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Should I Keep Mystery Snail Eggs? (That Depends)

Should I Keep Mystery Snail Eggs? The answer depends on you. If you want to breed mystery snails you can keep the eggs. If you are not interested in needing mystery snails you can discard them.

Mystery snails are a popular choice among aquarists because they work efficiently at scavenging food and other organic matter, helping to keep the aquarium clean.

They are also relatively low-maintenance, and their attractive shells can come in various colors.

However, one thing that perplexes many mystery snail owners is what to do about the eggs that these creatures lay.

This article will explore some of the choices for dealing with the eggs and help you decide what to do in this particular situation.

Should I Keep Mystery Snail Eggs

What are mystery snails?

Mystery snails are a type of freshwater snail that is widely popular among aquarists for its scavenging abilities and low-maintenance care requirements.

These snails are native to South America, and their scientific name is Pomacea bridgesii.

While mystery snails come in various colors, the brown variety is the most popular choice among aquarists. The shells of these snails can be quite attractive, with a dark brown coloration that is flecked with gold.

Mystery snails are relatively large compared to other types of freshwater snails, and they can grow to be up to 2 inches in length. These snails are also known for their rapid reproduction ability, which can be a blessing and a curse.

Where do mystery snails lay eggs?

Mystery snails will lay their eggs above the waterline on any hard surface that they can find. This can include aquarium glass, rocks, plants, or even other mystery snail shells.

The eggs are laid in a gelatinous clutch containing anywhere from a few dozen to a few hundred eggs.

In some cases, the mass may be quite large and look like small balls of shotgun shells that hang down from the surface.

What do mystery snail eggs look like?

They are very small and are typically milky or pink in color. Also they are commonly compared to grains of rice. They are so delicate that they can be destroyed simply by touching them.

There are some variations in the appearance of the eggs, however. Some egg masses may have a clear jelly-like substance surrounding them, while others may be more opaque. 

How often do mystery snails lay eggs?

They will typically lay eggs once or twice a month, but this can vary depending on the age of the snail, their health, and the water parameters in the aquarium.

Some snails may also lay more eggs if other mystery snails are present to help with the process.

What’s interesting about these creatures is that the female can store sperm for up to 140 days, meaning that she can lay eggs even if there are no males present. This is why it’s essential to be careful when adding mystery snails to your tank.

How many eggs do mystery snails lay?

It’s hard to provide an exact number, as the number of eggs that female lay can differ depending on a wide range of factors.

However, it’s not uncommon for them to lay anywhere from 50 to 200 eggs at a time. Among those eggs, about 20 to 50 eggs hatch successfully.

Further, one female can lay several clutches of eggs at one time. So, if you’re not careful, a single mystery snail can quickly turn into a population explosion in your aquarium.

Should I keep mystery snail eggs?

If you’re not interested in breeding them, the best option is to remove the eggs from the aquarium. These eggs can be quite prolific, and they can quickly overpopulate your tank if left unchecked.

On the other hand, if you intend to breed mystery snails, you will need to keep the eggs and provide proper care.

Keep the eggs in a separate tank with clean, oxygenated water and plenty of food to support their growth.

It is also necessary to know that there is a market for mystery snails, so you could make a bit of extra money if you decide to breed and sell your snails.

Ultimately, whether or not you choose to keep eggs depends on your individual situation and your goals for keeping these snails in the first place. For most aquarists, however, removing the eggs is the best option.

How to remove mystery snail eggs?

If you want to remove the eggs from your aquarium, a credit card or a razor blade is the best way to do so. Gently scrape the eggs away from the surface and discard them in the trash.

It’s essential to be careful when removing mystery snail eggs, as they may hatch elsewhere and be a pest, or they may float away and end up contaminating the water in your aquarium.

Be sure to clean off any scraps of egg that may remain on the surface to prevent this from happening.

To prevent them from hatching anywhere else, you can put the egg clutch in a freezer bag, keep it in a freezer for several hours, crush the clutch and throw it away.

If you have carnivore fish such as bettas in your fish tank, you can feed the snail eggs to them. These methods are probably more efficient than keeping the eggs in your fish tank just in case they will not be eaten by your fish.

Should I Keep Mystery Snail Eggs

How to hatch mystery snail eggs?

If you decide to keep mystery snail eggs, be sure to monitor them closely to ensure that they are developing properly. The key to successful hatching is a clean, humid, oxygenated environment and plenty of food.

They usually take about 2 to 4 weeks to hatch, depending on the temperature of the water and other environmental factors.

During this time, keep the tank clean and well-oxygenated and feed the developing snails a high-quality diet.

At the same time, ensure that your tank has no baby snail predators such as betta fish. These fish are known to eat baby snails, and they can quickly decimate baby snails once they hatch and go into the water.

If you want to hatch these eggs but not in your fish tank, you must follow the procedure below.

Step 1: Create an incubator for the snail eggs to hatch

You can not just remove the mystery snail eggs and keep them in a separate tank with water, as the conditions needed for hatching mystery snail eggs are very specific.

You need to create an incubator that can simulate the conditions of a natural environment for hating the eggs.

For this, you can use a small plastic container with a damp (not wet) paper towel in it. Mystery snail eggs require a humid environment to hatch, so it is best to keep the “incubator” inside the fish tank “floating.”

Step 2: remove the mystery snail eggs from the fish tank

Use a credit card, knife, or razor blade to remove the mystery snail eggs. Gently scrape off the eggs and place them on the damp paper towel in the plastic container.

You must take care not to break the eggs throughout this procedure. Since mystery snail eggs are delicate, it is normal for some eggs to destroy during the process.

Step 3: Close the container with the lid and float it in the fish tank

Close the container with the lid after placing all of the eggs in it, making sure there are no breaches in the lid. Then, float the container in the fish tank.

Step 4: Monitor the eggs daily and mist with water if necessary

You need to monitor the mystery snail eggs daily and mist them with water if the paper towel inside the container starts to dry out. The ideal temperature for hatching mystery snail eggs is between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

You also need to confirm that the water in the fish tank is clean and well-oxygenated during this time.

If you notice that the water in the fish tank is getting dirty, do a partial water change to ensure that the developing snails have clean water to live in.

Step 5: When the eggs hatch, release the baby snails into the fish tank (or another tank)

Tiny baby snails emerge from the egg sac when the mystery snail eggs hatch. At this point, you can release them into the fish tank if you have no baby snail predators.

If you decide to put the baby snails in a separate tank, be sure to keep it clean and well-oxygenated and feed the baby snails a high-quality diet.

How to tell if mystery snail eggs are fertile?

If you are unsure if your mystery snail eggs are fertile, there are a few ways to tell.

First, you need to look at the color of the eggs. Fertile mystery snail eggs are usually white or opaque before hatching, while infertile mystery snail eggs are generally brown or yellow.

Prior to hatching, the eggs in the clutches will also appear uneven. Some are puffier and whiter than others.

Further, fertile eggs do not have a foul odor. If you notice a foul odor or a strong smell coming from the eggs, they are probably infertile.

Finally, fertile mystery snail eggs will start moving when incubated. You should see small dots or swirls moving inside the egg sac as it gets closer to hatching.

How to tell if mystery snail eggs are dead?

There are two surefire ways to tell whether a mystery snail egg is dead.

First, you can check for a foul odor from the eggs. If you notice a foul odor or strong smell coming from the eggs, they are probably dead.

Second, you can check for any stains on the damp cloth. Infertile clutches leave red or pinkish stain marks on the damp cloth, while fertile clutches leave no stain.

Mystery snail eggs fell in the water

If your mystery snail eggs fell in the water while trying to remove them, you need to move fast. Try scooping up the eggs with a net or razor blade and transferring them to a plastic container with a damp paper towel.

If the eggs fell into the water while you were not there, you might be already late. The eggs may not survive, but you can give them a chance by incubating them in an “incubator.”

Mystery snail eggs are not hatching

Usually, mystery snail eggs take about 2 to 5 weeks to hatch. If the eggs are not showing any signs of life after a few weeks, they may have been infertile from the start.

If you are certain that you have fertile mystery snail eggs, provide them with a high temperature of around 80 degrees Fahrenheit and well-oxygenated water.

You can also try to do a partial water change if you suspect that the water quality is poor. However, if none of those steps seem to work, you may need to remove the dead clutch and try again with new eggs.

Final thoughts

Keeping mystery snail eggs in your fish tank can be a hassle as they can overpopulate and dirty the tank quickly. However, if you plan to breed mystery snails, you need to keep the eggs until they hatch.

The best way to incubate mystery snail eggs is by providing them with a separate container with a damp cloth inside with a plentiful supply of oxygen.

If you do not want to incubate the eggs yourself, you can also put them in the tank for your fish to take care of.

Whatever you decide, make sure to keep an eye on the eggs and remove them as soon as they hatch to avoid overpopulation.

Credit to : IvyVine Aquatics
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About Dr.Chamika

Hello, I'm Dr. Chamika. I am a Researcher in Water quality, Aquatic organisms, and Environmental chemistry. I am a passionate fish keeper, with10 years of experience. My mission is to help other aquarists experience the joy of fish keeping.