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White Cloud Mountain Minnow

white cloud mountain minnow

The White Cloud Mountain minnow (Tanichthys albonubes) is a hardy species of freshwater fish and coldwater fish often kept in an aquarium.

The species is a member of the carp family (family Cyprinidae) of the order Cypriniformes native to China.

The White Cloud Mountain minnow is practically extinct in its native habitat, due to pollution and tourism. It was believed to be extinct for over 20 years in 1980, but an apparently native population of this fish was discovered on Hainan Island, well away from the White Cloud Mountain.

They are bred in farms and are easily available through the aquarium trade.

White cloud mountain minnows should be kept in good-sized schools, preferably of a half dozen or more. When kept singly, they tend to lose color and hide most of the time. They are peaceful and fit well with other small peaceful fish.

Avoid larger tankmates, as they will be inclined to eat white cloud mountain minnows. The same is true of any aggressive species.

When kept in the right temperature range, this species of fish is very hardy and well suited for the beginner hobbyist. Although undemanding when it comes to water quality, this minnow does not deal with heat well. There is evidence that keeping white cloud mountain minnows in water that is constantly above 72 F (22 C) will shorten their lifespan.

You can read more about this beautiful coldwater fish here. These minnows are also available in our online shop.

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Stop Finning – Stop the trade

This blog post is going to be an exception for us as it is not related to freshwater invertebrates. It is intended to raise awareness on the atrocious and cruel practice of Shark Finning.

Even though Shark Awareness Day was held on 14 July, we felt that we can still do our part to help the Stop Finning initiative and get the message out.

Did you know that hundreds of sharks are killed every single minute for “Shark Fin Soup”?

The EU is a major player in this bloody, multimillion Euro industry. But we now have the chance to stop killing sharks for their fins by finally ending the trade with
shark fins in Europe.

The EU Citizens‘ Initiative “STOP FINNING – STOP THE TRADE” is more than a petition. It is a once in lifetime opportunity to change EU legislation and save the sharks.

Sign the petition at and do your part to help save these beautiful creatures.

Read more or donate to this cause at

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Botanicals: Balance, Beauty and Story

botanicals set

As I sit down to prepare another customer’s order of botanicals, I find myself thinking that there is something special about every order of botanicals – every single piece of woody seed pod, leaf or thick fruit has its own individual texture, pattern, shape and colour.

This is only one aspect of botanicals that makes them so special. Botanicals are nowadays increasingly used in a large variety of aquariums for different reasons. Some of us try to re-create the fish’s natural habitat whether through the use of leaf litter, dried seed pods, wooden structures or simply by adding botanicals to release tannins in the water – turning it anything from a light yellowish tint to a dark brown/black colour.

A distinctive beauty captured,
a natural story told, and a form-fit-function balance reached.

Botanicals can also be used to condition the water (e.g. to lower the pH). Alternatively, some aquarists use them to create foraging grounds for their invertebrates. Biofilm forms on botanicals after a day or two underwater.

Botanicals are known to have anti-bacterial or anti-fungal properties and can help protect your fish or help them recover faster from disease.

As I finish preparing the customer’s order, I tell myself that there is one undeniable truth about them. They are unique: a distinctive beauty captured, a natural story told and a form-fit-function balance reached.

The above gallery shows the unique pieces prepared in this last order for one of our customers. This set costs €31.25 and is ideal for a 60-80L tank. Next Day Delivery is also possible for circa €4 to any location in Malta. You can also pick up this set from our Fgura hub and get a discounted total price of slightly less than €30.

Thank you all for supporting us – stay safe and take good care of each other!

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MAS event – 25 July 2021

Good morning all.

For those of you who live in Malta, we just wanted to let you know about a meeting being organised by the Malta Aquarist Society next Sunday, 25 July 2021 at 09:30.

The meeting will be held at the Society’s new premises which is situated in Fgura. The full address is 37, St. Paul, Triq is-Summiena, Fgura.

An interesting discussion will be held on how to take care of your fish / plants during summer. What tricks should be used during a heatwave? And when the lights goes off… what should we do? It’s an opportunity to discuss with experienced fish keepers and share the knowledge and tricks!

As the local distributors of the Tropical brand in Malta, Tropical food will be on sale as well there. Free Samples of TropiCAT and TropiDOG provided by Tropical food will be available.

The tableshow for the day will be that of “One Pleco”.

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Feeding frenzy

amano shrimp (caridina multidentata)

Today, I decided to capture the moment when we fed the Shrimps Forever Biopowder to our shrimps. The XL Amano shrimps just go nuts for it.

Biopowder is made can either be premixed in water and poured in the aquarium. Alternatively, the powder can be scattered on the water surface and it will sink slowly. In this video, we did the latter.

Shrimps Forever Biopowder

Take a look at the amanos feeding from the surface!

Amano shrimps feeding frenzy

Get in touch if you are interested in the Shrimps Forever range or the Amano shrimps.

Shrimps Forever BioPowder

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We got BALLS!

Yes we do and they come in different sizes from 2cm to a whopping 7cm.

Marimo Moss Balls are algae balls (although they are referred to as moss balls due to their visual look). They are interesting decoration suitable for smaller aquariums.

They are also available in larger sizes and in nature reach up to 20-30 cm. They are not demanding in terms of conditions, but they do better with medium light. Together with stones and roots, you can achieve an attractive aquarium design.

Interestingly, this algae usually forms carpet surfaces at the bottom of lakes in Japan and Northern Europe, but if a piece of it separates, it is carried away by waves, which eventually make it a ball. Even in the aquarium, it is good to turn them from time to time to maintain their shape. When they grow to a certain size, they can be split.

They grow at a rate of 0.5cm per year and are often used in shrimp tanks and are useful to control the growth of unwanted algae as they compete for the same food source.

Check out our product page for more information on the selection of available sizes here.

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Hold your hoses!

ista multi-function hose holder

Good morning all.

If you are like me, you have aquariums everywhere. Undoubtedly, you will have some aquariums where you cannot easily set up an automatic water change setup. You resort to using water pipes or hoses running across your rooms. If you do so, you may have already had a couple of ‘accidents’ and you can feel those not-so-happy pair of eyes on the back of your head!

This nifty little accessory has been a game changer for such situations. First of all, it comes as a twin-pack so you can use one at each end of the pipe.

ISTA Multi-function hose holder (twin pack)
ISTA Multi-function hose holder (twin pack)

More importantly, it mounts easily to the aquarium (and/or cover, a bucket, etc.). The clamping mechanism adapts flexibly to objects with a thickness of up to 20 mm.

The holder can be used to fix hoses from 13 mm (12/16 mm) to 17 mm (16/22 mm) thanks to the adjustable mechanism.

The ISTA Multi-function hose holder twin pack is available in our shop. You get a pack of two hose holders for €4!

I hope you find this useful!

Nathan, obo Aquasnails Team

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No more cashback? What?

Yes correct – there is no more cashback.

Why are you doing this?

Well, the cashback programme has been a very successful programme. However, we felt that we can do better! We have decided that customers should be rewarded with instant discounts as part of the order they are currently preparing to place and not receive a cashback for use during their next order!

How will this work?

Simple – you just need to add items to your cart. The more you add, the more discount you get! 🙂

Under the hood, this is a tad more complicated as it takes into consideration a lot of factors: the type of product, whether we are local distributors of the product, our margin (i.e. can we ‘afford’ to give you more discount), size of order and lots more!

As you add more items to your cart, you will notice that the pickup and delivery option costs change instantly and only in one direction: DOWNWARDS! You will also start seeing a banner at the top of the page – like the one below:

This banner is instantly updating and showing you the current level of savings on any of the pickup or delivery methods. In the case of delivery options, you will simply see the new (reduced) balance. In the case of pickups, we are rewarding your use of our website ordering process, by giving you a direct discount on the products in the cart!

What happened to the old delivery methods?

We had a long discussion and we opted to improve our delivery mechanisms. For more information on the current delivery options, take a look at the ‘Delivery Options’ page. The good news is that all fixed-pricing delivery methods (i.e. not distance-based) have a capped maximum cost of delivery to any location in Malta. For example, the maximum you will pay for Next Day Delivery is €3.50+VAT (i.e. €4.13 inc VAT). With the new discount mechanism, the more items you add, the less that delivery fee is and might eventually become FREE delivery.

Are all delivery methods a flat rate?

No – we have kept the distance-based Express Delivery method as this might be cheaper for locations that are close to any of our Hubs. For the time being, all orders leave from our Fgura Hub but watch the space for updates on this! 😉

What is going to happen to my wallet balance?

Nothing – you can continue using it and the funds will be deducted from your order total. At the same time, you will be getting the discount directly applied in that same order. In the future, we might still launch offers that give some form of cashback but for the time being, use the funds that you already have in the wallet towards paying your orders.

Can I still top up my website wallet?

Of course – you can still recharge your website wallet and add funds to it. You can then use these funds to pay for orders and you will still be able to get discounts like anyone else!

We tried to answer all questions that came to mind and we really hope that the new changes will make your shopping and delivery experience even better!

We welcome any feedback – stay safe and take care of each other!


Nathan, obo Aquasnails Team

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Hello World!

Welcome to – I guess it’s never too late to start a blog! We have been operating since 2019 and have always had the idea of publishing a blog to keep all our friends and customers up-to-date with what’s going on! Two years have passed since then and it’s time we get this blog up and running.

The Aquasnails idea was born on the small island of Malta in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. Our objective was to cater specifically for the needs of freshwater snails and their keepers/breeders. We always felt that this niche was not well served locally. The snails that the local shops used to carry were limited to the usual range (zebra nerites, ramshorn snails, tracked nerites and not much more). Also, we wanted to get to know the local snail keeping community because, as far as we were concerned, back then, we were a lost voice in the desert! We soon realised we were very wrong! 🙂

We started off by opening a Facebook page and a corresponding Facebook group. It is through these channels that we shared information on breeding/keeping. We also introduced own range of snail food and supplements and worked closely with local breeders and keepers.

Back in 2019, we realised that there was space for an online, local aquatic shop in Malta. None of the big players had invested into this and our small group of very loyal breeders and keepers kept mentioning this to us. We decided to dive headfirst and set up and the now well-known online shop!

Slowly but incessantly, we expanded our product offering and opened up to all other invertebrates as well (shrimps, crabs, clams, mussels, crayfish and more). Around Feb/Mar 2020, when the COVID pandemic started approaching the island, as certain shops started to close down, we continued to serve our customers through the online website. We put our back into making sure that our customers find whatever they needed in the website.

We started expanding in other areas: nano tanks and their nano inhabitants, planted tanks, aquascaping, aquascaping supplies, etc… We made a lot of friends along the way and our partner network of breeders, keepers and growers has expanded locally. We are very proud and thankful to be able to source some of the livestock and plants from our local partners.

We might not be able to cover all types of fishkeeping areas but we wanted to remain close to our favourites: invertebrates. However, we definitely make sure that we address the needs of all aquatic invertebrate keepers!

To commemorate the upcoming two years of the operation, we will be introducing some changes to our website which I am hoping you will all appreciate. We will be sharing these updates in the next posts!

I look forward to share more thoughts, ideas, news, stories and whatever the Aquasnails life throws at us in the next weeks, months and hopefully years!

Until then, stay safe and take care of one another!

Nathan, obo Aquasnails Team