Are you looking to mix Cichlid fish and snails in the same tank? If yes you will want to know Will Cichlids Fish Eat Snails?
Cichlid fish generally do not eat snails. Some species have been know to eat small snails on rare occasions (Probably when they are very hungry). Cichlids fish will not actively hunt and eat snails.
Some species of Cichlids are more likely to eat snails than others, for example the African cichlid is the most likely to eat snails because they are not fussy what they consume.
Having said that snails will need plants to feed on and you usually don’t have plants in your tank because the African cichlid requires a high pH water level.
Can Snails Be Kept With Cichlids?
Yes you can keep snails with cichlids but you need to be careful which snails you select.
Generally larger cichlids will eat all snails, it doesn’t help that the snails antennas look like tasty worms. They will also swallow them whole.
It is recommended to only keep snails with smaller cichlid breeds.
The following cichlids are known to be safe to be kept with snails
- Convict cichlids
- Bolivian Rams
- South American Dwarf Cichlids
- Apistogramma cichlids
I recommended to get a fish that will not grow larger than two inches.
What Cichlids Can Not Be Kept With Snails?
The following cichlids are known to actively seek out and eat snails.
- African Cichlids
- Malawi Cichlids
- Chocolate Cichlid
- Red Devil Cichlid
- Peacock bass
- Jaguar cichlid
It is not recommended to keep large cichlid fish if you also want to keep snails. They will try to eat snails no matter the size of the snail.
Also do not introduce the snails to the tank when they are young / small as they will most likely be eaten.
What Snails Can Be Kept With Cichlids?
If you are looking to select snails to keep with your cichlid fish it is best to get a larger snail.
Snails that can be kept with cichlids are
- Zebra Nerite
- Large Mystery
- Tiger Nerite
- Black Devil
- Malaysian Trumpet
Below is a Malaysian Trumpet snail.
If the snail is young you should keep it in a separate tank until it is almost fully grown. If you introduce it in to your tank when it is young / small it will most likely be eaten.
Feeding your fish regularly will also help the snails not get eaten because your fish will be full and will not be actively looking for food.
Do Convict Cichlids Eat Snails?
If you are looking to keep snails with convict cichlids fish you will need to know if the snails will get eaten?
Convict cichlids are not aggressive fish but they will eat snails that are small enough to fit in their mouth. They will swallow the snails whole if they can. Snails make a perfect snack for the convict cichlids fish.
Tips For Preventing Snails Getting Eaten
There are a few things that you can do to prevent your snails from getting eaten which are
Buy Large Snails – If you buy large snails the fish are less likely to see them as a source of food
Hiding Places – Give them places that they can hide away from the fish
Feed Your Fish Regularly – Your fish are more likely to be full and not need a top up meal