We recently received a call from a pond owner who has been affected by the Apple Snail. Apple Snails can take over a pond and consume all of the vegetation. The snail was introduced to the Southeastern United States by aquarium owners who then dumped the unwanted "pet" into local waters. The snail is spreading rapidly. Below is a map from the US Geological Survey showing the snail's range.
Our customer wanted to know if Redear Shellcrackers could help solve his snail problem. The answer is YES! The Shellcracker will eat young, recently hatched, snails. The adult snails are too large for the shellcrackers, but a healthy population of Redears will help keep the snail population in check. To fully remove snails from your pond, you will need to hand pick the adults.
If you see large clutches of bubble gum colored eggs along your shoreline, then you have the Apple Snail. See below for an image.
A full news article from AL.com (above pictures also from AL.com) about the snail can be found here: Amazon Apple Snail Threat.
Contact Southern States Game Fish Hatchery if you would like to discuss your situation.