Callamanus Worms In 30 Gal!!!! Sos!!

  • #1
we have a 30 gal fish tank in our class and we just noticed that 2 out of 3 of the female bettas have callamanus worms (did I spell that right?) I think and so PLEASE HELP US!!!!!! and also there are white bulbs on the fish as well and we don't yet have a proper filter or syphon which I'm going t get today.

the current stock is:

3 female bettas
1 angelfish
11 white skirt tetras
3 mollys ( 1 adult and 2 juveniles)
2 assassin snails
1 crayfish

  • #2
What are white bulbs? White nodules?

I hate to be the one to say it, but you need a filter and vacuum ASAP.

Why do you suggest callamanus? Have you seen any worms protruding from the vent?

  • Thread Starter
  • #3
What are white bulbs? White nodules?

I hate to be the one to say it, but you need a filter and vacuum ASAP.

Why do you suggest callamanus? Have you seen any worms protruding from the vent?
I just looked up diseases and the symptoms match as well as the picture and idk they are just white bumps
  • #4
Can you tell me what symtoms your fish have pls? Is it only the white bumps?

Callamanus worms are hard to notice and diagnose without a microscope, but possibly you might see a pinkish or reddish mark at the vent of the suspected infected fish. Eventually the fish will waste away, but that can take years to happen.

Do the white bumps look like grains of salt? Are they raised? How many do you see and when did you first notice them? Do the bumps change locations, like new ones appear and old ones fall off?
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
they are bloated and have little red worms sticking out of there anus. and yes they look kind of like grains of salt

oops I meant camallanus
  • #6
Oh no. Then it does sound like callamanus and ich.

I use the sodium chloride and heat method to eradicate ich. 1tsp of salt per gallon added over a 8-16 hour period. Salt does not evaporate, it stays in the water until it is water changed out. Add more salt for water removed.

Heat speeds up the lifestyle of the ich parasite for shorter treatment periods. I bring the temp up to about 84°F. I usually keep treating for one week after I see the last ich spot drop off.

I think I would deal with the ich first, since salt is easy and inexpensive to find and treat while you wait for a dewormer to arrive.

The callamanus are a bit more difficult to deal with. You'll need to use a dewormer like Levamisole, Fenbendazole or Flubendazole. I personally used Levamisole and finished with Fenbendazole laced in the food. It's bwen 8 months since I completed the intestinal nematode treatment and I'm still not sure I've eradicated it short of a microscope to observe poop.

  • #7
Ich is the least of the concerns if the fish have camallanus worms in my opinion. How many white nodes are there? Ich is very small white spots. How big are the white spots?

The fish WILL die from those worms unless you treat them with a special pig dewormer. Yes, a pig dewormer. Not a fish med.

Right now, if you actually see worms coming out of them, it is very advanced. Any other health issues (like possible ich) are 2ndary to the worms. In order for the worms to be adult worms coming out of the fish, that means the infestation has been around for a while now. Many fish die way before you actually see any worms. So the fact that they are still alive at this point is impressive.

Let me ask a few quick questions...
When you say no proper filter, does that mean you aren't using a filter at all? Or is it a small filter?
How long have you had these fish?

If you want to save them, I would do two things. First, take a pic of the fish so we can confirm if the spots are in fact ich. If they are ich, then heat alone can take care of it. I only had ich once, and cranking the heat to 86 and doing lots of water changes and it was gone pretty quick. So you can start by cranking the heat. But it has to be at least 86.

Next, immediately order Levamisole. I got mine off of amazon.

Once you get the Levamisole, I can help you do the treatment.
  • #8
I'm not sure 86°F is a good idea using Levamisole since it reduces o2. Good aeration is advised during treatment with Levamisole. I say might as well deal with the ich while waiting for the Levamisole whatever treatment you use for the ich. My opinion and I could be wrong!

I also make sure to siphon the bottom well while preforming lots of water changes to get any larval stages of ich, forgot to mention it, thanks bizaliz3
  • #9
I'm not sure 86°F is a good idea using Levamisole since it reduces o2. Good aeration is advised during treatment with Levamisole. I say might as well deal with the ich while waiting for the Levamisole whatever treatment you use for the ich. My opinion and I could be wrong!

That was my point. Crank the heat now while waiting for the levamisole and then we will help them walk through the treatment process when the levemisole arrives. (as well as lowering the temp back to more like 80 degrees) Hopefully by the time the levamisole arrives, the ich will have improved. Assuming it actually is ich.....we might want to confirm that with a photo before having the heat cranked....

But due to the worms...these fish are very if the levamisole was gettable today, I would say screw the ich and get moving on the worms. That was where I was going with my comment about the ich being the least of the concerns right now.

Whatever the spots are, I am sure they are a 2ndary infection due to them being weakened by the worms. And again, in order for it to be this advanced (worms having grown into adults inside the fish and began their escape), the infestation has been around for a long time. (unless they were purchased recently and already had the worms when they were purchased)

I lost a handful of fish before a few of them showed the worms. Meaning, most of the deaths were to fish who couldn't even pass the worms at all. The ones who do pass the worms are the lucky ones. These fish have made it far in order to have worms sticking out.

I am honestly concerned they won't last long enough to get the levemisole. Especially with other infections starting. :-( And the lack of filtration and water changes.
  • #10
bizaliz3 We are on the same page And I agree the callamanus infestation is way more alarming and cause for concern.

Once you receive the dewormer, we can help the fish expel the worm. But yeah, it's usually quite advanced by the time you can see them hanging from the vent

For a filter, even a large sponge and airstone would be better than nothing.

Some of those fish like warmer temperatures of 75-80°F. You would need a heater anyway to deal with the ich.

  • #11
HI I’m raptorfishys classmate and he made a mistake, it’s NOT ich. It is a single bulb on the betas butt, that only appears when the worms retract.

Also here are some pics

This is also a startup tank, we had to save the school fish (the pricnceable wanted to flush them) so we took them into our classroom in a spare 30 gallon and did the best we could with what we had (Wich was not much), and now they have worms.
Also keep in mind that we are kids and can't afford expensive medicine.


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  • #12
Its wonderful that you guys tried to rescue them. That is awesome!! But sadly, if you cannot get the meds needed to treat these worms, these fish will suffer and die. They cannot recover from them without medication. I am not trying to be harsh, Its just the truth.

I hate to say this, but you might want to just look into euthanasia. Otherwise they are going to suffer pretty bad until they succumb to the worms.

I completely understand the spot you are in, and I wish I had better news for you. :-( I am so sorry.

Again, I think its wonderful that you guys tried to rescue them. Its just unfortunate that they are not savable without the medication.
  • #13
Oh I'm so sorry for the news, you have done all you can to save these fish and that's very commendable. Thank you for the pics and the clarification on the ich. Unfortunately it is definitely some type of intestinal worm, most probably camallanus as you suspect. Maybe some equipment and meds could be donated or something, but I'm so sad to say that it doesn't look good for the fish with visible worms anyway, and as mentioned, all the fish will suffer and perish without a dewormer. It isn't even usually an aquarium medication. It also takes a lot of siphoning (the bottom) to get the other stages of the worm, while the baby worms find a host. It's really nice you want to save the fish, but it's just too much work for you both and impossible without the dewormer medication I'm afraid.

If you euthanize the fish, PLS don't flush the bodies down the toilet!!! The worms could easily spread to our waterways that way. Instead, wrap the fish up in newspaper and then a really good plastic bag or three and dispose in the garbage.

To euthanize, clove oil is my preferred method. Maybe one of the parents have this and can assist? There are humane ways to put a fish down. You can Google it or ask here as well for more options.

Ahhh I feel awful for both of you. Thank you for trying to save these fish, it's really impressive and shows a lot of responsibility and how much you care about animals.
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
so I looked up levamasole and pig dewormer and actually I can afford it. right now we are doing a 50% water change and cleaning the gravel. if we do euthanize the fish, how do we make sure the worms don't come back?

and by expensive medicine we mean like really expenses
  • #15
I dismantle everything (nets, decor, siphons, and put them into a Rubbermaid with 1:10 bleach:water solution after rinsing with tap to get the visible gunk off. I let it sit covered for 30 mins. I swish it with gloves on periodically. Then drain/refill with tap water a few times and let dry completely. Or add a bunch of water conditioner to neutralize the chlorine bleach.

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