View Full Version : mystery snail question

12-03-2008, 10:04 AM
when my snails get close to the top of the water line, they do this kind
of "humping" action. Does anyone know why they do that??

Wild Turkey
12-03-2008, 11:16 AM
when my snails get close to the top of the water line, they do this kind
of "humping" action. Does anyone know why they do that??

Is it just one or two?

If its just one, and they do it right after feeding, its nothing to worry about.
My theory on that has always been it seems the snails have gotten themselves clogged up trying to eat to fast. They make a mad dash for the surface with the siphon stretched way out to get a breathe. Once they get there they sit with the siphon out, and kinda "cough" or what looks like coughing until they seem to dislodge the food, and then they return.

Very commonplace, this sounds like what you are describing.

01-06-2009, 08:02 PM
hey kellie! mine do that too, i guess i'm not the only one with dancing snails. my theory is that it's how they actually take air in through their siphon, like a pump! but i could easily be wrong, i don't see them do it EVERY time they are up at the surface, only when they have their siphon out. they never look desperate or anything, just...you know, pumpy/humpy. :) one of these days i'm going to try to get a video of it as it has come up several times on the forum, and it is nifty snail behavior. happy snail racing!


02-23-2009, 06:21 PM
I agree with katieo80. I've only seen mine doing that when they have their siphon at the surface.

Wild Turkey
02-23-2009, 06:29 PM
This is an old thread, but mysterys dont need to "pump" to use their siphon, they have a lung. If you watch closely some color variations you can see it through their shell kind of. The mysteries dont need to go for air if you have a HOB filter or airstone, so they only go up for it when they get food stuck in their mouths.

When i had a tank with 50+, one or two would do it everytime i fed them, but never at any other time.

If you want the proof, turn off ur airstone and stop the filter from breaking the water, after an hour or so they will all be at the top breathing air, but none will be "humping"

08-17-2009, 09:21 PM
I'm no expert with only ever having one of these but, it sometimes did the "humping" at the surface too. It was in a terrarium with no air stone or HOB. It did not do this every time it went to the surface with its siphon out though. So, I'll take "dislodge the food" as an answer over pumping air.

Now, to prove I'm no expert :sconfused: , but did read Wild Turkey's article, http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aquariumforum/showthread.php?t=38661&highlight=mystery+snail+care

A Mystery snail is a type of Apple snail. Are both Mystery and Apple snails genus Pomacea? I get confused. Species follows genus. How does species play out in choosing or identifying a Mystery or Apple snail?

I want one like I had that gets big. I think it was sold as Florida Apple snail. That just seems to confuse the issue even more. The gold or black "Mystery" snails commonly sold in stores like PetSmart, how big do they get? What about the blue ones?

Seems one easy way to confuse things is confusing family Ampullariidae (Mystery and Apple) with family Viviparidae. Seems like the best way to tell the two apart is the family Ampullariidae has labial tentacles. Only family Ampullariidae will have a siphon, correct?

I keep reading that these Apple snails got named Mystery snails because the aquarium trade just wasn't sure what to call them. Well, neither do I. :11:

My water seems very good for these snails. My pH stays 7ish and is hard. It's not a cold water tank. Feeding calcium rich vegetables won't be a problem.

Wild Turkey
08-17-2009, 10:26 PM
Basically, "mystery snail" is a coined termed like you are describing. It doesnt mean anything, except that you are dealing with some kind of apple snail.

Of course, it doesnt matter much as their care requirements are all pretty much the same.

The kind you get from petsmart usually top out at about the size of a half dollar

08-19-2009, 12:29 AM
I think I had Pomacea haustrum.

I'm looking for either another of those or a Pomacea maculata.