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FAQs on Freshwater Worms of All Sorts, Reproduction

Related Articles:  Invertebrates for Freshwater Aquariums by Neale Monks, Choose Your Weapon: Freshwater Fish Disease Treatment Options by Neale Monks,

Related FAQs:  Freshwater Worms 1Freshwater Worms 2, Planaria, FW Worm Identification, FW Worm Behavior, FW Worm Compatibility/Control, FW Worm Selection, FW Worm Systems, FW Worm Feeding, FW Worm Disease, & FAQs on: Worm Caused Diseases, Worms as Foods, FW Invert.s 1, Aquatic Insects, Crustaceans ShrimpsTerrestrial Hermit Crabs,


Earthworm Farming - 08/08/2005 Namaste! <Good morning!  Sabrina with you, today.> Hello people.  This is Mitra from India.   <Nice to hear from you, almost halfway around the world - thanks for writing in!> Can you please tell me how to store earthworms because we have a very dry soil over here and the worms come out only when it rains.  So I need to collect them and store them when they are out. So please help me. <Try a google search with the words "earthworm farm" or "vermiculture".  Here is one excellent site I found:  http://www.jerusalemcityfarmers.org/earthworm.html , and there are many, many others.  You might try searches containing "raising earthworms" or "keeping earthworms", as well.> Thank you,  Mitra <Wishing you well,  -Sabrina> Spawning worms 11/28/07 Hi, Hope you can help me with a 'wormy' problem. My fish (goldfish) spawn and I remove the eggs and put them in a separate tank for hatching. Within two weeks of them hatching I notice that I have red baby worms as well, I think they are called nematodes. How do I get rid of them. I have tried various means in the past even boiling the gravel etc but they just come back. I only have them when I have babies, I have had no luck with internet search thus far. If I leave the worms they grow into long spine shuddering wriggly things, the adults don't have worms in their tanks so where do they come from. I really want to get rid of them. I tried a 'commercial' fish de-wormer (for the adults) available from my local but that obviously has not worked either, any suggestions you can make I would be very grateful. Best Regards, Gillian <Hello Gillian. The good news is these worms almost certainly aren't nematodes but probably insect larvae (chironomids) given their red colouration. Even if they were nematodes, the free-living sorts that appear in aquaria don't do any harm. Anyway, assuming their insect larvae, they're getting in by insects laying eggs on the water or with live food or plants. They don't cause any problems, and adult fish will readily eat them. After a few weeks they turn into a pupa (looks like a pod with a tail that hangs at the surface) and then the adult midge appears and flies away. The easiest way to fix the problem is to stop them getting in. There are no medications useful for killing insects that are safe to use, so trying to kill them isn't going to happen. Scoop them out and dispose of them, and then ensure adults can't lay their eggs in the tank by covering the tank with a lid. I personally wouldn't worry about them, and would recommend you use them as live food for surface-feeders like halfbeaks and hatchetfish. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Spawning worms 11/28/07 Hi, Thanks for replying. I must admit I'm not convinced about the insect angle as I only ever have these worms when the fish have spawned and I have fry, certainly have not seen anything like the pupae you described. It would seem the only way to get rid of them is to dump the gravel and replace all filter material once the young fish go to new homes etc. I don't think they do harm the fish but there are just so many, they get into everything and they grow rather long and the 'stick' to the tank sides and the bucket when I do a water change. They are just revolting. Once again Thanks for advice. Gillian <Ah, you didn't say they were stuck to the glass. This suggests they are Planarians. Again, harmless, but planarians are almost always connected to overfeeding and bad aquarium maintenance. They consume detritus and the micro-organisms that live in messy tanks. They are typically around 10-20 mm long, rarely much bigger, very flat, and often some shade of reddish-brown. Removal is tricky, but certain fish, most famously gouramis and Paradisefish, will eat them. Basically you need to manually remove them with each water change, and then make sure you keep the tank clean so the remainder can't reproduce rapidly. Eventually the population will die back. Changing the gravel and filter media would work too. They are rather neat animals and worth appreciating, though in vast numbers they to indicate deeper problems with the tank that should be addressed. Planarians will eat fish eggs and fry, so you don't want them in a breeding tank. Cheers, Neale.>

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