Columbian Ramshorn Snail (Marisa cornuarietis) Species Profile & Care Guide
The Columbian Ramshorn Snail is an attractive, large snail and is a popular addition to freshwater aquariums in which plants are not considered a prized centrepiece. These snails are peaceful and will not bother other tank inhabitants. However, it would be best if you did not keep them with snail-eating fish that may attack them such as Loaches or Pufferfish.
Columbian Ramshorn Snails have lungs, gills and an operculum. Their lungs enable them to survive in waters with low dissolved oxygen levels where many other species would die. Their pretty shells and their scavenging skills make them popular with tropical fish keeping enthusiasts.
Because of the planispiral coiling, these shells closely resemble that of the Great Ramshorn Snail. However, they are not closely related to actual ramshorn snails in the family Planorbidae; they are from the Apple Snail family.
Their shells are flat coiled, often unevenly striped, and vary from a dark yellowish-brown, pinkish to dark red, red-brown, to more vivid shades of both colours.
The three to six dark spiral bands mainly located at the umbilicus can be a dark brown or even black. Black and yellow mutations without a banding pattern are also comparatively common.
The snail's apparent soft parts of the body can be coloured white with a yellowish, grey and black pattern with coloured spots; however, the snail's upper side is often just beige with the bottom being a darker brown colour.
|Scientific Name||Marisa cornuarietis|
|Other Names||Giant Ramshorn Snail, Giant Striped Apple Snail, Marisa Snail, Paradise Snail, Apple Snail, Golden Horn Marissa, Striped Ramshorn Snail, Stripehorn Snail, Hard Disk Snail.|
|Aquarium Level||All Levels|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Lifespan||2 - 3 years|
|Temperature||75 - 81 ℉ (23.9 - 27.2 ℃)|
|PH||7.5 - 8.0|
|TDS||150 - 250|
Natural Habitat of the Columbian Ramshorn Snail
Columbian Ramshorns are native to Bolivia, Costa Rica, Brazil, Trinidad Tobago and Venezuala and French Guiana, Panama and Suriname Florida, Texas, Cuba, California and even Idaho in northern South America and Central America.
These snails inhabit rivers, lakes, and swamps where they stay close to the water's surface and prefer calm, shallow waters with plenty of vegetation.
Even though these snails are known to tolerate relatively high salt concentrations and are occasionally found in lightly brackish waters, they cannot reproduce in these conditions.
Other Snails of interest
The Columbian Ramshorn Snail feeds primarily on living and decomposing aquatic plants. They can also consume decaying animals, live eggs, and even other juvenile snails.
These snails are relatively undemanding and can survive on leftovers shrimp and fish food such as shrimp granules, shrimp pellets, algae wafers and fish flakes.
It would be best if you supplement their primary diet with blanched vegetables or catfish wafers and use calcium-enriched foods to ensure their shells will not corrode.
The use of liquid calcium, cuttlefish bones, calcium pills and eggshells is hugely encouraged for healthy shell conditions, especially when the water is relatively soft and acidic.
Breeding the Columbian Ramshorn Snail
Breeding Columbian Ramshorn Snails is the most straightforward job imaginable. As long as you have males and female snails in one tank, expect them to breed.
Columbian Ramshorn Snails are not hermaphroditic meaning a single snail does not have both the male and female reproductive organs. Unlike most Apple Snails, they will lay their eggs in disk-shaped clutches below the water line on virtually any substrate, commonly the aquarium glass.
When first deposited, up to 200 eggs about 2 to 3 mm in size are visible as small white spots inside a translucent, gelatinous mass. As the snails develop, they become more transparent and look like little spots attached to each egg's outside.
Hatching depends on temperature and occurs typically within two weeks. The young snails will then lose themselves in the gravel and take care of themselves without any additional support.