Ramshorn Snails
 Aqualand’s inside info on Planorbis rubrum

 
Amphibians
Axolotls
Caecilian Worm
Chaco Toad
Mud Puppies

Newts General
Newts Eastern
Newts Golden

Newts Mandarin
Salamanders
Suriname Toad
Tadpoles
Terrarium I
Terrarium II
USA Toads
Water Dogs
Misc. Toads

Frogs
Bull
Clawed
Dumpy
Dwarf
Fire-Belly
Floating
Green Tree
Leopard
Pac Man
Pipa pipa
Pyxie
Red-Eyed Tree
Tomato
Misc Frogs 
Misc Frogs II
Misc Frogs III
Misc Frogs IV

Misc Frogs V

Animals
Bunnies
Bunnies II 

Cat-N-Around Cat Club
Cat-N-Around Cat Club 2007 Annual Show
Hawkeye Cat Club 2004
Hawkeye Cat Club 2005
Chinchillas
Degus
Ferrets
Ferrets by BOB
Gerbils
Ground Squirrels
Guinea Pig
Hamsters I
Hamsters II
Hamsters III
Hamsters IV
Hamsters V
Hedgehogs
Kittens
Kids & Kittens
Mice
Mice Pets II
Parasites
Rats I
Rats II
Rats III
Rats, Hairless
S-T Opossums
Siberian Chipmunks
Sugar Gliders
Sugar Gliders II
Water Bottles

Bugs
Crabby 500
Crab 04 Results
Centipedes
Cray/Lobsters
Crayfish II
Crayfish III
Cray, Yucatan
Fiddler Crabs
Shrimp, Algae
Shrimp, Aqua
Shrimp, Orange Bee
Shrimp, Red
Shrimp, Flower

Shrimp, Ghost
Shrimp, Rudolph
Hermit Crabs
Hermit Crabs II
Madagas Roach
Mantids
Mini-Clams
Mini-Crabs
Patriot Crabs
Giant Millipedes
Red Claw Crabs
Reiman Butterfly
Spider, Black Widow
Snail, Apple
Snail, Colombian
Snail, Land
Snail, Malaysian

Snail, Mystery
Snail, Trapdoor 
Scorpions
Tarantulas
Tarantulas II
Tarantula Night 2006
TarantulaWeen VII
TarantulaWeen 9
Walking Stick
Misc. Bugs
Misc Bugs II  

Birds
Breeding Tips

Button Quail
Canaries

Cockatiels
Dove, Diamond
Dove, Ringneck
Finches
Love Birds
Parakeets
Pelleted Foods
Quaker Parrots

Parrot Pictures
Parrot Pix II

Parrot Pix III
Dave's Parrots


Lizards
Alligators
Anoles
Bearded Dragon

Beardies II
Calotes
Chamel, Jackson
Chamel, Panther
Chamel, Veiled
Crested Geckos
Gecko, Golden

Gecko, House
Gecko, Leopard
Gecko, Tokay
Horned "Toads"
Iguana New
Iguana Dragons
Iguana Q&A I
Iguana Q&A II
Iguana Training
Iguana Update
Cool Iguana Pics
Knight Anoles
Monitors, Nile

Monitors, Savana
Monitors, Water

Salmonella
Skinks
Skinks Blue-Tongue
Tegus
Uromastyx maliensis
Water Dragon
Misc Lizards
Misc Lizards 2
Misc Lizards 3
Misc Lizards 4
Misc Lizards 5

Misc Lizards 6
Misc Lizards 7
Misc Lizards 8
Misc Lizards 9
Misc Lizards 10


Snakes
Anacondas
Boa, Rosy

Boa, Red-Tail
Corn Snake
Garter Snake
Green Snake
Kids/Corn Snakes
Kids/Red-Tail Boas

Kids at Pet Expo 1

Kids at Pet Expo 2

Kids at Pet Expo 3

Kids at Pet Expo 4

Kids at Pet Expo 5
King & Milk
Python, Ball
Python, Burmese

Snakes Alive
Snakesgiving
Snakesgiving II

Misc Snake Pix
Misc Snakes II

Misc Snakes III  

Turtles/Tortoises
Box, Asian
Box, USA
Races
Snapping

Spiny

Sulcata
Water

Western Painted

Live Foods
Blackworms
Blood Worms
Br Shrimp I
Br
Shrimp II
Crayfish 1
Crayfish 2
Crayfish 3 
Crickets
Dandelions
Daphnia
Earthworms
Feeder Goldfish
Fruit Flies
Ghost Shrimp

Glass Worms

Grindal Worms
Infusoria
Mealworms
Microworms
Rosy Reds

Super Worms

Wax Worms
White Clouds

 

Decorating
Bubbles
Driftwood
Gravel
Plastic Plants
Rocks
Slow Growing Plants

Miscellaneous
Bob's Acclimation

How to Start
How to Add New Fish
How to Keep Healthy
Which Fish Get Along?
10 Questions to Ask
What is Ich?
Under Gravel Filters

Sponge Filters
Cloudy Water

Cool Water Tanks
Gravel Vacuums
Preventing Disease
Feeding to the Max
Frozen Foods
Green Water
Nasty Chemicals
Overfeeding
Power Filters
Rift Lake Salts
Quarantine Tank
Mini-Tank
2nd Av Bait

Pet World Visit
Dandelions

Aquatic Plants
Amazon Swords
More Swords
Sword Plants III

Anubias
Anacharis
Aponogetons
A. boivinianus
A. fenestralis
A. ulvaceous
Aquarium/Bog
Banana Plant
Bolbitis
Bunch
Bunch Plants II
Cryptocorynes
Crystalwort
Dwarf Lily
Grassy
Grassy II
Hornwort
Hygrophila
Lace
Java Fern I
Java Fern II
Java Fern III
Java Fern IV
Java Moss
Moss Balls
Onion
Vermiculite

Watersprite

Different Watersprite

 
Local Clubs
Cat-N-Around Cat Club 2006

Cat-N-Around Cat Club 2007
Hawkeye State Cat Club 2004
Hawkeye State Cat Club 2005
CIWGA -- Central Iowa Water Garden Association
Iowa Herp Society
MACBS -- Mid America Caged Bird Society
Iowa Aquaria Association
IAA 02.05.05
EIAA -- Eastern Iowa Aquarium Association
MAS 75th Ann. Show
MCA Expo 2006 -- the Fish
MCA Expo 2006 -- the People

 Ramshorn Snail Factoids

Origin

Hitchhikers on new plants

Maximum Size

One inch

Temperature

Normal tank temperature

Attitude

Eats day and night

Usefulness Cleans up excess fish food

Security

A tough shell that clamps to the glass.

Foods

Algae, fish food, zucchini, dead fish, decaying vegetation

Supplements Calcium helps their shells.  Most algae contains calcium.

Water

Prefers hard water with elevated pH-- but flexible

Brood Size

Lays several eggs in one flat mass

Gestation Period 4 to 40 days depending upon temperature

Breeding

Hermaphroditic.

Longevity Two years?
Threats Copper, low pH, dirty water, salt, loaches, puffer keepers, and cichlids

LA
Ramshorn snail apparently laying eggs on airline tubing.

LA
Ramshorn snail trucking across a sponge filter.


LA
Ramshorn snails come in a variety of colors.

Introduction.  Ramshorn snails are the most identifiable of all the aquarium snails.  Named for the curled horns of a male sheep or a dodge truck, these little guys pop up mysteriously in many supposedly  "snail-free" aquaria.  Ramshorn snails often come in under the cover of plant leaves.  They hatch out too small to see at first glance.  They soon grow to a noticeable size -- as much as an inch in diameter.

LA
You won't see their antennae in any tank that contains nippy guppies.  Note the white patches on his shell.

LA
Diffewrent colors within the population.

LA
White patches on his shell indicate a low pH (acidic) water conditions.

Ramshorn Snails at First Glance.  At first you notice their curlicue shell.  Upon closer observation you can see their antennae -- unless they're in a tank containing nippy little guppies or other small fish looking for a quick snack.  Most fish are constant browsers and do not hesitate to nip the snails' bite size antennae.  Ramshorn snails quickly learn to adhere tightly to the glass to avoid being nipped.

Why the White Patches?  Age and low pH take their toll.  Snail shells tend to dissolve eventually.  Usually the whiter the shell, the older the snail.  Some aquarists try to aid their ramshorn snails by adding crushed coral or cuttlebone to the aquarium.  We'll cover another way to help your snails build stronger bodies and stronger shells.  Oddly enough, the diatom algae they eat are also high in calcium content.  (You could also buy a brown colored Sharpie and paint in the faded spots -- even better than the hair restorer in a spray can.  I've never tested the toxicity of Sharpie ink, so you're on your own there.)

LA
My potential breeding crew.  Gentlemen. start your engines.

LA
With no operculum, this ramshorn snail quickly latched on to my finger.

No Operculum.  You won't see one of those "trap doors" that slam shut to protect many snail species.  If out of the water for extended periods of time, ramshorn snails will dry up and die.  Contrast that with a Malaysian trumpet snail which slams shut and can be resuscitated weeks or even months later.  Mystery snails can live a week out of the water.

 LA
I rounded up all the ramshorns in Aqualand.  Several different colors were scattered about.

LA
Occasionally some red sports occur in the population.  Look for a red ramshorn coming soon.

  LA
Albino red ramshorn from a decade ago.

Red Ramshorns.  A couple decades ago, red ramshorn snails were more popular in the aquarium hobby.  We don't see them much anymore.  However, they're still out there in the gene pool -- as the picture above indicates.  I've tried to pull out the redder ramshorns in the past and line breed them to re-acquire the red ramshorns.  I know they still exist in other parts of the world, but I want my own.  My red ramshorn line-breeding attempts in the past have been unsuccessful.  Seems like the harder you try to raise snails, the quicker they die (or maybe that's just me.)  The reddest ramshorns I've seen in the past, lived in clear or white shells.  Unfortunately, I have no current pictures of the reds, they still exist only in my mind.

  LA
0.35-inch "red" ramshorn.                                               0.75 brown ramshorn.

"Red" Observations.  Ramshorn snails or Planorbis rubrum seem to have Red in their scientific name.  "Rubrum" usually refers to a red coloration.  Theoretically, the red ramshorns contain no melanin, the black pigment.  They are red because of their red blood cells.  Perhaps the reds are weaker like many deviations from the "norm."  Who knows?    

LA
Shell strengtheners.  Not so much the "no plaster" Tetra one. 

Calcium Additives.  Ramshorns need a source or two of calcium to build and strengthen their shells -- young ones especially.  They pretty much hatch out naked and naïve about the ways of the aquatic world.  They soon learn that even small fish consider baby snails a taste treat.

  LA
You can almost see their radula (rasping tongue) in addition to their antennae.

Tank Mates.  Most fish will devour baby snails.  Some fish love to crunch up the adults or slurp their tender bodies as an appetizer.  With fish in the same tank, you'll never see all your ramshorn snails can be.  Constant pick, pick, picks by the fish cause your ramshorn snails to clamp to the glass.

LA
Different guy also looking for a snack.

LA
Three ramshorn snails "processing" their feeder block.  They apparently enjoy it.  This is one night's efforts.

LA
Three different ramshorn snails the next day.

LA
Nothing left the third day.

More Calcium Comments.  Ramshorn snails put a lot of calcium into their shells.  The feeder blocks mentioned earlier contain lots of calcium.  They can add it to the insides of their shell but can't add it to the outside.  However, calcium in the water increases the pH which makes their shells hold up longer.

LA
10-gallon Aqualand laboratory set up for observations of ramshorn snails.

LA
Ramshorn snail dropped into a new tank and struggling to upright his shell.

LA
Water looked a bit cloudy so I added an extra filter.

LA
Ramshorn snails help clean the glass.  But I've found them to ignore most algae.

LA
Carrot strip dropped into the ramshorn "vat" to test its palatability.

LA
Hour later -- off to a good start.  Couple of reddish rascals in the carrot chewing crew.

LA
Day later.

LA
Two days later.  They've eaten thru -- just right of the middle.

LA
Dwarf gourami given to them yesterday.  It was floating this am.

LA
Newly deceased pearl gourami dropped in today (with lead strip to hold it down).

LA
One hour later.

LA
Next day.

LA
Next day the lead strip came off and the gourami floated to the surface.

LA
Canned green beans -- French-cut of course.  They did not like their green beans.

LA
Ramshorn snails enjoying a slice of zucchini.

LA
Next morning.  Ramshorn snails do like zucchini.

LA
This guy came to the top and ate flake food (and duckweed by accident).  They all loved flake food.

LA
Foolproof snail riddance method.

Snail Killers.  Give 'em the finger.  Squoosh 'em.  This handy method works great on snails under 1/4 inch.  As they grow larger, this method becomes much more painful.  Use the blunt end of a rubber-handled screwdriver (flat blade or Phillips optional).  You can nail many more of them this way.  Nail them with a screw driver.  Yeah.  Paronomasia at work.  

LA

Nearly Last Words.  I'll add some egg pictures after the ramshorns get down to their main business.  I fed them flake fish food just now and I'll be back to capture more details next year (tomorrow).  LA.December 31, 2010

LA
Not a large clutch (10 plus one likely dud), but we'll soon see more.  January 2, 2011.  They were gone January 3.

Coöperative Egg Layers.  Two days later one helpful ramshorn laid a small clutch of eggs on the front glass.  Anywhere else and they'd be too hard to photograph.  I secured the dime with rubber cement.

LA
New eggs January 3.  The fish flake food triggered some egg laying activities.

LA
Another one with a single egg.  January 3.


LA
New eggs January 4.  There were ten visible egg cases.  Flake food seems to trigger them to lay eggs.

Closer to Last Words.  We'll track all these egg cases to come up with a more exact gestation period.  That first egg case with Roosevelt's picture has already disappeared.  Perhaps the larger snails are eating them. 

Last Words.  Final gestation results are in.  At 78 degrees Fahrenheit over a dozen egg "cases" hatched in less than a week.  The baby snails are miniscule -- way too smal to photograph.  No doubt the larger ramshorns will eat some of them.  The majority will join the ranks of the aufwuchs (as the Germans say) and be snacked upon by organisms lurking on a higher rung on the food chain ladder. LA

LA
Eggs laid on Jan 8.  Picture taken Jan 13.  Snail on right hatched Jan 10.

Laster than Last Words.  Well, seems the camera can see better than the (excuse the expression) naked eye.  To the left you can see the soon-to-be-hatched eggs.  To the right you can see a two or three-day-old newly hatched ramshorn snail.  LA

LA
Cirque du Snail, eh?

 


© 2010, © 2011  LA Productions
aqualandpetsplus.com

3600 Sixth Avenue

Corner of Sixth & Euclid Avenues

Des Moines, IA 50313

515 283-0300

Home

Fish

Other Stuff

 

Anabantids
Betta Leaf 
Betta Breed 1
Betta Breed II
Betta Info
Betta  Housing
Betta Pla Kat
Choc Gourami
Climbing Perch
Gourami Pix
Kiss. Gourami
Osphronemus
Pearl Gourami
More Pearls
Paradise Fish  
Snakehead
Spawn Gourami
T. trichopterus

Catfish  
Banjo
Bullheads
Bull Sharks
Channel  
Corydoras
Cory Pics
Electric
Glass
Hoplos
Otocinclus
Pangassius
Pictus
Plecostomus
Pleco Bristle
Pleco Costly I
Pleco Costly II
Pleco Costly III
Pleco Costly IV
Pleco Costly V
Pleco Costly VI

Pleco Costly VII
Raphael
Red-Tail
Shovelnose
Sun
Synodontis
Synodontis petricola
Turushuki Catfish
Upside-down
USD Gold Flake
Misc Catfish
Misc Catfish II
Misc Catfish III

Misc Catfish IV
Misc Catfish V

Cichlids
African I
African II
African III
African IV

Af. Furniture
Amer. Small
Amer.  Med 
Amer. Large
Angelfish I
Angelfish II
Angelfish III
Angelfish IV
More Angels
Buttikoferi

Chocolate
Chocolate Spawning
Cichlid Decor
Cichlid Food
Convicts
Convicts 2
Convicts 3
Convicts 4
Dempseys
More Dempseys
Jack Dempsey Spawn
Discus
Dither Fish
Flower Horn
Green Terror
Jaguar
More Jaguars
Jaguar Spawning

Jaguar Spawning II
Jewel Fish
Keo's Flowerhorns
Keo's Flowerhorns II
Kribensis

Odd Couple Spawn
Oscars 1
Oscars 2
Oscars 3
Oscars 4
Oscars 5
More Oscar
More Oscar II
More Oscars III
More Oscars 2007
More Oscars 2007.5
Oscar Spawn
Peacock Bass
Red Devils
More Red Devil

Red Parrots

Red Parrots Spawn
Red Parrot Spawn II
Pikes
Pink Tilapia
Rams
Red Bay Snooks
Red Bay Snook Spawn
Roger Stephen's Cichlids
Severums
More Severums
Severums III

Tanganyikans
Texas Cichlid
Texas Spawning

Texas Spawn II
Uarus
Misc Cichlids I
Misc Cichlids II
Misc Cichlids III
Misc Cichlids IV
Misc Cichlids V
Misc Cichlids VI
Misc Cichlids VII
Misc Cichlids VIII
Misc Cichlids IX

Livebearer  
Guppies
Half-Beak
Mollies
Moons/Platys
Swordtails

Minnows/Tetra 
Barbs
Barbs, Black
Barbs, Gold

Barbs, Rosy
Barbs, Tiger
Barbs, Tinfoil

Danios

Danio Egg Saver
Distochodus
Fathead Minnows
Headstanders
Killies, Econ.
Killies, Golden
Killies, Peat
Killies, Plant
Misc Mini-Fish
Pacús 

Piranha, Black
Piranha, Red
Rainbowfish

Rainbowfish, Dwarf Neon
Rainbowfish, Irian

Silver Dollar
Tetras, Larger
Tetras, Smaller
Tetras, Spawn
Tetra, Vampire
White Clouds

Pond Fish
Carp
Channel Cat
Gold. Comets
Gold. Fantails
More Fantails
Gold. Oriental  
Gold Oriental II 
Gold. Spawn
Kloubec Koi Farm
Koi
Koi II

Koi III
Oranda Spawn
Plecostomus
Shubunkins

Oddballs  
Af. Butterfly
Af. Lungfish
Af. Mudskippr
American Eel
Archer Fish

Arowana
Bichirs
Borneo Suckers
Brackish I
Brackish II
Brackish III
Brackish IV
Brackish V
Michael Troung's Pix
Butterfly/Wasp
Chameleon Fish
Chromides

Chin Alg Eater
Crazy Fish
Crocodile Fish

Datnioides

Dojo
Dwarf Puffers
Electric Cat
Electric Eels

Elephant Nose
Exodon paradoxus
Flounder
Gars
 
Glassfish
Goby Bumble
Goby Butterfly
Goby Dragon
Goby Misc.
Half-Beak
Knife African
Knife Clown
Knife Ghost
Loach Botias
Loach Clown
Loach Kuhli
Loach Weather

Longear Sunfish
Moray Eel  
Peacock Gudgeons
Polypterids
Puffers

Ropefish
Scats
Siam Algae Eater
 
Spiny Eels 
Snakehead
Stingray
Stonefish
Wasp Fish
Wolffish
Wrest Half-Beak
Misc Mini-Fishes
Misc Odd
Misc Odd II
Misc Odd III
Misc Odd  IV

Misc Odd V
Misc Odd VI

Sharks  
Bala
Black
Bull
Chinese Hi-Fin Banded
Iridescent
Red-Tail
Siam Algae Eater

Pond Info 
Blank Park Zoo
Bob Humphrey's Ponds
Cattails
Maffett Reservoir
DMACC's Pond
D.M. Botanical Center
D.M. Water Works
Dr. Ervanian's Garden
Duckweed

Dwarf Lily
Ewing Park "Pond"
Jan & Chris's Water Garden
John McDonald's Pond
Hall's Four Acres
Klines' Water Garden
Landscaper Effects
Mini-Pond Pics
Pioneer Corn's Pond
Pond Fish Predators
Pond on 38th Street 
Pond Pics
Pond Plants
More Pond Plants
Pond Plants III
Reiman Ponds
River Scenes
Riverview Island
Selin's Water Gardens
Selin's Japanese Garden
Tom's Used Cars Pond
Urbandale Duck Pond
Water Hyacinth
Water Lettuce
Wild Ponds