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@JasonE,

I've been where you are - driven half-mad by those f*cking flatworms. When I finally gave up trying to get rid of them (my rounds of Prazipro started hurting the plants) they disappeared by themselves in less than 2 years. I am suspicious that happens for most people since you don't hear many stories of people who have had infestations for years on end (though maybe the long-sufferers stay quiet?).

@Johanovich I have not seen these flatworms kill a large isopod, but the small tropical red and whites could be subdued and killed so isopods are not entirely immune to the flatworms.
You may be right. I'm still going in multiple times a night to kill them. I found one of my frogs eating on this morning off the glass, so maybe they will be somewhat useful for reducing their numbers.

My dwarf white population in that tank is great. If they are eating isopods it can't be in large numbers. They're clearly producing more than the flatworms are eating.
 

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I used Prazipro - a formulation of praziquantel. At the proper concentration it was very effective at killing the worms on-contact - but it did not persist in an effective vermicide beyond direct contact at the time of spraying. It could, though, be an effective addition to a plant-dipping solution.
How much prazipro do you dose as a plant dip?
 

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@Shazace I have not tested it as a plant dip but, in my case where I was testing it on worms directly, 1-3tbsp per gallon was an effective dosage depending on how long you expose/soak the worms.
 

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effective addition to a plant-dipping solution
I don't suspect that adding praziquantel to a standard bleach dip is going to be the best protocol, as bleach may well take that molecule apart, and prazi might reduce the effectiveness of the bleach by using it up.

FWIW, I've personally confirmed that a standard 10% bleach/10 minute dip is quite sufficient to kill adult predatory flatworms.
 

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I don't suspect that adding praziquantel to a standard bleach dip is going to be the best protocol, as bleach may well take that molecule apart, and prazi might reduce the effectiveness of the bleach by using it up.

FWIW, I've personally confirmed that a standard 10% bleach/10 minute dip is quite sufficient to kill adult predatory flatworms.
Absolutely, I agree. Bleach is an indiscriminate oxidizer of organic matter. More than likely it will oxidize the praziquantel and render it useless if combined with bleach. I seriously doubt that the concentration of praziquantel would use up any detectable amount of bleach. You're better off using one or the other, or sequentially but never simultaneously.
 

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Another thing that works well besides bleach (so by that I mean instead of bleach, not combined) is F10sc. I tested it in various concentrations and pretty much all of the concentrations recommended for disinfecting tanks works pretty well at killing them, the timing is just a bit different. And provided you'll be rinsing the plants shortly afterwards you can even use the highest recommended dose, which kills them in seconds if they come into contact with it.
 

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Another thing that works well besides bleach (so by that I mean instead of bleach, not combined) is F10sc. I tested it in various concentrations and pretty much all of the concentrations recommended for disinfecting tanks works pretty well at killing them, the timing is just a bit different. And provided you'll be rinsing the plants shortly afterwards you can even use the highest recommended dose, which kills them in seconds if they come into contact with it.
Any idea what concentration/duration kills all the organisms killed by a standard bleach dip? Flatworms, snails, slugs, ranavirus, chytrid, trematodes, the multitude of protozoans including the novel Perkinsea which has no established disinfection protocol that I could find short of an assumption that 10%/5min bleach is sufficient).
 

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Any idea what concentration/duration kills all the organisms killed by a standard bleach dip? Flatworms, snails, slugs, ranavirus, chytrid, trematodes, the multitude of protozoans including the novel Perkinsea which has no established disinfection protocol that I could find short of an assumption that 10%/5min bleach is sufficient).
Glad you asked that. Exactly what I was wondering. Thanks for the inquiry.
 

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Just checked out their website. Looks like it's a quatinary ammonium compound. I'm surprised it's not harmful or frogs, although I think that needs to be confirmed. Reptiles I can understand since their skin is waterproof. But amphibians might be able to absorb it through their skin. Quats have been used forever as a veterinarian and agricultural disinfectant and sanitizer. It kills everything, even mycobacterium and is very effective against tuberculosis. Also used as an algicide for pools. They vary only in their hydrocarbon chains.
 

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Another Mader reference here (I'm liking this book):

Chlorine effectiveness against
bacteria -- yes
bacterial spores -- partially effective
mycobacteria -- yes
mycoplasma -- yes
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- yes
non-enveloped viruses -- yes

Ammonium quats:
bacteria -- yes
spores -- partial
mycobacteria -- partial
mycoplasma -- partial
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- partial
non-enveloped viruses -- partial
(text notes that it may not be effective against Pseudomonas)


It kills everything, even mycobacterium and is very effective against tuberculosis.
A web search turns up many references that contradict this, except for a couple very recent studies of "novel formulations".

Efficacies of selected disinfectants against Mycobacterium tuberculosis - PubMed

F10 has been found to kill only two Mycobacteria species (one of which is the standard test organism for TB, but which does react differently to disinfectants in some tests) that I could find:

healthandhygiene.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/THHa-Index-F10SC-Disinfectant-February-2021.pdf

Tangentially, quat ammonia is in fact sold as a pool algaecide, but works pretty poorly (in my experience with our pool, and in the general opinion of folks who hang out on pool forums). Adequate chlorine level at the proper pH and in the absence of elevated levels of cyanuric acid is much, much more effective.

There seems to be some use of F10 in direct contact with amphibians, but do a lot of research before trying this, as I didn't catch the details.
 

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Well just as the study you quoted states, quats have for decades been labeled effective against mycobacterium. The only exception was when it was encrusted in organic (fecal) matter. I remember that be my pathology classes from the 70s, when little else was effective against them and tuberculosis was a huge concern in the dairy and poultry industries. Whether newer resistant strains of these bacteria have developed or better culturing techniques have developed or for some other reason, I can't say. I'd hate to think that quats were deliberately mislabeled as being effective when they weren't. But back in the 70s quats were one of the few chemical agents that were deemed effective against the problem of bovine tuberculosis and it's transmission to people. That's the historical perspective on quats.
 

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I would indeed be very careful with direct application of F10 on the skin, but for dipping plants and related it should be fine (particularly if rinsed afterwards). F10 has been shown to be effective in curing chytrid and red leg disease in either a very diluted form for direct contact or by nebulisation. See for example:




I have used nebulisation of F10 myself for animals that had abrasions, as this method allows for the animals to remain less disturbed compared to having to take them out for disinfecting the wounds. I did not see any adverse effects from the nebulisation on the frogs.

That said, the efficacy on ranaviruses is not studied very well and insufficiently documented unfortunately.
 

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Any idea what concentration/duration kills all the organisms killed by a standard bleach dip? Flatworms, snails, slugs, ranavirus, chytrid, trematodes, the multitude of protozoans including the novel Perkinsea which has no established disinfection protocol that I could find short of an assumption that 10%/5min bleach is sufficient).
I can say that the two upper concentrations recommended, 1:125 (8ml in 1 litre) and 1:250 (4ml to 1 litre), both kill most insects, slugs and flatworms in under a minute. Isopods seem to able to survive being exposed to direct contact. No idea why tbh. Have not tested it on snails.
 

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Another Mader reference here (I'm liking this book):

Chlorine effectiveness against
bacteria -- yes
bacterial spores -- partially effective
mycobacteria -- yes
mycoplasma -- yes
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- yes
non-enveloped viruses -- yes

Ammonium quats:
bacteria -- yes
spores -- partial
mycobacteria -- partial
mycoplasma -- partial
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- partial
non-enveloped viruses -- partial
(text notes that it may not be effective again
Another Mader reference here (I'm liking this book):

Chlorine effectiveness against
bacteria -- yes
bacterial spores -- partially effective
mycobacteria -- yes
mycoplasma -- yes
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- yes
non-enveloped viruses -- yes

Ammonium quats:
bacteria -- yes
spores -- partial
mycobacteria -- partial
mycoplasma -- partial
fungi -- partial
enveloped viruses -- partial
non-enveloped viruses -- partial
(text notes that it may not be effective against Pseudomonas)




A web search turns up many references that contradict this, except for a couple very recent studies of "novel formulations".

Efficacies of selected disinfectants against Mycobacterium tuberculosis - PubMed

F10 has been found to kill only two Mycobacteria species (one of which is the standard test organism for TB, but which does react differently to disinfectants in some tests) that I could find:

healthandhygiene.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/THHa-Index-F10SC-Disinfectant-February-2021.pdf

Tangentially, quat ammonia is in fact sold as a pool algaecide, but works pretty poorly (in my experience with our pool, and in the general opinion of folks who hang out on pool forums). Adequate chlorine level at the proper pH and in the absence of elevated levels of cyanuric acid is much, much more effective.

There seems to be some use of F10 in direct contact with amphibians, but do a lot of research before trying this, as I didn't catch the details.
Just as this study suggests, it's very possible that quats may well have been effective as an agent against a wide variety of microorganisms but over time resistance has developed in many strains of the decades from continued use. Essentially repeated applications of the same compounds may select for resistance over time. So what once was true no longer is true. Even if one billion cells are killed but one survives, you've just selected for a new resistant strain! That's the importance of 100% kill rate for microbes. And so long as you're able to achieve that with the target organisms but not what you are intending to culture, that's the ideal. To date, I know of no organisms to be resistant to chlorination. But with time, who knows. Never say never. But that seems highly unlikely in my opinion.

 

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I have a question about the flatworm situation. If you were able to feed less flies. Meaning by the end of the day all the flies are gone out of the enclosure. Would the flat worms taper off because of no food.

Thanks Roger


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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To date, I know of no organisms to be resistant to chlorination. But with time, who knows. Never say never. But that seems highly unlikely in my opinion.
Searching Google Scholar for "bacteria resist chlorine disinfection" gives many results regarding species that are resistant and also species that can develop resistance in certain conditions and in response to ongoing disinfection measures.

"Chlorine-resistant bacteria (CRB) are commonly defined as bacteria with high resistance to chlorine disinfection or bacteria which can survive or even regrow in the residual chlorine. Chlorine disinfection cannot completely control the risks of CRB, such as risks of pathogenicity, antibiotic resistance and microbial growth."

"This study demonstrates that E. coli O157:H7 adapts to starvation conditions by developing a chlorine resistance phenotype."

"Although the quality of drinking water is extremely important for human health, the widespread use of chlorine disinfection results in the formation of chlorine-resistant bacteria which seriously threatens human health."

I guess the reason I'm pushing back so hard on these claims is that we (the hobby) have disinfection methods that, while certainly not perfect, do work well for our purposes as judged by a couple decades of adequate practical results. That's not to say that improvements couldn't be made. But motivating a change in these practices -- especially one that isn't an attempt to solve an actual problem -- based on outdated or incomplete information would be a step backward, and these steps backwards* are really hard to undo. I understand that the "chlorine resistant" claim wasn't made in support of a change in practices, but is rather just an instance of a claim that seems simply false based on a wealth of literature, unless there is some semantic confusion between your claims and my responses that I'm failing to see.

*I'm thinking here of the ill-thought-out push for UVB for all captive herps, the same blanket recommendations for bioactive enclosures, and further in the past (30 years now) but still with us today the shift to carotenes instead of Vitamin A in supplements.

@JasonE , I hope this all still seems sort of relevant to your flatworm concerns. :)
 
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