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Re:Parasitic worm infestations

Sylvia wrote:

>Just wanted to post this for general information. Recent mention of culturing
>live foods, especially mosquito larvae, as we head into the summer season,
>has been made.
>I recently watched my previously vigorous blue rams succumb slowly.
>Inspection and dissection revealed intestinal parasites.
>One of the worms is still unknown, and I'm waiting for analysis. It's
>reddish-brown in color, rather pointed, and maybe 1/4" - 1/2".
>There were visible worms, in the anal area of the fish, which are referred to
>as horsehair worms. Very, very tiny, threadlike, and gently moving. You
>wouldn't notice unless studying quite closely. As I said, these are called
>*horsehair* worms, and they protrude from the body in this way. They are
>carried by mosquito larvae.
>I've been using frozen foods for quite some time, and only recently started
>experimenting with culturing my own. I use both Bio-pure and Sally's.
>Bio-Pure claims to be parasite and bacteria free (how would they know?), but
>Sally's makes no claims. Mosquito larvae, by nature, endure freezing. I'd bet
>the parasites do too.
>I don't know the damage the reddish-brown worms will do. I was told the
>horsehair worms are very bad, and will kill the fish.
The red worms sound like Camallanus, a parasitic nematode which has been
discussed a year or so ago on this digest.  The young nematodes have a
free-swimming stage where they get picked up by various invertebrates, such
as cyclops.  I suppose that mosquito larvae could pick them up, but only if
they are in water that has infected fish producing the swimming larvae.
You don't have to worry about Camalianus in mosquito larvae if they have
been collected from water that has no fish.

Paul Krombholz, in dry central Mississippi.