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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Been dealing with detritus worms for a while now. Impossible to get rid of them. This is one of the reasons why I debated a gravel-less setup when upgrading to the 65 gallon tank (but ultimately decided against it).
Now, within the last week, I've noticed Rhabdocoela worms on the glass. I do not have live plants and have not added anything to my tank in the past 2 months.
The only thing I can think of that could have introduced these Rhabdocoela worms would be either live "red wriggly worms" from Petco (I rinse them off good before feeding) or frozen bloodworm cubes. Both seem unlikely to me.
Do these Rhabdocoela just "evolve" in your tank?

Luckily I don't have planaria.
I may try the Panacur C dewormer to at least get rid of these Rhabdocoela worms, though I'm reading it wont do anything for detritus worms.
 

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I've never had worms in my tanks (except one episode of nematodes in a tank with debris but no substrate). I do not feed live or frozen food.

What kind of cichlids do you have?
 

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Well one example that they don't just evolve in your tank. Can they live after being frozen? If not then all points to Petco.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, I did the Fenbendazole treatment (Walmart brand of Panacur C). By the next day, all of the Rhabdocela worms were dead. Within 2 days, the detritus worms were dead as well. After a week, I no longer have any worms of any kind in my tank. Worked great.

For anyone trying this, buy the 10-pound dog size. I used 1 1-gram packet for my 65-gallon tank. Take an empty water or soda bottle, fill it with tank water, dump in the dewormer, shake the **** out of it, then dump it in your tank. Make sure you remove any carbon from your filters. 2 days later, do a gravel vacuum and 50% water change, repeat after another 2 days.

FYI, this will kill snails. The articles I read say to do another treatment after a week to kill off any lingering worms. I didn't but I'm still not seeing any worms return.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just saw a single Rhabdocela worm, must have been a leftover. Doing dosage 2 now of Fenbendazole. Hopefully this will be the last time.

Seriously, do these worms just "evolve" in tanks? I had detritus worms for a while, but I never introduced anything that would could have carried in Rhabdocela worms. Nature's phenomenon.
 

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Thanks for the update on what worked for you. I have used Panacur C for ridding a shrimp tank of hydra and planaria and it worked great with no shrimp loss.
 

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Those worms are good. You shouldn't be trying to get rid of them.

If you see too many of them, its usually one of two things:

  • 1) Overfeeding: the worms are thriving due to an abundance of detritus
    2) Tank Aeration: worms are coming out of the sand because there's not enough oxygen in the water near the substrate

Most likely culprit is #1.
 

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I don't suggest using dewormers to get rid of detritus worms; they can harm the fish. So I avoid them altogether. Instead, I focus on generally cleaning the tank. This method doesn't get rid of all the worms. But then again, that is not my goal. The goal of getting rid of worm is just to lessen their numbers.
 
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