I don't keep fish, but I've wondered about this. From what I understand, snails are introduced to a fish tank to keep it clean. Fish produce waste and the snails eat this along with algae.

Don't the snails themselves produce just as much waste though? Are we just converting one kind of wate into another? Why doesn't this need cleaning?

2 Answers 2


The large snails produce more waste, they are better at cleaning algae than fish feces (not all snails will munch on fish feces).

Regardless of what kind of garbage eaters you have you still need to do maintenance and suction out the feces/debris.

  • ...And water changes.
    – M.P.
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 14:13
  • it was implied with maintenance :P Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 15:25
  • :) ok I thought so, but was not sure. ;)
    – M.P.
    Commented Jul 7, 2016 at 10:58

As far as I have seen, snails are introduced into aquariums as cleaning crew for algae, not fish waste. Snails also add lot of waste but algae is very big problem for many aquariums. Snails will work very hard and will be helping in cleaning algae.

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