Trial 2 with snails.
After the passing of Polky, our first Singaporean snail, we decided to try one more time.
Yesterday night was our date night. What do semi-geeks like us do on a date night? Snail shopping of course! (Don’t worry, we had dinner before our shopping excursion.)
We picked out two plants and two snails. All for under $5. (Cheap date?)
Immediately after putting the two snails into the water with Eppy we were encouraged. Both snails wasted no time in moving. This was a good sign (note to self: Good Sign 1). Polky was never so eager.
Our happy feelings didn’t last for long.
Discouraging sign 1: The larger of the two snails headed for the water line. Is he trying to escape?
Discouraging sign 2: We were watching the larger snail make a break for it. Epsilon came over. He seemed to be interested in his new tank make. My jaw dropped as we watched Epsilon take his first bold move. As best as we can tell we think we witnessed Eppy chomp off the tiny, skinny antenna that the snail had out. Either that… or maybe (hopefully) the snail retracted his antenna quickly? We could not believe the rash behavior of our beloved fish.
Maybe Eppy was hungry? We quickly commenced to feed Eppy. (Hopefully this didn’t seem like reinforcement for eating his friend’s one antenna.)
Discouraging sign 3: Eppy went to the smaller snail. This snail was moving much quicker than his larger friend. He was making his way towards his snail friend when Eppy came close. We were shocked for a second time as Eppy nudged this little guy a good snail’s length! How could he!? The audacity? Who did he think he was to be bullying his new companions???
We decided that we should count the horns on the smaller snail. We could count four.
Eppy seems to be eager to play … or is it antagonize … his new companions.
I guess I shouldn’t forget that our fish is a fighting fish.
Day 1 passes and day 2 dawns
Good sign 2: The snails are still getting along.
Discouraging sign 4: Our worst fear with Polky is starting to seem like reality with our new snails. Both snails are out of the water. The small snail is sitting on the larger snail who is a good centimeter above the water line.
Eppy: You should be ashamed of yourself. We go through all this effort to give you some tank mates. And what do you do? Scare them off! How cruel!
Afternoon of Day 2
Good sign 3: The snails have submerged half of themselves into the water.
Discouraging sign 5: Weren’t there four horns on the little guy? I have counted several times. I only see three now. I can only assume that Eppy has continued with his poor carnivorous appetites and habits.
[I feel like Howard Crick in Stranger Than Fiction when he is tallying up different occurrences to determine whether he is part of comedy or tragedy. I fear my snails may be part of a tragedy.]
On the happy side: we did name the snails! (Good sign 4)
Meet Spike and Zebby:
Zebby is the larger snail. From what we can tell he is a Zebra Nerite Snail. Spike is the smaller snail. He is a Horned Nerite Snail. But Horney sounds a little too ornery. So we chose Spike instead.
I think they’re getting along well and enjoying each other’s company. Andrew pointed out though that the large snail really might not like the smaller one… maybe Spike is just along for ride and is actually kind of pesky?
Good Sign 5: Since I wrote the above, Spike and Zebby have moved. I counted Spike’s horns again. I now count four. Either he grew one back quickly. Or he was in an odd position such that, try as I might, I was only able to count three horns earlier. I’ll take either explanation as a good sign.
Oh, there’s another good sign (6): Epsilon seems to like the plants. He swims into the branches and tries to get around the plants. He looks happy. At least that makes one happy creature in a tank of three animals.
So we have at least a happy fish, even if we don’t have happy snails. And if I count up the good vs. discouraging signs, we have a lot of good going on. (We’ll ignore the discouraging points for now.) That makes me happy.
And it also makes one happy and successful Andrew. He was on a mission to give Eppy a bigger tank and some plants and snails. He is so pleased with how our aquarium adventure is going that he said that maybe Spike could be my snail!
Whoopee! … though I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do with a pet snail. Hmm…