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FAQs about Marine Worms, Vermiform Animals Identification 7

Related FAQs: Worm IDs 1, Worm IDs 2, Worm IDs 3, Worm IDs 4, Worm IDs 5, Worm IDs 6, Worm IDs 8, Worm IDs 9, Worm IDs 10, Worm ID 11, Worm ID 12, Worm ID 13, Worm ID 14, Worm ID 15, Worm ID 16, Worm ID 17, Worm ID 18, See Also: Flatworm ID 1 +, Nemertean, Proboscis, Ribbon Worm ID 1, Nematode, Roundworm ID 1, Nematomorpha, Horsehair Worm ID 1, Acanthocephalans, Thorny-headed Worm ID 1, Tubeworm/Featherduster ID 1 +, Bristle Worm ID 1 +, Hirudineans, Leech ID 1, Sipunculids, Peanut Worm ID 1, Echiuran Worm ID 1, & FAQs on: Worm Behavior, Worm Compatibility, Worm Selection, Worm Systems, Worm Feeding, Worm Disease, Worm Reproduction, & Invertebrate Identification, Worms 1, Worms 2Worms 3, Flatworms/Planaria, Fire/Bristleworms

Related Articles: Worms, Featherduster Worms

SW worm ID?   4/18/06 I found this worm in my tank.  Can you let me know if it's harmful or not?   I have a great video of it moving about but it was far too large to send.  Thanks for all your help! Lisa <Please peruse here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/wormidfaqs.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Worm ID  - 04/16/06 Hi, I found what i think is some kind of worm in my kitchen sink on a scrub brush.   <I know your sink is technically a "wet" area, but...sink bugs aren't really our thing.  We deal with aquarium-related queries, mostly.> It was about 1 inch and was moving all throughout the bristles.  It seemed to have 3 prongs on one end and on the other end it appeared to be producing some kind of, thread-kind of like a spider.  It was very think and black, and had no other noticeable characteristics.   <Legs/no legs?  Segmented?  Shiny/matte?  Everything has characteristics.> I looked extensively over the internet trying to identify it, and where it might have come from, but couldn't. Please please please let me know if you guys know what this thing was.  Also when i killed it was green on the inside. <Good to know.  Did you not think to place it outside?> Thanks. -Joy <Follow this link: http://www.insectnet.com/cgi/dcforum/dcboard.cgi?az=list&forum=DCForumID2&conf=DCConfID1  They specialize in things like this.  Jodie>  

Worm ID Help  - 4/11/2006 Thanks for the quick response.  It's amazing how fast you guys are.  I apologize for the mix up with the links.  Here they are again.       http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g66/arowley/2006-04%20tank/DSCN0011.jpg       http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g66/arowley/2006-04%20tank/DSCN0046.jpg      Thanks a million, again.   Angel Hello. I can't thank the crew enough for this very thorough and informative website. I don't know where I'd be without the wealth of information at my fingertips. Now to my question, I've had this interesting worm in my tank that I noticed a couple of weeks ago. By the way, my tank is about 10 months old and thriving. I've seen it hovering around a xenia stalk that I have and before that it was on a colt coral. It has an almost fluorescent hue to it with many hairs. It's approximately 5 inches long. It's possible that it's eating my xenia but I cannot tell for sure because I added a coral beauty about the same time I noticed this worm on my xenia and the coral beauty reeked havoc on some of my Zoas and Favia and I think this xenia. Anyway, here's the link to the pics. Thanks a million. Concerned aquarist, Angel <Is a polychaete of some sort/species... I might use a small diameter flexible piece of tubing to siphon it out... if you think it may be chewing on your cnidarians. Bob Fenner>

Worried About A Worm...  - 03/29/2006 I have a worm in my tank 72 gallon bow front, in my live rock I have this black worm blue stripes, no tentacles it looks like an earthworm. It stays in it's hole most the time, stretches across the rock occasionally to eat. It's thin about as big around as a paperclip.  It's about 1 1/2 inches long the part you can see it doesn't come completely out of the hole. I would take a picture, however it's back in some rocks and would be hard to get a picture. I would like to know if it's harmful to my fish or reef. I appreciate any help you can give me.  I have looked everywhere to no avail on the type of worm this is. Thank you Amber Adams <Hi Amber. It's really hard to say, actually. Most of the worms that we find in our systems are essentially harmless, and perform a function analogous to terrestrial earthworms, helping to keep the sandbed clean and consuming detritus and uneaten food. Sure, there are "Bristleworms", which do have some nasty little bristles that can "zap" you if you touch them, and may or may not be problematic in terms of damaging corals. However, the majority of these worms are nothing to worry about. If you can get a pic we can make a more accurate call. Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>

Worm identification ... Bob's go - 03/29/2006 I have a worm in my tank 72 gallon bow front, in my live rock I have this black worm blue stripes, no tentacles it looks like an earthworm.  It stays in it's hole most the time, stretches across the rock occasionally to eat. It's thin about as big around as a paperclip.  It's about 1 1/2 inches long the part you can see it doesn't come completely out of the hole.  I would take a picture, however it's back in some rocks and would be hard to get a picture.  I would like to know if it's harmful to my fish or reef. <Not likely> I appreciate any help you can give me.  I have looked everywhere to no avail on the type of worm this is. Thank you Amber Adams <I would leave as is. Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm Bob Fenner>

Odd Gramma Beh.? and questionable worms  3/30/06 Per your instructions, below please find my original email corrected for proper grammar, punctuation and spelling.  Many thanks. ------------- <Welcome> Dear WWM crew: I have a 37 gallon reef tank that is not doing very well and I could use your help. I have only one fish, a Royal Gramma.  When it comes out to swim it struggles but seems to maintain, and when it rests it does so on the live sand up against the glass.  This fish was fine for the first month in my tank, but it has been this way for the last two months, The breathing appears normal, however I cannot be sure, and it maintains a voracious appetite.  It seems alert and responsive when I am near the glass.  Other than the swimming problem and resting on the sand, it seems fine.  Could this be a swim bladder problem? <Possibly... but what you describe is not totally unnatural behavior for Grammatids> If so, what are my options?   <Mmm, well... there are some chemical treatments that could be tried... best applied, snuck in the foods this animal is taking... But if it were me/mine, I'd go for improving the nutrition of this fish and leave it at that... by supplementing such foods in Selcon or eq.> I'm afraid to add other fish to the tank until I am able to figure out what to do. <You are wise here> Secondly, there is some kind of parasite in the tank that I'm having trouble identifying.  I think it's some kind of worm.  Unfortunately, I don't have a camera that is sharp enough to capture it so I will do my best in describing it to you.  Each one is no larger than a human hair and is tan in color.  They are congregated in small bunches, and many of them attached on one end to my feather duster and the other end to the live rock.  They seem to be alive, and their movements strike me as some kind of worm, not simply a hair algae. <Mmm, does sound like some sort of worm, but I assure you, it is highly unlikely that this is parasitic> I'm frustrated to all end with these things, and I'm a little too embarrassed to bring this up at my local aquarium store. <Please... don't be...> Any advice, assistance, or otherwise would be greatly appreciated!  Many thanks, and please let me know if you have any further questions.  I love this hobby but I'm getting so frustrated!! Best regards, Chris <Chris, consider availing yourself of a cleaner organism... my choice would be a shrimp of the genus Lysmata... will likely eat these querulous worms, and help cure/improve your Gramma's behavior. Bob Fenner>

Worm me or my reef club can identify ...?   3/25/06 Here is a pic of the worm. Is it bad/good or just a plus. thanks for everything. <... can only tell it's broken, segmented... likely a polychaete of some sort... there are tens of thousands of species. Bob Fenner>

Spiny white worms...  - 03/22/06 Hey Bob, I have been doing some research on the wetwebmedia.com site looking for an answer to my new found problem. I started to dabble in the salt water hobby after being a fresh water enthusiast for a couple of years. About 8 months ago I got started on a 10 gallon just to see how it would turn out. It began a little shaky but after getting all kinds of different info from the 3 or 4 sources that I have access to here. It seems that no one has any definitive answers. So I have come to the internet to try to gain some wisdom on the matter. Anyway the 10 gallon is doing so well that I have recently set up a 27 gallon. Hopefully once it is all settled and cycled I can start to transfer some livestock from the 10 to the larger tank. So I have about 30 pounds of aragonite and about 15 pounds of live rock. I recently purchased 8 pounds of the live rock and donated the rest from the 10 gallon. The rock that I just bought came with it's own creatures, just as to be expected, but one in particular bothers me. I have heard and seen Bristleworms and I believe those ones aren't detrimentally dangerous to your tank, but that's not what this is. Another source tried to tell me I have a Peanut worm, which apparently isn't harmful either. <Correct> But this is no Peanut worm. I first noticed shortly after I bought the rock these patches of silky webbing forming on the rock and the sand. I never noticed any activity in the tank during daylight hours so this must be happening at night. One night about 4 days ago I saw this centipede looking, slow moving, white, spiny, segmented, about the diameter of a pencil, worm thing intertwined into the new rock I bought. So I asked around to some friends and aquarium shops and got all different answers to the same question. Some have told me that this worm is a good detritivore (which I'm guessing means scavenger), but I've also heard that I am lucky to have seen it and that I have nothing else in the tank. That this monster will eat any fish, inverts, or coral that I put in there. <Not likely all these> I have also heard that these things can get really long, like up to 4 feet in length and seriously clog up sump and filter systems. <Some even larger, but not likely> Since I first seen it I have been trying to locate it in the tank to get rid of it but it's next to impossible to find. <Can be baited, trapped out...> I need a straight answer to this one. I can't afford to stock up the tank with fish and coral thinking this thing is harmless only to serve up a smorgasbord to it. Even if it is reef safe I still don't want all that webbing in the tank. Thank you for your time and I hope we can work this out. Chris <Is likely a polychaete... Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/polychaecompfaqs.htm and the linked files above... Bob Fenner>  

Unknown Marine Life, Sipunculid? - 03/17/2006 Hi Bob, <Josh here. Sorry for the delay here.> I am hoping you can shed some light on the identity of the critter in the attachments. <I'll try.> I found him accidentally while relocating a piece of live rock.  This rock is home to a toad stool that our maroon clown decided should live somewhere else! <The nerve!> I am wondering 2 things, what is this creature and should he remain a welcome resident in our reef tank? If you happen to know I would be grateful for your insight.   <Well Dawn, I'm not 100% positive here but noticed that you've re-sent this yesterday, and are still waiting. I would say this is a Sipunculid or Peanut worm. Try throwing those terms into a search.> Thank you so much for all of the knowledge and humor you have provided since I have discovered the passion of Marine Aquaria! <Thank you for allowing us to "spout off" to any who will listen.> God Bless you, Dawn Borgstrom <And you. - Josh> <<I forgot to add, if this is in fact a Peanut worm, it's completely harmless and very beneficial. - Josh>>

Spiraling worm   3/14/06 Hello, <Hi there>      Thanks for your site, great info.  Need critter ID:  Worm type organism, which harmlessly crawls around during the day eating detritus.  Looks like a white centipede with head that tapers down to the tail, with hundreds of small legs running down the length of the worm. <Is an Errantiate polychaete (bristleworm) thus far...> Also some of them have a black line down the back some don't.   <Might be more than one species...> At night when the timer shuts the daylights down, you can observe on occasion a worm spiraling through the tank fro one side to the next.  Figure the worm is just propelling itself to get from one place to the next, in search of food.  Figure it must be a harmless hitchhiker until one turned into ten.  Please if you could identify these critters.  Mini pictures of the worms attached. Thanks, Marc <Need closer images, larger, bigger resolution to make out mouth parts, eye number and arrangement, podia characteristics... to get to family ID... Bob Fenner>

Worm ID   03/07/06 I noticed a small dark colored worm tonight and am wondering if I should worry.  I was looking over my tank with the lights off as all of us do and I noticed a worm that looked like it was possibly biting the side of a small snail shell.  Right when the light hit him though he began to roll up and invert himself, retracting back into his hole.  He was kind of a grayish color and his mouth was a reddish orange color.  I have never seen any worms like this and was wondering if you could tell me what it was.  Thanks so much for all your help. <Do you know what a bristleworm looks like?  Thinking this may be the critter.  Photo would help much.  James (Salty Dog)>  

Is this harmful to my fish?    2/17/06 Great web site! Many questions Master! <Okay> I have been reading through the FAQ and thought this maybe an  interesting photo to add? I have found some kind of worm (leach?) burrowing in my live rock, I understand that there are many unidentified. So was wondering if they cause damage other than to the live  rock or eventually will become food for my coral beauty? <Mmm, likely neither... looks like the feeding end of a Spaghetti Worm... Google on WWM re> I have also white thorn looking growths appearing out of the live rock, any identification or advice would be very welcome. <... not possible with the pic, data provided> I have a 55 gal tank, 50 lb live rock (may need 30 lb more), 25 lb crushed coral which I am thinking of replacing with fine sand? Emperor 400 filter (slowly removing filter media).(will replace with power head for water circulation). AquaC remora Pro with Mag 3. Thick dry'ish bubbles (love this unit and I make up words too!). <Useful> Power glow and eclipse natural light tubes. What tube lights would you choose for this small size tank? <Posted on WWM> I think I can fit 3 tubes. FasTest shows; Temp 78 of Gravity 1.023 0 ammonia 0 Nitrite 0 Nitrate PH 8.2 1 coral beauty. 3 false clowns (one getting bullied by other 2) 3 fire fish 1 cleaner shrimp. 1 rock covered in small tube worms Suggested tank mates, clean up crew and stocking capacity? <... Posted> Inverts? Caulerpa   for grazers? behaved in captive fish? Thank you for your time in advanced! Lots to learn.
Paul Atkinson
<Oh yes. Bob Fenner>

Flatworm id?  - 2/15/2006 Bob, I don't know if this is the right place to ask questions, but we found this critter swimming very very fast in our tank tonight and netted it to put in a plastic cup. http://www.cupids-playground.com/reefbug.jpg <Nice pic> It is about 1/2 inch long, kind of clear, black eyes and has many legs like a bristle worm or centipede.  Is this a bristle worm?  Is it reef safe?  It doesn't look segmented like an isopod, but it's so small, I can't really tell.  Any help would be appreciated.  I can't find anything anywhere that resembles it. Thanks, Mary O. <Mmm, looks like a flatworm, but could be a polychaete juvenile... no worries either way. Bob Fenner>

Worm id please   2/14/06 Greetings WetWebMedia crew!. My question is last night i was cleaning my tank " lights off " when i noticed something that swam by really fast. At first i thought it was my imagination, but then i saw it again. I was able to catch it, and it looks like some kind of worm. It is about 1 inch in length. the color is a light tan. and it has a flat head with a millipede like body, with thousands of what looks like legs?. <Yes... podia...> This critter swims REALLY fast but seems like it is blind. And the body is just a little transparent. I know a pic would a lot of help, but unfortunately i do not have a digital camera nor can i afford one =(. I've tried to do research and really cant find anything that looks like this. Could this be some sort of flat worm?. Oh and by the way i have a 60 gallon reef tank with about 60 lbs of Live rock, Half Fiji and half Tonga. THANKS!. Roger. <Many organisms come out, reproduce, feed in the water column by dark of night... including thousands of species of polychaete annelids. Put these words in the Google search tool on WWM... and/or your subject title... and read. Bob Fenner>  

Worm ID (better pic - 2nd request)  02-05-06 Hey guys, I searched and did find this from your site, but you  were unable to id the little critter. I have included a picture & description of my  own below.     - Worm ID - Hi.  Are you guys able to  identify this thing in my tank, which I think is some kind of worm.  <Beyond agreeing with you that it is some type of worm, the picture is  just too blurry to say much more than that.> It lives in a crack in a  rock and can extend the arm like thing in the photo about 8 inches and   uses it to pick over rocks.  Thanks, Matt <Cheers, J --  >     I knew as soon as I saw this little guy  I have one too. Here's a picture & my description.   OK so I have been using a flash light  lately trying to catch some nocturnal critters in action. Well I knew there were  little bugs, shrimps & other little buggers around, BUT tonight I something  caught me eye. Strung across one of the top of a flat  rock that is about 12/13in wide was a bright green worm like thing, it was about  the size of a piece of spaghetti and about as long. The head (I guess) was forked. As I shined my flash light on it, it  sucked it's self back into a it's hole in the LR (I guess it's home). I waited about 30 min and went back -  instead of turning on the flash light I took a picture in that direction with  only the flash on. I got a little bit of the "head". Any  idea what it might be???? My picture also has the forked part out  & is separated about 2 in. while most of it is secure in the  hole. Attached Images <... not able to discern what this is from the description or pic. Would need a much higher resolution image and/or microscopic examination... Bob Fenner> Thanks for any further info!
Cheryl G.

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