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FAQs on Aquatic Insects and Freshwater Aquariums 2

Related Articles: Invertebrates in Freshwater Aquariums, Invertebrates for Freshwater Aquariums by Neale Monks,

FAQs on Aquatic Insects:  Aquatic Insects 1, Aquatic Insects 2, Aquatic Insects 3, Aquatic Insects 4, Aquatic Insect Identification, Aquatic Insect Control
FAQs on Aquatic Insects by Group: Beetles, Dragonflies, Flies in General (Caddis, Gnats, Midges...), Freshwater Mites, Mosquitos/Mozzies and much more!

FW parasite ID     8/18/13
Good morning
 <And you>
I wondered if you could help with identifying the attached...
 I found 8 of them on the bottom of my quarantine tank after treating a sick platy with an anti-parasite medication (liquid Praziquantel 'Prazi Pro') . As far as I know they came from inside the poor fish.
 <Mmm; appear to be chitinous in this pic... external, or gill cavity (which is also ext.)...>>

The heads are dark and visible to the naked eye. About 0.3mm across. The bodies had largely disintegrated before I got them but looked to have been maybe a cm or so long and worm-like...
<Hmmm; please do send along an image of a whole specimen if you can>

without the dark cuticle (?) visible on the head part. I did see some other structures - a node with fine hooks or hairs (bursa? couldn't tell which part it had been attached to) and the structure coming from the inside of the head shown on the doc. file. 
 Hunting around on the web the closest I can find is some kind of hookworm ... what do you think? The teeth and claw structures are really distinctive but I couldn't find a picture of anything quite like these anywhere...
I'd like to know what they are and whether my main tank is likely to be swarming with eggs and larvae just waiting to latch onto one of my other fish and whether there is any point in re-treating my sick fish with the Prazi Pro - she is still very sick-looking and not eating. (It is 7 days since I first quarantined and treated her)
<If they are worms, the Prazi has likely eliminated them; if crustaceans; you'll need to treat w/ another compound. See WWM re such for freshwater fishes.>
Any help/info would be appreciated!
<The head, mouth parts, are reminiscent of Ergasilus, some other copepods... perhaps... Bob Fenner> 

Re: unknown parasite, FW...      8/18/13
Thanks for the quick response! Had a look at Ergasilus spp on the web - but nowhere seems to mention they have 'teeth' - which are very distinctive in the species I have and I think would be commented upon somewhere...
<Mmm, yes>
I have make the attached composite photos of the 2 specimens I have of bodies ('body 2' has two versions - a light and dark)... I am afraid both specimens are in pretty bad shape but I had another good look under the microscope and can't see any obvious structures like legs or chitin plates etc... so don't know if these help much! I am also not sure if they are complete or the tail end has broken off - looks broken to me so there could be missing parts.
<... no apparent legs? Quite common in internal parasites; and of course worms lack them... But do have eyes; and these too tend to be absent, or greatly reduced... These appear to be segmented... and still arthropods...
Did you actually see them being evacuated from the fish's vent? Am leaning toward (guessing) aquatic insect larvae... non-parasitic; though can be piscivorous... Do put the string "freshwater aquatic insect larvae" in your search tool and take a long look/see at images... do any of these bear close resemblance to what you have here?>
Sorry about the quality - I am just holding my camera and taking shots down the microscope tube.
<Good work; better than I could do. BobF>

Re: unknown parasite     8/18/13
Oh - that's an idea! I'll send the photos to a friend who is an aquatic invertebrate person... though I have to say I still think they must be parasitic. I scooped the sick fish out of the aquarium in a small container to transfer her to the quarantine tank and  I think I would have noticed if these guys were with her. But maybe not! Perhaps there is something else completely different wrong with the fish...
<... do look at the system this fish was hauled from... At the surface especially. B> 
Re: unknown parasite     8/18/13

I agree - the mouthparts do look like those of an insect....
Any suggestions as what to do with my sick fish? Any other treatment (if it 's not an internal parasite) you can suggest?
<As you were first directed.>
Symptoms are - very thin, lethargic, not eating or if eats - spits food out, has been like this for at least last 2 weeks (was away on vacation before so not sure how she was...), other fish in original tank all fat and bright, can't see anything obvious on her externally....

Re: unknown parasite     8/20/13
FYI Identified the mystery 'parasite'
 It's a midge larva!

Not a parasite at all but residue from feeding bloodworms... must have been in the water the fish was transferred in (from the main tank) or from her gut and pooped out once in the quarantine tank...
 <Ah yes; as I had guessed>
Back to the drawing board for my diagnosis!
<No worries; not harmful. Bob Fenner>

Help in identifying plant eating larvae 6/18/2013
This morning i found a larvae eating my plants. Can you help my identify it
<Mmm, an intermediate form/metamorphosis of some aquatic insect>
my water plant shop reseller haven't seen this in the past.
Its about 1 inch long, and transparent.(not green like in picture) when i removed it from water, it shrank and lost its internal water.
I don't have any fish in the tank yet. I started it only 10 days ago.
I assume it was a hitchhiker on one of the plants and therefore i can expect more.
<Likely so>
If so, i want to know if its dangerous to fish as well as eating my plants....
<Best to poison, remove... Please read here:
i was planning to add fish in two weeks but would like to do a water treatment in advance if necessary.
<Yes, I would. An acetylcholinesterase inhibitor... As you'll read... an insecticide. Bob Fenner; fresh out of time>

Re: Help in identifying plant eating larvae  6/19/2013
Thanks for your quick reply.
acetylcholinesterase inhibitors which are insecticides can be dangerous to my plants ? or biological filter ? Its an organic phosphor molecule ?
how should i use it ?
<... please learn to/use the search tool, indices on WWM:
Read here:
and related (arthropods) here:
Which companies sell them for aquarium purposes ? Tetra ? Sera ? Seachem ?
What is the safe dosage for a 120 Liter aquarium.
should i wait a few weeks before taking this drastic measure and see if i have more of these pests ?
<I wouldn't>
i am not in a hurry . though my two daughters are impatient to see fishes swimming in the tank :)
sorry for throwing all those questions on you.
<No worries. Just short of time today. BobF>

Is this a bloodworm?     4/26/13
I've recently (last few months) started building a freshwater tank - the last one I had was taken down due to moving to FL, and the fish given to a LFS (I haven't gotten any new fish yet).  I was kayaking last week and noticed some *Egeria *type plants*,* and grabbed some to start a planted tank.  I kept them out of the tank until today to make sure there weren't any snail hitchhikers, and today I put them in my tank.  As I was cleaning up and about to throw out some plant debris, I noticed little tiny red worm-like things flailing around in the plant matter on my kitchen counter.
After freaking out a bit, I Google searched to see if I could figure out what they are - they are probably in the tank since I didn't notice them until *after* most of the plants went in the tank.  I'm assuming they are bloodworms, but could you double check my identification?
<Could be a Chironomid... an insect larval stage of some sort>
  I'd hate to have any eventual fish I get subjected to a parasite I pulled out of a river.
Thank you!
<Welcome. There's always a chance of introducing trouble/s w/ such wild collecting... Better to run all new material through a few weeks of isolation/quarantine, before introduction to your main/display system. Bob Fenner>

Aquatic larvae please help!!     4/26/13
Hello, I recently found two of these worm-like "insects" in my planted aquarium (I know it's blurry and I am very sorry). It looks like a tiny caterpillar and it seems to live in a kind of "house" made out of leaves from my aquatic plants, it slides in and out of the leaves but always has its back-end inside the "house".  I noticed what looked like webs or threads in the tank the other day, however I don't know if they were related to these or not, and they appear to be gone now.
<This/these are insect larvae. Read here;
This is a fairly new aquarium- established for about 3 months, and has java ferns, java moss, duckweed, broad leaf Anubias, and dwarf penny Wort (I believe it came in on this- its a matted plant).
I have a bubble ring in the tank and the filter is a sponge filter.
I am in desperate need of your help, I don't know what it is and what I should do.
Please please please help!
Thank you so much!
<Oh! From where you lifted the image... read on! Likely nothing to do... fishes will eat or they'll cycle out. Bob Fenner>

What are these tiny 'insects' in my tank? (RMF couldn't find graphics/pix file)     12/11/12
Hello Neale,
I hope you are the rest of the Crew are well.
Please help!
I wanted to find out what these tiny white insects (lice or mites) are that are swimming around inside my tank.
<Springtails, collembolans, thrips… that sort of thing; completely harmless, even commonplace.>
They are very small but visible when i look close enough and their movements are jerky and random. I also observed one on the glass and it seemed to move more like an insect. Are they harmful in any way, like parasites, and what is their likely presence caused by? Also, what would be the best way to eradicate them? Hope to hear from you soon.
Best wishes,
<Virtually impossible to eradicate (at least, not without poisoning your fish). But they multiply best in tanks where there's a lot of protein (uneaten flake, algae, bacterial slime) at the air/water interface, especially around the sides of the tank. Since they sit at the top of the water, they prefer relatively still water movement. Basically, keep the tank cleaner and add more turbulence and their numbers should delicate. The addition of floating plants seems to help, too -- or at least hides them. Cheers, Neale.>
Re What are these tiny 'insects' in my tank?    12/11/12

Dear Neale,
A saviour as always! Wishing you and the rest of the Crew a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!
Best wishes,
<Most welcome, and thanks for the kind words. Cheers, Neale.>

Freshwater Pest? - 10/28/2012
Hi my name is Casey.
<Sabrina with you tonight.>
I have a question for you guys. I was moving some Bristlenose Pleco eggs that the male had kicked out today.
<Hmm.... Usually, Ancistrus are pretty good at caring for their eggs and fry.... if he's kicking them out, perhaps they are bad/unfertilized?>
When I lifted up the log to see if I could move the eggs back, I noticed three little critters. At first I thought they were fry, but when I looked closer I noticed they had legs. They are about the same size as newly hatched Pleco fry and have the same brownish spotted coloring, hence my mistake.
They look like little crickets when you look closer.

I think they had been munching on the eggs as four were empty.
What could these be and how would I get rid of them.
<The closest I can think of to match your description might be a Gammarus species of some sort.... I do recall getting a bunch of these little amphipods in a freshwater tank I had as a kid, possibly from feeding dried Gammarus as fish food.... Do take a look with a Google search and see if what you've got matches this. If they are Gammarus, you might easily get rid of them by adding something that would happily eat them. There are many fish that would do so. If the tank is a species-only tank exclusively for breeding the Ancistrus, then perhaps just temporarily housing a predator of little shrimps? Just don't skip quarantine!>
I don't need them wiping out my Pleco spawns.
<Understandable. But, would you imagine, I actually think Gammarus are a little bit cute?>
Thanks for any information you can give me.
<I do hope this helps.... Do let us know if my guess is off, and see if you might be able to get a picture, or try to describe them in very clear detail. Best wishes to you and your future Ancistrus babies, -Sabrina>

worms, FW ID      8/19/12
hi WetWeb,
<Hello Jon,>
I have a question for the freshwater entomologist :
<Hmm… not exactly come to the right place!>
The other day I was watching a shrimp eating a dead shrimp. I guess it's normal for a shrimp population to somewhat control itself ?
<For sure. Or at least, to recycle calcium from moults or corpses.>
The number of shrimps seems to stay about constant but I don't see very many babies nor very many grandpas and grandmas.
<Pretty much true.>
Anyway, right near the dead shrimp I noticed a red wormy-looking thing. I've never seen this thing before. It was about the size and color of a bloodworm but not segmented.
<If it isn't segmented, it can't either [a] an insect larva such as a chironomid larva; or [b] an oligochaete such as Lumbriculus.>

Also, it slithered over the rocks rather than doing the bloodworm motion.
<Gliding over solid surfaces is more typical of flatworms, i.e., planarians.>
As I watched, it slithered away into the substrate never to be seen again. The substrate is round river rock of various sizes. Not too big but larger than normal aquarium gravel. Kuhli loaches love it. This thing was slithery like a slug, not free-swimming at all and rounder rather than flatter.
<Again, suggestive of a planarian.>
I searched the site and found Planaria and leeches but this creature seemed more evenly shaped than a leech, not fat in the middle with tapered ends.
<Leeches are segmented; they are of course Oligochaetes.>
And it didn't have the triangular head that Planaria have.
<Ah now, the triangular head with the two eye spots is not universal to flatworms.>
I searched and searched the rest of the tank but only see/saw the one.
Any ideas what this thing could be ?
<Does sound like a planarian; look at species such as Dugesia which are fairly common in ponds and get into aquaria via plants and live foods. They're harmless, by the way.>
thank you,
<Most welcome, Neale.>
Re: worms, FW ID    8/19/20

Thank you for the reassurance :)
They sure look nasty icky slimy but we probably aren't very attractive to them, either …
<Likely so.>
I'm sort of assuming that since this is part of life, as long as they aren't parasites they're actually good for the tank ?
<Or at least neutral. If you have a lot of them, then that tends to indicate the tank isn't clean (overstocked, uneaten food, inadequate maintenance). But a few of them is normal, and in some tanks adds to the charm of the aquarium. Indeed, I have an 8-gallon aquarium on a sunny windowsill that's crawling with tiny life such as these worms, and it's a useful place to grow on small fish like Ricefish fry that feed on algae and tiny animals. It's a fun tank to observe, almost like a reef tank.>
Especially since I've only seen one, not thousands ?
<Quite so.>
thanks again much :)
<Cheers, Neale.>

Tiny Yellow Bugs 2/6/12
I just cleaned my tank today and noticed these tiny speckles above the water line. On closer inspection they were crawling. They are extremely small yellow bugs, no bigger than a pencil dot.
I looked through your posts and found one question about something similar. I have seen them floating on the water as well, but mostly on the side of the tank. I can see antennae and six legs if I strain my eyes.
I too have a fresh water and live planted aquarium, 20 gallons.
However I believe I know the culprit. I've found these brown bugs in the same room as my tank, adult size is about a 1/2 inch. I don't know the proper name, but I was told they're called Stink Bugs, because of the scent they emit when in danger or crushed. I found one hanging out on my filter while I was cleaning. I've found others there before, attracted to the light and heat, but never saw the little yellow guys before. They are however very similar with six legs and antennae. Also the same body shape.
In the photo I've sent you (I apologize for the lack of detail), you can see tiny little dots just left of center. Those are the little yellow bugs. I don't have a picture of the adult stink bug.
I just thought you guys might want an idea of what these tiny bugs might be. Please let me know if there's anything I can do to get rid of them. I've been using a paper towel and just wiping them out.
Thanks for all the great feedback you've given!
<And thanks for the kind words. Anyhow, these are harmless tiny insects, collembolans, mites, silverfish'¦ that sort of thing. Quite normal. Nothing to worry about. The fish don't seem to eat them, but conversely, they don't seem to damage the fish or plants either. They're mostly feeding on organic material that collects in warm, humid places like fish tanks. Cheers, Neale.>

Dragonfly/Damselfly issue 1/19/12
Hi there!
Ok, so the other evening I found what was either a dragonfly or damselfly (can't remember what the wings looked like)
<Mmm; easy to tell apart, the latter can fold their wings over the axis of their bodies. Odonatans, no:
http://bcadventure.com/adventure/angling/bugs/damselfly/damselfly.phtml >
on the edge of my aquarium light! Don't ask me how it got into the house, it just did. So I'm thinking, 'Great (a sarcastic 'great')! Its laid eggs and I'm going to see nymphs in my tank!'
<I hope not Odonatan!>
I got a bit annoyed and blew at the poor creature to force it to land in the water, forgetting that they can probably repel the water tension as was the case here. It flew up to the glass brace bar of the aquarium and I felt bad and took pity on the thing.
I got my net and rather easily caught it and took it outside and released it. It was a very beautiful deep crystal blue.
24 hours later,
I spot what I at first thought was a dead cherry shrimp laying at the bottom and foreground of the tank. Upon closer visual inspection I realise that I'm looking at a dead nymph (I guess one of my dwarf gourami used it for sport after realising it was a bit big to fit in the mouth comfortably) as I had earlier feared. The problem is, it was only 24 hours later and this thing was already approximately 10mm in length. Could it have hatched and grown this large so fast?
<Don't think so; no. Perhaps a previous visitor...>
Were they both possibly from a same batch that hitched a ride in my blackworm feeder water and one just happened to develop and moult faster than the other (latter seems unlikely since I've read that nymphs will spend up to 3 years in its larval form where there is a plentiful water supply and food source)?
<Mmm, maybe>
The problem I am facing is that I have lost A LOT of red cherry shrimp which I put down to our summer weather, but now I'm starting to think that nymphs may have been behind these mysterious disappearances, especially if one developed to the point that it was large enough to moult and escaped my attention till it emerged. I still have a couple of female cherry shrimp carrying eggs and I'm concerned that there may be more nymphs hiding in the aquarium.
<I'd dismantle... take a look... you should be able to see if there>
I have nothing against dragon/damselflies at all, in fact I find them very beautiful and extremely beneficial
insects at pest control, but they have no place in my tank if it means that I lose most if not all of
my cherry shrimp.
<I suspect something else is going on w/ your shrimp mortality. Please peruse this file:
In particular, are you feeding enough, is there sufficient room? Do you dose Iodide/ate? What re biomineral and alkalinity here?>
I also found a dead adult male cardinal tetra the morning before I saw the dragon/damselfly. Are they tough enough to kill a cardinal tetra or would this have more to do with water conditions or aggression from a spawning male dwarf gourami?
<Dragonflies can catch, kill quite large fishes. Yes>
What would you recommend I do?
<Reading the citation, answering the questions, dismantling and looking...>
I don't have a second tank to transfer the fish and shrimp and I don't really want to tear the tank up looking for nymphs anyway. Any other solution besides just keeping an eye out?
Thanks heaps,
<Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: Dragonfly/Damselfly issue 1/20/12

Hi again,
My aquarium critters may have to take their chances for now since I have no way of housing them
while I tear their home apart.
<Mmm, can be just placed in a chemically inert container for the less-than an hour time this should take>
My apartment is tiny and I can't afford a second, smaller aquarium right now.
<Don't need>
My water is pretty hard, although I don't think it has any concentration of copper
<Mmm, no. Your shrimp would be dead>
(I don't have any test kits besides a liquid ph kit which is basically useless since adjusting the ph in hard water creates an unstable environment) and I've been careful to avoid any products containing copper. I have laterite in the substrate, but apart from this I don't use any supplements, bio or chemical in the water (except of course dechlorinator, but not really a supplement... more a conditioner).
The tank is 36" long by 14" high and 12" deep and medium to heavily planted. Besides the cherry shrimp it houses 1 male gourami, 2 female gourami, (now) 5 cardinal tetras, 2 false julli eye Corys and an albino Bristlenose so there should be ample room for the shrimp and a forest of hiding places with plenty of open swimming space near the top for the fish.
I feed the catfish about 3 sinking wafers a week in addition to a reasonable amount of leftover food plus a large amount of java moss too. The fish are fed frozen brine shrimp, fish flakes, frozen bloodworm
<See WWM re these sewer fly larvae... I'd cut out>
and live blackworms alternately so they lack nothing for variety.
I also do weekly 25% water changes.
My other suspicion that I have yet to prove is that a lot of the baby CS were sucked into the filter inlet, but this doesn't account for the many missing adult CS that are too big to be sucked up. I occasionally still see a few baby CS crawling around in the java moss and in the forest of chain dwarf Amazon swords I'm training to cover the foreground.
So if you don't think its the nymphs causing the havoc, I may need to take a sample of my water to the LFS to test for ammonia, nitrite etc,
<Better by far to have/use your own kits then and there... samples change w/ time, moving>
but I did believe that the lack of animals, the size of the aquarium and the density of plant life in the tank would take care of this for the most part.
Although I don't use an air pump, I always raise the canister filter outlet above the water level at night to achieve adequate aeration for both plants and fish. Most of the plants pearl nicely during the day so I'm guessing there should be plenty of air in the water during the day. I also use DIY Co2 injection.
<This too could be problematical...>
Anyways, I hope this answers most of your questions about the condition of my aquarium. If you don't have anything else you could advise I guess I'll just have to play the 'wait-and-see' game.
<A good plan>
Thanks again.
<And you, BobF>

Planted Tank, fish sel. for pest control 11/9/11
Dear WWM,
Usually this would concern marine topics, however I do have a 20 gallon freshwater planted. My goal when I purchased it was to make a tank that would be almost self sufficient, obviously it needs water added on occasion due to evaporation and flow provided, my end product has a small heater, and filter, and standard light (also receives ample sunlight). Stocked with Micro Sword which is growing across that tank; Amazon Sword that has more than doubled in size and number of leaves; Argentine Swords which grow and are a nice back drop, Java Fern slow growing, and what I believe to be a Ludwigia peruensis that likes to loose leaves every time new ones grow in.
I also have two Apple Snails, Six Ghost shrimp that keep having babies whom I can never find. I would assume this is due to the free swimming larva encountering the filter. One common Pleco. I also have gnats that like to land and die in the water much to my dismay. Is there a fish I could get that would not have a high demand or be over-whelming to my tank that would eat the gnats and algae? The algae I already identified to be Green Spot Algae rather than a non-photosynthetic type. Thanks.
<Depending on water temperature and water chemistry, something from the killifish or livebearer groups would seem most appropriate here. At low-end tropical temperatures, Florida Flagfish can make excellent algae eaters.
They're territorial but not especially aggressive. Other pupfish-type Killies might be used depending on their availability in your area.
Livebearers are good for tanks with moderately hard to hard water. Alfaro cultratus is an exception, doing well in soft water, though it is difficult to breed and eats mostly insects rather than algae. On the other hand, Limia nigrofasciata is an excellent algae-eater and unusual enough that passing on excess fry is easy to do. The Dwarf Mosquitofish, Heterandria formosa, would be an excellent choice for your tank, being so small it'd have minimal impact on water quality unless you kept hundreds. Naturally, you could go with plain vanilla livebearers too, such as Endler's. Just as an aside, the Plec has no place in this tank and will cause trouble before long; neither will it do much/anything to hold back algae. Replace with an Ancistrus instead; these are smaller, reasonably good algae eaters, and very easy to keep. Otocinclus might be an option too, but they're delicate, dislike warm water, easily starved, and often die within a few months or a year of purchase. Cherry Shrimps are much easier to breed, and they're also more colourful, and in my opinion the best all-around shrimps for most tanks. Do bear in mind that Green Spot Algae isn't going to be removed by any fish. To deal with this algae type, you want to adopt a preventative approach, perhaps through a combination of physical removal of what you have now, Nerite snails for scraping away new colonies before they start, and the use of fast-growing plants (ideally, floating plants) to inhibit algal growth. Cheers, Neale.>

Yellow Bugs in Tank -- 8/20/09
<Hello Tiffany, Lynn here this morning.>
We have a 40 gal tank that's well established, 4+ years.
<Freshwater, saltwater, or brackish?>
About two weeks ago I noticed some tiny yellow bugs on the glass walls hanging out above the water line. If I go to touch or remove them they hop or jump out of the way, either to another spot on the wall or on top of the water. I can't see any in the water.
I tried to take a pic but you can't see them in the picture. Approx. size of salt grains. Population has gotten larger this week. What are they?
<Most likely nothing bad, but I need more information. I need to know the water type and anything else you can tell me to describe the 'bugs'. If you have a magnifying glass, get that out and take a good look at one. Tell me what you see. I can appreciate how difficult it would be to get a photo of these little guys, but if you're able to, please send it along!>
How do I get rid of them or prevent in future?
<Again, they may be completely harmless, but I imagine you could wipe out quite a few by taking a quick swipe across the glass with a clean, plain white (one with no dyes/designs on it), paper towel. For those on top of the water, get another piece (or length) of paper toweling (just a bit longer than the tank is wide), grasp both ends and drag across the surface. That should pick up quite a few as well. Repeat as necessary.>
I just spent an hour or so reading through posts and can't find anything on yellow bugs like this. Hope you can help...
Tiffany J.
<Take care, LynnZ>
Help with ID query, please? 8/22/09

Hello Bob and fellow crew members,
<Hey Lynn!>
I need a hand, please. I answered a query the other day titled "Yellow Bugs in Tank - 8/20/09". The querior had great numbers of tiny yellow bugs hopping all over the glass above the waterline. In the reply, I requested more information, including water type, and received a follow-up today.
Ends up, it's a FW system and I have no idea what the little bugs might be.
Has anyone run across these before? I placed the query in the FW folder.
Thank you so much for your help! Take care,
<Will respond. BobF>
Re: Help with ID query, please?

Thank you so much, Bob!
<Thank you Lynn. B>
Re: yellow bugs in tank

Sorry its freshwater, only has 4 fish in the tank, I've been wiping every other day with plain paper towel to no avail.
The sentence in the original email should state, I cannot see any swimming in the fish tank, only some occasionally on the surface of the water when I try to get rid of them.
I can't get a close up picture of them b/c the camera keeps trying to focus and zooms out to do so. They appear to have 6 legs and 2 antenna's each.
<Ahh, a good description... These are almost doubtless insects of some sort. The adults have "flown in" to reproduce in your aquarium>
And their body shape reminds me of the bugs you build in the game called cooties!
IE it has a few segments and the butt section is kinda heart shaped.
Tiffany J.
<Wiping these off the edge with clean, white, non-scented paper towels should rid your system of them over a short while.
Bob Fenner>

Re: yellow bugs in tank -- 08/23/09
I've been wiping them off every other day for a couple weeks now with no success. Is there anything non toxic to fish I can use like maybe vinegar?
<Not Vinegar, aka Acetic Acid... there are organophosphates that are sold at times/places as "remedies" that are toxic to Arthropods mostly, but I would not "stoop" to their use here>
I even tried to let them dry up about two weeks ago
<Mmm, look to screening the room windows and tank top... new adults are "sneaking in" and reproducing in your tank>
when I changed the water and waited over 2 hours to refill the water after wiping the walls down till they were dry and letting them sit that way for the 2 hours. thanks for the help or any ideas!
Tiffany J.

Freshwater insect larvae ID 6/26/09Crew,
I mostly tore down my QT tank before going on a work trip 2 weeks ago.
While I was gone there was gravel enough to cover the bottom and water to just cover the gravel (maybe 1cm). I was cleaning the tank today by adding hot tap water and I noticed what I assume are insect larvae. Sorry the pics are out of focus. The long, gray UFO (unidentified freshwater object)
is about 1.5 cm actual length. The other 2 are about .5 cm.
<It's the larva of a dipteran of some sort. Midge, mosquito... something like that.>
No matter what, I plan on having all these things cleared out of the aquarium before the wife sees them. She hates anything wriggly!
<They're fish food. Not a problem.>
Thanks for any help.
<Cheers, Neale.>

Weird Creature, Help! 6-15-2009
I have sent this photo to about 10 sites and not one has responded, do you guys know what this is?
<It's an aquatic larval insect of some sort... need to see details of the head to get close as the Order>
I live in Castle Rock, CO at about 6300 feet, these things are flourishing in my little 3' x 2.5' pond; no circulation, only duckweed, 1 water hibiscus and 1 water hyacinth.
This is a photo of one; it's in a jar, I used the macro feature on my camera; they are from needle pin dots to 3cm. Obviously a crustacean (from the tail/abdomen which shows 6 sections) but the body seems upside-down with feet on the top a large eye?
Any input would be greatly appreciated.
<More pix please. Bob Fenner>

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