Last Updated on February 4, 2022 by cmoarz
Will dwarf puffers eat Malaysian trumpet snails, and do they make a nutritious part of their diet? And in fact, will it hurt their teeth like so many on the internet say it will?
These are important questions to know the answers to if you own or thinking about getting dwarf puffers.
What do experts say about whether dwarf puffers will eat Malaysian trumpet snails?
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All the experts agree that puffers will eat Malaysian trumpet snails. They even all agree that puffers do need to eat snails in order for them to remain healthy.
Luckily for us, it doesn’t take an expert to know that puffers love all kinds of snails, including MTS.
As for the teeth question, A lot of people are under the impression that MTS shells are too hard for puffers to destroy, and that this somehow damages the puffer’s teeth. This is not true.
Puffers naturally eat shells of other snails (shellfish) as they would any mollusk; crunching them up to eat the soft parts inside. The calcium in those shells helps with both their bones and teeth and actually, makes them grow stronger.
In fact, A puffer needs to keep eating these hard-shelled mollusks in order to grind their teeth down because they are always growing. It’s an important part of their diet.
Puffers will eat Malaysian trumpet snails, and they will benefit from eating them as long as you don’t overfeed your puffer! When in doubt, underfeed your fish so it has to work at getting its food rather than just inhaling it all.
So if they’re good for their teeth, why do so many people think MTS will hurt a puffer’s teeth?
Well, most of that myth comes from the fact that the Malaysian trumpet snails shell is very dense and hard, Much harder than other snails.
This is because of their unique conical design, creating a more densely packed shell area, especially closer to the bottom.
But fortunately, puffers’ main diet is mollusks and their teeth are designed to chew through them regardless of how dense the shell is.
So basically there’s no need to worry that your puffer won’t be able to eat MTS because of their hardier shells or that eating them is bad for your puffer’s teeth. Just feed it what it needs, don’t overfeed.
The benefits of keeping Malaysian trumpet snails in your puffer tank
Puffers love to snack on MTS. They can bring your puffer hours of entertainment, while also providing it with needed calcium and nutrients that will help it stay healthy.
The active hunting that can take place between your puffer and MTS can also provide an extra level of mental stimulation for both creatures.
And there are some benefits for you as well! Malaysian trumpet snails are typically very easy to care for, have interesting behaviors that are fun to watch, they’re rarely bothersome to their tank mates, and aren’t the types that just run wild in your tank.
Their slime coat helps keep the water safe for all fish in their surroundings, they are excellent at keeping algae growth under control.
Don’t expect to be able to breed them in your puffer tank though. The puffers will likely be able to decimate any static population of snails, so you will always need to be adding more.
It’s best to breed MTS in a separate breeding tank so you always have stock to feed to your puffers.