whitish worms

Questions about pests that invade tanks.
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emily
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whitish worms

Post by emily »

1-2mm white/translucent worms (maggots?) in food dish of one of the tanks tonight. Only one crab in that tank b/c she was there to molt and just finished a few weeks ago or so. Just play sand (no coconut or eco earth). Food dish had packaged crab food, dried shrimp, lettuce, strawberry at the time. Recently had cantaloupe. The dried shrimp are something new we just bought. The main tank has same foods and no pests (that we see). There were at least 10 of these creatures wriggling around disgustingly. We see no flies or mites.
What are these???
We removed the crab. Gave it several salt water baths. It is too late at night to go get StressCoat. Placed her with some new sand in a small plastic critter keeper we had .
We can clean the tank she was in. But could we just put her back in the main tank? If so, when? How do we assure she does not transport anything? If these creatures came from outside, what are the chances they are already in the other tank? Should we clean it too?
Grossed out.
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emmac350
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Re: whitish worms

Post by emmac350 »

1. Did crab actually molt or did you just put her in there to try to make her molt? They can molt in their main tank just fine (unless they surface molt, are dug up, etc.). Why did you ISO her? New crab?

2. If you salt water bathed the crab (as in, placed her opening side up in the water so it would get down in the shell several times) it should have killed anything that was in her shell, if anything.

3. Did you wash/bake the sand in the tank? If not, that is one possible source of white worm-type things. The other is in the fresh food they've been having. They bury food a lot, and if anything had been lain in it before that happens, now it's coming up to find more food. Or it could be that they're from somewhere else and just managed to get in the tank.

If you reintro the crab into the tank, do it when you'll be around a bit. That way any aggression can be noticed and crabs separated (I find putting the aggressor in the food bowl usually does the trick...).
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emily
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Re: whitish worms

Post by emily »

Crab was in that tank (10 gal) because the other crab was molting and we read about cannibalism. While in there, she went down to molt. She did molt, and returned to surface after a month with the tiny black toenails. Meanwhile, the other crab went back down (he was down a month, truly molted, was up a month and went back down for 3 weeks). Both are now up, both still have their black spiky toenails but appear hearty and active.
Yes, we bathed like that.
We had not washed the sand before putting it in the tank :( but it has been there more than a month without problems. I suspect it may be the food. Perhaps the strawberry as that is what the worms seemed to have eaten. The shrimp are new (we never had them before).
Thanks for the re-intro advice. We have been afraid to do it, but really it is time. The boy crab is really social and outgoing and the girl is shy. They used to be together though.
emily
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Re: whitish worms

Post by emily »

Most worried about what they are larvae of. Do these mites I read about have a worm-like larval stage? We have looked both crabs over and do not see mites. If it were mite larvae, would they go to the food dish? We did not see any anywhere else.
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emmac350
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Re: whitish worms

Post by emmac350 »

I've never heard of larvae for the mites that crabs can have. One other reintro tip - bathe the reintroed crab before introducing it into the tank so it hopefully won't have the "freshly molted" smell. If both crabs have molted, bathe both of them.
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emily
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Re: whitish worms

Post by emily »

thanks. Will do. I had not seen much mention of larvae in all the mite posts, so hopefully that is not it. Those mites sound scary. Have not seen more wormies so far since disposed of food dish.
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ladybug15057
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Re: whitish worms

Post by ladybug15057 »

Are you able to determine what species of mites they are?
http://crabbywiki.com/tiki-index.php?pa ... e+Crabitat
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