Taxonomy: Astraea Snail belongs to the Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Mollusca, Class Gastropoda, Family Astraeinae and Genus Astraea.
Scientific names: The scientific name of Astraea Snail is Astraea species. One of the commonest specific varieties of the snail is Astraea tecta.
Other common names: Astraea Snail is also commonly known as Conehead Algae Eater, Astraea Conehead Snail, Star Snail, Turbo Snail, Turbo Grazer Snail, Turban Snail, Top Shell Snail and Astraea Star Snail.
Origin or natural range: The Astraea species originates from the Atlantic Ocean including Americas, Caribbean and Haiti.
Size: Astraea Snail grows up to a maximum size of approximately six inches.
Color: The Astraea species occurs in olive, green, purple, brown and tan colors.
Compatibility: Astraea Snail is non-aggressive towards the other marine aquarium members.
Growth enabling environment in your marine aquarium:
- The Astraea species is very hardy.
- The appearance of Astraea Snail resembles to that of pyramids or cones with star like projections in some of its varieties.
- The mantle of the Astraea species is muscular and secretes calcareous shell.
- The shell of Astraea Snail is tan in color which becomes green owing to the coralline algal growth on it. The shell continues to grow with the body growth of the Astraea species.
- The texture of the tongue, called radula, is like that of a rasp. Radula pulls off phytoplankton from their substrate.
Your marine aquarium must meet the following environmental specifications to successfully host Astraea Snail in it:
- Temperature of water: The temperature of the water in your reef tank should be maintained within the range of seventy-two and seventy-eight degrees Fahrenheit.
- Specific gravity of water: The specific gravity of water in your marine aquarium should be pegged within 1.023 to 1.025.
- pH of water: The pH value of water in your reef tank should scale between 8.10 and 8.40.
- Habit & habitat:
- To host Astr0aea Snail, you should have a reef type marine aquarium with ample rocks, Corals, Live Rocks, Sand and rock caves for the snail to hide behind and graze algae on.
- Slowly acclimate the Astraea species to your marine aquarium environment.
- Provide ample movement space for Astraea Snail in your reef tank.
- The Astraea species attains a maximum size of around one inch in a marine aquarium.
- Feeding & Nutrition:
- Astraea Snail is Herbivorous in feeding habit and eats phytoplankton such as, filamentous micro algae, diatoms and cyanobacteria.
- You can supplement the food of the Astraea species with Lettuce, dried seaweeds, blanched Spinach and vegetable pills.
- Benefits: Astraea Snail is an algae eater and keeps the walls and the substrate of your marine aquarium free of algae.
- Astraea Snail is easy to maintain.
- If the Astraea species is turned upside down then, you will need to set it right. It cannot turn itself on its own and may die.
- Copper and Nitrates in any form in your marine aquarium may prove lethal for Astraea Snail.
- The fluctuations in temperature and specific gravity of your tank water may give temperature shock and specific gravity shock to Astraea Snail therein.
- Maintain Calcium level in your aquarium’s water between three hundred and fifty ppm to four hundred and fifty ppm to provide ample calcium to the regularly growing calcareous shell of the Astraea species.
Hermit crabs may attack Astraea Snail to snatch its shell. Therefore, do not keep the crabs with the snail in the same reef tank.