Tiny White Worms In Betta Tank

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by K8lin, Apr 22, 2019.

  1. K8linNew MemberMember

    HELP for the love of gahd!
    okay I did a 50% water change on my 2 month old Betta tank yesterday. im new to the hobby so i spend a lot of time staring closely at my Betta fish because I'm paranoid about his health. lol so I try to look for anything weird and was horrified to see these very tiny worms squirming about in the water. it creeped me out I had to shower.
    they are very thin and about 1-2 mm long
    there is mixed information I can find about whether they are safe or not. im also not sure where they came from as him and the plants went in at the same time and I haven't seen them before.
    also can they be potential harmful to humans I don't wear gloves when I clean the tank?
    he does seem hungrier than usual but I did start changing up his pellet food with fluval bug bites that he's been eating like crazy. I also haven't noticed any poop at the bottom. he does have a plump stomach on one side when he eats and a newnew greyishscale on the other side that just showed up within the last week. I attached photos.
    I ordered some snails and a couple of shrimp that will be here in a week I want to make sure to get rid of them before I introduce them to the tank. I have a small quarantine tank that they will be in until I know they're healthy too.
    if someone could tell me what they are that'd be great!

    Attached Files:

  2. Jeff041419New MemberMember

    By the odds they are probably detritus worms. That's the most common "little wormy thing" in an aquarium.

    Detritus worms are like earthworms on land. They live in the soil/substrate and feed on any sort of organic material they can find.

    Detritus worms are no more harmful than earthworms. They can be beneficial by helping to process any organic material that gets down into the substrate. Fish can safely eat them.

    It isn't at all necessary to totally get rid of detritus worms. That would be like trying to totally get rid of all the earthworms out in a farmer's field. Bad idea. You'd have to nuke the aquarium.

    Control them simply with good maintenance, to minimize the amount of organic material in the substrate. Don't overfeed, don't allow very much dead plant material to accumulate, etc.

    You might be seeing them in the water now just because you disturbed the substrate when you did the water change. Did you also vacuum the substrate?

    I have never heard of detritus worms being harmful to humans, any more than earthworms are. Personally, I would not intentionally eat them, but that's because I think worms are yucky.

    Now, it's possible you're seeing something else. I'm just going by the probabilities here. Most likely they are detritus worms.

  3. ETNsilverstarWell Known MemberMember

    It looks like what I had, rhabdocoela, which is basically a type of detritus worm. They're nothing to worry about and will go away on their own if there's nothing to feed them (extra food, plant detritus). Snails and shrimp may eat them as well (along with your betta) depending on the type. I had just shrimp in my tank and the worms were annihilated in days after I added some fish. I was overfeeding a bit because there were shrimp babies though. What kind of shrimp/snails are coming?

  4. K8linNew MemberMember

    yes I vacuumed the substrate although im not honestly pleased with it, it seems difficult to leave the substrate and just take the gross stuff out. maybe I'm doing it wrong:bored:
    I really hope they are just that and not some sort of parasite. that would be awful. so far it's been like fix a problem then another appears, with my Betta tank.
  5. K8linNew MemberMember

    that sounds promising. I got a nerite, mystery snail and 3 velvet shrimp that will hopefully get along with my Betta. i know sometimes tankmates can be hard with them so whoever doesn't get along will be donated my cousin's 75 gallon he has. they'll also be housed separately temporarily and introduced slowly. I seem to get a lot of algae on the plant leaves so i thought they would help in that department. I honestly wouldn't mind having a shrimp tank though. we'll see.
  6. K8linNew MemberMember

    hey guys just an update my Betta fish looks bloated on just his left side near his tail. it's been like that since last week. he always gets a food baby after I feed him but this isn't going down. I gave him cooked pea yesterday and skipped real food. I am just worried it's linked to these worms. he seems to move around ok. he does stay up on his leaf hammock a lot near his bubble nest. it's so hard to tell if he's ok.
    any thoughts?
  7. ETNsilverstarWell Known MemberMember

    Can you get a picture of it?
  8. K8linNew MemberMember

    so a couple weird things:
    I took him out and put him in a tiny tank while I did a 75% water change today and cleaned his tank really extra good. I noticed when he wasn't in a dark background anymore that his fins were a slightly pink tinge and it also looks like he has stress stripes?. I also test the tank water and the test is 0 nitrates, 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites. which I thought was weird since I've had this tank since February... & about a month ago I had gotten prime conditioner while my tank was cycling and tried to use it with my water change. after that he got pink/red spots on the ends of his fins (one of the last photos) which I related to ammonia spike and they went away. this time it's like a pinkish hue throughout his fins. but I don't think he looks like he as fin rot? however the last picture I added is from when I first got him in the beginning of February so maybe someone else will see something I don't. I know he has a bit of popeye that he had when I first got him and it comes and goes.
    I only fed him a few pellets last night because I wanted to see if the bloat would go down. and it did a little.. is it possible he is eating the worms? or the worms are some sort of stomach parasite?
    I'm so lost obviously. :eek:

    Attached Files:

  9. ETNsilverstarWell Known MemberMember

    I don't see any bloating, but I'm not the most knowledgeable with bettas. He may simply be stressed from the temporary tank move. Do his fins still look off now?
  10. Jeff041419New MemberMember

    If I correctly understand the arrows on the pics, it looks normal. Do you mean the bulge just ahead of the tail fin?

    It's normal for a betta to have a bulge in that area, caused by their swim bladder. It shows up more on some bettas, because of their coloration, and also the angle of the light makes a difference, for how easily you see it.

    I suggest you might take a look through the betta pics on this site and compare. But again, if I'm understanding what you mean, I believe you're seeing a normal feature.
  11. K8linNew MemberMember

    went down somewhat after feeding very sparsely for a week and some cooked peas and it's mostly only on his left side. he does still have red in his fins and I just noticed a few pieces of his dorsal fin are missing now where it is folded down most of the time. the reason why I'm concerned is because the red in his fins in that second to last picture (taken a month ago) has spread throughout them giving them a tinge sort of like they're stained. I am worried he has septicemia or mild fin rot and the bloating is a symptom or something. he's had popeye/cloudy eyes off and on too since I got him so I think he's been sick this whole time. he's also staying in his corner more or on his hammock. when he takes a break from swimming he kinda drifts to the side his bloated area is on if that makes sense. it seems like it takes effort for him to swim around but idk if that just because his fins are so huge. in a whim of paranoia I bought stress guard (I added it yesterday) and methylene blue so I think I'll do a quick dip with him tonight as from what I read it can't hurt.
    I also bought some other medicines (the seachem trio deal with kanaplex etc, furan2 and paraguard) as sorta a first aid kit in case. since I suddenly already have a snail tank I don't think this new found hobby is going anywhere.
    I also did a 70% water change last Saturday and rinsed the filter foam not the media out, vacuumed it really well and did another gravel vac 20% water change yesterday.
  12. K8linNew MemberMember

    yes and he has a bit missing out of his dorsal fin that I didn't see before because he usually has it down or folded his fins look like they're stained red or pinkish throughout.