What Snails Can Live With Nerite Snails? (With 5 Examples)

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As they get their hands on Nerite snails, many aquarists wonder what other types of snails they can live with in the same tank. I even asked this myself when I started growing these fascinating creatures.

Nerite snails can live with most freshwater snails, including Mystery, Japanese Trapdoor, Apple, Ivory, and Rabbit snails. These are suitable tankmates for Nerite snails because they feature flexible water requirements and are neither aggressive nor territorial. 

As we move forward, I will show you what steps you should take to ensure that your Nerite snails can comfortably share a tank with other types of snails. Then, I will mention the only type you shouldn’t add to a tank containing Nerite snails.

What Snails Can Live With Nerite Snail?

People enjoy Nerite snails because they are efficient tank cleaners. But if you want your Nerite snails to take care of your tank, you must pair them with suitable tankmates. Some potential companions for your nerite snail include:

1. Mystery Snails (Pomacea bridgesii)

Mystery snails are tube-shaped and have a black color with yellowish shell markings. They are active at nighttime and use their tentacles to help them find food. This type of snail usually feeds on algae, detritus, detrital worms, and fungi.

They are excellent tankmates nerite snails because they are peaceful and don’t mind sharing their territories with other snails. The mystery snail will do well in a planted aquarium that features a sufficient amount of hiding places.

2. Japanese Trapdoor Snails (Viviparus malleattus)

Japanese trapdoor snails are so-named because of their operculum, which helps them to stay moist. They are tube-shaped and dark brown with contrasting white markings. These snails are also susceptible to copper.

Japanese trapdoors eat algae, dead plant matter, and bits of fish food. They can easily share a tank with nerite snails because they are peaceful and won’t fight over territory. They can also share a tank with some types of fish and shrimp.

3. Apple Snails (Ampullariidae)

Apple snails live in large colonies and eat algae, detritus, fungi, and worms as well as sometimes eating other invertebrates that get caught in the tentacles. They sometimes eat dead plants and dead animals.

They are excellent tankmates for nerite snails because they are not aggressive. They also remain calm when the aquarium conditions become difficult. They can be kept with all kinds of freshwater fish, but they are particularly fond of the clown loach.

4. Ivory Snails (Pomacea bridgesii)

Ivory snails are colored white, their shell is oval, and they are very small. They can be kept in freshwater aquariums with apple snails and nerite snails if the temperature exceeds 65 degrees Fahrenheit.

They are usually peaceful and mind their own business. That makes them excellent tankmates for nerite snails, as well as other types of snails that are not aggressive. They are also great at eating the algae that grow on the glass, walls, and decorations.

5. Rabbit Snails (Tylomelania)

Rabbit snails are colored dark brown, fawn, or black. They are named so because their face looks like a rabbit. They prefer to live in water that is not too warm and has a pH level of 7.3 to 8.5.

They usually require hiding places, such as loose rocks, filled aquarium decoration, or under plant leaves. Rabbit snails are great tankmates for nerite snails because they are not aggressive and like to stay in the same place in the aquarium.

How To Make Nerite Snails Coexist With Other Snails?

Nerite snails will coexist peacefully with other snails. But you can take the following steps to prevent conflicts from arising in the future:

1. Scatter A Few Plants

Again, nerite snails can live without plants. But if you prefer to maintain a tank with plants, you have three options: 

Snail Species

The first option is the most obvious. Try to stock snails that do not eat plants. That includes bladder snails, mystery snails, and Malaysian trumpet snails.[1] But you can’t forget the population problems that species like Malaysian trumpet snails will introduce.

Plant Species

If you want the plant-eating snails to stay, introduce plants that those snails are less likely to eat. Snails eat delicate plants with soft leaves.[2] Therefore, if you add robust plants with stiff leaves, the snails are less likely to eat them.

One example is Anubias. It has strong, dark-colored leaves that snails do not like. 

Plant Type

You could simplify matters even further by adding artificial foliage. Natural plants are attractive because they add oxygen to the water. They also provide snails an alternative food source during periods where you can’t feed them for one reason or another. 

Nerite snails will eat the plants if they don’t have any other food source in the environment. But if you have an automatic feeder in place that can feed the snails even when you’re not around, you might as well replace live plants with their artificial counterparts. 

It is the most convenient solution. Snails cannot eat them, and they don’t require any additional care. If that wasn’t appealing enough, they don’t die. When live plants die, they rot. 

This can cause the ammonia concentration to rise. But this problem doesn’t exist where artificial plants are concerned. You should gravitate towards the solution that suits you.

2. Limit The Snail Population

Nerite snails are tiny, which is why you can keep one in merely five gallons of water. Two snails require 10 gallons; 15 gallons for three snails, 20 gallons for four snails, and so on.[3] The more snails you have, the more space you need.

A small tank will cause stress and attract diseases. Additionally, snails are more likely to misbehave in a small tank. The tank will become more challenging to maintain because toxins tend to spike at a much faster rate in small spaces.

Technically speaking, a large tank can solve this problem. But if you have snails that reproduce very quickly, their numbers will eventually overrun your tank, no matter how large it is.

If you want to keep your snail population under control, you should introduce a few Assassin snails. Assassin snails are a bad idea if nerite snails are the only creatures in the aquarium. The fact that they do not reproduce in freshwater means that their population will remain the same. 

Once you add species like bladder snails that reproduce rapidly, one or two assassin snails will keep their numbers down. Keep the number of Assassin snails small. Otherwise, they will kill more snails than you would like.

3. Adjust The Environment

Maintain a pristine tank. That means the following:

  • You need temperatures of 72 to 78 degrees F.[4] Use a heater so that you can keep the temperature stable. 
  • The water pH should be around 7.5. Also, ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites should be at 0 ppm. To measure these, I use the API Water Test Kit (link to Amazon). That bundle lasts for about eight hundred measures, making it highly cost-effective.
  • Perform regular water changes to keep the water clean. I suggest making routine changes of 15 to 30 percent. Try to do that each week.
  • Add a filter. The current shouldn’t be so strong that it can push the snails around. Keep making adjustments until you identify a flow that suits the snails.
  • Give your nerite snails suitable tankmates. That includes rasboras, neon tetras, cherry barbs, mystery snails, ghost shrimp, vampire shrimp, Kuhli loaches, and honey gourami, to mention but a few.[5] Aggressive neighbors will antagonize the entire tank.

4. Feed Your Snails Properly

If you want your snails to coexist peacefully, keep them well fed. Nerite snails eat algae, detritus, and biofilm. You can supplement their diet with algae waters, leafy vegetables, spinach, lettuce, etc. 

As was mentioned earlier, you can use an automatic feeder to ensure that the snails have enough food. Starving snails are more likely to turn on one another.

Why Can Nerite Snails Easily Live With Other Snails?

Nerite snails are popular among aquarists. Fortunately, they can also live with other snails. The evidence supports this conclusion. This is what you should know:

1. Nerite Snails Are Peaceful

Nerite snails are peaceful and do not bother their neighbors.[6] Additionally; peaceful neighbors won’t bother them. Most snails that can survive in the same freshwater conditions as nerite snails are perfectly peaceful.

They can live side by side with nerite snails. Admittedly, nerite snails have a voracious appetite. On the one hand, this is a good thing because nerite snails are incredible algae eaters. No other snails can rival them in this department.

On the other hand, fish with voracious appetites are problematic because some of them will fight one another during mealtimes. Beginners that have kept such fish in the past might expect nerite snails to exhibit the same habits.

But those expectations are wrong. Food may spark conflict in a snail tank if the snails in question are hungry. In an aquarium with plenty of food, their considerable appetite for algae will not create conflict between nerite snails and their neighbors.

2. Nerite Snails Won’t Overcrowd Your Tank

How many snails can your aquarium hold? You don’t want to overcrowd your tank. Unfortunately, some snails reproduce too quickly. One example is the ramshorn snail. They will start breeding soon after you add them to a tank.[7]

It only takes young snails three weeks to grow to a point where they can live independently. The more food ramshorn snails have, the more breeding they will do. Malaysian Trumpet snails are just as problematic. They breed too quickly. The better the conditions, the faster they will reproduce.

Apple snails, pond snails, bladder snails are in the same boat.[8] Nerite snails are not a problem because they won’t reproduce in freshwater. But if you pair them with the wrong snails, you run the risk of crowding your nerite snail aquarium.

3. Nerite Snails Don’t Compete Over Plants

The common belief is that freshwater snails do not eat live plants. Nerite snails may appear to nibble on the plants in your aquarium. But the creatures are more interested in the algae on the leaves, not to mention the biofilm the plants shed.

Nerite snails will eat dead plants, but they have no interest in live ones. However, before you celebrate, you should know that this doesn’t apply to every single snail. Some snails will happily eat live plants.

One example is the apple snail which eats algae and living plants.[9] Another example is Marisa Cornuarietis, also known as the Columbian Ramshorn Snail. They eat algae, dead fish, and aquarium plants.[10]

At the end of the day, plants are not essential to the lives of a Nerite snail. But they will improve the appearance of the tank. If you don’t care about the plants in your aquarium, you can go ahead and stock the species mentioned above. 

What Snails Can’t Live With Nerite Snails?

Freshwater snails are generally peaceful. But Assassin snails are the one major exception to that rule. People use them to keep their snail population under control. 

In many cases, individual assassin snails will steer clear of larger nerite snails. But that is not a guarantee. Additionally, if you have multiple assassin snails, they will gang up on large snails.

Even if your nerite snails are larger than the assassin snails, you are better off keeping the assassin snails out of the nerite snail aquarium. Don’t add assassin snails to a snail aquarium unless you want that assassin snail to kill its tankmates.

Can Nerite Snails Reproduce With Other Snails?

Crossbreeding among snails is possible. However, you don’t have to worry about nerite snails breeding with other species. At the end of the day, they cannot reproduce in freshwater. Their eggs will not hatch.

This is the only factor that may prevent nerite snails from sharing a tank with other freshwater snails. Nerite snails can live in freshwater and saltwater. However, they require saltwater to reproduce. To be more specific, their eggs need brackish water to hatch.

Freshwater snails do not like saltwater. Some are somewhat resistant to the effects of salt. They can tolerate a certain amount of salt. But others will die painfully.[11]

Mystery snails are a prominent example. They make excellent tankmates for nerite snails. However, they cannot live in a saltwater tank with nerite snails. Therefore, if you want your nerite snails to reproduce, you cannot keep them with other freshwater snails.

But if you don’t want your Nerite population to grow, you can keep the creatures in tanks with other freshwater snails. It is a question of what you want to achieve.

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Nerite snails can happily live with other freshwater snails. You may keep them in the same tank with apple snails, ivory snails, mystery snails, or pond snails. At the end of the day, nerite snails are just peaceful snails that eat algae and mind their own business.

However, that is not the case with Assassin snails. You cannot keep those with Nerite snails as they are very aggressive and territorial. Some aquarists even go as far as using Assassin snails to control the population of their Nerite snails.


  1. https://jaljeev.com/do-aquarium-snails-eat-plants/
  2. https://aquariumgenius.com/do-aquarium-snails-eat-your-live-plants/
  3. https://www.fishkeepingwisdom.com/how-many-nerite-snails-per-gallon/
  4. https://www.aquariumcarebasics.com/freshwater-snails/nerite-snails/
  5. https://tinyunderwater.com/snail-tank-mates/
  6. https://fishtankadvisor.com/nerite-snail/
  7. https://aquariumbreeder.com/ramshorn-snails-detailed-guide-care-diet-and-breeding/
  8. https://modestfish.com/freshwater-aquarium-snails/
  9. https://www.bigalspets.com/blog/freshwater/choosing-the-right-snails-for-your-freshwater-aquarium/
  10. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marisa_cornuarietis
  11. https://jaljeev.com/can-aquarium-salt-kill-snails/