Little critters swimming around my tank...

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0morrokh

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There are two kinds of little critters I often see in my 20 gal. One is a teeny (less than 1/4 inch) worm looking thing, brownish red in color...they are often half-buried in the gravel. The other is like the size of a period with a tiny tail, and white in color...those are usually crawling on the bottom half of the glass or on the gravel or sponge filter. I often see Dorado eating these (not sure which ones...I can never see, but I see him pecking at stuff).
Just wondering if anyone can tell me what these are. I've never seen them in any of my other tanks.
 

Gunnie

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The white ones sound like planaria which usually show up if you have a water quality issue. Do a thorough vacuum of 1/2 your gravel this week, and the other half next week. How high are your nitrates, and how often do you feed?
 
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0morrokh

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Nitrates registered at 0 ppm--tested twice because I didn't believe it. I hadn't tested nitrates in a while since I needed a new kit and didn't have any money But, got it today and tested at 0--I even shook the 2nd bottle for like 3 mins the second time I tested, since I've heard sometimes the mixture gets separated if it sits around for a while. The tank is the 20 gal, inhabitants listed in my signature (still not fully stocked). All that's in there plant wise are 3 medium java ferns, and then there's the green water algae that I cannot get rid of, but I suppose at least it's eating my nitrate. Would that and the jf's be enough to reduce my nitrate to 0, or might there be something wrong with the test kit? (it's an API liquid test)

I do generally vacuum about half my gravel each week when I do a water change, but I will make sure to do an extra good vacuum this week.

Feeding--the Betta gets fed once or twice a day depending on how fat he is from eating the planaria and worm things. I drop in a wafer or several pellets for the catfish once every 1-2 days.

I can't figure out why that tank always looks so dirty...
 

Gunnie

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Hmmmmm. It doesn't sound like you're overfeeding, and that you're keeping the tank clean. I'm at a loss on this one. ???
 
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0morrokh

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Heh well I figured out my problem. Guess I wasn't gravel vacuuming as well as I thought. My last water change, I saw that the area where I always drop in the catfish food looked a bit dirty so I decided to give just that area a super good vacuum. I shoved my siphon in almost to the bottom of the gravel. Well, so much dirt and gunk came out the water in the dirty bucket looked almost black between that and the algae in the water. yuck So, better vacuuming from now on.

I guess that would explain all the little critters, but who knows about the algae. I'm trying a light schedule of 5 hours on and 2 hours off, since I've heard that is supposed to stop algae growth. This tank is really frustrating sometimes.....
 
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