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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings! This is my first post here. Good ol' Google.

Anyhow, I have a 55g tropical tank that is mostly a wide variety of catfish. I set it up January of this year and although it took a while to cycle, everything is running very smoothly now.

It is properly cycled with all good water test results. I have water sprite and wysteria in it along with lots of fake plants to act as hiding places. I am using the normal retail gravel found in any LFS.

I use my city tap water with Aquasafe and other necessary additives. I do add aquarium salt after reading that it does benefit even freshwater fish. I add it according to the directions. All my fish are fine and I rarely have any die. Plus I heard that apple/mystery snails will tolerate salt added correctly.

But I have/had two snails since week 1 and since they've been in my tank their shells have steadily dissolved to where you can almost see through the shell and near the opening it has completely eroded.

One snail ended up either dying or was pulled out of its shell by the fish. The other snail is hanging on, but looks terrible.

Now here's the thing. City tap water should be soft, but my test results indicate that its very hard. Is that the salt doing that?

If my water is so hard, why are my shells dissolving?

I also have a dozen ghost shrimp that seem fine, but they molt so I don't know if its the same.

Someone please help.

I can provide as much information as necessary.

Thanks!
-Nick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Thanks for replying. I've read that calcium is the most important mineral to have. But I thought if your water was hard, then it was chock full of calcium?

If not, and I need to add it, how will that affect my current fish?
 

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Usually a sign of calcium deficiency. Suppliment feeding with blanched spinach and zucchini. Another thing that you can do is to get some cuttlebone and put in the tank as well.
 

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If you have trouble finding it look in the bird section at pet stores as most people use it in bird cages for their birds to peck at. Gram had it for her parakeet. Hikari also makes a pellet food for shell type critter called

Hikari Tropical Crab Cuisine

It keeps your shell types healthy and makes for some wonderful shells. My snails started to grow like crazy when I started to feed them a pellet every day.

Rose
 

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If your water is hard, there should be calcium. However, copper might be a problem with hard water. This hurts snails and shrimp, hence medications like coppersafe with warnings to use it at half dose for inverts and loaches.

I believe another nutrient that snails and shrimp require is iodine...I know it is required for shrimp, not positive about snails, now that I think about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replies everyone.



I will go with the crushed coral or limestone route.



Questions, can too much crushed coral or limestone be added? Also, is this a magical fix that pushedsthe pH right to 7.0 or will too much take it one way and not enough take it another?



I say limestone, because I have a driveway full of it. Can I just drop a few pepples in? Is crushed coral better?



Thanks!

-Nick.
 

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yes...be very carefull using cc or limestone. They will have a major impact on your PH. Look at using cuttlebone or feeding calcium rich veggies instead.
 
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