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What to do With Dead Snails


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What do you guys do with dead snails? My astrea bit the dust a couple days ago and I wanted to see what happens if I let nature happen since the shell would be good for hermits too. Some of you are probably shaking your heads in disgust but everything is so far normal including ammonia tests.

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Caeser and Chris are wayy off.

take it out. DONT leave them in the tank. that is just stupid and fuels nitrogen cycle and algae growth. Not to mention, they are the foulest of things when dead. Put it in a zip lock bag and freeze it till garbage day. They stink THAT BAD.

if you have enough crabs ( 15 + and they eat it withinn 2 days of it dying, chances are it is ok to leave in the tan, but if it is a bigger snal I pull it. TRUST ME you don't want any more foulness than needd in a mini reef;)

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Sometimes they just don't move for a few days. Make sure its dead. I just found a hermit snapping at one of my astreas. I sent the crab to reef prison (my fuge) but I haven't seen my astrea move in a few days now...

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I strongly agree with Dave. I had one snail die on me in my first SW tank. I took it out (thinking oh I'll toss it in the trash) and it was the most god awful smell (take a newborn dirty diaper, frag some xenia, give yourself an enema combine all 3 and you aren't even close) that I have ever smelled. Oh and never handle the dead ones. Scoop them out and toss them in a bag and freeze them like Dave said. The smell won't come off for a day or so and the chicks DEFINITELY don't dig it. If they do then send them my way. ;)

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I had one die on me too. IT SMELLED LIKE HELL HAD GONE WRONG. I took it outside and used a pocket knife to gut out the innards. I then rinsed the inside out. Then I placed a frag on it and sold the frag a week later.X)

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I have always left them in. If you have some scavengers they really don't last long (overnight in my tanks). Bumble Bee snails are good for this kind of work and cleaner shrimp and hermits will get in on the action too. They must think it stinks so good. But yeah, if you don't have a clean up crew that can handle it, get it out.

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I take them and toss them behind the rock work so there are extra shells just in case a snail loses his for some odd reason or a hermit needs a huge shell. My Emerald crab loves them and can eat one dead snail in an evening. Catch 22 though. He doesn't always eat the dead ones. He eats crap loads of algae and so do the snails but he eats probably one snail a week too. At $1 each I don't mind grabing a few each time I'm at the LFS. I still think he is my best cleaner upper.

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Damn! You don't want them skunking up your tank, just scoop them out and sniff them. If they smell like crap then there dead, so just put them in a bag with a bit of water. Let them sit in the tied off bag for a month or so, then take the shell out, rince it off and through it back into the tank.

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Try taking a glug of good olive oil in a nice sauté pan and sautéing a clove or two of garlic finely sliced. (Not too hot or you'll burn the garlic and ruin the dish! Burnt garlic leaves a nasty taste!)


Take a small red chili pepper, remove the seeds and finely chop as well and toss into the pan too. Or you can use some red pepper flakes to taste. (I prefer the chili's.)


In a separate pot get some good RO water boiling and add a touch of Instant Ocean Salt and some cumin seeds. Once it is up and boiling good toss in your linguine and cook until al dente.


Throw your snail into the sauté pan and toss lightly while coating with the infused garlic oil. (The pepper will add a nice touch!) If you're over run with snails, now is a good time to clean the tank a bit. Toss'em in there too! Don't forget that mean damsel if it's been causing you some trouble too! Can't have it bullying everything around in your tank, now can we?


At this time pour a few glugs of a nice white wine into the pan and deglaze the pan. Be certain to scrape all the good stuff from the bottom of the pan too! Then cover for about 5 minutes until the snails and damsels are steamed properly.


By now, the linguine should be ready to drain. Drain and finish cooking the linguine IN the pan - to soak up all that goodness! This is what separates the really fine chefs from the amateurs! BAM!!!


A nice Caesar Salad on the side, a hearty bread fro dipping into the white wine sauce, a few candles and VOILA!!! You now have a nice Valentines Day dining experience for that troublesome 'significant other' who doesn't understand your passion for nano-tanking!


Oh yeah... Make yourself a grilled cheese too while your cooking THEIR supper! ;)

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  • 16 years later...
  • 1 year later...
On 2/10/2003 at 10:19 PM, ChrisIsBored said:

Leave em in if they aren't too big. Some of the turbo's are huge though and in a smaller tank i'd just remove em...

And put them where?

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