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Pond Snails

Last Updated: 5/23/12

A pond snail on 3/25/12.

My Pond Snails
Photos of My Pond Snails
Photos of Other People's Pond Snails
Pond Snail Links


Survive in aquariums: Yes
Survive in warm ponds: Yes
Survive in cold ponds: Yes
Plant eating capacity: Low to High (varies based on population and population controls)
Algae eating capacity: Moderate to High
Breathing: Pulmonate
Breeding: Hermaphrodites and sexual, egg-laying

There are three different reactions to these snails. One, they are horrible and will destroy all plants and pollute the water and must die at any cost. Two, they are natural and part of the system and let us leave them alone. Three, they are great assets because they eat some algae. Well, they do eat plants but fish and other animals eat the snails in return too. Thus, I think that you can treat plants to kill snails before adding them BUT, when they show up anyway (they will!!), just let them be and do their part. Pond snails are hermaphroditic egg-layers that breed very fast. At times, they have been all over my waterfall and bio-filter and most likely everywhere in the pond but do not seem to be a problem in my ponds. I do not find plants with holes in them so I assume the fish and other animals keep their numbers low in the big pond itself. Most fish will eat pond snails if you crush the shell for them. Some species of loaches and other fish may eat shelled pond snails. Pond snails tend to stay under 2 cm in length. These are the most appetizing snails to fish. Some common and scientific names of various pond snails are the Melantho snail (Lymnae sp.?), pond snail (Lymnea stagnalis, a large snail), woodland pond snail (Stagnicola catascopium), marsh pond snail (Stagnicola elodes), flat-whorled pond snail (Stagnicola exilis), and coldwater pond snail (Stagnicola woodruffi). Please correct me or give me any information if you know anything more.

My Pond Snails

I never bought or intentionally added pond snails to my ponds but they have found their way to all of my ponds. Even if you could sterilize everything added to your pond, snails will show but when visiting animals drop off live snails or snail eggs that are attached to them or bits of plants from other ponds. At times, some of my smaller ponds have had a lot of pond snails but they are rarely a problem. There are few pond snails (or other snails for that matter) in my largest pond where, presumably, the large koi, goldfish, and orfe eat many small animals.

Photos of My Pond Snails

Pond snail on 3/25/12.

Snails - trapdoor snails (the biggest ones) and their babies (the smallest ones), black ramshorn snails (the round ones), and Melantho snails (the elongate ones), on the day that I got them, 4/28/11.

Two Melantho snails that I got on 5/23/07. Sorry it is not in focus.

Photos of Other People's Pond Snails

Photos are listed from oldest to newest.

Sarah sent these photos of her a pond snail and its eggs in her aquarium on 2/25/07.
Pond snail
Pond snail eggs - real close up!

Karen sent these two photos on 9/1/07 of her stream with pond snails and insect larvae in the water flow.
Pond snails
Pond snails

Joaquin took this amazing photo under the microscope of pond snail embryos six days after the eggs were laid. They were moving around in the eggs. You can see their eyes. I forgot the date but it must have been around 10/08.
Pond snail embryos
Pond snail embryos - a close-up of some of them from the top of the previous photo

Pond Snail Links

None at this time.

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