I have written about our water plants and goldfish, but I haven’t mentioned about our golden apple snails. Yes, I have been unfair for not mentioning this very useful animal. I think it is because of the fact that I hate snails, I mean garden snails. They are filthy and slimy suckers that damage plants in the garden, but I must admit that water snails are different………….These snails have creamy yellow flesh that look neat and clean:)
Unlike garden snails that eat plants, apple snails don’t normally eat water plants, although many people will say the opposite! However, from what I see so far, my golden apple snails choose to eat algae, fish food and other rotting plant materials in the water. Slowly they crawl along the sides of the water tub cleaning the surface from algae. Even the edges of the Papyrus pot that was black of algae before now it is pretty clean since I have added the snails. Many times I saw them walk along the water lily stems, underneath the leaves and even on the flower bud without even trying to nibble on them. They love to eat debris that sit on the anacharis/elodea plants without eating them.
Golden Apple snails are one type of water snail species Pomacea bridgesii (= P. Canaliculata). They come in several colours; yellow, blue or yellow and red stripes. Female snails lay a cluster of up to a hundred pinkish eggs on the side of tubs or aquariums near the surface of the water. My snails have never laid eggs before but I hear that big goldfish love to eat baby snails that just hatched. To me it is good as I don’t expect to have too many snails and the population will be under control. They thrive in tropical/semi tropical water and are originally found in South America but have been introduced in many places worldwide. In many tropical countries, they have become introduced pests. For this reason, it is better not to release them in local ponds, lakes or rivers.