Cichlid Lovers Tropical Fish

Live Blackworms

 

Blackworms are 1-2 inches long, small enough for most fish to eat whole. Small fish will break off a section of the worm and eat it and it will grow back. Uneaten worms will not die and decay in a freshwater aquarium, but will live until eaten and will even do some scavenger work.  Blackworms are Lumbriculus variegatus, native to silt edges of clean streams and lakes. They are not Tubifex worms, who live in the sewers! They are raised in controlled conditions without fish, making them free of diseases. They are a very nutritional food source, ideal for promoting growth, health and prolific breeding.

Watch this video for proper storage of your live Blackworms in the fridge. They can live for a couple of months in the fridge without feeding.  It's important to rinse them with water the same temp they are in, and with dechlorinated water. If you want the worms to stay alive in the aquarium after feeding you will need to acclimate them from cold water to tropical water gradually, as you would a fish. The same with daily rinsing.  They are cold blooded animals and will die if shocked from too fast of a change in water temp.

You can also store them in in an aquarium by themselves and even and culture them. Set up an empty tank with well aged dechlorinated water or better yet water from an established aquarium. Culture medium should be strips of brown paper grocery bags. Add a mature sponge filter and give them plenty of aeration, room temp is fine and no light is needed.  Feed daily as you would a fish tank. But only enough food for the worms to consume in a day. Remove any uneaten foods to avoid an ammonia spike. Treat them as you would fish. Preferred foods are sinking Spirulina type pellets that dissolve at the bottom. Algae wafers may be too hard.  When well fed they can reproduce at astounding rates, taking only 3-4 weeks to double in population. Perform regular water changes to keep the tank fresh and avoid water chemistry problems.   

 

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