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LilMermaidGirl 02-06-2010 02:29 PM

Tiny tiny bugs in gravel
Hi, I have a small 1.5 gallon tank with 1 mystery snail in it. It has a small filter, couple of small aquarium decorations, and gravel and that's it.

I just gravel vacuumed today and after I was done and adding fresh water I noticed a good bit of tiny brown or black bugs I guess. They are swimming about in the gravel but I don't see them anywhere else in the tank. They are about the size of two dots a pencil would make.

I feed my snail sinking algea wafers, fish flakes, pellets, and sometimes freeze dried bloodworms.

Also, there used to be 5 ghost shrimp in the tank but they all suddenly died about two weeks after I got them, but the snail has been fine.

I just want to know if these are a parasite or something that could harm my snail, and if so how to get rid of them. Thanks for any help.

pretzelsz 02-06-2010 02:40 PM

If the tank was new then there might have been an increase in amonia and the shrimp died. Also the shrimp might have laid eggs and those might be little shrimps.

LilMermaidGirl 02-06-2010 02:58 PM

Thanks for the fast reply. The tank is about two months old and the shrimp died about 2 weeks after, so it has been about a month and a half since there was a shrimp in there, wouldn't that of been too long? (I don't know how long it would take a shrimp to hatch though.)

The bug things I have right now are like in the layer of the gravel, not top of it. So I can see them moving through the tiny gaps between gravel pieces when I look in at eye level of the gravel through the glass.

pretzelsz 02-06-2010 03:09 PM

I heard you need to run a tank for at least half a year before putting shrimp in. also could you get some pics?

LilMermaidGirl 02-06-2010 03:28 PM

I will try to get some pics but they are soooo tiny little buggy things I don't imagine them looking like more than blurry dots lol. I know I made a mistake putting the shrimp in right away though, and I won't be adding anymore anytime soon. But i love my little snail and I don't want these little things to be a parasite that could harm him.

cbirk 02-06-2010 03:38 PM

Are you sure your snail is a mystery snail? ramshorns, pond snails, and MTS are asexual, could be snail babie. Have you noticed any yellowish/orangeish jelly clusters in the gravel?

LilMermaidGirl 02-06-2010 03:59 PM

I'm positive it isn't one of the snails you mentioned, although it could be an apple snail. There aren't any jelly clusters or egg clusters.

It looks exactly like the snail on the main page of the apple snail site, The Apple Snail (Ampullariidae) Website , although when I bought it it was sold as golden mystery snail. Also mine is about an inch round and has the siphon to breathe air also.

I tried taking a picture but the things are like specs of dirt. I'm pretty sure they're a parasite, I'm just not sure if they're a bad kind that could hurt the snail. They seemed to of settled down so I put my hand in and stirred the garvel a bit and I saw a few again (the 1st time I noticed them was after I gravel vacuumed.)

cbirk 02-06-2010 07:13 PM

I beleive mystery snails are a type of apple snail, but both are hermaphroditic, non-asexual anyways. that is very strange, I have no idea. they are big enough that you can tell that they are live critters and not small debris? i know its a dumb question and i dont mean to insult your intelligence, it is just very strange.

Angel079 02-06-2010 08:13 PM

For the Shrimp: The new set up killed them; I bet ya my all on that. Shrimp should never be added until such point hat the tank is well established. Any Shrimp queries just gimme a shout :-)

The "bugs" be more descriptive: Round? long like a mini worm? Black or indeed brown? Length? describe them inside-out the best you can maybe we can figure it out together.

LilMermaidGirl 02-07-2010 01:01 AM

I know the new setup killed the shrimp and I feel bad, I buried the ones I found but I think my snail ate the others after they died (I read snails are too slow to kill anything but will eat it if they find it). But really I just mentioned them in case maybe they could of been a carrier of the parasite bug things?

I questioned myself alot at first too if it was just debris lol so no offense taken. But I watched closely and I can see them standing still on a piece of gravel and then walking across it. They are definetly alive lol.

The things are round, they aren't long or mini worm like. They are basically the size of if you took a thin marker and stood it up straight and put one quick dot on a piece of paper, they're as big as that dot would be. That's the best I can describe it lol. I think they are black but it's hard to be certain in this lighting.

I was searching around and found this page on wikpedia about things called ostracods. Ostracod - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Sadly I don't have a microscope so I can't tell if this is what is. I'd just really like to know if they are harmful and why they appeared in the tank. I have a 10 gallon with just 1 betta and I don't see them in it at all. The only thing that's really different between the two tanks is size (obvious) and the heater in betta's, plus the betta has a light and snail doesn't get any at all. The only difference in food is the algea wafers the snail gets.I wonder if they could be the issue? They are Hikari brand.

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