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Discussion Starter #1
I have my terribilis tadpoles in a communal container once they get to a safe size. This morning when I was eyeballing it I noticed these super tiny white worms on the sides, bottom, and to a lesser degree free floating in the water. I cant really take a picture, they are too small to get my phone camera to focus on. Cant find out a lot about them. Anybody know what they are? Are they a concern to the tadpoles, or me and the fam? Thanks in advance.

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These are probably the ones that are pretty common in vivs. They're an Enchytraeus species, I'm guessing, like the white/grindal worms cultured for feeding ornamental fish.
 

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Finally was able to get my camera to focus on a collection of them. I see that as they grow some seem to sprout little tentacles, feelers, antennae? I've taken some of the the java moss out and placed it in a separate cup and you can see really large examples hanging on the bottom of the moss.


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I think they might be hydra. I got some supplies from a guy that bred brine shrimp and I'm wondering if the almond leaves and alder cones were contaminated.

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If they are sprouting tentacles, perhaps they are Hydra.
The last pic with the tentacles do look like Hydra. I have cultured Hydra and they start as buds on the parent's base - no 'worm phase'. The juveniles will already have tentacles when they separate from the parents and they drift with current, slide on their 'foot', or tumble/somersault to move about.

In the first pic, the worms (flatworms) on the glass look like Planaria.
I have fought Planaria and they are born tiny flatworms with a slightly triangular head and they follow this form through maturity. I had to find a way to eradicate them from several well-planted aquariums because they are dangerous to the mystery snails I keep & breed.

Are you seeing two different animals? This infestation can happen when using plants or water from a source that contains them. You would be amazed at the variety of fauna in a couple drops of swamp water, let alone a wad of plant matter.
 

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I think they might be hydra. I got some supplies from a guy that bred brine shrimp and I'm wondering if the almond leaves and alder cones were contaminated.

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Pretty sure you are right about it being hydra. If it were me I would move the tadpoles to a separate container (by net, don't move the water over) and then sterilize everything in there. Future hardscape/botanicals should be boiled before adding to the tank.
 

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Yes, I'm reading about hydra and I see they reproduce by budding as you say, so I'm thinking I have two different things going on here. I got my almond leaves and alder cones from a gentleman that had brine shrimp before, and the java moss (which was kinda hard to find even in my big city) came from a lady that kept a lot of different aquariums. I'm assuming everything came in on the plants, etc.

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Pretty sure you are right about it being hydra. If it were me I would move the tadpoles to a separate container (by net, don't move the water over) and then sterilize everything in there. Future hardscape/botanicals should be boiled before adding to the tank.
How do I sterilize the java moss? A mild bleach solution?

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You really can't sterilize java moss and expect it to live. I would remove it, wash it thoroughly and quarantine it in a separate container for at least a few weeks.
I wasnt sure, I've dipped cuttings I recieved in a mild bleach solution, and i even did a moss ball that survived with no issues, but i had a feeling that java wouldnt be too keen on it. Yea time to set up a java quarantine station.

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I looked in the archives, and found a couple positive experiences bleaching java moss, and no negative ones.

Why would bleach affect that species differently than any other?
 
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It's delicate appearance made me think it might not take it well, also wasn't sure if it was a good idea to bleach and put them back in with tadpoles (not right away). I didn't really have any anecdotal evidence to back it up. I know merino moss is fine in a bleach solution. Honestly I was gonna try and bleach a piece to see what happened regardless. Just was curious if others had firsthand experience. I did a general google search about it, but it turned up a lot of people saying not to bleach java moss (though not really saying why) I'm going to do some pieces though and we will see what happens.

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I looked in the archives, and found a couple positive experiences bleaching java moss, and no negative ones.

Why would bleach affect that species differently than any other?
For my own experience if you are bleaching Java moss with enough bleach to kill Hydra, then it will also kill the moss. Vascular plants have a much higher tolerance than moss I have found.
 

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For my own experience if you are bleaching Java moss with enough bleach to kill Hydra, then it will also kill the moss. Vascular plants have a much higher tolerance than moss I have found.
Good info. What is the concentration/duration that kills the Java moss? Since others have reported success, maybe there is a fine line to be walked with the bleaching/
 
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Yes, I'm reading about hydra and I see they reproduce by budding as you say, so I'm thinking I have two different things going on here. I got my almond leaves and alder cones from a gentleman that had brine shrimp before, and the java moss (which was kinda hard to find even in my big city) came from a lady that kept a lot of different aquariums. I'm assuming everything came in on the plants, etc.

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The two things I see are Detritus Worms and Hydra. You mention your Java moss came from someone that was keeping brine shrimp... Are you sure about this? Brine shrimp are a brackish water species of shrimp that commonly go by the name "seamonkies". They are not exactly popular to keep, and most people who keep them hatch them from eggs and feed off the freshly hatched brine to small fish or fry. Are you sure you're not mixing them up with Cherry Shrimp (Neocardinia Sp.) or Crystal Shrimp (Cardinia Sp.)? There is no reason for this person to be keeping Java Moss with brine shrimp unless they have some unorthodox display going on.

The easiest way to get rid of hydra on contaminated plants is with a quick soak/dip of the plants in a copper based solution. Copper based medications are extremely toxic to inverts and are a quick and easy pesticide for them. Problem is, I'm not sure how plants retain copper and/or how copper affects tadpoles. The other solution that is chemical free is to keep the plants in a quarantine and provide the plants the light they need and constantly change the water. Going through a temperature shock (cool, not freezing) water changes, especially in a QT that could be normally room temp or kept at Tropical (78-80F) can in turn cause damage to the Hydra which would in time kill them. Keeping the plants in a QT also means that there would be no sources of food. Hydra thrive on meaty foods. If they are not getting a flake or pellet food, they might be eating the other inhabitants in the enclosures you have them in, which in this case are most likely the Detritus Worms. Detritus Worms in any body of water are inevitable. They thrive in conditions where excess food sources are prevalent. That's why you might see them in some containers more than others.

In my honest opinion, the best way to play it safe would be to dispose of all Java Moss and media that the Java Moss has been kept in. The containers can be cleaned with hot water, bleach and left to dry for a few weeks. I understand that you said Java Moss is a little hard for you to find in your area, but for peace of mind, it makes the most sense to start off with Java Moss that is uncontaminated with pests.
 

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The two things I see are Detritus Worms and Hydra. You mention your Java moss came from someone that was keeping brine shrimp... Are you sure about this? Brine shrimp are a brackish water species of shrimp that commonly go by the name "seamonkies". They are not exactly popular to keep, and most people who keep them hatch them from eggs and feed off the freshly hatched brine to small fish or fry. Are you sure you're not mixing them up with Cherry Shrimp (Neocardinia Sp.) or Crystal Shrimp (Cardinia Sp.)? There is no reason for this person to be keeping Java Moss with brine shrimp unless they have some unorthodox display going on.

The easiest way to get rid of hydra on contaminated plants is with a quick soak/dip of the plants in a copper based solution. Copper based medications are extremely toxic to inverts and are a quick and easy pesticide for them. Problem is, I'm not sure how plants retain copper and/or how copper affects tadpoles. The other solution that is chemical free is to keep the plants in a quarantine and provide the plants the light they need and constantly change the water. Going through a temperature shock (cool, not freezing) water changes, especially in a QT that could be normally room temp or kept at Tropical (78-80F) can in turn cause damage to the Hydra which would in time kill them. Keeping the plants in a QT also means that there would be no sources of food. Hydra thrive on meaty foods. If they are not getting a flake or pellet food, they might be eating the other inhabitants in the enclosures you have them in, which in this case are most likely the Detritus Worms. Detritus Worms in any body of water are inevitable. They thrive in conditions where excess food sources are prevalent. That's why you might see them in some containers more than others.

In my honest opinion, the best way to play it safe would be to dispose of all Java Moss and media that the Java Moss has been kept in. The containers can be cleaned with hot water, bleach and left to dry for a few weeks. I understand that you said Java Moss is a little hard for you to find in your area, but for peace of mind, it makes the most sense to start off with Java Moss that is uncontaminated with pests.
No, the almond leaves and alder cones came from the guy with brine shrimp. The moss came from a lady who kept aquariums and fish. The issue with getting new moss is it's from the same source. So I'm going to have to do the same things to new moss that I would to the loss I already have. Would other types of aquarium moss work as a substitute for java? Or if there is an online source in Canada anyone could reccomend for clean java moss I'd appreciate hearing it.

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Being that you got Alder Cones and Indian Almond leaves from the person leads me to believe that they were actually for Neocardinia Sp. or Cardinia Sp. and not just plane old Brine Shrimp.

Christmas Moss, Flame Moss, or Taiwan Moss would be just as beneficial as Java Moss.
 

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Christmas Moss, Flame Moss, or Taiwan Moss would be just as beneficial as Java Moss.
That's awesome, I'm pretty sure my local aquarium and fish store sells all those kinds. They had around 7 kinds, none java.

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Java Moss is the cheapest one due to how it looks. Lots of stores don't carry it because if it doesn't sell it just takes over. The other mosses are a little more controllable (still prolific) and tend to grow with a more esthetic appearance.
 

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Christmas Moss, Flame Moss, or Taiwan Moss would be just as beneficial as Java Moss.
I currently have Java Moss, Christmas Moss and Weeping Moss flourishing in the same tanks. The Java needs cutting back more than the others and does want to take over.
 
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