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How To Tell If It's Dead


holyk

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I received quite the scare just now! I'd separated my snail from my main tank since I heard that Ich meds can be harmful/deadly to them, and just changed the water of its temporary home. When I picked up the snail to set it back in the clean water, I thought it was an empty shell, and my poor snail had died!

Then I noticed that my snail had just retreated even further into its shell. How deep is the "door" supposed to fit? Previously, it'd only fit over the opening to the shell, but now it's back about 1 cm. I have a "black mystery snail" (apple snail of some sort). I'd been feeding it cucumber (on which it was gorging itself), but decided to add a little variety recently, so I put a leaf of Romaine. But now I'm worried that it's starving, since I see little to no damage to the Romaine! ...So I guess this is two questions in one on my snail's health.

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Give him some time, he's probably just freaked out by all the commotion.

When snails die (in my limited experience) they tend to come further out of their shell, not go further back. Like anything else, they kind of go limp.

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How's the snail doing?

A sure sign on whether he is dead or not is the smell. A dead snail has an unmistakable rank odor to it.

My snails have had their trap doors sink inwards like that before, and they were fine. :D

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Yeah, it's fine. XD I think it was just freaked out. It's eaten its cucumber (Picky snail! Won't eat any veggies so far but cucumber! Now, I like cucumber, but that's just picky), and seems to be fine. Moved it back to the regular tank today.

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whoawhoa. Harpo is a WOMAN. O.O It was being pretty active when I came in the room just now, so I got a chance to peek at my snail's anatomy. Apparently, Harpo is female! So weird. XP But I kind of expect these things to happen when dealing with animals whose sex isn't obvious at first glance.

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  • 1 month later...
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Well, little Harpo died today. =( I think it was because I hadn't given her cucumber in a few days. Rather than snack on my aquarium plants, my picky eater chose to starve.

Various things have been going on lately that have made me a more irresponsible snail owner, and though it's been easy for me to remember to feed my fish, feeding Harpo wasn't so easy. My fish have lost an entertainer and mute friend, and alas, the last of the Marx brothers has died too (Groucho the fish died too, a mere 2 weeks after purchase, probably from flukes, before I had many resources or knew anything about diseases of the fishy variety.) Now I have only Greek gods in my tank, and I hope they live longer than our dead entertainers. </3

(I had been considering trying to sell my snailie for a week or two, since I'd bought it to clean the tank back when I didn't know that plants would keep algae in check, so I'd bought both. I remembered my only other snailie that had lived for months munching on algae, so I thought I wouldn't have to feed it. With my plants, I later realized there probably wouldn't be a time that I WOULDN'T have to feed it. Alas, I was not ready for the commitment that was a snail, and will remember this lesson for years to come.)

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