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will guppies eat snails?

Will Guppies Eat Snails?

Finding the perfect tank mates for guppies can be challenging as they are smaller than most other fish and often get bullied. Therefore, you might consider getting other tank animals to house with your guppies, such as snails. But will guppies eat snails, or can they live in the same tank?

It’s unlikely that guppies will eat snails if you place them together in a tank. Guppies are too small to eat snails and have a gentle temper, so they won’t attack them. However, some guppy owners have reported that their guppies eat baby snails. In addition, guppies will eat unprotected snail eggs.

If you ensure that your tank accommodates both guppies and snails, they should be fine living together. Guppies make good tank mates with other tank animals, as long as they aren’t bullied or hurt by those fish. We will discuss ensuring that your guppies and snails live happily together and which snails are best to house with guppies.

Do Guppies Eat Snails?

Guppies are adorable fish and are easy to take care of. However, because of their small size, finding other creatures to keep in a tank with guppies can be challenging. Many other fish will hurt the guppies because they are so small. As such, you might consider housing snails with your guppies because the snails are unlikely to hurt them.

Fortunately, this plan can work, as guppies also won’t eat the snails. Guppies are extremely small and have mouths too small to eat a snail. In addition, guppies have a gentle temperament, so they won’t attack your snails unless they feel threatened. Furthermore, guppies aren’t too curious, so they’ll likely leave your snails alone.

Keeping a few snails with your guppies is generally a good idea because the snails eat all the leftover fish food. This keeps your tank clean, prevents the water from becoming toxic, and ensures your guppies are happy and healthy. They are also practically ninja level at eating algae, which is always a bonus! If you have ever wondered what caused algae in your tank, this article will help you with that.

One problem that can occur when housing guppies and snails together in one tank is that the guppies can become stressed if the tank gets dirty. While the snails help clean the tank by removing leftover food, they also contribute to waste because they poop often.

Therefore, cleaning the tank and replacing the water often is crucial so your guppies don’t become stressed or ill. Another potential problem of housing snails and guppies together is that the snails can overpopulate the tank if they are allowed to breed unchecked. This may also cause your guppies some stress. Therefore, we recommend monitoring the number of snails in your tank.

While guppies won’t eat snails, they might attack and eat snail eggs. This is especially true if the snail eggs are left unprotected. If you want to increase your snail population, this might be a problem. However, it can also be a helpful guppy trait in some circumstances, as the guppies help keep the snail population in check.

In addition to eating snail eggs, guppies may occasionally eat baby snails if the snails fit into their mouths. Snails have extremely hard shells that the guppies cannot bite or break. Therefore, guppies may sometimes eat baby snails out of curiosity rather than hunger.

If you notice your guppies eating snail eggs or baby snails, monitor their condition carefully in case they develop stomach problems. You can use certain chemicals that kill the snail eggs to prevent the snail population from overcrowding the tank. This will also prevent the guppies from eating the eggs.

mystery snail
A Mystery Snail

Which Snails Can You Keep With Guppies?

While you can keep most snails in a tank with guppies, some snails are better tank mates than others. Ideally, you don’t want snails that grow too big or can easily overpopulate a tank. Most snails need more room than guppies. Therefore, we recommend that you ensure three ounces of water for each snail and two ounces for each guppy in the tank.

Consider the size of your tank and determine how many snails and guppies you can have in it. Note that most snails will reproduce at a fast pace. Therefore, you should carefully consider which snails you add to the tank and how much space you have available.

Consider also, that some snails manage to sneak into your tank, which can cause some confusion at first. I have written an article about where random snails come from when they appear in your tank.

These are some of the best snails to house in a tank with guppies.

1. Golden Mystery Snails

Golden mystery snails add a beautiful pop of color to your tank. They can grow big in size, so you must consider how many snails you add to the tank. However, these peaceful snails are excellent at cleaning a tank and will pair well with guppies.

2. Nerite Snails

nerite snail
This is one of the nerite snails in my tank.

Nerite snails are the perfect snails to house with guppies because they only reproduce when kept in salt water. Guppies are freshwater fish, so they won’t reproduce when kept with your guppies. Nerite snails are beautiful and add an exciting element to your guppy fish tank.

I have 2 nerite snails in my tank. They do an amazing job of eating the algae. I have 7 guppies in with them (along with other fish), and they all live peacefully together.

3. Ramshorn Snails

Another great snail species to add to your guppy tank is ramshorn snails. They are some of the most beautiful snails available. These peaceful snails have a shell that resembles a ram’s horn, hence the name. They are efficient at cleaning your tank and don’t grow too big. However, they can reproduce quickly, so you must monitor their population.

4. Assassin Snails

Assassin snails can attack and prey on other snail species. However, they don’t attack fish, making them a safe addition to your guppy tank. These snails have a striking striped shell and look brilliant when added to a tank with guppy grass or other greenery.

This video shows their version of the 5 best snails for your freshwater tank. It includes 3 species I haven’t mentioned, but which would be safe with your guppies.

Do Snails Eat Guppies?

Although guppies will not attack or eat snails, you might still be concerned that the snails might eat the guppies. However, this isn’t a concern as snails are too slow to eat guppies. Most snails aren’t aggressive, so they’re unlikely to attack your guppies.

If guppies laid eggs, you would have reason to be worried because the snails would definitely eat the eggs. However, this isn’t a concern since guppies give birth rather than laying eggs. This is another reason why guppies and snails are good tank mates.

Snails are opportunistic eaters, though, meaning they will eat anything and everything that comes across their path. Therefore, if one of your guppies dies and sinks to the bottom of the tank, the snails will crowd it and eat it. This is just a part of their character and another way they help to clean the tank.

Fortunately, if you have healthy guppies, they are safe, and your snails won’t eat or attack them. Therefore, you can safely keep most snails in a tank with guppies.


Guppies are highly unlikely to eat snails because they are too small and have a gentle temperament. Guppies also keep to themselves, so they won’t bother your snails. However, guppies will attack and eat unprotected snail eggs. This helps to keep the snail population in check.

Snails are too slow and mild-tempered to eat guppies, too. However, snails will eat dead guppies if they sink to the bottom of the tank. You can keep almost any snail with guppies. Some great snails to consider are golden mystery snails, nerite snails, ramshorn snails, and assassin snails.

More Guppy Related Articles:

Why is my guppy not eating properly?

My guppy is a bully! What do I do?

Will guppies eat my plants?

How big can guppies grow?

Do guppies lay eggs?

Do guppies eat their babies?

Can guppies be aggressive?

Can guppies jump out of the tank?

Do guppies change colour?

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