TERRARIUM FOR PET SNAIL
1. Make sure to clean the walls of the terrarium from snail mucus once every 2 days. It is advised to use a sponge. Take a new sponge, it should only be used to clean the glass in the terrarium. Don’t take a kitchen sponge that is used to wash dishes, as this sponge has in conjunction with detergents that can cause burns or irritation to your snails.
2. Terrarium cleaning. Once a month, completely replace the entire substrate in the terrarium. Remove all substrate, plates, and decor (if any) from the terrarium. It must be completely empty. Treat your terrarium with a spray of hydrogen peroxide solution (1:3 ratio). Wait 10 minutes and then wash your terrarium thoroughly with hot water. Put plates and decor in hot water and wait 10-15 minutes. Then dry everything and put it back in the terrarium.
3. Plates for your snails should be made of soft material. You ask why? This is necessary not to injure the shell of your snail, if, for example, it climbs on the wall or ceiling of the terrarium and falls down (this happens very often). The plate can be made of soft plastic, but the best is hypoallergenic silicone.
4. The lid in the terrarium is necessary to ensure that the snails will not escape and to maintain high humidity (it should be at the level of 70-80%). The lid of the terrarium should be made of non-toxic material (preferably plastic) and must have ventilation holes.
5. Decorating the terrarium:
A. Sphagnum moss. We recommend the use of dry, non-toxic (chemical-free) sphagnum moss (available on Amazon here). Why dry? Live moss contains many microorganisms that can adversely affect the ecosystem in your terrarium (fungi, beetles, worms, etc.) or infect your snails with parasites. Dried moss does not contain microorganisms and is safe. The only thing is that sphagnum moss by its nature has a low level of acidity (PH about 4), and snails like a substrate with a medium or close to a high level of PH (7-8). To raise the acidity level, you can sprinkle sphagnum moss and all your substrate with a small amount of natural, chemically neutral calcium.
B. Snags (roots) of trees. You can find the roots of the trees in your garden (if you live in a private house) when you uproot a tree. Also, you can walk along the river or lake and find the driftwood that you like. Or just choose something on Amazon here. The roots from nature must be boiled in water for 1 hour. Then dry it and put it in a terrarium. Here you can show your creativity and put a few roots in the corner of the terrarium, cover it with moss, and create a landscape you like.
C. Greens. You can plant a special sowing grass for cats (you can buy it on Amazon here). IMPORTANT! Do not plant houseplants in the terrarium! Most of these plants contain harmful and sometimes poisonous substances in their leaves or flowers, which can damage the health of your snail.
D. The terrarium should not contain any stones, ceramic pots, or other solid objects so that snails won’t damage their shells.
E. Alternatively, you can cover the walls of the terrarium (on the outside) with a natural background printed on the printer. You can choose the image on our site and download them here for free.
6. Light. Snails do not need light. You can illuminate your terrarium from the outside (or set it inside) just to admire your snails and enjoy the atmosphere of the terrarium you have created. The terrarium with illumination looks very beautiful in the evening. Such a calm, natural atmosphere can relax you after a hard day.
7. Place for the terrarium. The best place is in the corner of the room, away from direct sunlight. Direct sunlight can overheat the terrarium and harm your snail. Drafts from windows or doors also have a negative effect on the health of snails, so they should be secured against this.
8. Temperature. The best temperature is from 22 to 28 degrees Celsius (or 71.6° - 82.4° Fahrenheit), depending on the type of snail. The comfortable temperature for each will be different. The temperature is mostly maintained and is stable throughout the year in your living space. You can also maintain a constant temperature in your terrarium with special heat mats, which you can buy on Amazon here. You can control the temperature and humidity with a humidity-temperature meter (which you can purchase on Amazon here). If the temperature in your home is too high in summer (more than 28 degrees Celsius or 82.4° Fahrenheit), then you need to find a cool place. If you have a private house, it can be a basement or just a place in the corner of the room on the floor (usually the temperature in such places is lower than somewhere on the table or shelf).
9. Substrate. You can use ordinary soil from your garden or flower shop, coconut substrate, moss, or combine them. IMPORTANT! Your substrate should be environmentally friendly and chemically neutral, without any impurities, as these can harm or even kill your snails. Our experience (over 5 years) has shown that it is best to use the following mixture: 70% peat moss (you can get it on Amazon here) + 30% dried Sphagnum moss (you can get it on Amazon here) + for 10 liters of substrate we add 10 grams of organic calcium. After you put the substrate in your terrarium, you need to water it with plenty of clean, chemically neutral drinking water. However, the substrate should not float in water, it should be moderately moist. How many substrates should be in your terrarium? The optimal level is 10-15 cm, depending on the type of snail. The most important thing is that the snail can completely bury itself in the substrate.
Since snails are most active in the evening and at night, the best time to feed them is in the evening.
What to give:
1. Plant food. It can be lettuce, vegetables, fruits (zucchini, melon, watermelon, carrots, cucumbers, apples, pears, bananas, avocados, mangoes, etc.). Important! You can not feed snail citrus (tangerines, oranges, etc.). In our experience, lettuce leaves are the best plant food. It is easy to find in the grocery store, it can lie in the terrarium for a long time without spoiling, and it can be used as a plate.
2. Calcium. This is an essential element in your snail's diet! After all, thanks to calcium, the snail grows and develops properly, and in case of damage - the shell recovers very quickly. Many snail lovers recommend using cuttlebone fish as a source of calcium. However, in our opinion, this is not entirely correct. Let's explain why. The fact is that cuttlebone fish is the internal shell of the Cuttlefish, a small, squid-like cephalopod. It can be found in most marine habitats from shallow seas to deep depths and in cold to tropical seas. Therefore in saltwater. Cuttlebone fish, even after you wash and boil it, still contains a lot of salt, and as we know, salt is poisonous and sometimes deadly to your snail. If you do not agree with our position, please write your opinion and justify your position on our forum here. Although, you can still make cuttlebone fish suitable for feeding. This requires such actions: a) carefully grind cuttlebone fish b) rinse it under running water c) boil for 1 hour. E) rinse under running water. E) boil again for 1 hour. G) dry and grind. You must use organic calcium without any chemical additives! You can prepare the calcium mixture yourself. If you have your own special recipe for making a calcium mixture, please share it with the participants of our forum here. We have been developing and testing our Organic Calcium product for 2 years. It contains natural calcium. It may not be perfect and thanks to your feedback and help we can make it even better. So far this is the best of what we have used as a source of calcium for our snails. You can buy our Organic Calcium here.
3. Dry mixes. It is desirable that your snails have access to dry mixes throughout the day. Dry mixes should primarily contain calcium, vitamins, and minerals based on plant products (rice flour, buckwheat, chickpeas, and other various kinds of cereal). Food that contains animal protein is equally important for the normal growth and development of your snails. This can be ground food for aquarium fish, turtles, lizards, etc. However, you can give animal protein to snails no more than once or twice a week! You can yourself prepare food for your snails or buy our "Food for Snails" product. This mixture, which contains calcium, vitamins, minerals, and protein, it's recommended for daily use and should be in the terrarium all day. However, care must be taken to ensure that such food does not spoil. It can be spoiled due to excessive humidity in the terrarium or water on it. The product is completely safe if used according to the instructions. There are a lot of recipes on how to prepare special food for snails and how to feed land snails in various forums. We are very interested in your opinion on this. Please leave your comment on our forum here.
4. Microgreens. It's just a vitamin boost for your snails because such food contains a lot of micro and macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. This is a 3-in-1 food since it can be: a) a kind of delicacy for snails. b) a beautiful element of decor in your terrarium. C) a regulator of the required high level of moisture in the terrarium. You can grow microgreens yourself. Very soon you can read how to do it here (we'll provide a link to the article on our website).
5. Wet mixes or porridges. Wet mixtures (porridges) can be made from dry mixes. To do this, add warm boiled water to the dry mixture and mix thoroughly. Boiled water should be at a comfortable room temperature (20 to 28 degrees Celsius or 82.4° Fahrenheit). You can also add fruit puree to the dry mixture. You can make it yourself by pre-grinding fresh vegetables or fruits in a blender. Or you can buy ready-made baby formulas at Walmart or at Amazon. However, when buying such a mixture, pay special attention to the components of the product, it should not contain any chemicals (flavor enhancers, emulsifiers, stabilizers, dyes, etc.), there should be no sugar, and no salt! IMPORTANT! Unlike dry mixes, wet mixes (porridges) have a tendency to spoil quickly. Therefore, it is very important to remove the remains (those that your snails could not eat) from your terrarium after a maximum of 3 hours, as the spoiled mixture can cause poisoning or even death of your snail.
Our "FOOD FOR SNAILS" Feeding Guide
As any other pet, your snail needs full nutrition every day: a protein that is most concentrated in meat and legumes, vitamins and minerals contained in fresh vegetables and fruits (carrots, cabbage, potatoes, lettuce, apples, bananas, strawberries, etc.). If you don’t have any time to cook such delicacies for your pets every day, this food can partially (for several days) replace all the above said. It is a universal food for land snails. This food contains all the necessary minerals, trace elements, and protein for your snail to grow healthy and energetic. It is recommended for daily use. It has a specific taste and smell, which snails like very much. It is suitable for snails of all ages. It is also suitable for all types of snails: Giant African land snails AKA Achatina Achatina or "GALS", Helix Pomatia, Helix Aspersa, Theba Pisana, Otala Lactea, Eobania Vermiculata, Cepaea Vindobonensis, Caracolus, etc. In order to achieve the best result it is recommended to use this food together with a food supplement "SNAILS CARE" by ®MyHappySnails .
Dosage and method of use: For one middle-sized snail (1-2 inches shell size), take 1/3 of a teaspoon of the mixture and pour it into a shallow (0.5 inches max) feeding plate. After feeding snails for 8 hours (10 hours max), remove the plate with the mixture. If the snail did not eat the mixture you prepared, the leftovers should be thrown away (because of the high humidity in your terrarium, the mixture absorbs water and will deteriorate very quickly). Next time reduce the dose and do so until you see that your snail eats all the mixture you give to it. Snails are animals that are most active in the dark (from evening to morning). Therefore, it is best to feed them in the evening. However, many snails are often active during the day, so if you have the opportunity to feed them during the day, you can do so. You can also "activate" your pets in a very simple way. Simply sprinkle your terrarium with a spray (pure water without impurities). This will increase the humidity in the terrarium and the snails will become more active.
Also, you can try to mix the food with pure water for feeding your snails. Some of our customers told they snails like wet food more than dry. It depends on the species of your snails, their rationing, temperature, and many other factors. In any case, everything is individual and you have to try your "best method" of using the food. We'll be very happy if you share your experience and write to us by email.
Our feeding recommendations: Based on the long experience of feeding snails with this mixture, we got the best result when such feeding was alternated with feeding fresh vegetables and fruits. For example, one day you feed the snails with this mixture, and the next day you give them fresh vegetables or fruits. If you do not have the ability to give fresh vegetables or fruits, then you can simply feed your snails with the mixture. There is protein, calcium, vitamins, and minerals that make a complete set of elements necessary for growth. Then fresh vegetables and fruits will be a treat to be served for your snails when you want to have a holiday. Thank you very much for choosing our product and being with us :)
1. Feed your snails daily. It is desirable (if possible) to give fresh vegetables and fruits daily and sprinkle them with dry mixtures and calcium. If it is not possible to give fresh vegetables or fruits every day - give moist mixtures (porridge) and make sure that there is always a plate with a dry mixture and calcium in the terrarium.
2. Check the temperature and humidity in your terrarium. To do this, you need to buy a temperature/humidity meter. You can buy a cheap but high-quality item on Amazon here. If the temperature is low, you need to turn on the heating for your snails. If the temperature is too high - then you need to cool the terrarium (turn on the air conditioner in the room where the terrarium is installed or move the terrarium to a cooler place). If the humidity is low (less than 60%), you can spray the walls of the terrarium and your snails with a water spray. IMPORTANT! Be sure to take clean, drinking water (the one you drink yourself). Also, to increase the humidity, you can partially close the ventilation ducts that are on the top cover of your terrarium. To reduce the humidity, open the lid of your terrarium and allow some time (30-60 minutes) for excess moisture to evaporate.
3. Clean the feces of your snails. They can be on the surface of the soil, in the soil, or on the glass of the terrarium.
4. Remove leftover food that spoils quickly. It can be a wet mixture (porridge), vegetables, and fruits. A maximum of 3 hours after you put such food in the terrarium, take it away and throw it in the trash. Such food is not suitable for re-feeding.
How to fix a broken snail shell?
Repairing a broken snail shell can be a delicate process that requires care and patience. Here are the general steps to follow:
Assess the damage: The first step is to assess the extent of the damage to the shell. If the shell is only cracked or chipped, it may be possible to repair it. However, if the damage is too severe or the snail is injured, it may be best to take it to a veterinarian who specializes in treating exotic pets.
Clean the shell: Before attempting any repairs, it is important to clean the shell thoroughly to remove any dirt, debris, or bacteria. Gently wash the shell with warm water and a mild soap or disinfectant.
Apply a patch: If the shell is cracked or has a small hole, you can apply a patch to help seal the shell and prevent further damage. The patch can be made from a variety of materials, such as a small piece of plastic, acrylic, or even eggshell. Use a non-toxic adhesive, such as cyanoacrylate glue or aquarium sealant, to attach the patch to the shell. Be sure to apply the adhesive only to the patch and not directly to the snail's body.
Provide extra care: After repairing the shell, the snail will need extra care and attention. Make sure to keep the snail in a clean and humid environment and provide it with plenty of food and water. You may also want to add some extra calcium to the snail's diet to help it rebuild its shell.
Remember, repairing a broken snail shell is a delicate process that requires care and attention. If you are unsure or uncomfortable with repairing the shell yourself, it is best to seek the advice of a veterinarian who specializes in treating exotic pets.
What do I have to buy if I want to keep Giant African Land Snails as pet snails?
Keeping Giant African Land Snails as pets can be a fun and rewarding experience. However, it's important to note that these snails can grow quite large, so you'll need to make sure you have enough space to accommodate them.
Here are some of the things you'll need to buy to keep Giant African Land Snails as pets:
1. A terrarium or aquarium: The size of the container will depend on how many snails you plan to keep. Generally, a 10-gallon tank can accommodate one or two adult snails.
2. Substrate: Snails need a substrate that will hold moisture and provide them with a place to burrow. You can use organic fertilize-free (pesticide-free) peat moss mixed with Sphagnum moss or coconut coir mixed with Sphagnum moss.
3. Heat source: Snails need a warm, humid environment to thrive. You can use a heat mat or lamp to keep their enclosure warm.
4. Humidity gauge: It's important to monitor the humidity level in your snail's enclosure to ensure they have the proper environment. A digital hygrometer is a useful tool for this.
5. Water dish: Snails need a shallow dish of water to drink from and to help maintain the humidity level in their enclosure.
6. Food dish: You'll need a dish to put food in for your snails. They enjoy a variety of fruits and vegetables, such as apples, carrots, and lettuce.
7. Calcium source: Snails need calcium to keep their shells healthy. You MUST provide them with food that contains organic calcium. Also, as an additional source of calcium, we suggest you buy calcium sticks or calcium powder.
8. Hiding places: Snails like to have places to hide and feel secure. You can provide them with coconut shells, cork bark, or other natural materials.
9. Spray bottle: You'll need a spray bottle to mist the enclosure and keep the humidity level up.
10. Snails! You'll need to purchase Giant African Land Snails from a reputable breeder or pet store.
It's important to do your research and make sure you're providing the right environment for your snails to thrive. With the proper care, Giant African Land Snails can make fascinating and entertaining pets.