Skip to Content

Will Nerite Snails Eat Algae Wafers?

Nerite snails are the second most commonly kept aquatic snails due to how much algae, detritus, and left over food they are able to eat in the average aquarium.

With so many people having nerite snails in their tanks these days, we commonly see people reaching out with different questions about their nerite snails.

One thing that we have noticed people asking recently is about if nerite snails will eat algae wafers or not.

This may be due to the fish keeper wanting to use algae wafers for fish in their tank such as a pleco without their nerite snails eating them or they may be intentionally looking for something to feed their nerite snail.

No matter the reason, we wanted to publish this article going over if nerite snails will eat algae wafers or not.

What Are Algae Wafers?

Algae wafers are essentially a sinking pellet or tablet that is made for fish that primarily eat algae.

Plecos are probably the most common type of fish that you will see eating algae wafers but there are other types of fish that may eat them as well.

Some examples of other fish that may consume algae wafers include:-

  • Otocinclus.
  • Loricariids.
  • Some corydoras.

In reality though, most omnivorous species of fish will usually eat algae wafers.

What’s In Algae Wafers?

The name “algae wafers” mislead many people into thinking that algae wafers are made from algae.

This is not the case and the actual ingredients in algae wafers will change from brand to brand and surprisingly, very few commercially available algae wafers actually have any algae in them at all.

This is due to even dehydrated algae being able to rehydrate and contain spores that can reproduce in your tank and case your problems with algae blooms.

Here are the main ingredients in most types of algae wafer on the market:-

  • Fish Meal.
  • Wheat Flour.
  • Wheat Germ Meal.
  • Seaweed Meal.
  • Alfalfa Meal.
  • Soybean Meal.
  • Krill Meal.

As you can see, there are actually very few planted based ingredients in algae wafers so very few detritivores and herbivores will actually eat them in most cases.

Do Nerite Snails Eat Algae Wafers?

Nerite snails are detritivores and herbivores meaning they usually prefer to eat decomposing plants or plant based foods.

Due to most brands of algae wafer on the market not having much plant based ingredients in them, most nerite snails will not actually eat algae wafers.

Many of the people on social media who say that their nerite snails eat algae wafers are often confused by their nerite snails being on top of the wafers but in many cases, they will not actually be eating the algae wafer.

That said though, there are a number of different brands of algae wafers out there that use their ingredients in different ratios.

Due to this, some brands of algae wafers tend to have a higher chance of nerite snails eating them than others due to having higher amounts of plant based food in them.

What Are The Best Algae Wafers For Nerite Snails?

In our opinion, the ingredient ratio of Hikari Algae Wafers has the highest chance of nerite snails eating them.

The tend to have more plant based foods in them so it will increase the chances of your nerite snails actually eating them.

Most of the cheaper brands of algae wafers use fish meal as their main ingredient and the majority of nerite snails won’t eat it.

Although Hikari Algae Wafers are slightly higher priced than most other brands of algae wafer, they are usually considered to be the best option amongst the community.

Most local fish stores will stock Hikari Algae Wafers too due to so many people keeping plecos in their tanks these days as well as them wanting to feed them algae wafers.

What Are Some Alternatives To Algae Wafers For Nerite Snails?

If you are considering algae wafers for your nerite snails as a treat food option for them then there are much better options available.

The majority of people tend to use cucumber or zucchini as a treat food for the nerite snails in their tank.

In most situations, nertie snails tend to really love eating cucumber or zucchini and they will eat them quickly and will often draw all the nerite snails in your tank to them when added to your tank.

Another popular option is slices of carrots but cucumber or zucchini definitely seem to be the better option for most nerite snails.