Turtle Tank Sharing? (Fish, Snails, Shrimp checked)

Turtles make good pets, and if you wish to keep one for a long time, you have to take good care of it. In the wild, turtles find their food, but you are responsible for providing them with food when you keep them in your house. Most turtles are omnivores; they feed on meat and plants.

So, do turtles eat snails? Most turtles prefer to eat live food, which includes snails. Turtles love to eat, and a single turtle can eat three to five snails in a day. Turtles have strong jaws that can break the shells of small snails. You can purchase or capture a few snails for your pet. However, ensure the snails have not been exposed to pesticides to avoid poisoning your turtle.

Turtles have different feeding habits, and you have to find out what your pet likes and what they do not. Some turtles prefer to eat snails all day, while others will eat one or two. Finding out more about keeping snails in a turtle tank is very important, as doing this without thinking about this could lead to the snails being eaten by the turtle.

Red-eared slider turtles will eat snails if you put them in their tank. In the wild, red-eared slider turtles will catch and eat small animals such as shrimp, krill, silkworms, and snails. Red-eared slider turtles love to eat snails. When you put in a few snails in their tank, the tank will be free of snails in a few weeks.

A red-eared slider is a semi-aquatic turtle, and it is the most popular pet turtle in the U.S. Many people opt to keep red-eared slider turtles as pets because they are very attractive and social. Just like any other pet, you have to feed them a variety of foods to ensure they get a balanced diet.

Red-eared snails prefer to eat aquatic snails. Aquatic snails live in water bodies such as rivers and ponds, and they include the Malaysian trumpet snail, apple snail, and ramshorn snail. When eating snails, red-eared slider turtles will crush the snails’ shells.

If you have a soft spot for animals, you can just drop the snails in the tank and walk away to avoid seeing the beastly act. Importantly, red-eared slider turtles are omnivores. Therefore, when you supply them with snails, do not forget to provide some vegetables to balance their diet.

Can I Put Snails in My Turtle Tank?

Most people have two or more pets of different species. Some pets will live with others without any concerns, while some pets are extremely territorial, and you cannot keep them with others. Some pet turtles can be friendly and coexist with other pets as long as they do not attack them.

You can put some snails in your turtle tank, but the turtle may end up eating the snails. Snails are omnivores and will eat some of the leftovers from your turtle. Some people put snails in the turtle tank to clean the algae that grow in it. However, snails do not eat a lot; therefore, the algae may still be there sometime after you have introduced snails into the tank. Mystery snails are perfect for cleaning the tank as they will do at a slow pace.

However, it is a gamble on how many snails will survive after you put them in the tank since your turtles will eat the snails. Therefore, their survival depends on your turtle’s appetite. Some turtles love snails and may eat all the snails you put in the tank within a short time.

If you put ten snails to help clean the tank and after a few days you cannot spot a single snail in the turtle tank, it would be better if you refrain from adding any more snails and find another cleaning method. If you intend to feed the snails to the turtle, you can always place them in the tank from time to time.

You also need to put in snails that will not harm your turtle. Some pet stores use snail bait to capture the snails. This chemical stays in the snail’s body for a long time, and when your turtle eats that snail, it can cause serious health issues.

You should also avoid putting snails you have captured in your garden or the wild in the turtle’s tank. If you want to know a snail is safe for your turtle, put in a container, add some peanut butter and cover it. The snail will eat the peanut butter, and if it survives after a few days, it is safe to put it in the turtle tank.

If your turtle is fond of live snails, it’s best to only feed it small snails. Bigger snails have tougher shells, which the turtles will struggle to break. Also, avoid trapdoor snails, since the turtles can get their feet stuck in the trapdoor shells and drown.

The shell of a trapdoor snail usually has a small door that can close when the snail retracts into the shell. If your small turtle gets its head or feet stuck in the shell, it will be difficult to free it.

Snails are also carriers of parasites and germs. If you keep them in the tank, they will contaminate the water. The parasites might not have any negative effect on your turtles’ health, but you should be worried about the safety of the people living in your home.

Snail parasites can cause dreadful diseases such as bilharzia. If you put snails in the tank, you need to exercise caution when cleaning the tank. Also, avoid touching the water without protective gloves and warn the children not to play with the snails.

Can you put turtles and fish in the same tank?

Fish and turtles are known to do well underwater; however, the turtle can leave the water to bask or lay eggs. Most turtle keepers love to create an environment that mimics the reptile’s natural set up to feel more comfortable. Thus, as an exotic pet hobbyist, you may want to know how best to go about rearing your fish and turtle.

It is possible to keep fish and turtles in the same enclosure. However, it depends on their species and their sizes. For instance, if you rear large turtles and small fish in the same place, the chances are high that the turtles will turn to the fish for food. Similarly, you need to consider the size of your tank. It should be large enough to accommodate all the animals comfortably, and since there will be a lot of excretion, you may need a more robust filter to manage the wastes.

Turtles may at first seem harmless, but they can cause adverse damages to your fish if you aren’t careful. So, it would be best to put all factors into consideration before you decide to add fish to their tank. The turtles will likely try to capture and eat the fish, especially if the fish are smaller.

Your turtle and fish can live in the same aquarium provided that you consider all the necessary factors. First, you need to check your fish’s size; if the fish are smaller than your turtles, then the fish are likely to be a danger, and in time, they may start to disappear. For instance, you need to avoid incorporating small fish like the goldfish in your turtles’ aquarium. Due to their size, the turtles will easily target them.

To prevent the menace of turtles consuming the small fish, you can opt for larger fish instead; this way, you are sure that they won’t try to eat them. On the contrary, there are other aggressive fish like the Oscars which may bite the turtle. Therefore, the best option is to find a medium-sized fish that is docile, and you will be sure that the two will coexist.

Notably, some turtle species are more aggressive and territorial to the extent that they can feed on smaller fellow turtles. Therefore, before putting your fish inside a tank infested by turtles, confirm whether the species you have is accommodative enough. A box turtle is preferable because they are small and can’t butcher larger fish.

Besides, if you want to put fish and turtles in the same aquarium, you need to ensure that it is big enough to accommodate all the animals. They need to satisfy their love for swimming to reduce territorial problems; therefore, an 80-gallon tank would suffice.

How Can You Keep Turtles and Fish Together?

Keeping turtles and fish in the same enclose will require you to be careful and skeptical. If you assume that everything is normal, you may be endangering both your pets.

Before introducing your fish into the tank, you must first ensure that your turtle has not been feeding on feeder fish. Once you accustom them to eating feeders, they will find it easy to hunt down and devour your pet fish. Secondly, you need to find a fish species that is compatible with your turtle. For instance, pleco fish is fast, energetic, and can’t fit in a turtle’s mouth.

It can also grow long (up to twelve inches). Thanks to these features, they are immune to attacks by the turtle. It would also help to let your turtle mature more before introducing a fish inside the tank. The good thing is, as some turtles grow older, they tend to love veggies more than juveniles. Hence, they won’t pose a significant risk to your pet fish. It would be best if you also considered your turtles’ sizes.

Additionally, before introducing the fish into the tank, you will have to familiarize the fish with the water temperatures for some minutes. Next, you need to monitor how the turtle is behaving towards the fish. If it is chasing it and trying to bite it, then that’s a red flag that your fish will be a victim. In such circumstances, the wisest thing to do is remove it and place it in a different tank.

Once you manage to place the two in one place, the next thing to do is make their environment more conducive. Fish and turtles love hiding; therefore, it would help to set up more hiding spots for them. This way, they would have safe places to retreat to if needed. Moreover, in case the turtles turn on the fish, the fish will have hiding places.

Adding different features in your tank will also serve as decoration for their enclosure since natural plants may not be a good idea. Unless the plants are synthetic, the turtles are likely to feed on them. However, if you can’t find plastic plants, there are alternatives.

For instance, you can use rocks and hardwoods for hiding spots as long as they are light enough to fit in the enclosure. Lastly, before placing anything inside the tank, it is wise to clean it using hot water to destroy any infection that it might carry with it.

For your turtle to live peacefully with the fish, always ensure that you feed the turtle so that they won’t turn to the fish for food. Provided their stomachs are full, they won’t consider the fish a viable food source. You also need to check your filtration system and tank’s temperatures to ascertain that both conditions favor the animals; we recommend approximately 75°F.

Lastly, it is vital to consider your filter. Now that you have two types of animals in one enclosure, you will realize that the level of excretion will increase. If you have an inferior filter, the excretion levels will increase, posing a grave danger to your pets. Note that the bigger your tank, the stronger the filter you need.

What Can I Put in The Tank With My Turtle?

Your turtle can feed on certain fish species, but not all of them. Besides, some fish are a threat to the turtle, so you need to avoid them; these include catfish and lobster. Your turtle can get company from certain fish species as long as they are not a threat.

In case you don’t find the right fish to incorporate in your turtle aquarium, there are other docile options such as crustaceans, shrimps, and snails. Shrimps feed on the turtle’s leftovers; therefore, with time, they will help reduce the waste in the tank. Similarly, snails feed on scraps and fungi such as algae, so they will help keep the tank clean.

Therefore, the decision to have other creatures in your turtles’ tank may end up being beneficial. You can also add different turtle species to the enclosure. The best species that do well with most turtle species are cooters and box turtles. However, you need to ensure that the turtles are approximately the same size; otherwise, the larger turtles may turn on the smaller ones.


Most turtles are omnivores, and snails are part of their diet. Both land and marine turtles eat snails. Marine turtles will hunt for aquatic snails under the ocean floor, while land turtles will look for snails on shrubs and logs. You can provide your pet turtle with snails regularly as part of its balanced diet.

Some turtles are social animals who can live with other pets. If you want to keep other pets in the turtle tank, you can choose snails. However, there is a strong possibility your turtles will turn their new roommates into dinner. Taking good care of your pet turtle is very important. A proper diet ensures you turtles are healthy. Therefore, conduct ample research and only feed your turtle foods that contain the right amount of nutrients.

It may be challenging to keep turtles together with other animals since they will always try to hunt them for food. However, some fish species pose a threat to them, so it would be wise to consider all factors before deciding to put them in the same enclosure. Ensure that both animals are docile and are not territorial; otherwise, there may be injuries or deaths. Also, ascertain that they are both of approximately the same size; thus, none will intimidate the other.

In a nutshell, before introducing other inhabitants into the tank, consider issues such as the tank’s size, whether there are enough hiding places, and if both animals are well fed (lack of food may cause them to hunt down their counterparts in their enclosure).

Bal Kang

Bal Kang is an owner of several pets including reptiles, cats and dogs. An avid writer, who loves to share her insights into caring for pets.

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