Floating snail?

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Floating snail?

Postby Absolver » Wed Nov 06, 2013 1:44 am

I have a snail in my tank and lately he has taken to just floating around the tank. He was floating for about two days when I decided he must be dead and scooped him out with the net but when I (gently) poked at him he pulled himself into his shell even tighter so I sort of wedged him under a plant and left him touching the bottom. He eventually began moving and did a lap around the tank, eventually sticking up next to the very top of my filter water intake tube at the surface. Now he's floating again.

All my fish are doing well and swimming normally. My shrimp is doing well too. Any ideas? Nothing visually off about the snail.
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Re: Floating snail?

Postby Carylnz » Wed Nov 06, 2013 4:34 am

I found the following information which should help. Some snails do float about sometimes..

Trapped Air
When some snails close up -- mystery and apple snails are notorious for this -- a bit of air gets trapped inside. Like a little balloon, they say goodbye to the bottom-dwellers and start floating to the very top of the tank. Once they open up, they'll fall back down to the bottom, or suction onto something. You'll often see this with snails who have a lung.

Take a look at the surface of your water and you might notice a milky film. It most often results from harmless bacteria or poor surface agitation, which allows plant protein and food particles to join together and form a film. Regardless of the reason, the film isn't harmful to your swimming friends. But some snails, such as pond snails and Malaysian trumpet snails, love to munch down on it. They float along the top, upside down, eating away at the film. Sometimes you can see their little mouths moving. Adding an air stone or increasing your filter power can sometimes disrupt the film. You can also lay a paper towel flat on the surface for a second or two to remove it.

Bad Water Quality
If your water quality has taken a turn for the worst, your snails might float in protest. You might also see them try to leave the tank by climbing out of it. They're trying to get the heck out of a bad environment. Your primary concerns are nitrates, nitrites and ammonia. Check your water. If those levels are out of whack, change 20 percent of the water each day until they go down, and your snails will stop their floating madness.

Knowing whether your snails are just chilling out at the top of your tank or actually dead calls for a bit of closer inspection. Pick up the snail in question to see whether he's closed inside his shell. If he's tightly shut, he's not dead. If he's hanging out of it and not reacting when you touch him lightly, he's probably either dead or very sick. The only way to know for sure is the smell test. Dead snails smell something horrid, usually within 12 hours of dying.
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Re: Floating snail?

Postby Rob W » Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:16 pm

Mine float around occasionally too, doesn't do them any harm and they normally find their way back onto a hard surface. I have a boisterous angel and I've noticed he knocks the snails off the glass if they get too close to his eggs.
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