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on 01:48 AM 3/15/00 , Hoa Nguyen wrote:
> >From: IDMiamiBob at aol_com
> >Subject: Re: Snails
> >MT snails don't eat algae or vascular plants. They live on mulm and
> >in the substrate. I'm not even sure why they roam around on the glass, but
> >once you get them in your tank, they will not be easily removed.
>What evidence points to this? I observe them roaming all over my plant
>leaves at night? How can you say with certainty that they don't eat algae?
I can say with reasonable certainty that they *do* eat algae. Or at least
I just watched a 1" long MTS for about 20 minutes on the aquarium glass. He
moves toward a spot of algae (the tiny green spot variety) and sticks out
his proboscis and an opening (mouth?) opens and closes very quickly and the
algae spot disappears. I watched him devour about 50 spots (each spot
probably .5mm in diameter). Give me a few days and I can probably get a
close-up photo of this.
Also, anecdotal evidence: whenever I have major algae problems, MTSs
multiply like crazy. Right now I have hundreds in my 15G tank and only a
few in my 30G tank, and the 30 has been established much longer (the 15 was
seeded with 6 large snails from the 30 a couple of months ago.) I feed
much less in the 15, but the MTSs multiply out of control. The current
algae explosion in the 15G tank seems like the obvious reason for this.
Notice that I didn't say they eat *much* algae, or that it's their primary
food source. The MTS on my glass didn't eat enough algae to do much good.
After 20 minutes I can't see any measurable effect, and if I hadn't been
watching individual algae spots from an inch away I would have had no idea
that it was eating algae.
More anecdotal evidence: When I scrape the algae off the glass thoroughly,
I see fewer MTSs on the glass for the next couple of nights. If not for
algae, I can't imagine why they would be out on the glass and on the
plants. (Maybe they eat a microorganism that eats algae? Seems like a stretch.)
Who ever said MTSs don't eat algae?
michael moncur mgm at starlingtech_com http://www.starlingtech.com/
"Every nation ridicules other nations, and all are right."
-- Arthur Schopenhauer