Will Snails Eat Fish Eggs Lets find out

Will Snails Eat Fish Eggs? Lets find out

Snails are one of the best-known tank cleaners. Whenever aquarists talk about aquariums’ health and wellness, the first tank mate that comes to mind is snails. Moreover, snails add beauty and enthusiasm to fish tanks. But a query always pops up in our imagination while keeping snails and our favorite fish: “Will Snails Eat Fish Eggs?”

Snails can eat fish eggs. If they get the opportunity or their size is big enough, they definitely eat fish eggs. However, “Can snails eat fish eggs” purely depends on the specific species of snails. Some snail species love to eat eggs, while others don’t pay attention to fish eggs.

Do you know various snails are optimistic feeders, and they don’t care about the harmony of fish tanks? They ruthlessly eat anything that comes their way, whether a fish egg or any other snail. I understand it sounds scary when considering keeping snails with your fish as a beginner. However, I hope you’ll feel better at the end of this topic.

Let’s jump into the insights!

Will snails eat fish eggs?

Yes, snails eat fish eggs. These little darlings look cute, but some love to gobble up fish eggs. They eat not just fish eggs but eggs of other snails and their own eggs. If you put hard-boiled chicken eggs in the fish tank, these snails will eat them.

It’s just like “anything is a fair game” for some snails in terms of their dinners and lunches. They even eat many fish species. Just imagine how dangerous some snails are! On the other hand, many snail species ignore fish eggs and only scavenge on algae and fish leftovers.

Important Note:

Bigger Nerite and Apple snails make up a good companion with many friendly fish species in the same tank. If you give them egg yolk, they share their food and do not attack each other.

Many aquarium keepers intentionally offer them protein-packed eggs to meet their nutritional needs. In this case, make sure you are feeding them hard-boiled egg yolk as a hearty snack to both tank mates – fish and snails.

Why do snails eat fish eggs?

Snails have diverse food choices to consume from, and fish eggs are one of them. They eat fish eggs because they are usually soft and easy to consume. Moreover, fish eggs are full of proteins and calcium.

Gelatinous is another essential thing in fish eggs that makes them appealing to snails. Also, fish eggs are easy to digest. Some snails find it easier to survive on nutritionally rich sources than others.

Which snail species eat fish eggs?

There are many snail species that like to eat fish eggs. Here is the list of a few snail species that are commonly known to eat fish eggs regularly and sometimes opportunistically:

  • Bladder Snails: These snail species are relatively smaller in size and commonly found in many fish tanks. However, they do not eat fish eggs regularly. They are known to eat fish eggs accidentally while grazing on other food items on aquarium surfaces.
  • Pond Snails: These snail species are inhabitants of freshwater. According to various scientific studies, pond snails eat fish eggs. They mainly eat them in the wild, but pet pond snails do not eat fish eggs.
  • Ramshorn Snails: These snail species are omnivorous. That’s why ramshorn snails are known to eat eggs of many fish species with other foods, especially tiny organisms.
  • Trumpet Snails: These snail species are primarily called detritivores. Still, they like to eat fish eggs if any egg comes in their way of hunting food items.
  • Assassin Snails: Everyone knows that Assassin snails are popular among aquarists due to their predatory nature. These snail species do not show mercy on other snail species and eat them. Then, how can we expect assassins not to eat fish eggs? They eat!

Here is another important thing that I want to share. All individuals of each of these snail species do not eat fish eggs. This is because every individual has unique eating habits that make them distinct from other species.

Moreover, food availability matters a lot. Sometimes, a few individuals of the above-mentioned snail species do not eat fish eggs if other foods are available for them. Otherwise, they eat fish eggs out of hunger (opportunistically).

Related article: Do snails eat brown algae?

What are the health benefits for snails to eat fish eggs?

Snails Eat Fish Eggs Lets find out

It is important to note that “snails eating fish eggs” is not driven by health benefits for snails. Snails eat fish eggs because they are opportunistic feeders, which does not give them a more specific health benefit. However, here are a few undeniable health benefits of fish eggs for snails:

  • Protein intake: As I have mentioned before, fish eggs contain proteins. A small quantity of protein intake helps the snails to grow and reproduce.
  • Caloric energy: The lipids (fats) in fish eggs can provide an additional energy source to snails.
  • Calcium content: Some fish eggs have calcium content in their shells. It is beneficial for the snail’s shell development.
  • Dietary variety: As you know, a diverse diet can help prevent nutritional deficiencies. So, fish eggs change the taste of the tongue of snails.

In general, snails have their own dietary needs and nutritional requirements. While fish eggs may give some healthy content, it is not a primary or essential part of their diet. The potential health benefits for snails come from a balanced diet that consists of microorganisms and plant matter.

How often do snails eat fish eggs?

The eating habits of each snail species towards fish eggs are a bit different. Some snail species eat fish eggs opportunistically or when other food items are unavailable.

On the flip side, some snail species eat fish eggs as their regular diet. As you know, fish eggs are not a common part of their diet; they do not rely on them to meet their dietary needs.

Which fish species’ eggs do snails eat?

Snails are known to consume the eggs of various fish species. Particularly, they eat eggs of those fish species that are laid on aquatic plants or other surfaces. This can include the eggs of species like goldfish, guppies, and other small fish that lay adhesive eggs.

You probably know some fish species that are aggressive towards other tank mates and are always dominant in protecting their food and eggs. These fishes are also protective parents. For example, Convict Cichlids have the ability to put snails in danger whenever they try to eat their eggs. These fishes are excellent parents!

FAQs’ 

  1. Can snails eat their own eggs?

Yes! According to a recent study on WikiBooks Organization, snails can eat their own eggs. Interestingly, the hatchlings eat their own shells for calcium intake. Also, the newly hatched babies start eating other hatchlings or unhatched eggs.

  1. Will snails eat pleco eggs?

Yes, snails eat pleco (Plecostomus) eggs, and pleco also eat snails. However, pleco parents, especially males, are known to guard their eggs. So, snails have little chance of accessing and consuming snails in well-protected environments. ~ Source

  1. Will a snail eat baby fish?

Yeah! Snails eat baby fish. According to many Quora Digest colleagues, some snails already know that a fish is ill or about to die, and they take the opportunity and start eating the live fish. Similarly, some snail species, like assassins and even turbo snails, intentionally attack the baby fish to eat them.

  1. Do snails eat fried eggs?

Yes, according to various snail keepers in aquariums, “snails eat fried eggs.” However, if you offer them raw eggs (white+yolk substance without frying), it’s more beneficial for the health of snails. It is recommended to give them fried eggs twice a week if the snails are bigger. Contrarily, offer fried eggs after 10 to 15 days to snails if the snails (garden snails) are smaller in size.

  1. Will snails eat Cory’s eggs?

Yes! Snails eat Cory eggs, and sometimes Cory itself eats their own eggs. Here is a conversation link where my Reddit fellows were keeping Cory and Snails together, and when Cory Catfish lays eggs, the snails eat them immediately.

Others witness that Cory itself eats their eggs, sometimes. However, I would like to remind my readers that it depends on the species of snails and Cory whether they will eat their eggs or not.

  1. Do baby snails eat fish eggs?

Yes, baby snails eat fish eggs if the eggs are not so big. However, some aquarists state that baby snails are so tiny they cannot eat fish eggs. But my observations say that if there is a large population of baby snails that are opportunistic predators, they eat fish eggs.

Conclusion

So, our topic, “Will snails eat fish eggs?” comes to the conclusion that various snail species eat fish eggs. Not just in captivity, many snails in ponds eat fish eggs regularly. They know how to gorge themselves on anything available in their habitat. Also, remember that too many snails can overpopulate the fish tank, again a leading reason behind snails overpowering the fishes, their eggs, and anything else.

Thus, snails can make your fish tank (like cleaning tanks, eating leftovers and algae) and break your fish tank if you do not closely look at them and analyze their behavior. If you have any specific queries, ask in the comments section. I would be happy to answer that.

Thank you for reading about the complex relationship between snails and fish in the same tank!