Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Petsmart? Not So Much!

We have apple snails in our aquarium. Lots of them.

Several months ago we got a new aquarium, some guppies, some ghost shrimp and two apple snails. Apparently most snails are asexual. It only takes one to make baby snails. But not apple snails. With apple snails, you need two - a male and a female. It soon became apparent that we had just that - a male and a female. The females lay their eggs above the waterline. Frisky did so. Many times.

At one point while I was in the Petsmart fish department I mentioned to the young man working there that my snails had laid eggs. He assured me that their snails didn't lay eggs. OK. Whatever, he was young, probably inexperienced. I wasn't going to argue. I knew that I had snail eggs. I saw her laying them, they looked exactly as described online. There was no question. Not about the eggs, but maybe about the knowledge of the people in the fish department.

So, I'm pretty smart, right? I know what happens with eggs. They hatch. And baby snails come out. Yep. I also know that keeping the population under control is easy with apple snails,  you can just scrape the eggs out and don't let them hatch. But what a science lesson! Let the kids see what happens, right? Well, of course you know what happened. A couple of weeks later they began to hatch. They were the tiniest cutest little things you've ever seen.

Well, now they aren't so cute. They are bigger. We have way too many in that tank!

So, even though I knew it was probably futile, I called Petsmart. Maybe they would take some of the extras off my hands. I spoke to a woman this time. I told her my dilemma and she proceeded to go on at length about how snails are asexual and how even if there is only one, you end up with lots and lots of snails and she always warns people before they buy them that they can become a problem and they are asexual so it only takes one and they can fill your tank right up and on and on and on the same thing over and over and over. I politely thanked her and hung up.

Apparently, they have no idea what they are selling in the fish department (at least as far as snails go) and what the properties of these creatures are. A little frustrating and very annoying!

So, I got online again. Did you know that apple snails are edible? You eat only the foot part (fully cooked of course). There are even directions and recipes online. Hmmmmm.



  1. I'm not eating that. And you'd better not sneak it into my food like my mother used to do with calamari.

  2. Escargot! Yipeeeee!

    No, Karen, you do not have to save any "feet" for our return.

    And Michael seems to have survived quite well in spite of the calamari. Think he ever wonders what other dinner-time "unknowns" were presented to him?

  3. eeeewwww But you raised them from tiny little eggs - How could you entertain the idea of .... Oh My!

  4. "Think he ever wonders what other dinner-time "unknowns" were presented to him?"

    Well I do now!