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Can Crayfish Eat Snails? (All You Need to Know)

Crayfish aren’t actually fish, they are shellfish. Apart from crayfish, there are other crustaceans, such as crabs, lobsters, and shrimps. However, crayfish can live in both saltwater and freshwater. 

A crayfish diet mostly consists of decomposed plant waste, such as weed and grass. However, their diet also includes small living organisms, stripes, tadpoles, etc. Additionally, if you are thinking about whether crayfish can eat snails or not, then bear with us. 

We are going to have an elaborated discussion on this topic. So, without any further due, let’s get started. 

Can crayfish eat snails?

Crayfish can eat snails. Crayfishes tend to consume both expired and living creatures. Their diet includes small fishes, shrimp, algae, planktons, etc. However, if you plan on having a crayfish with snails, keep in mind that they will have no trouble eating the snail.  

As crayfish tend to eat almost all things, therefore consuming snails is not a huge task for them. However, almost 90% of crayfish tend to live on plants. But, they do not mind having supplements once in a while. 

Ramshorn snails: 

Crayfish will eat ramshorn snails. They will end up clearing out the snails in no time. Ramshorn snails are considered to be great tank cleaners. Ramshorn snails are a part of apple snails. However, you can easily spot the differences. 

Mystery snails: 

The crayfish will end up eating up your mystery snails. If you plan on putting them together in your aquarium, just know it is not a great idea. Mystery snails are a great addition to your tank. These little creatures add up a lot to your tank including, color, movement, and peace. 

However, they do not produce much waste in the tank, so the tank remains cleaner for longer.     

Orb snails: 

Orb snails are freshwater snails. They are consumed by a lot of vertebrate predators. However, Orb snails are also known as ramshorn snails. Therefore, you can guess that they are edible to crayfish.   

Trumpet snails: 

All crayfish will infest trumpet snails. However, it may always not happen regularly, but your crayfish will tend to eat up the trumpet snails. Especially dwarf crayfish. These crayfish will consume everything they can catch.  

Bladder snails: 

Bladder snails are consumed by crayfish. They are considered excellent tank cleaners and they will spend most of their time grazing the algae from the tank. However, their growth must be kept in control. 

Nerite snails: 

Baby nerite snails are easily edible by the crayfish, especially dwarf crayfish. However, you can still place your nerite snails with crayfish in the tank. Although crayfish are known for eating snails, they might not always act on that.    

Additionally, crayfish like to chomp on baby snails.   

Pond snails: 

Crayfish will eat pond snails. These creatures have the habit of consuming almost anything expired or alive. Mostly, they would survive on algae or plankton. However, they wouldn’t mind eating snails.

If you do not want your snails to get consumed by crayfish, then try not to put them together.     

Can I put snails with crayfish?

You can put snails with crayfish, however, it is not recommended. 

Crayfish can consume almost anything and everything. Therefore, consuming a snail wouldn’t be a big deal for your crayfish. 

However, dwarf crayfish are safer options. The larger the crayfish, the more the opportunity they will have of eating your snails. Additionally, you can have dwarf crayfish along with nerite snails. 

Striving through a snail shell is no issue for a crayfish. However, you must also keep in mind that this does not always happen. If the crayfish have plenty of food available they will not eat up the snails. 

By consuming the snails and snail eggs, they keep the population under the control of the snails that are present in the tank. 

Do all crayfish eat snails?

Most crayfish tend to eat snails. However, if they have enough food resources available, they might not eat them. But, in most cases they do eat snails.    

Blue crayfish: 

Blue crayfishes will consume whatever they can catch. They mostly prefer plant based meals or algae wafers. These creatures can also live on fish food. However, they can eat snails. 

If there are not enough food resources, or they require a change of taste. They will not hesitate to munch on a snail or two. Therefore, if you are planning to keep the snails along with blue crayfish, give it a second thought.  

Dwarf crayfish: 

Dwarf crayfish are usually considered harmless for most small creatures. However, they wouldn’t mind consuming snails or dwarf shrimps.    

Additionally, you can provide them with commercial invertebrate food. They will also live on planktons, algae wafers etc. In some cases, dwarf crayfish may not harm your snails, so they can be put together. 

Therefore, you can simply try putting them together and check what works best for you.      

Electric blue crayfish:

Electric blue crayfish are more likely to share the tank space with others. However, if your crayfish is determined, then they might end up eating your snails. 

Additionally, it absolutely depends on the crayfish. It is not mandatory that your crayfish will end up eating the snails but there are chances that it might. So, before you put them together keep in mind that your snails can be eaten by your crayfish.    

Freshwater crayfish:

Freshwater crayfish have a diet that consists of both living and expired things. Therefore, you cannot put snails with your freshwater crayfish. In general, their diet has planktons, algae, passed fishes, tadpoles etc. 

Most crayfish will munch on snails. Additionally, keep in mind that, the larger the crayfish, the bigger snail they can handle.        

CPO crayfish: 

CPO crayfish can be a great addition to your tank, when you plan on adding some color to your tank. However, like most other crayfish they are most likely to consume the snails. 

As snails can be a great source of protein to them, they don’t mind eating a snail or two. Therefore, there’s a higher chance that your CPO crayfish will eat your snails.       

How do crayfish eat snails? 

Crayfish strike the shell of the snail, and tear the meaty part into smaller pieces then have a feast on them. 

Crayfish are omnivores. They will eat almost anything and everything. Whether it’s passed away or alive, they will consume it in order to fulfill their nutrition requirement.  

Crayfish hold their food with their claws. Additionally, their molting tendency depends on the amount of food they consume. Crayfish tend to eat almost one equivalent to ¾ inch pellets everyday.

Do crayfish eat snail shells?

Crayfish tend to eat snail shells. Slicing the shell of the snail shouldn’t be an issue for crayfish. They ingest the shells of the snails to collect necessary minerals. 

However, not all of them ingest the shell. Additionally, if you place your snails and crayfish together, it may result in losing your snails. 

Apart from that, if you notice carefully,  you will observe that the shells will have signs that they have been striked. Crayfish almost eat all snails. 

Even though they tend to strike on the shells, they mostly concentrate on consuming the meaty part of the snail.

Will crayfish eat snail eggs?  

Crayfish will eat snail eggs. Crayfish eat snail eggs to control the abnormal growth of the population of the snails. Snails are proven to get too abundant when there are no predators present around them. Therefore, to balance the environment of the tank, crayfish eat snail eggs. 

Crayfish will also eat other food like algae and plankton. Almost all crayfish will eat snails. Once they are large enough, they will not miss the opportunity to eat the snail. 

Larger crayfish will just need to apply one swift move and it will get through the snail. However, smaller crayfish may need to put in a bit more effort. But, they will succeed no matter what.

However, the consumption of snail eggs by crayfish is considered healthy,if you want to preserve the environment of your tank.

Final Thoughts 

In most cases, crayfish will end up eating the snails present around them. The diet of a crayfish consists of algae wafers, planktons, passed fishes, tadpoles etc. Apart from all these they are also comfortable consuming snails and shrimps. So, if they are sharing a tank, your crayfish may eat them.