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Welcome to APC! :D

The snails that you saw burrowing into the substrate is most likely Malaysian Trumpet snails. As for the little football shaped one, you are right, it is a pond snail but I have never heard of them eating live plants before. I have a ton of them in both my 10g and 2.5g and they have never eaten any of the live plants. Only dying leaves, fish wastes, uneaten food and algae.

I don't know what to say about the Ramshorn snail though. If they are very tiny and it looks like their shells shift to the side when they are walking about then I'd say don't worry about it but there is a ramshorn snail(Marisa cornuarietis) that will eat all plants regardless of whether they are alive or dead. If you go onto the applesnail.net site, click on the Species link then click on the Marisa link underneath the map. Look for the name of the snail I mentioned and you'll find out more about them. :)
 

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Thanks Red and Krisp. Glad to be here. My local aquarium store don't have a whole lot to choose from and the only floating one was the hornwort. So I'll see how that goes. I read many places that the snail to avoid were the pond snail for aquarium such as this link http://www.fish-tank-guide.com/snailarticles.html. This also say that ramshorn eat plant as well and my snail definitely look more like them than Marisa applesnail. I will consider switching out the aquaclear with my old whisper for 10 gallon when the aquarium is more established. I feel like the bio balls in the aquaclear help keep the ammonia in check and not kill the two gold barb and two guppies I have left in there. I had a couple that jumped out of the open top aquarium since I switched to the naturally planted tank. And the remaining gold barbs doing this crazy frantic swimming pattern lately. The guppies looked fine though. They actually help remove the protein film on the surface of the aquarium. Nice fish to have to avoid skimming or whatever you do to get rid of the film on the surface. So I want to use aquaclear for now until the plant is more established.
Hi Alex,

One of the reasons why people say to avoid pond snails is that they reproduce like crazy! Just add a few to your tank and you'll have a ton of them in a few months. The ones in my betta's tank tend to stay undercontrol because he loves to eat them. lol

As for the filter, if your tank is an El Natural then the only media you really need in the filter is the sponge and some don't even use that. I have the AquaClear 20 on my 10g with a baffle on the outflow to stop surface agitation and the only media I use in it is the sponge. I do have sponge on the end of the intake tube as well as a narrow piece inside that tube to help lessen the flow because my betta doesn't like strong currents. The only reason I use it is for some water circulation. The plants and the nitrifying bacteria in the soil will cycle the tank for you. :)
 

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Mandy,
Thanks for the link to a great idea. Simple and effective. I notice the plants sway a little before the baffle and now they are really calm. The hornwort is doing really nice too. I came home to the evening sunset (west facing window) and my aquarium were just bubbling all over the place. Very pleased with how quickly hornworts are having their intended effect. Definitely a nice plant to have to soak in all the nutrients of a setup tank. http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forumapc/images/smilies/icon_eyes.gif
You're welcome, Alex. :) It's great to use for fish who are not fond of strong currents as well as for preventing CO2 from being released from the water.

Do you plan on posting pictures of your tank? I'd love to see how your tank looks! :)
 
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