20 Gallon Aquascaped, Still Cycling, Nematodes? Question

Discussion in 'Fish, Snail, Worm And Pest ID Help' started by Sokonomi, May 19, 2019.

  1. Sokonomi Valued Member Member

    Hello everyone,

    I'm working on starting up my first fishtank (going 4 weeks now), and I keep having bug scares! :eek:
    Right from the getgo I had a pair of snails even though I rinsed and inspected every plant going in. Two weeks ago I managed to remove one big planaria that popped out of nowhere. Theres also a solitary water flea enjoying the good life in there.. And now, I've got one or two of what seems to be nematodes flopping around in my water. :sour:

    Where do all these bugs keep coming from? Is it normal to keep finding bugs in your tank?
    What do they feed on? Theres no fishfood yet.

    I've got some dennerle 9-in-1 soil under my gravel area, and plain fine grain sand next to it, divided by some thoroughly washed and soaked pebbles. Is that where these creepy crawlies were hiding until they felt like having a wiggle around the tank?

    The other two pests seem to have disappeared after promptly removing any ive spotted, but now these nematodes.. are they going to be a problem if they persist?
    Last edited by a moderator: May 19, 2019
  2. mdjrnc Valued Member Member

    I have 4 tanks and i have always had nematodes and tons of tiny bugs swimming around. Especially with a scaped cycle. I believe they ride in on the plants because there is no other way to really get them in the tank. I would say leave them all because most fish love nematodes and planaria. I have scarlet badis, neon stiphadon gobies, a hara catfish, and a Taiwanese micro goby along with a few other small fish in a 20 tall and they eat all those little bugs. I have a tank that has a lot of nematodes and I take a syringe and stir up the water and I suck the nematodes up and feed them to my other fish. I would say dont worry about em.

    Also snails. Keep the snails. In a planted tank the more snails to clean up and stir substrate around the better. I keep a good population of Malaysian trumpet snails in my tanks to keep substrate turned over and all uneaten food eaten. I also reccomend rabbit snails for a heavily planted tank because they eat the decaying plant matter and dead leaves. Most say they eat your plants but I haven't had a rabbit snail eat anything but live plants and I have 3 chocolate rabbits and one yellow rabbit snail along with 2 baby yellows and 3 or 4 baby chocolates. I bred the chocolate rabbits.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 19, 2019
  3. Sokonomi Valued Member Member

    Surprised to hear these bugs are straight up fancy food for fish; I thought these worms could be parasitic.
    And upon further investigation, it turns out that nematoda are infact also known as.. vinegar worms! I had no idea!
    So my tank is propagating live food. Neat!

    I've been fishing the snails (ramshorns I think) out and dumping em in a glass of tankwater just for funzies.
    Should I put em back? I thought they could overrun the tank and ruin my plants.

    Rabbit snails are amazing and beautiful, but my tank will be too cold for them.
    Im running it about 75'F (24'C) for the kuhli loaches and rasboras im gonna get.
  4. mdjrnc Valued Member Member

    I would add the snails back. They help eat any uneaten food that may be hidden from view and help to prevent an ammonia spike.