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Mollusk (Snail) ID Guide (October '10)

Discussion in 'Newbies Corner' started by jonthefb, Oct 1, 2010.

  1. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Let's start the ID party with our favorite workhorses in our tanks....snails! Please grab the ID format from the stuck thread in here and add your info! I will compile all of the submissions into a final definitive ID guide that we can all rely/refer to as needed!

    Ideas to get you guys submitting:

    Astrea
    Cerith
    Stomatella
    Columbellid
    Sea Hare
    Turbo
    Etc!

    Cheers~!
    Jon

    EDIT: So a site that I have found to be absolutely dynamite in helping ID many of these snails based on their shell is:
    http://www.gastropods.com/index.shtml

    Check it out! It is an amazing resource!
     
  2. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Opeatostoma pseudodon
    Comon Name(s): Red Footed Conch/Thorn Tooth Latrius/Banded Tooth Latrius
    Size: 1.5"L x 1"W x 1"T
    Shape: Spiral with predominate tooth near operculum opening
    Color: Tan with black stripes, covered in coralline algae
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate/Rock
    Origins: Pacific Coast of N. & S. America
    Food: Unknown
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: I received these snails as "Chestnut Turbo Snails" which they are not. After placing them in my tank, they immediately burrowed in the sandbed/clung to live rock/underside of corals.

    Photos:
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  3. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species:Stomatella varia
    Comon Name(s):Stomatella snail
    Size:>1" - 1 1/4"
    Shape:Oval, often reffered to as a shell-less snail
    Color:Varies. Grey, black, mottled, etc.
    Aquarium Habitat:Rock and glass mostly.
    Origins:Indo-Pacific, often as hitchikers on Live Rock, corals, frags, algae, etc.
    Food:Herbivores that eat microalge, including diatoms, cyanobacteria, dinoflagellates.
    Method of Reproduction:Broadcast spawners. Quick pelagic larval phase, easy to breed in captivity.
    Experiences/Notes:These guys have a cool defense mechanism similar to some reptiles that will "ditch" appendages when threatened. When this snail is threatened it can "ditch" a portion of its foot that continues to move and writhe after ejection to keep the attention of the predator.

    Photos:

    [​IMG]
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  4. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species:Tectus fenestratus
    Comon Name(s):Trochus snail, Turban snail
    Size:Up to 2" W x 2" T
    Shape:Pyramid, round aperture, sometimes with bumps or ridges on the shell
    Color:White, Grey, mixed combinations of the two. Body of snail is white and black spotted.
    Aquarium Habitat:Rock and glass
    Origins:Indo Pacific
    Food:All types of algaes, filamented, micro, turf, and slime.
    Method of Reproduction:Broadcast spawners.
    Experiences/Notes:These snails do have a protein/horn type of operculum that is semi-transparent and brown.

    Photos:
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  5. Mckibbonator

    Mckibbonator Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Yet to be named
    Comon Name(s): yet to be named
    Size: Max size recorded 2 inches
    Shape: any
    Color: Black / blue
    Aquarium Habitat: Unknown
    Origins: unknown
    Food:Unknown
    Method of Reproduction: unknown
    Experiences/Notes: Little is known of this snail out side of the fact that it has a symbiotic relationship with a sponge in the genus Haliclona. They tend to avoid bright light, and the sponge is prone to air bubbles. The was one known specimen that had a serpent stare as a "roommate" to the host sponge. The sponge requires a feeding of phytoplankton twice a day.


    I had it in the tank for a year, and I'm really, really mad it got sold with the tank for $500, when the snail alone was worth $1000+!

    I couldn't find a picture of it on the web, but you can find the article on this snail in CORAL magazine volume 5, number 4.
     
  6. deadrock

    deadrock Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

  7. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Scutus sp. (possibly Scutus antipodes or Scutus unguis)
    Comon Name(s): Shield Snail, Shield Limpet, Black Limpet, Elephant Slug
    Size: Up to 4+ inches
    Shape: Oval shaped, with long black mantle that enrobes the white shell. Long antenna and a rather large snout
    Color: Black mantle with a slit along the dorsal side of the mantel often allowing the white shield-like shell on its back to be seen. Ventral side of the mollusk is white
    Aquarium Habitat: Rock and glass, nocturnal
    Origins: Indo Pacific
    Food: Algal grazer
    Method of Reproduction: Broadcast spawners.
    Experiences/Notes: These snails often hitchike on live rock, and once established can breed succesfully in captivity. I recently bought 4 specimens from a shop who has them readily breeding in their systems.

    Photos:
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  8. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Conomurex luhuanus, Strombus luhuanus
    Comon Name(s): Tiger Conch, Strawberry Conch
    Size: Up to 5"L x 2"W
    Shape: Cone shaped with a very short spire. Ventral Side has a long thin aperture that the conch emerges/retracts from.
    Color: White/cream undertone with orange blotches/stripes all over the shell. Ventral interior of the shell is always a salmony pink color. Ventral aperture has a dark brown/black line.
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate
    Origins: Indo Pacific
    Food: Diatom algaes, microalgaes, bacterial slimes
    Method of Reproduction: Egg Layers
    Experiences/Notes: These conchs spend lots of time under the sand substrate, and as such, should be provided with a nice thick sandbed. The conch has eyes set on eyestalks and its radula is set on a long proboscis that extends away from the shell as the conch hunts for food.

    Photos:
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  9. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Vitta luteofasciata/Vittina luteofasciata
    Comon Name(s): Nerite Snail
    Size: Up to 1/2" in diameter
    Shape: Pea shaped, roundish, aperture sits relatively flat. Very smooth shell
    Color: Rainbow. Can be any varied color with dots, lines, swirls on the shell, and any combination.
    Aquarium Habitat: Rock and glass, often burrowing below the substrate line as well.
    Origins: Sea of Cortez
    Food: Microalgaes, turf algaes, cyanobacteria.
    Method of Reproduction: Egg layers.
    Experiences/Notes: These snails, like most nerite snails are intertidal. They will often be found above water line in a home aquaria. They will also often be found in congregations at times, often in areas of high water flow. They lay eggs prolifically in an aquarium on rock and glass, but I have never personally seen baby nerites pop up in a tank.

    Photos:
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  10. Aku

    Aku Cuttle Fish M.A.S.C Club Member

    Here is a very quick and dirty one that I started on. Please change anything that is incorrect as I'm sure there is some of it.

    Species: Cerithium atratum
    Common Name: Florida Cerith
    Size: 1.25”(Collected)L x .25”W x .25”T, grows to 1.75”L
    Shape: Elongated spiral shell with spikes.
    Color: Variable
    Aquarium Habitat: Lives in the sand bottom near rocky reef areas.
    Origins: Florida?
    Food: Herbivore. Known for consumtion of red diatom and algae.
    Method of Reproduction: Egg layers.
    Experiences/Notes: Great for mixing up the sandbed, very hardy in reef aquaria.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks to Rockys_Pride for the picture.
     
  11. chrislorentz

    chrislorentz Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Collonista
    Comon Name(s): Mini Turbo
    Size: 1/8" - 1/4" im my experience
    Shape: Roundish
    Color: Mine mostly seem to be tan and brown checkerd pattern
    Aquarium Habitat: Everywhere - glass, rocks, plastic, substrate, you name it.
    Origins: I do believe they are found all over
    Food: Algae grazers
    Method of Reproduction: Broadcast spawners that reproduce readily in captivity. In most cases, this method means the young have very little chance of survival in home aquaria. However, in this case, they likely go through a very short planktonic/pelagic stage, so their chances are greatly improved.
    Experiences/Notes: Vary in color and pattern from solid white to combinations of white with tan, brown, or even pink markings. If you’d like to confirm the ID, remove one of the snails and (using a magnifying glass) look for a hole/pit in the center of the the “trap door” in the opening of the snail. They reproduce well in aquaria, and are quite good grazers. If present in large numbers, they may effectively replace all other grazers in our systems. You will mostly see these at night as they are considered nocturnal. I do see mine in the day if I look hard for them on the Live Rock.

    Photos: You can look them up on the internet I don't have a camera good enough to get good pictures.

    I hope this is what you are looking for.
     
  12. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Cerithium stercusmuscarum
    Comon Name(s): Cerith Snail
    Size: Up to 1 1/2" in length, 1/2" in diameter
    Shape: Cone shaped, smooth shell, sometime found with minor bumps.
    Color: Black, dark grey, or dark brown often with very fine white dots everywhere. The apex of the shell is almost always white in larger specimens.
    Aquarium Habitat: Rock and glass, however primarily burrowing in the substrate
    Origins: Sea of Cortez
    Food: Microalgaes, turf algaes, cyanobacteria, detritus.
    Method of Reproduction: Egg layers.
    Experiences/Notes: These are some of the best cleaners for an aquarium. They spend a lot of their time in the substrate keeping the bacteria aerobic, while also eating diatoms, and other nuisance algaes and detritus. They often spawn in an aquarium, however the eggs take a decent amount of time to mature, and are often consumed by other tank inhabitants. These snails can right themselves if turned upside down.

    Photos:
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  13. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Nassarius (Zeuxis) melanioides
    Comon Name(s): Nassarius snail
    Size: 2" in length, 3/4" in diameter
    Shape: Cone shaped, smooth shell, very pronounced inner lip with teeth visible, ridged partly visible on spire near apex of shell.
    Color: Black/grey
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate including sandbed
    Origins: Indo-pacific, Australia
    Food: Unknown, hopefully a scavenger/detritivore
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: This snail recently showed up in an order of large nassarius snails. It immediately stood out because of its elongated shell and large inner lip. Because it was uniquie I decided to snap some pics before tossing it in my tank.

    Photos:
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  14. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Nassarius sp?
    Comon Name(s): Nassarius snail
    Size: 1" in length, 1/2" in diameter
    Shape: Cone shaped with defined ridges, very pronounced outer lip, whorls along spire visible but not pronounced
    Color: Black/grey with a yellowish line following the whorl the entire length of the shell
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate including sandbed
    Origins: Unknown
    Food: Unknown, hopefully a scavenger/detritivore
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: This snail recently showed up in an order of large nassarius snails. It immediately stood out because of its coloration and yellow stripe. Because it was uniquie I decided to snap some pics before tossing it in my tank.

    Photos:
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  15. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Nassarius (Zeuxis) margaritiferus
    Comon Name(s): Nassarius snail
    Size: 1 1/2" in length, 3/4" in diameter
    Shape: Squat and conicalCone shaped with defined small bumps all over the shell. Shell whorls are visible but not prominent
    Color: White/cream undertone with red/black/green blotches all over the shell
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate including sandbed
    Origins: Indo-Pacific
    Food: Scavenger/Detritivore
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: These nassarius snails are being imported regularly to Los Angeles based distributors.

    Photos:
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  16. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Nassarius (Plicarcularia) bellulus
    Comon Name(s): Nassarius snail
    Size: 1 " in length, 5/8" in diameter
    Shape: Conical shaped shell, however the side nearest the snail's aperture usually flattened. The inner and outer lip can often be well developed to make a flat base.
    Color: White/cream undertone with black/green/yellow blotches/lines all over the shell
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate including sandbed
    Origins: Indo-Pacific
    Food: Scavenger/Detritivore
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: These nassarius snails are being imported regularly to Los Angeles based distributors.

    Photos:
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  17. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Nassarius (Zeuxis) fraudator vernicosa
    Comon Name(s): Nassarius snail
    Size: 1 " in length, 5/8" in diameter
    Shape: Bulbous squat conical shaped shell with dominant whorls
    Color: White/cream undertone with black/green/yellow blotches/lines all over the shell
    Aquarium Habitat: Substrate including sandbed
    Origins: Indo-Pacific
    Food: Scavenger/Detritivore
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: These nassarius snails are being imported regularly to Los Angeles based distributors.

    Photos:
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  18. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Cypraea annulus
    Comon Name(s): Money Cowrie
    Size: Up to 1 1/4" in length, 3/4" in diameter
    Shape: Oval shell, flat bottom with well defined teeth at aperture, extremely smooth, glassy appearance
    Color: White/cream undertone with yellow ring surrounding dorsal side of shell.
    Aquarium Habitat: Rocks and glass
    Origins: Indian Ocean, Indo Pacific
    Food: Herbivore feeding on many different types of algaes
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: Money cowries are fantastic algivores, however are fairly uncommon in the trade. Like other cowries the have a robust mantle that can cover the majority of the shell. The mantle color is white with black stripes and has lots of little tentacles protruding from it. These cowries tend to be nocturnal and hide behind rocks/corals during the day.
    Photos:
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  19. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Cittarium picta
    Comon Name(s): Zebra Turbo Snail, Zebra Striped Turbo
    Size: Up to 2 1/2" in length, 2" tall
    Shape: Roundish compressed cone, large aperture, whorling definately present from body through to apex
    Color: White/cream undertone with black/grey striping giving it its common name. Often with yellow or green highlights
    Aquarium Habitat: Rocks and glass
    Origins: Central America to the Bahamas
    Food: Herbivore feeding on many different types of algaes
    Method of Reproduction: Unknown
    Experiences/Notes: Zebra turbos come from warmer waters than many of their Turbo bretheren, therefore giving them an advantage in reef aquaria. These snails are true workhorses when it comes to mowing down algae, however because they can reach large sizes, they may have a tendency to bulldoze rocks/corals that arent firmly attached. They have a horn-like protein operculum that is brown in color.

    Photos:
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  20. jonthefb

    jonthefb Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    Species: Trochus radiatus
    Comon Name(s): Red Banded Trochus Snail
    Size: Up to 1 1/4" in length, 1 1/4" tall
    Shape: Pyramid shaped shell, with a fairly flat bottom
    Color: White/cream undertone with maroon red/pink bands radiating from the apex of the shell. The Apex often is silver in color. The area around the aperture is white/cream with red/pink dots/dashes
    Aquarium Habitat: Rocks and glass
    Origins: Indian Ocean to Indo Pacific
    Food: Herbivore feeding on many different types of algaes
    Method of Reproduction: Broadcast spawners
    Experiences/Notes: Red Band Trochus snails are some of my personal favorites. They are one of the only snails that can right themselves if they land on their backs on a sandbed. They have a voracious appetite for algae, however are very hard to come by in the hobby. Several hobbyists have had luck breeding them ending up with babies all over the tank.

    Photos:
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