Zebra Nerite Snail (Neritina natalensis)
The Zebra Nerite Snail is probably one of the most sought after snails for your aquarium. These snails have a stunning yet straightforward beauty, with each snail having their own unique pattern. In addition, these snails are docile and peaceful in temperament and can easily move throughout the aquarium.
Zebra Nerite Snails are very easy to care for and have minimal demands once you have added them to your tank, making them perfect for beginner aquarists as well as advanced hobbyists.
Zebra Nerite Snails make a great addition to any planted aquarium. They are insatiable algae-eaters that are continuously working hard to clean algae off of your glass, plants, decorations, substrate and even filters. Unfortunately, these snails have been known to climb above the water level; therefore, a tight-fitting lid is highly recommended to stop them from escaping.
Ideal tankmates for Zebra Nerite Snails would be small and peaceful species such as Dwarf Barbs, peaceful Tetras, Endlers and Guppies. You can also house Zebra Nerite Snails with Dwarf Neocaridina Shrimp and other snails such as Trumpet Snails, Rabbit Snails and Mystery Snails. However, it would be better to avoid harbouring these snails with large and aggressive fish, Crayfish and Assasin Snails; otherwise, your Nerites will become easy prey.
The ideal aquarium setup for Zebra Nerite Snails would include plenty of caves made from rocks or driftwood to act as hiding spots, even though they will spend most of their time out and about. The aquarium will also require a soft sandy substrate to prevent your snails from getting damaged. Aquatic plants are unnecessary; however, they are a good addition to the aquarium as they will make it look more natural and will also give your snails extra places to graze on.
Zebra Nerite Snail shells can be of various colours, from an intense golden-yellow and light brown to a yellowish-brown to a greenish-yellow. The stripes on the shell are uneven, and there can be prominent light ridges at the base of the shell. In addition, the Zebra Nerite Snail has several dark bands that can also vary in colour, which gives them their characteristic appearance.
There are various types of Nerite Snails available, including Tiger Nerite Snails, Olive Nerite Snails, Black, Red and Gold Racer Nerite Snails, Horned Nerite Snails, and Red Spotted Nerite Snails.
|Scientific Name||Neritina natalensis|
|Other Names||Spotted Nerite, Tiger Snail, Zebra Snail, Zebra Nerite|
|Origins||Brazil, Kenya, Mozambique, Somalia, South Africa, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago|
|Lifespan||1 - 3 years|
|PH||6.5 - 8.5|
|KH||12 - 1|
|TDS||150 - 250|
|65 - 85℉|
18 - 29℃
Photos of the Zebra Nerite Snail
Zebra Nerite Snails are endemic to Trinidad & Tobago, Kenya, Mozambique, Somalia and Tanzania in Africa and South Africa and Brazil in South America. These snails inhabit moderately flowing waters in creeks, mangrove swamps, lakes, lagoons, ponds, rivers and streams, where they can be found amongst driftwood and rocks. Zebra Nerite Snails are used to changing water levels, so they are able to thrive without any issues in both freshwater and brackish water aquariums.
What to feed the Zebra Nerite Snail
Zebra Nerite Snails primarily eat algae, from green to brown algae and even soft film algae. However, if there isn't enough algae for your snails to graze on, you can supplement this with fish food and spirulina wafers.
Zebra Nerite Snails will also enjoy the occasional treat of blanched vegetables, including broccoli and zucchini and will also eat blanched carrots and Kale.
It may also be necessary to provide your snails with calcium supplements as this will keep your snail's shells healthy and strong because soft shells may lead to other health issues in the future.
How to breed the Zebra Nerite Snail
Zebra Nerite Snails can lay multiple eggs in freshwater aquariums, but they will not hatch and can only be successful if you keep them in brackish water. Successful breeding is more probable with 5 Nerite snails or more; this makes the group more likely to contain both males and females.
If you plan to attempt breeding the Zebra Nerite Snails by yourself. In that case, the water salinity level will need to be around 1.007, and the temperature will need to be about 79 degrees Fahrenheit. Furthermore, Zebra Nerite Snails breed best in tanks with only other nerite snails and are separate from any other species.
Zebra Nerite Snails will start to lay eggs on hard surfaces within the tank if the conditions are right. The eggs will look like tiny white dots, are very hard, and will gently stick to whatever they fall on. You can then either allow the eggs to hatch or scrape them off the surface and chuck them.