13 Types of Aquarium Snails

Aquarium snails can provide a great addition to any tank, bringing with them a unique look and a range of benefits. However, it’s important to be aware that not all aquarium snails are created equal. In this article, we’ll go over 13 types of aquarium snails, discussing both their good and bad qualities. We’ll cover the various sizes, shapes, colors, and costs associated with each type of snail.

Aquarium Snails

Aquarium snails are an excellent addition to any home aquarium. Native to many parts of the world and found in a variety of watery habitats, these mollusks can bring life and balance to your underwater environment.

With their unique shapes, sizes, and colors, aquarium snails are both interesting and beneficial to any fish tank.
These intriguing invertebrates come in dozens of species; from the common pond snail to the exotic Ramshorn snail. Each species has its own unique characteristics that make it desirable for certain types of tanks.

Some varieties are great for helping keep algae levels in check while others add a touch of whimsy with their bright coloration or decorative shells.

13 Types of Aquarium Snails

Are Snails Beneficial in an Aquarium?

Are snails beneficial in an aquarium? The answer is a resounding yes! Not only do they help to keep water clean and reduce algae growth, but they also provide a natural source of food for other inhabitants. Snails can be a great addition to any freshwater or saltwater tank.

Snails are low-maintenance creatures that are often overlooked when stocking tanks. They feed on excess food particles and algae, helping to keep the water clean.
Additionally, they help aerate the gravel by sifting through it with their foot and releasing oxygen into the water column as they move throughout the tank.

This helps keep beneficial bacteria levels balanced while also providing an interesting visual aspect to your aquarium setup.
In addition, snails can be a great source of food for other fish in your aquarium like cichlids and loaches.

Can Aquarium Snails Become Pests?

For aquarium owners, having an infestation of pests can be a nightmare. Aquarium snails are often seen as beneficial organisms that help maintain the water quality in an aquarium, but it is possible for them to become pests as well.

Aquarium snails reproduce quickly which can lead to overcrowding and over-feeding. These conditions can cause the tank to become unbalanced and put stress on other aquatic inhabitants.

Without proper care or regular maintenance, aquarium snails will start consuming live plants or other invertebrates in the tank causing further disruption of the ecosystem. In extreme cases, they may even begin eating fish eggs or small juvenile fish leading to further population decline.

13 Types of Aquarium Snails

Good Snails vs. Bad Snails

Snails are often used in aquariums to help keep the tanks clean. They are naturally occurring creatures that feed on algae and other organic materials, helping to keep the tank clean and healthy. While snails can be beneficial to an aquarium, they can also become a nuisance if not managed properly.

Good snails belong to the species of Apple snail, Nerite snail, Malaysian trumpet snail, and Rabbit snail which all help with tank maintenance by eating uneaten food, algae buildup and dead plants while leaving healthy specimens alone. These snails do best in mature tanks with plenty of live plants so they have food available throughout their lifespan.

Bad snails on the other hand include species such as pond snails and ramshorn snails that reproduce quickly and eat any plant matter including live plants making them a pest for many aquarium hobbyists.

13 Types of Aquarium Snails

The market is filled with a wide variety of aquarium snails. The top 13 are listed below:

  1. Mystery Snails

Mystery snails are an increasingly popular addition to aquariums. These small, freshwater snails can be found in a variety of colors, sizes, and shapes. While they may look delicate, mystery snails are actually quite hardy creatures who can live for several years with good care.

When it comes to keeping mystery snails in your aquarium, there are a few things you should know before getting started. First and foremost, these snails need plenty of oxygen so it’s important to make sure your tank is properly aerated and heated.

Additionally, they need plenty of hiding spots such as rocks or driftwood in order to feel safe and secure. Lastly, these little critters love a varied diet that includes both plant-based foods like algae wafers and meat-based foods like frozen bloodworms or brine shrimp.

  1. Nerite Snails

Nerite snails are some of the most popular choices for cleaning up aquariums and adding a unique touch to any aquatic environment. These small, attractive snails come in a variety of species and sizes, each offering its own distinct color pattern and shell shape.

Nerites are known for their hardy nature, making them an ideal choice for both expert aquarists as well as beginning hobbyists.
These tiny creatures can help keep algae from growing out of control in your tank by consuming it on glass walls and rocks.

They also work to keep the substrate clean by eating decaying organic matter from the gravel bed. In addition to helping with maintenance, nerite snails make great additions to any freshwater tank thanks to their bright colors and entertaining behavior.

  1. Apple Snails

Apple Snails are one of the largest types of freshwater snails, and are an interesting addition to any aquarium. They have a unique, attractive shell that can grow up to six inches in diameter. The typical size for these snails is around two or three inches in height and width.

Apple Snails come in a variety of colors including browns, yellows, greens, blues and even pinks. These creatures are typically quite peaceful and enjoy having plenty of vegetation to browse on in their tank.

In addition to providing excellent aeration for your tank, they also act as a natural water filter by consuming algae and other debris from the bottom. As with most invertebrates, they require special care when it comes to water parameters and food selection.

  1. Rabbit Snails

Rabbit snails are an enjoyable and exciting addition to any freshwater aquarium. They are a unique species of snail that has become increasingly popular in the aquarium world, due to their amusing behaviors and activity levels.

Rabbit snails can reach sizes up to 2 inches in length, and do best when kept with other peaceful tankmates.
These interesting snails get their name from their pronounced “rabbit-ear” shaped shells. These curious creatures will explore every inch of an aquarium, seeking out food or hidden areas for shelter.

Rabbit snails feed on algae as well as leftover food from other tankmates. They are also known for being very active at night, often seen climbing rock walls or darting around the substrate in search of a meal!

  1. Assassin Snails

Assassin Snails are a species of freshwater snail that many aquarium enthusiasts have come to know and love. These snails are easy to identify by their large, brownish-black cone-shaped shells. However, what makes them remarkable isn’t just their appearance: it’s their behavior.

Assassin Snails are carnivores that feed on other snails in the aquarium, hence why they have been named as such.
In addition to preying on other snails, Assassin Snails also scavenge for leftover pieces of food in the tank. They typically consume foods such as shrimp pellets, flakes and algae wafers.

These omnivorous creatures do not get along with most other tanks inhabitants; they actively hunt down and consume any snail they may encounter.

  1. Gold Inca Snails

Gold Inca Snails, also known as Escargot Peruviana, are a rare species of freshwater snail native to the rivers and streams of Peru. These beautiful creatures are easily identified by their bright yellow and orange shells with distinctive dark stripes.

They are both an eye-catching addition to any aquarium and an important part of Peru’s aquatic ecosystem.
These snails have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their unique coloration, as well as their ability to thrive in many different water conditions.
They are easy to care for, requiring only high quality food such as algae pellets and fish flakes, along with some occasional calcium supplements for shell health.

Gold Inca Snails can grow up to 1/2 inch long and can live up to five years if cared for properly.

  1. Black Devil Snails

Black Devil Snails are an interesting and unique species of snail found in the Amazon Basin. These snails have a distinct black shell with white stripes, which adds to their unique appearance.

Their scientific name is Melanoides Tuberculata, but they are commonly known as red-rimmed melania or Red-Mouthed Mud Snail.

These snails live on the bottom of shallow water bodies such as ponds and rivers, where they feed on organic matter like decaying plant material and algae.
They play an important role in maintaining the balance of nutrients within aquatic ecosystems.

Black Devil Snails can reproduce rapidly under favorable conditions, so it’s important to keep an eye out for them when breeding other species of aquatic organisms. Additionally, these snails can serve as hosts for parasites or disease-causing agents that can spread to other animals.

  1. Ivory Snails

Ivory Snails are a type of aquatic snail native to the freshwaters of Brazil. They are distinguished by their attractive, ivory-colored shells and can reach up to 2 inches in size.

These small snails are popular among aquarium hobbyists for their bright coloration and hardiness in many fresh water tank environments.
These snails feed on algae, detritus, soft plants, and other organic matter, which makes them an ideal addition to any freshwater tank that is struggling with an algae problem.

They make great additions to tanks where they can help cycle nutrients and keep the substrate clean as they move around the tank looking for food. Ivory Snails will breed easily in a captive environment if given the right conditions including plenty of hiding places and enough food sources.

  1. Pond Snails

Pond snails are small, aquatic creatures that can be found in many different bodies of water, including ponds. They are a type of gastropod mollusk and belong to the family Planorbidae. Pond snails have interesting characteristics and come in various colors, shapes and sizes.

These unique creatures play an important role in their environment by eating algae and detritus from the bottom of the pond, helping to keep it clean.
They also act as prey for other organisms such as fish or birds who eat them as part of their diet. In some cases, pond snails can even become overabundant due to reproduction rates that far exceed predation levels.

Overall, pond snails are an important part of any aquatic ecosystem and provide a range of ecological services like cleaning up excess algae or acting as food for other animals.

13 Types of Aquarium Snails
  1. Bladder Snails

Bladder snails, also called Physidae, are a species of aquatic gastropods that occur in many parts of the world. They can be found living in freshwater lakes and ponds, as well as slow-moving streams. These snails are mostly small, ranging from 4 to 8 millimeters in length.

The bladder snail is known for its domed-shaped shell which has thick walls made of calcium carbonate. The exterior color can vary greatly between different individuals and often takes on tones of browns or greens. The interior of their shells have a glossy texture and comes in shades of white or yellowish hues.

These snails play an important role in their ecosystems by helping to break down leftover plant matter and decaying organic material which helps to keep water clean by recycling nutrients back into the environment.

  1. Ramshorn Snails

Ramshorn snails are a type of aquatic snail found in many fresh water bodies, including rivers and lakes. They are easily identified by their unique shell shape which is flat on top and grooved around the sides.

The shells come in a variety of colors, ranging from brown to bright blue or green. They can grow up to 2 cm in size and have an average life span of one year.
These animals make popular additions to home aquariums as they act as good tank cleaners by eating leftover food, algae and other organic matter that accumulate over time.

They reproduce quickly, with most females capable of laying up to 100 eggs at once; however, they can also be kept under control by introducing fish predators such as loaches or large goldfish into the tank.

  1. Malaysian Trumpet Snails

Malaysian Trumpet Snails, also known as MTS, are a popular and attractive addition to freshwater aquariums. They come in various sizes and colors, giving hobbyists the ability to customize their tank’s look.

But Malaysian Trumpet Snails offer so much more than just aesthetic appeal; they are excellent scavengers that help keep tanks clean by consuming algae, detritus and uneaten fish food.

MTS have a unique appearance with their long slender shape and spiral shell pattern. They can be found in shades of black, brown or yellow but some species may even exhibit stripes or spots.

When it comes to care requirements these snails are relatively easy to maintain with just regular water changes and good filtration necessary for optimal health.

  1. Japanese Trapdoor Snails

Japanese Trapdoor Snails are a unique species of aquatic snails that live in freshwater habitats all over the world. They are an important part of their ecosystem, as they filter algae and other tiny particles from the water column, consuming them for food.

But what sets these particular snails apart from others is their unique anatomy – they have two distinct shells connected by a “trapdoor” that allows them to safely close off their shell when threatened or stressed.

The Japanese Trapdoor Snail is different from other snail species because it has two overlapping shells connected by an operculum, which functions like a trap door – allowing the snail to close itself off from predators or environmental changes.

These snails often inhabit shallow, still waters such as ponds and lakes where they can feed on algae and detritus found in the substrate.

13 Types of Aquarium Snails


In conclusion, aquarium snails come in many shapes and sizes, each with their own unique benefits and drawbacks. While some may be a nuisance to your home tank, others can actually help keep it clean.

Many species of aquarium snails are highly adaptable and easy to care for, making them an ideal choice for novice aquarists.
Additionally, most snails can help to maintain clean tank conditions by consuming organic waste and algae.

Ultimately, it’s important to choose the right variety of snail for your aquarium needs and understand the specific requirements for each type of snail. With a little research, you can find the perfect addition to your home aquarium that will both provide its own unique benefits and beautify your tank.

Related Questions

Which snails are bad for aquarium?

The most common type of snail that is bad for aquariums is the Apple Snail. They reproduce quickly and can consume large amounts of food, potentially leaving other inhabitants in the tank without enough to eat. Additionally, they can cause damage to plants and decorations in the tank.

What is the best snail for a beginner?

The best snail for a beginner is the Mystery Snail (Pomacea bridgesii). They are easy to care for and can tolerate a wide range of water conditions, making them ideal for novice aquarists. Plus, they are peaceful, attractive creatures that don’t require much space or special equipment.

Do snails prefer light or dark?

Snails generally prefer dark, moist environments. They are nocturnal and tend to be most active at night. They also like to hide in the shade during the day, so they can avoid the hot sun and predators. Therefore, it is best to provide them with a dark habitat if you want them to thrive.

What is the best snail to have as a pet?

The Giant African Land Snail (Achatina fulica) is a popular pet snail. They are easy to care for and can live up to 10 years. They grow to about 6 inches long, so they need plenty of space in their tank. They also enjoy eating vegetables and fruits, so feeding them is relatively simple.

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