Algae On Snails

by Kay
(Worcestershire )

Hi - I have 2 small snails that live very harmoniously with my goldfish. However, this year they are covered in algae. How do I remove it from them as it’s pretty stuck?

Many thanks

Grant's Reply

Hi Kay

This is a tricky one.

For the snails, this is ideal camouflage so it won't be worrying them, unless an algae eating fish takes an interest in them.

You mention that "this year they are covered in algae". As you have Goldfish I'm surprised they aren't munching on the algae, my fish love it.

The algae appears to be what would be termed blanket weed, a filamentous type that attaches itself to anything in its environment, moving or not.

What has changed?

I notice you have greenery in the aquarium so therefore it must be receiving a certain amount of light to sustain the plants. Has the lighting hours been increased or the light bulb(s) changed?

What is the nitrate level, anything above 10 ppm (parts per million) will help promote algae growth?

If all water parameters are as they should be, then the focus is on removing the algae from the snails.

There are several algae removing chemicals on the market. I highly recommend that you DO NOT use them as, despite the claims, they are harmful to Goldfish health.

Some of these chemicals aren't recommended if invertebrates are present anyway.

The easiest and safest way of removing the algae is to put the snails in their own container in a dimly lit area for two weeks, feeding them a bit of greenery or fish food occasionally. They may eat the algae off each other's shell if food is scarce, but most snails seem to hate having another snail crawl onto their shells and do their best to dislodge them.

I suspect though, that as soon as the snails are back in their aquarium, withing a few weeks the algae will grow back.

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