Bithynia tentaculata


Faucet snails are herbivores which obtain food in two ways, using both a radula and a filter feeding method.
Both methods are used to acquire algae and sometimes black fly algae (Kipp and Benson. 2011).



A radula is an organ made of chiton that allows snails to scrape algae and other vegetation from hard substrates such as stones. All mollusks possess this feeding organ. Since they lack any mouth parts, and therefore cannot chew their food, a radula helps break down their food into a digestible substance (Nordsieck, R. 2001). The diagram of the right gives an idea of how this process is performed. Below is a microscopic view of a radula. If this is still unclear, there is a great video that shows an actual snail using its radula here

 Filter Feeding

Faucet snails also use filter feeding as a source of obtaining food. With this method, gills are used to take in algae.
Once it is taken in, it becomes compacted, and sent through its right tentacle and exhalent siphon. Once  the food
reaches here, it can finally be eaten (Kipp and Benson 2011).

go on to learn about Reproduction and shell growth.
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