Can’t Find Nerite Snail? Where Did My Nerite Snail Go?

Last Updated on January 9, 2022 by cmoarz

So you went to clean your tank or to admire your nerite snails, only to find that one of them has gone missing! A not too uncommon problem nerite owners will face on occasion, Why can’t you find your nerite snail? Where did my nerite snail go? We’ve got some possibilities below.

Nerites are like the ninjas of the snail world. They can seemingly disappear and reappear at will! Don’t panic, they are probably still in your tank. (But maybe not, more on that later).

Nerites are really good hiders. They’re small enough to get into a lot of different places and their ability to crawl allows them to get into places most aquatic creatures can’t.

So the first place you want to check is your decorations.

Has your nerite snail been able to crawl up inside a hallow decoration? If so, they can walk around inside it. Or has your snail decided to take a little rest in the center of your big plastic plant?

If you can’t find your nerite snail in any obvious places, start doing a more thorough search. Pick up decorations and lift out plants to check underneath them.

Give your filter a look. Nerites have been known to sneak their way into filters and sumps! If your filter intake is in the middle of your tank, be sure to check there too.

Once you’ve searched the obvious places, it’s time to get down on snail level.

Do Nerite Snails Bury Themselves?

Nerite snails do bury themselves from time to time. Especially if you’ve got a sandy substrate. And if they do bury themselves, it can be difficult to find them.

Run your finger along the sandy bottom to see if you can feel his shell anywhere. There’s a good chance you will stumble upon him right there… But if not, It’s possible he’s fallen out of the tank.

Will My Nerite Snail Escape?

So, you’ve looked everywhere, Inside the filter, In the substrate, inside all the decorations and plants. You even checked the roof of the aquarium and he’s not hanging around up there.

Your certain he’s not in the aquarium that it’s time to assume he might have escaped and fallen out of the aquarium.

This is pretty common with nerite snails. They love to crawl up to the top of the aquarium and sometimes even on the outside glass.

Unfortunately, nerites are clumsy snails and they easily fall off the glass.

The most important thing here is not to panic. Nerites can go a week or more outside of the water once they seal themselves off in their shell.

However, depending on how he fell and how long the fall was, he may have injured his shell, so be ready to patch it up if you need to.

Check around the back of the aquarium, on the stand, and on the floor in the entire area. Usually, they won’t go too far and you should be able to spot him soon.

If he has died, you will know immediately as the smell will permeate the entire room quicker than you can say “Oof”.

Prevent Future Escapes

Preventing future escapes is actually pretty easy. You simply need to place the bottom half of a velcro strip along the rim of the tank.

This won’t hurt the nerite as a copper strip would, But it will prevent him from leaving the confines of the aquarium as they can’t stand the feeling of the velcro on their foot.

Also, be aware of any overhanging decorations or plants. Nerite snails have been known to climb up protruding and over-hanging plants and decorations and fall off.

Good luck!


Owner of and also owner of actual Aquarium Gravel believe it or not! ;). Setting up beautiful aquarium sceneries and habitats since I was very young. Enjoy!