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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since filament algae seems to be a common problem and having seen a number of animals suggested for its control, such as hermit crabs and sea urchins, I decided that instead of draining my one gallon desk top tank and starting from scratch, that I would try to find an animal in the wild that actualy is of use.

About two months ago, I added a small live rock to the tank and within a few weeks, the entire tank looked worthy of being awarded a "yard of the month" designation. Not only did it have green hair algae, but also the red variety as well. So much so, that even the back and side glass panels were thick with it. The sand, forget it, looked like a lawn gone crazy.



Being that the very near shore areas here are a filament algae heaven, I started poking around to see what herbivores I could find. Noting that the few rocks large enough to remain in place looked "clean", I lifted such a rock only to find a good number of "ring" cowrys hiding underneath. So I collected three of them and put them into my desk top tank. Within two weeks, all of the green filament algae was gone, and as of today, there is but a small sprig of the red filament left, which as I write this, one of the snails is working on it. On top of taking care of the filament algae, they also seem very good at cleaning up the green/brown micro algae that grows on all of our glass/acrylic.
If anyone is looking for an extremely effective herbivore, I strongly suggest you give these snails a shot at it. Fair warning though, if you have any algae or plants that you wish to keep, these snails do not appear to be picky at all in what they eat. Looking over at the tank now, I can see the largest of the three making a meal out of a "paddle weed" leaf.





After being in the tank for a few days, and having more than enough to eat, I found the largest of the three brooding an egg mass, which hatched out on day five and have since been feeding the tank a bit of phyto in the hopes that at least a few of the veligers make it to settlement.

Just wanted to pass this along in the hopes that the correct animal will be put to work instead of other types that do more harm than good, or worse, end up dead.

Please, if you know of any suppliers that have this species available, please pass the word.

Snails Snail Hitch Hikers

Chuck
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
They are completely reef safe and are strict herbivores, which can not be said for other cowrys that I know of. I have had these ring cowrys in my reef tank for a number of years with no issue, I just never knew they were so good with hair algae since my reef tank has never had that issue. Another thing that makes this species ideal for reef tanks is that they remain small, other snails can get quite large and start bulldozing their way around.

Chuck
 
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