Rhabdocela invasion

MissATV

New Member
Joined
6 Oct 2020
Messages
7
Location
London
Hello all,

Has anyone dealt with an invasion of Rhabdocela worms? I have a new setup, 4 weeks old. 25liters cube, with 2 pea puffers. I have set it with existing media from my other tanks and added some plants to it. Now, I don't know what causes it but I seem to have an explosion of these little white worms, they are everywhere. Especially on the glass at the front - away from the plants.

I am doing 50% water changes every 3-4 days and I feed each puffer 2 bloodworms/day which they eat instantly so there is no excess food reaching the bottom or rotting anywhere. I don't experience any plant melts yet these tiny wrigglers seem to find perfect conditions to breed. I am sure they're not planaria as I've seen planaria before in shops and it did not look anything like this. They are white and tiny and glide around, very unsightly. The filter is a sponge, the temp is 25 C, pH 7.6

I don't think they are affecting the fish or plants in any way as the fish are behaving well and the plants grow well too. But they are horrible, every single morning out on the glass in huge numbers :eek:

If you have any suggestions on what I can do to make them less prolific please advise. You can see them in the photos - tiny little specks all over the glass, and that's just the ones the camera picked. There are a lot more in real life!
 

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lilirose

Member
Joined
13 Aug 2020
Messages
283
Location
Ireland
They are harmless and in fact a sign of a healthy tank, if you are 100% certain that they aren't planaria- I can't tell for certain from your shots, your worms seem to have a mildly spade-shaped head but I don't see the eyes that planaria have. Planaria normally do glide around, so I'm not sure what you saw planaria doing that these don't do.

If they are Rhabdocela, they will decrease in numbers as your tank continues to mature. Right now, they are finding something that they like to eat- when that food source is gone, they will decline naturally.

You could try dosing Panacur if you are absolutely determined that they have to go, but personally I would recommend against adding a chemical (which will stick around and make your tank toxic to snails) when the worms are not harming anything beyond your sensibilities. If it were my tank, I would wait a month or six weeks before considering this.
 

MissATV

New Member
Joined
6 Oct 2020
Messages
7
Location
London
Thanks that's very helpful if their numbers will go down in time. I will wait for it to die off then, there's no way I'm adding chemicals to a tank with healthy fish.

Why I'm quite convinced its not planaria: I've had them for a month now and they're still super tiny. They seem to be reaching a few mm and then stop growing. The planaria I've seen was wider, a bit brown much larger and more like a leech looking, these guys undulate a bit more than the planaria I've seen in stores. But it could be a different type of planaria for all I know, just in my eyes it looks like Rhabdocela worms when I did a google search😁
 

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