View Full Version : Severly damaged Mystery Snail... help?

01-22-2009, 01:53 AM
I went to Petco for some reptile food today and grabbed a couple mystery snails for my tiger barb tank... didn't notice this until I got home. I've heard of people repairing shells, and I have a couple empty shells in my other tank but I really don't know if this can be done, or where to start. Any advice?

01-22-2009, 02:18 AM
looks like they have calcium deficiency

01-22-2009, 02:45 AM
the pictures are all of the same snail, and none of the others that I got looks like this one... is there any way to treat calcium deficiency?

01-22-2009, 03:01 AM
You can add a calcium supplement to the water. Over time the new shell the snail produces will be stronger.

01-22-2009, 03:40 AM
Make sure your pH is above 7. Add calcium supplement to water, feed high calcium veggies and stuff like weekend feeders which are mostly calcium.

The outside of the shell will not be repaired but the snail can put new coats on the inside. You can also put clear nail polish on the shell to protect it. Check out applesnail.net for instructions- I just saw it there.

Wild Turkey
01-22-2009, 04:07 AM
Make sure your pH is above 7. Add calcium supplement to water, feed high calcium veggies and stuff like weekend feeders which are mostly calcium.

Exactly, taking these steps will make sure you dont have serious problems with shell damage. (whats shown in your pic is not very severe at all)

Which brings me to my next point.

Repairing shell damage is for when the snails shells have actually broken away, leaving a hole. You take an old shell or some ceramic and basically glue it to the snail so its still protected. This is because holes wont repair themselves, and can be dangerous for the snail. With cracks and such, the new shell will eventually grow in and the shell damage will move from the front of the shell to the back as it grows. Eventually it will be gone

01-22-2009, 04:10 AM
Agreed, doesn't look too bad. And it's very common for them to have some shell damage as they get older, as their shells become less resistant, and especially on the little swirl on the end.

I'd just make sure the pH is above 7, and leave it to fix itself.

01-22-2009, 04:20 AM
Thanks everybody! I'm glad it's not as bad as it looks, I've never seen anything like it before in person. My ph is 6.8, is this close enough? I don't really want to mess with my ph levels. Also, if I try weekend feeders, will my fish ignore them if I feed them their normal food? I guess I can go get some and just try it out.

Also, I have powdered calcium for my leopard geckos, is this something that might be aquarium safe? It's "Jurassi Cal Calcium Supplement for Reptiles and Amphibians" The bottle also says it's phosphorus free, if that makes a difference.

Wild Turkey
01-22-2009, 04:37 AM
Usually messing with the ph isnt a great idea. But its a lot easier to raise and keep stable a higher ph than lower. So thats good news. Basically....this is why mysteries can be quite a keep for some.. the easiest way to remedy the situation is to replace the substrate with crushed coral or add a bunch of crushed coral. Of course you will have to add it slowly since you already have inhabitants.

I find the best thing to do for mysterys is grab a ten or 20 gallon tank, keep the bottom bare, use bagged crushed coral and rotate it with new coral on occasion. Not pretty but the only realistic way of keeping mysteries without any problem in the long term or major maintenance, of course some things dont come into play when you have one or two...but if you are careful and know what you are doing you put 50 or so snails in a 20 gallon very comfortably using said method. Just get rdy to spend a fortune on food.

The cal suppliment you mentioned sounds like its ok...but i would ask someone who knows more about reptiles to be sure there isnt some difference im not aware of. Long term, just buy the wholesale stuff online that is "pure" in bulk. Cheap as dirt

01-22-2009, 10:26 PM
For calcium supplements, I'd rather use something they can eat. Putting it in the water will increase your hardness, which you may not want if you don't want to change the water conditions for your other critters.

So far my fish haven't bothered the weekend feeders- part of the reason why they're not worth it for fish. I just break off a chunk instead of feeding the whole thing as that's a lot of food for a few snails. You can also use human calcium pills, just don't use the ones with Vitamin D added as it can be harmful in large doses like that.

I would think your pH would be ok, just make sure the snail gets some calcium in his food such as the weekend feeders or blanched collard greens, etc.

Wild Turkey
01-23-2009, 04:28 AM
Well, the crushed coral with raise the hardness anyways, but snails actually need semi hard water as well. Regardless, in a ph less than 7.0+ their shell will eventually rot. Its a combination of factors..that is to say, just because your ph is 7, doesnt mean they wont rot. But if its not 7, they surely will. Look at it this way, your local fish store probably has a ph of 7 and the snail already has shell damage.