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http://indianaquariumhobbyist.com/community/ :: View topic - Need ID of these White Detritus Worms.
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Need ID of these White Detritus Worms.

 
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Kastor48252
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Joined: Dec 09, 2008
Posts: 665
Location: Mumbai Dahisar (w)

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:01 pm Post subject: Need ID of these White Detritus Worms. Reply with quote

 I  don't  know  whether  this  is  the  right  section  to  post  my  query.  Mods  kindly  make  the  corrections  if  applicable.  Now  coming  to  the  topic  in  question:
 
 Yesterday,  when  I  was  cleaning  my  bare-bottom  tank,  I  founds  tens  of  thousands  of  tiny  little  white  wormies  colonizing  my  filter  media  (I'd  previously  cleaned  my  filter  less  than  a  month  ago  and  there  were  no  worms  then).  I  have  seen  these  guys  on  my  Aquarium  glass  on  various  occasions  in  the  past,  especially  when  I  had  substrate  in  my  tanks,  but  always  thought  that  they  were  planaria.
 This  time  though,  I  had  a  little  bit  of  spare  time  and  thought  of  viewing  these  under  my  school-time  compound  light  microscope  with  a  total  magnification  of  200x  on  a  droplet  mount.  I  was  in  for  a  surprise.
 They  weren't  flatworms  as  I  had  expected,  but  were  actually  segmented  roundworms  with  hairlike  appendages  and  a  highly  functional  flexible  proboscis.  The  peristaltic  motions  of  their  viscera  could  be  seen  clearly,  but  I  wasn't  able  to  count  the  number  of  segments  due  to  their  continuous  motion.  I  tried  to  overcome  this  by  first  placing  a  coverslip  over  the  droplet  mount  (the  little  guy  bursted)  and  then  by  absorbing  the  water  to  limit  its  field  of  motion  (its  body  shriveled  up  ).  But  both  medhods  failed,  ending  in  the  death  of  the  fragile  worms.  
 One  end,  which  appeared  to  be  the  oral  end  (as  motion  was  unidirectional)  sported  the  proboscis,  while  the  aboral  end  sported  a  rounded  bulb  like  structure.  The  microscopic  anatomy  of  this  structure  wasn't  clearly  visible  at  this  magnification  or  at  this  level  of  activity.  At  the  junction  of  every  two  segments,  there  was  a  tuft  of  rigid  hairlike  structures  emerging  from  both  sides.  These  appeared  to  have  no  active  role  in  locomotion.  These  guys  aren't  free  swimmers  and  only  slide  on  the  bottom  and  sides  of  the  aquarium  like  earthworms  (While  stuck  to  the  glass,  their  motion  resembles  the  smooth  peristaltic  movements  of  an  earthworm,  but  as  they  disengage  from  the  glass,  the  movement  is  more  of  an  undulant  nature),  but  the  motion  is  unidirectional.  When  sucked  up  and  collected  in  a  burette,  these  guys  clumped  and  coiled  up  in  the  manner  of  tube-worms.
 I  tried  to  google  them  up  on  the  internet,  but  was  unsuccessful  to  find  any  images  resembling  them.  I  tried  to  capture  their  microscopic  anatomy  on  camera,  but  was  unsuccessful.  Ultimately,  I  gave  up  and  drew  a  rough  sketch  of  the  same.  Inspite  of  being  highly  inaccurate  (eg,  the  nodes/septae  are  more  widely  spaced  than  what  they  appear  in  the  sketch),  hope  that  it  helps  in  their  ID.  I  gather  that  they  must  be  detritus  feeding  annelids,  but  need  an  actual  ID,  to  take  any  measures  for  the  safety  of  my  fish.  Can  the  experts  give  an  exact  id  or  atleast  a  few  close  guesses?
 Thank  you.
 
 A  Rough  Sketch
 
 
 
 Under  20x  magnification  (using  only  the  eyepiece)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Worms  in  burette  shot  without  magnification  
 
 
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