Why is my Snail Floating on Aquarium?

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Written By Fun Fish Tanks

I Love my Fishes 

It is a common occurrence that when you glance at an aquarium, you see your snails floating in the water column. You might be perplexed by that sight.

You have seen them being stuck on a surface and minding their own business, but never floating, so it’s right to be surprised.

Most of us straightaway jump to the conclusion that the snails are dead. It is not only in such circumstances that the snails float. There are other reasons as well why the snails float. 

In this article, we will take you through every facet of why are your snails floating.

Why is my Snail Floating on Aquarium ? 

There are lots of reasons as to why snails float in an aquarium. The snails can float when there is air trapped in their lungs. Lets look into the most common reasons which makes the snails float in an aquarium. 

Improper Water Conditions can make the snail float

Snails get stressed by a change in the water parameters. A sudden change in the temperature or pH of the water will stress the snail, leading them to float.

A spike in chemicals and poor water conditions can cause the snail to float. The snail undergoing stress will try to flee from the aquarium or hang out from its shell. So this leads to them floating in the aquarium. 

You can commonly see a snail floating in the water column after water changes. After water changes, the parameters can shift for a while. Snails like Apple Snails, Mystery Snails, and Assassin Snails are some species that are sensitive to water parameter changes.

The Snail wants to change its location 

The snail may appear to be floating if they are changing their location in their tank. When they slam their shell shut, a little quantity of air is trapped within and forms a bubble. They utilise it to begin floating in a different direction.

They sink once they open their shell and let the air out. Due to aggressive tank mates or a powerful filtering system, they may seal their shells.

Smaller water snail species, such as Bladder snails and, on rare occasions, Ramshorn snails, exhibit similar behaviour. When snails wish to float, they make the intentional decision to keep air in their shells.

Why is my snail floating and sticking out its body? Copper Poisoning!

If your snail is floating and simultaneously hanging out its body it indicates that it is affected by copper poisoning.

Copper may be added to a home aquarium for good purposes including aquatic plant fertilizers and fish medications. But the copper that is good for fish is harmful to the snails.

Always treat ill fish in a separate hospital tank to avoid this. You can relocate your snails to a separate, well-cycled tank, check their activity level, and reduce the copper contamination if you suspect copper contamination in your communal tank. Your snails may be sick if they don’t respond after being placed in the clean tank. 

Why does my snail float after laying eggs? 

If your snail floats after laying eggs, it might be due to the water condition rather than the snail eggs themselves. Check for pollutants and make sure the water temperature and pH are within acceptable limits.

However, it is different in the case of Mystery Snails. After depositing eggs, mystery snails will occasionally float spontaneously. They’ll do this for a brief time to recuperate, letting the female stay close to the water’s surface for easy access to oxygen. 

Do snails float when they die? 

A floating snail also indicates that it may be dead. But that is always not the case. If you see your snail floating in a tank, then you can check upon it. Poke its body parts, and if they respond they’re fine. But if they don’t respond, your little friend is dead. A dead snail will also give out a displeasing smell. So dead snails float.

What should I do if my snail is floating? 

Check your water’s temperature and pH level 

The first thing you can do is to check your water for temperature and pH level. For if you see your snail floating, it is commonly because of fluctuations in the water parameters.

See if the water parameters are within the preferred range of the species of snail you have. If they are not then you have to correct the water parameters.

Test the water for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates as well. If there are too much of these chemicals in the water parameters then the snails float as well. Keep the water flow low as well. 

Most aquatic snails like a pH of 7.0 to 7.5 in their aquarium. When the water temperature is between 75℉ and 85℉, it is the best for most snails. But its better you check upon the species of snails you have. 

Check if your Snail is in good health or not 

If you see your snail floating in your aquarium, then they might be unhealthy or sick. Give your snail a little tap if they are floating, if they response really slow then they are not healthy. You might want to look for treatments. 

If they don’t respond at all then it means they are dead. 

Provide them with good food

The snails can float around in search of food as well. They do this if they are not getting an adequate amount of nutrition. If you are thinking the snails eat the fish waste, they don’t. They don’t demand too much food. All you have to do is feed them once a day. You can give them blanched vegetables.

Get rid of the air trapped in their lungs 

Sometimes air can be trapped in the lungs of a snail. This can make them float in the water. For this what you have to do is spin them and move them around. This can release the air trapped in their lungs. When the trapped air is gone the snail will begin to sink.

Don’t panic and jump to the conclusion that your snails are dead when they are floating. They mostly float because of the imbalance of water parameters. Not just water parameters they may be going through inadequate food or copper poisoning.

Take a floating snail as an alarm for the improper water conditions. Straightaway start on to make the parameters right.

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