Quarantine Pest/Predator Woes

parxs

This is my first time truly quarantining any fish, while I know it’s definitely something I should be doing for any store bought fish realistically I usually don’t... I know, I know save the shaming for later lol. Recently Florida had a day where you could fish without a license which meant that I could legally and easily get some new genes for my least killifish colony that came from a feeder guppy tank a few years ago. I also grabbed a couple of plants because I knew they’d want hiding places while in quarantine and if I get a few plants out of it what’s the harm? I was able to get 3 males, two pregnant females, and 1 melanistic mosquitofish male. They’re in a 5.5 gal tank in my room that was home to my current killis before they got upgraded to a 10. It’s been about 12 days and I just learned about why you quarantine plants too.

Water scorpions. That’s why.

I think they’re water scorpions anyway, it’s the best match I’ve found. I took photos with a clip-on macro lens that is blurry if not in incredibly close range (which I was trying to avoid with these things) but they’re about a half inch long at most right now. I’ve gotten 4 out of the tank so far but my biggest concern now is making sure I kill any still in there. They can and will bite people and they are definitely putting the fry that have already been born in danger. The adult fish are either not interested or not big enough to eat them. I know they breathe from the surface but don’t know how to stop that without hurting the fish. I also don’t want to unnecessarily treat the tank and stress the fish if I don’t have to.

Has anyone else dealt with this? Could something gentle like aquarium salt work? Would removing the plant I suspect is the problem possibly solve it or is just removing them as I see them the best solution at this point? Also I flushed the four I found, we’re on septic so I can’t imagine them doing anything down there other than dying but if that’s not smart and I need to come with a better way to kill them please let me know.
 

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Demeter

They are a species of water scorpoion but not the huge ones most people think of at that name. I always called them water walking sticks but their common name is actually water stick insect. They are probably Ranatra fusca or some similar species. Those might be young ones as they are quite small compared to what I've seen in MI, they are around 3in long or so.

I'd try removing the plants and doing some sort of dip to kill any left, salt or even a bleach dip might work. Either that or toss the entire plant just in case. I'd expect any meds used on shrimp may work for killing aquatic bugs but I can't say for sure.
 

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