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Bloodworm

SRP3006

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I've found a large number of bloodworm and smaller black worms in my water butt, however there is a decent amount of crud/leaf litter and moss at the bottom. Is there an easy way to separate the two so u don't add loads of mess to my aquarium?
 

mort

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There might be an easier way but I add them to a tub of water and use a pipette to suck them out without the debris. You can create a little whirlpool by spinning the water and most of the debris collects in the middle of the tub.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
There might be an easier way but I add them to a tub of water and use a pipette to suck them out without the debris. You can create a little whirlpool by spinning the water and most of the debris collects in the middle of the tub.
I <"do the same">. I net out some crud and then tip it into a <"white tray"> (or washing up bowl etc.), give it a swirl and <"start pipetting">. I cut the tips of some of the pipettes to give me a range of sizes.

cheers Darrel
 

SRP3006

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Thanks @mort and @dw1305 thats what I've tried doing but the little blighters are determined to stay within the ball of crap in the middle. OK I'll have another go, thanks.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Thanks @mort and @dw1305 thats what I've tried doing but the little blighters are determined to stay within the ball of crap in the middle. OK I'll have another go, thanks.
If you have a fine mesh net you can run it under the cold tap to extract the bloodworms from their tubes, they are quite tough. You wash more material off with a coarser mesh net, but all the Blackworms end up entangled in the mesh.

cheers Darrel
 

SRP3006

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Sorry @dw1305 , what do you mean when you say extract them from their tubes? Is this something I need to do before feeding the fish or have I misunderstood. 😁
 

louis_last

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At this time of year you should be able to find eggs too. It can be mutch easier to remove a mass of eggs and let them hatch in some tank water. I'm feeding a ton of mosquito and midge larvae at the moment because each night I go and collect eggs from the garden. The midge eggs round here look like giant strings of DNA made out of jelly and they deposit them at the edge of the surface film or attached to floating detritus. Mosquito eggs are in the form of little black floating rafts that look a bit like tiny, tiny, honeycomb. You can look underneath leaves that overhang water for egg masses of the non biting midge that look a bit like snail eggs too.
I just float all the eggs in a shot glass on top of my aquarium light, they hatch pretty quickly from the warmth and then go straight in the tank.
I'm hatching hundreds and hundreds a day at the moment and it's been a very useful additional food source for some very small scalret badis fry.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
what do you mean when you say extract them from their tubes?
Bloodworm (Chironomid) larvae live in <"little tubes of sediment">, held together with mucus. If you see a few swimming around, they are only a tiny proportion of those actually present, but hidden from view.
is this something I need to do before feeding the fish or have I misunderstood.
Depends on the fish. Fish like Apistogramma or Corydoras will have no problem at all in removing the larvae, they are food items that they eat in the wild. I haven't kept them for a long time, but Loaches would be another fish that will extract the bloodworms with out any issue.

cheers Darrel
 

louis_last

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Hi all,

Bloodworm (Chironomid) larvae live in <"little tubes of sediment">, held together with mucus. If you see a few swimming around, they are only a tiny proportion of those actually present, but hidden from view.

Depends on the fish. Fish like Apistogramma or Corydoras will have no problem at all in removing the larvae, they are food items that they eat in the wild. I haven't kept them for a long time, but Loaches would be another fish that will extract the bloodworms with out any issue.

cheers Darrel
I wonder how they harvest them so cleanly en masse for prepacked livefood sales?
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I wonder how they harvest them so cleanly en masse for prepacked livefood sales?
My guess would be they wash them with relatively high pressure water. Their exoskeletons are really tough so it wouldn't damage them. I've not been to a commercial Bloodworm farm, but I've seen them in huge numbers in sewage works etc. and you could wash them out of the sewage sludge fairly easily.

I don't ever buy Bloodworms (live, freeze dried or frozen), even if they have been gamma irradiated, and I never fed dead ones when I've PYO them. You only get them in commercially collectable numbers where the water is really organically polluted.

cheers Darrel
 

SRP3006

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Thanks Darrel, I now see exactly what that link describes.
I've caught quite a few but that is one tedious task 🤣, pipetting them one by one trying to avoid the crud they love so much.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I've caught quite a few but that is one tedious task 🤣, pipetting them one by one trying to avoid the crud they love so much.
If you leave them in the tray of water overnight they will rebuild their tubes, this removes a lot of the loose material from the water.

cheers Darrel
 

SRP3006

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Thank you @dw1305 that made them much easier to collect. Cories went crazy for them when I managed to sneak them past my 35 white cloud minnows 😂
I'm thinking of trying to introduce daphnia to the water butt and guessing that as its OK for bloodworm it'll be OK for daphnia?
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I'm thinking of trying to introduce daphnia to the water butt and guessing that as its OK for bloodworm it'll be OK for daphnia?
My guess is that it will be OK for Daphnia, but you can't really draw any conclusions from the presence of Bloodworms (Chironomid - non-biting midge larvae). Because they contain haemoglobin some species can live in very low oxygen conditions and these can build up to <"huge numbers in very polluted conditions">.

You get them in clean water as well, just as a <"component of the species assemblage">, rather than all of it.
.........There are about 600 species of chironomid midges in Britain. They can be found in all types of freshwater ecosystems, where they are often the most abundant insects.......

cheers Darrel
 
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