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Old 01/09/2008, 02:02 PM   #1
Gwynhidwy
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Skunk Cleaner Shrimp Eating Snails?

I have five skunk cleaner shrimp (Lysmata amboinensis) in my 155G reef. A couple of times now I've seen a shrimp (not necessarily a particular one, but I can't tell them apart), with a snail turned over on its back apparently eating the snail. What I'm hoping to find out is if they are eating dead snails or attacking live snails.

The first time I assumed it was simple a dead snail, but I've seen it a couple of times now in the last few weeks and since I'm not watching the tank all the time its probably happening when I'm gone too. I can't think of any reason that the snails would be dying off either as everything in the tank looks good. This tank has been up and running for about six months.

Water parameters as follows:
pH: 8.3
temp: 80F
Ammonia: undetectable
Nitrite: undetectable
Nitrate: undetectable
SG: 1.025

Any ideas?


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Old 01/09/2008, 02:18 PM   #2
Diver4life
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Dont know for sure, never heard of cleaner shrimps killing snail. i have 4 of them same as yours and dont bother anything in my tank except stealing food. Hope somebody else can help you. Good luck.


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Old 01/09/2008, 02:45 PM   #3
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I haven't heard of that being a problem, either, but I suppose if the shrimp gets hungry, it might prey on snails. Most shrimps aren't very picky about what they eat, and you might have gotten a particularly predatory individual.


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Old 01/09/2008, 02:54 PM   #4
atvdave
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I have had the same problem. But I only notice that the cleaner shrimp only go after a sick or newly added snail.

Now when I add a snail I always make sure he is attached himself to the side of the glass so if a shrimp does come around he can pull down tight and seal himself off from the shrimp.

But this only happens to new or sick snails. They leave the others alone.


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Old 01/09/2008, 03:24 PM   #5
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I've never seem mine go after a healthy snail. Are you sure they aren't trying to clean it? I'd imagine that almost anything in the tank would go after an overturned snail at some time. They seem kind of like MRE's for fish tanks...


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Old 01/09/2008, 04:28 PM   #6
Norward
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After adding my cleaner shrimp, nothing else, I have lost all three of my conch snails, more recently a margarite, and this week a turbo! Now, I have to admit that I wondered if a nassarius had come up after the conches. Something is up in my tank and I believe it's the inverts responsible.


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Old 01/09/2008, 05:00 PM   #7
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Most margaritas are from cold waters and die within 3-4 months in our tropical aquariums. It may have died naturally....

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Old 01/09/2008, 06:27 PM   #8
Gwynhidwy
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Thanks very much for the replies. I've never seen cleaner shrimp be aggressive either. I suppose if I don't see the water quality going down then there are still at least enough doing their jobs.


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Old 01/09/2008, 09:05 PM   #9
dustybuddy
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do u have any powerheads in your tank by any chance or something that might flip snails over? my snails kept going onto my powerheads, got sucked up a little by the intake and then dropped on their backs in the sand. they couldn't turn upright and it was a feast for my cleaner shrimp.


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Old 01/09/2008, 09:21 PM   #10
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My skunk cleaner shrimp pair used to go on rampages and murder dozens of stomatella snails at a time. Really made me mad so I got a flame hawkfish.

No more skunk cleaner shrimp.


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Old 08/07/2012, 09:23 AM   #11
saltyjarhead
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Glad I found this post I thought I was going crazy. Yesturday I noticed one of my turbo snails had fallen off a piece of LR and was upside down. I thought no biggie he will flip himself back over. Later last night after doing some honey do's I go inside and find an empty shell and a chunk of snail on the sand right beneeth my cleaner shrimp. I said no way that guy just ate the snail, but what else could of done it? I only have snails and a few hermits and the cleaner shrimp in my tank no fish.


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Old 04/04/2013, 03:02 AM   #12
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I was sitting in front of my tank tonight and was checking out a small snail half the size of a pea that hitch hiked with my LR. All of a sudden my cleaner shrimp came down and picked up the live snail as I was watching it move around and cleaned out the shell in three minutes.


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Old 04/04/2013, 01:50 PM   #13
nynick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saltyjarhead View Post
Glad I found this post I thought I was going crazy. Yesturday I noticed one of my turbo snails had fallen off a piece of LR and was upside down. I thought no biggie he will flip himself back over. Later last night after doing some honey do's I go inside and find an empty shell and a chunk of snail on the sand right beneeth my cleaner shrimp. I said no way that guy just ate the snail, but what else could of done it? I only have snails and a few hermits and the cleaner shrimp in my tank no fish.
Turbo snails don't live very long in our warm tanks. It probably died and shrimps will eat anything. I bet you could throw a marshmallow in there and the shrimp will eat it.

Also, keep in mind that an animal who does the humane thing and actually waits for the poor snail to die before eating it would starve in the wild. Often when you see something "kill" in a tank it is just hurrying things up.


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Old 05/09/2013, 07:00 PM   #14
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My roommate watched my skunk cleaner hunt down, carry off, and eat a peppermint shrimp this afternoon... Both shrimp added on Sunday. He was stalking the other peppermint this evening, which I then removed (but I think I will be swapping out the skunk instead and keeping the peppermint).


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Old 09/08/2013, 01:01 AM   #15
fattytwobyfour
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I just watched my skunk cleaner shrimp rip up a snail that was crawling on the live rock, and eat it. I feed my shrimp very heavy, every other day. (I have to, in order to keep them off the corals while I'm feeding them). I am sorry that I ever put them in my tank. They are evil.


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Old 09/08/2013, 12:47 PM   #16
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We had a large skunk cleaner grab a cerith off the rock, rip it out of its shell & eat it right in front of us. I was shocked even though i knew it had eaten our stomatellas. Shrimp died a couple days later...karma LOL. I always hand fed my shrimp every day. This was the largest I'd ever bought, I have to assume it was wild caught (since raising them is unsuccessful) and probably old to boot.


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Old 05/31/2018, 06:46 PM   #17
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I think my shrimp. Is too! I actually caught him in the act! I couldn’t believe it. However, he is a favorite in the tank so I can’t get rid of him however all my nassurius should be on high alert ��


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Old 05/31/2018, 07:30 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atvdave View Post
I have had the same problem. But I only notice that the cleaner shrimp only go after a sick or newly added snail.

Now when I add a snail I always make sure he is attached himself to the side of the glass so if a shrimp does come around he can pull down tight and seal himself off from the shrimp.

But this only happens to new or sick snails. They leave the others alone.
Nice ribbons. Semper Fi!

By the way, my skunk cleaner shrimp were model citizens and huge. I fed them silver sides and they never bothered any snails.


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Old 06/01/2018, 07:24 AM   #19
nereefpat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirstContact View Post
I fed them silver sides and they never bothered any snails.
My opinion is that the shrimp need fed...and the same for hermits.

A girls gotta eat.


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Old 06/02/2018, 05:47 PM   #20
Uncle99
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Skunk eat snails.....absolutely!


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Old 06/02/2018, 07:01 PM   #21
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Cleaners are opportunistic scavengers and will absolutely eat stomatella snails. They will also eat any snail that's flipped over and can't protect itself. That being said, most healthy snails CAN flip themselves back over, or seal their shells with their operculum (ie, protect themselves). Snails that can't, are often on their way out.

Kevin


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Old 06/02/2018, 07:17 PM   #22
AlSimmons
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IME most healthy snails can fend off the small claws of a cleaner shrimp. That tissue is firm, tight. Like mentioned above though unless the snail was on it's way out it should be able to weather the attack.



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Old 06/05/2018, 09:17 AM   #23
Uncle99
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My 3" cleaner takes out Trochus snails with little trouble and these can right themselves.
Opportunistic scavenger, YUP!


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