|In the aquarium||From above||Operculum view|
|Profile view||First zoom, note the baby Neothauma tanganyicense on the side||Zoom of the head, the radula is placed far ahead of the head, what makes it look like an elephant trump|
Species: Paramelania damoni
Origin: Africa, endemic to Lake Tanganyika
Size: 5 Ó 6 cm
Breething: aquatic, through gills
Utility: detritivorous, wheras its appetite is moderate; very decorative.
Remark: same family as melano´ds, its bad is similar but a little more massive. Unlike the latter, it does not dig-in.
This prosobranch lives exclusively on or dug-in the substract. Movement is slow. This snail takes no risk regarding predators, at the slightest sign of activity - besides other snails - it hides in its shell.
the shell worls are superb and make it as beatiful as some marine snails. The shell is thick, what may be explained by the original environment water conditions; within these conditions, shells have a tendency to strenghten rather than corrode.
This type of gastropod may be considered as rare in aquaria; endemic to Lake Tanganyika and seldom imported, it represents no interets to the aquaria hobbyist as snails are generally considered as pests. Nevertheless, a "regional" aquarium is supposed to reproduce the living conditions for the species maintained in it ... it might seem stupid to include snails in an aquarium that contains cichlids that would eat them, but these snails live near cichlids all their life ....
Paramelanias mainly eat the fish food remainders, but they refuse any "aquarium" food or substitution food (boiled lettuce, cucumber, etc ...) and never touch plants or algae. They live exclusively on the substrate but sometimes slightly dig-in in order to stand sudden changes in the water chemistry. their shell is very thick and it is sometimes useful to assist them turn over (like turtles :-)). I noted they are somehow able to evade this position, but I never had the chance to see the acrobacy :-).
The snail hereabove is under study, other comments will come soon.
( ... come back soon for the next episode)