Removing Snails from the Freshwater Aquarium | Fish FAQs
Manual removal can also be an effective way to get rid of aquarium snail infestation.
A baby Apple SnailSome people love them, some people hate them. Snails would probably be more welcome in aquariums if they weren't so prolific. They do serve as good aquarium janitors. they will eat any leftovers, gathering it all up, processing it and then leaving it in convienient little packages known as "snail droppings". Snail droppings are much easier to remove than the fine crud that they eat, hence the snail is a very valuable addition to any fry tank.
The Apple Snail is more well thought of by most aquarist. They are big, sometimes approaching the size of an apple (hence the name) and since they lay their eggs above the water line in easy to see, and easy to remove, light colored masses they aren't too hard to control.
Tips for Removing Aquarium Snails - Aquarium Base
pyramid snail removal? | 3reef Aquarium Forums
Despite the fact that snails are beautiful animals, there are situations in which they are unwanted. This could be for example when there is an excess of snails in an aquarium. Also it's a fact that not everyone is pleased with snails and even consider snails to be harmful and some species do eat your aquatic vegetation. However, it's important to realise that snails can play an important role in maintaining a healthy eco-system in an aquarium: they remove dead fish, they eat decaying vegetation, clean up food excesses and snails as the are beneficial for the bottom quality. The snail population should stay relatively constant and an excessive growth in the snail population indicates possible problems in the balance of your aquarium (primary a food excess). Another occasion in which snails are unwelcome is when they treat human food production. In the case of apple snails this applies to area's where they are artificially introduced (e.g. and Hawaii) where the apple snails can cause to rice fields and taro patches. Furthermore, you might want to kill a snail for reasons (dissection of the snail to learn more about invertebrate ) or to reduce the spread of snail transmitted that can affect humans and cattle. Snail eating fish The introduction of snail eating fish can help to control the snail population. Not all snail eating fish are equally good in removing snails and some fish are great snails eaters, but aren't well suited for most aquaria. An example of the latter are puffer, which primary feed on snails, but also tend to get aggressive towards other fish. A list of snail eating fish is available at the of this site. Complete tear down of the tank This very drastic method is one of the best methods if you want to remove *all* snails from an aquarium, but for most of us, it the last option if all other methods fail. A complete tear down means removal of the fish and the water, taking out all vegetation and collect the bottom material. All fish should be put in a separated tank with adequate water quality. A good option is to use the water from the tank as the fish are already adapted to this water. Remove all snails and eggs from the plants and after that they should be threatened with a weak potassium permanganate bath (see above) or another snail killing bath. The gravel should be boiled to kill all snails and their eggs that are hiding in here. Clean all other objects thoroughly and clean the tanks itself as well (don't use detergents for this!). A good sponge and warm water should do it. The filter should be cleaned as well (obvious): put the filter without filter material in the 10 mg/l potassium permanganate solution for one hour (with the filter running). Rinse the filter with clean water and put in new filter material. After all this the aquarium environment can be put together again. Note!: The cleaned aquarium needs some time to rebalance again and the fish should only be reintroduced after this period (3 days to a week). Use a part of the old water to speed up the balancing. I have found that the most effective treatment to remove snails from live aquarium plants is to submerge them in a 5% chlorine bleach solution for between two to three minutes. Obviously, more delicate plants like water sprite should be on the lower end of that time scale, while hardier plants like Amazon swords can easily handle up to three minutes.