Clown Loaches and Malaysian Trumpet Snails
The two just do not mix. The clown loaches are voracious snail eaters. I
have a 55 gallon that had a thriving population of Malasian Trumpet
snails. The clown loaches killed all of the snails within one week. I
have tried to reintroduce snails 6 or 7 times. Each time I would
introduce 20 or more snails. The result is the same everytime. The
snails would all be eaten within a couple of days.
I do not understand how skunk loaches could be MORE aggresive to snails.
When I first got my clown loaches, I had a ten gallon that was overrun
with pond snails (easily 100 or more snails). Two clown loaches ate every
snail within 3 days! What is more aggresive than that? Watching the
clown loaches eat the Malaysian snails, I observed that the loaches do not
have to break the shells of the snail. They are able to pick the snail up
with their mouth and suck the snail out of the shell. I have removed
hundreds of snail shells all perfectly intact and perfectly empty.
Speaking from my experience there is no way for any snail to co-exist with
snails. For the record-- I feed my fish very sparingly (no more than once
every 3 days) and my substrate consists only of gravel. Perhaps if the
fish were fed more they would leave the snails alone. A soil substrate may
also provide more shelter from the prying loach's mouth.
Hope this helps.