Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   PARASITES?! (

Picklee 06-24-2007 12:43 PM

I've just noticed this morning these worm-like parasites floating around in my water. They are incredibly small, and I was amazed with myself for spotting them. I've removed the majority that I can see, but I fear there may be more. When I spotted one, I noticed this white particle "contracting" on itself. It occurred to me that they were live, worm-like creatures. I'm not a biologist, but I'm assuming they are parasites. Neither my pleco or angel appear sick at the moment although I did lose two other angels recently, but the larger angel that I have now was really stressing the other two out, and I think they died from overstress. And, of course, my oscar died not too long ago from hexamita. I quaratined him before I found these little guys, but hexamita is caused by a protozoan anyway, not a parasite. They never showed any signs of having a disease or any parasite. I cannot provide any clear pictures, they are simply too small for my camera to zoom.

As a pre-treatment, I have added 1 tablespoon of salt to the aquarium. My aquarium is as follows:

~10 gallons
6.8 pH
0 ppm NH3
0 ppm NO2
83 deg F
1 angel
1 pleco
planted sword
water wysteria


Amphitrite 06-24-2007 12:48 PM

Hi Picklee, don't worry too much - it sounds like Planaria which are small white flatworms, and generally caused by overfeeding.

A series of water changes along with a cutback on the amount of food given should help resolve the problem.

Picklee 06-24-2007 12:59 PM

Thanks for the suggestion, but when I looked up pictures for those, they didn't resemble what I have at all. Plus, I don't overfeed. I've been "underfeeding" lately to see if my food (bloodworms) was building up on the bottom, but it instead turned out to be lots of fish waste that I have been removing daily. Maybe they started to appear in the water because I was disturbing the substrate?

Picklee 06-24-2007 01:12 PM

Well, I've done some experimenting. I captured a bunch, and added them to a bowl and then observed them under a low power lens. I then proceeded to add some de-iodized table salt and the contraptions become more frequent, then they curled up, and died. Suggestions?

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