Monday, December 10, 2012

Mystery Snails: Fun In The Tank



               Like in water? With fish? Yup. It all started when I decided to get my daughter a fish tank for her sixth birthday. I had always loved the fish tanks that my mother, grandmother, and aunt had in their homes. I wanted to share the calming beauty and serenity that comes with watching the glittering scales of fish as they float through the water with my daughter.
            So off to the store we went. I bought a little ten gallon set up from Walmart and went to our local Petco and purchased some guppies. It was such a hit and huge success that we decided go to the Petsmart and take a look and see what they had. And that is when I spotted the snails.

My first snail.
Female Blue Mystery Snail
I named her Escargo. 

               They were crawling up the side of the glass with long noses that had cute little curling whiskers. I was immediately taken with them. They just made me smile looking at them. And only a 1.99? Yup I went for it and bought two. One blue, and one black. My daughter and I were so taken with them that a day later we went back and bought two more. Golds this time. Now usually I don't buy animals, even fish without proper research. This time I did and researched later.

Bully. My second mystery snail.
Male, Black or Wild color, sometimes also called Dark Burgundy.

                Turns out everything about them is easy. And when I say everything, I mean everything. Especially when it comes to getting baby mystery snails. I had my little snails for just over a month. In which they grew rapidly and pow! I woke up at 5:30am to this!

 Escargo laying her first egg batch.

               So there I was, expecting little baby snails. I jumped on to my computer and spent the next few days furiously researching the art of raising baby mystery snails. Unfortunately there actually wasn't all that much detail out there about the little snails AFTER they hatched. Oh sure I found tons of stuff about how to properly care for the egg batches until hatching. But when it came to finding information about right after they hatched there was almost nothing. Other than a few words about how the babies eat the same as the parents. There really wasn't much else about the actual babies.
                I had so many questions. Number one being; When can you tell what color they are? I found absolutely zip about color identification. Except that is a bunch of other people asking the very same question.
                Well I now have successfully hatched about a dozen egg batches, raised more than a 100 of those babies to adulthood and to have babies of their own. Even though I am no where near an expert, I thought I would start this blog and give the knowledge that I have gained from my experience. Maybe if someone else happens to have these same questions, I might be able to answer them.

Apollo, the larger of the two golds that I bought.
Male, Gold Mystery Snail.