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Bmitchell486

Tiny White Worms

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So last night, I noticed that there seem to be thousands of super tiny white worms on the glass in my 29 gallon aquarium.  This tank has been up and running for about 5 months, with one 4 inch ranchu in it.

 

I googled it, and seems that there are little white worms called Planaria.  The pictures of those worms look like they're longer than the ones in my  tank, but maybe the ones in my tank are just babies?  It also said  they appear when overfeeding occurs.  I don't think I am overfeeding, and I do an 80% water change every weekend and clean out the filter about every 6 weeks.  But maybe I have an underlying issue I need to work on.

 

Just curious if anyone can identify these little worms, help me figure out why they showed up, and if I should be concerned with their bioload in the aquarium. 

 

At first glance, you can't really see them

IMG_8990.jpg

 

But if you get close, you can see them, and they are actually slowly moving along the glass

IMG_8998.jpg

 

 

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For some reason many people on fish forums call every free-living worm a planarian.  In fact, planaria rarely occur in aquariums.  You may have tiny annelids called detritus worms, or even some very tiny insect larvae.  In any case, they are harmless.  

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Thanks Sharon!  I was hoping you'd answer bc I knew you'd know :)  

 

I was thinking they were harmless but wanted to double check.  I'm a little puzzled why they showed up bc I haven't introduced anything new into that tank (substrate, plants, rock, fish, filter media) since I first set it up.  I'm glad they're harmless but where will they go?  They're too small for my goldfish to eat now, but maybe they'll get big enough for him to snack on them later? haha

 

In my saltwater tanks I had, I liked any little detritus worms/snails (like Nassarius snails and bristle worms) bc they would keep the sand churned and help clean up.  They're actually quite beneficial and important in saltwater tanks.  But I've just never seen so many worms show up all at once, and never in a freshwater tank.

 

Speaking of churning up sand -- I have sand in this tank.  I can't use my gravel vac on it, but I always churn up all the sand with my fingers right before each water change so nasty pockets don't form.  It's about 3/4 inch thick, but of course my goldfish rearranges things and can pile it up to 2-3 inches  thick on certain spots.  Do you know if there are freshwater snails that burrow under the sand, like saltwater Nassarius snails?  If there are, I think it'd be super cool to get one or two to see how they do.  I'd imagine there would be enough for them to feed off of...

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Do you use any live foods?  

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