Ramshorn Snail (Planorbis rubrum)
Ramshorn snail where scientific name is Planorbis rubrum belongs to the kingdom Animalia, phylum Mollusca, and class Gastropoda. They have their origin in Central America/Colombia and are found worldwide especially as an ornamental snail in aquaculture.
Planorbis rubrum snails are completely non-aggressive and peaceful animals. They can be kept with shrimps and fishes as tank mates safely. Ramshorn snails are considered ornamental snails because they are available in a range of colors such as red, blue, pink. They use their wide, flat, muscular foot to move around. They usually prefer natural habitats with low tide, slow-moving freshwater to live.
Ramshorns can respire using atmospheric oxygen as well as the dissolved oxygen in the water. Hence, they are mostly a good indicator of the water quality in the tank. While they come to the surface of the tank and try to leave the water, this may refer to some problems with the water aeration or chemistry.
Ramshorn Snails are famous with also their over-breeding capacities in aquariums. They may have a sudden outbreak in numbers within a short period. This is mainly because they are hermaphrodite (bisexual) snails capable of undergoing self-fertilization. Therefore, even one snail is enough to increase the snail population in the aquarium setup. But this can be controlled up to some extent unless other residents are not overfed in the tank.
Ramshorn snails have a great appetite at any time so they tend to consume any stuff provided to other animals in the tank. This may sometimes result in increasing the number of snails in the tank. Some people don’t like them to breed too much in their tanks. For such cases, there are potentially some certain chemicals in the market produced to kill over-populated snails. But the common sense in the aquarium society does not recommend using these chemicals as they can also harm the other animals in the tanks (especially other invertebrate species).
Removing the Ramshorn snail eggs may be another option but surely it will not be effective since these snails lay eggs rapidly everywhere in the tank. The eggs can be on the plants, pebbles, or even the walls of the tank. The best thing to control the Ramshorn snail population is just to stop over-feeding to the aquarium. Adding assassin snails into the tank, which is the natural enemy of snails also helps to control the Ramshorn snail population. But for longer periods they are kept in the aquarium, assassin snails will completely eat all the ramshorn snails.
Temperature: 75 – 81 Fahrenheit / 24 – 27 Celsius
pH: 6.5-7.5 Tolerable of a wide range of conditions.
Community snail, but could be seen as food by large fish.
Despite they don’t require certain conditions, the setups with plants, driftwoods, and rocks matured with algae or biofilm for grazing and providing cover will perfectly comfort them.
Recommended min. aquarium capacity: 20 liters – suitable for Nano aquariums.
Ramshorn snails are good algae eaters, especially the green and brown algae types. They can be also fed up with blanched vegetables like lattice, cucumber, squashes, cabbage, fish food, and dead fish can also be used as food supplements whenever needed for this species.
These snails rapidly multiply in number and they don’t want any special requirements to breed except a medium water quality in the tank. They lay eggs as a clutch covered with thick mucus. It is a jelly-like substance that gives moisture and nourishment to the eggs and keeps them safe and still during the incubation period. Newly hatched snails become adults after about 2-3 weeks and then easily adapt to live in the environment they were born in.
Image Source: http://www.planetinverts.com Leonard, Bill Southern