I don't think it's a bristleworm... What do you think?

o0xerog0o

New member
At first, when I saw this worm, I thought it may be a bristleworm, but it looked to smooth, not like the pictures I've seen on here and on other forums before. I had the aquarium lights out for about 90 minutes while I was watching Saw 4, and after the movie, I turned the lights on again to check out the tank and this little guy was sitting there on the sand, but he was kind of scrunched up and was more round than he is in the pics. Maybe about 1 1/4" to 1 1/2" long...

This is my first encounter with him, and I did some searching online to no avail, so could anyone help me out here? Thanks

mysterywormvm3.jpg


mysteryworm2jl4.jpg
 

Tennyson

Active member
I would get rid of it, does it come out in the day like that? Mine never even leave the whole in the rock.
 

Tennyson

Active member
Well, no bristle worms are good, they just cant harm anything. and there are really small ones that are around 2-3 mm long and don't get bigger than half an inch, they come out at night and swim around to the surface, makes good food for my fish. Those are completely harmless, I'm not sure what they do when they reach the surface of the tank. But I could be wrong, they might not be bristle worms, but I'm sure they aren't peanut worms.

I just looked up peanut worm, and the tiny "bristle worms" aren't peanut worms.
 

Pea-brain

In Memoriam
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=11676565#post11676565 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by Tennyson
Well, no bristle worms are good, they just cant harm anything. and there are really small ones that are around 2-3 mm long and don't get bigger than half an inch, they come out at night and swim around to the surface, makes good food for my fish. Those are completely harmless, I'm not sure what they do when they reach the surface of the tank. But I could be wrong, they might not be bristle worms, but I'm sure they aren't peanut worms.

I just looked up peanut worm, and the tiny "bristle worms" aren't peanut worms.

I mean good like "help clean the tank and keep it from crashing when something dies". I dunno your definition of good.

You said yours never leave the hole in the rock. Peanut worms live in a hole in the rock and just stretch out to get food. Thought thats what you meant :/ My bristleworms have been known to come out on rare occations in the day, especially if i just turned lights on or fed. Anyways, at the very least the bristleworm is harmless to everything except your hand.

Dan
 

stevelkaneval

New member
at the very least the bristleworm is harmless to everything except your hand.

totally agree. i have tons becouse i feed a lot. ive even picked up rock with a worm hanging out and a little wierd feeling and some viniger and done. not the most painfull thing in the word.

some places even sell bristle worms.
if we didnt have bristle worms what would eat all the poop and wast?
 

o0xerog0o

New member
Thanks for the info everyone. The pictures that I found online of bristleworms all seemed more colorful and spiny, but if that's what you all agree it is, then I believe you! Thanks again
 

aspinn

New member
sorry to go a lil off topic here but i always hear bristle worms should e removed... why is this? (othen them being a little ugly looking lol)
 

stevelkaneval

New member
i always hear bristle worms should e removed... why is this?

they have a bad rap. but if you were latex gloves you should be fine. i think peaple get more freaked out than anything. if you do remove it and are still feeding regularly you will have many more in your tank. and if you insist on takeing it out put the worm in your sump at least.
 

Sk8r

Staff member
RC Mod
Most all worms are good. If it's got bristles, it's good; if it's got stubby tentacles on its head it's not.
You can harm a tank by killing off an overpopulation of worms [if overfeeding is your practice.] They grow only as the food supply does.
This worm pictured isn't a bristleworm: it's one of a large class of polychaete worms, but probably will do no harm. If you have doubts, put it in your sump.
 

jadeguppy

New member
sk8r, please elaborate on the polychaete worms. I have one that looks identical, except larger in my nano. I can't seem to keep shrimp in there past when they molt and have suspected it. Is that possible? How quickly do they breed?
 

moocow

New member
I have bristles and polychaete worms, they don't harm anything.
At least that I've ever noticed.
They eat dirt, and clean up.
I really see no point in wasting time trying to remove them all.
 

lucy.lou.glass

New member
Oh, I just saw one of these in my tank today! My tank has been running for about a year. It seems to be at least 3 inches long. I saw him once a long time ago when I put the live rocks in the tankI had the rock in my hand, and when i moved it actually scared me. I dropped the rock, and never saw it again. I have waited all this time to finally see it again.
Kind of funny that one of the first threads I saw was on the same topic! thanks for the info. :)
 

greenbean36191

Premium Member
i always hear bristle worms should e removed... why is this?
They get a bad rep because people confuse them with fireworms, which eat coral.
This worm pictured isn't a bristleworm: it's one of a large class of polychaete worms
Well, part of the problem is the ambiguous use of common names and trouble with worm identification within the hobby.

Polychaete translates to "many bristles." The entire class is known as the bristle worms, which is a term that far predates the hobby. It covers everything from featherdusters and spaghetti worms to eunicids. When people say bristleworms are harmless or should be removed they're painting with a huge brush and both are right to some extent.

The worms with the irritating calcareous bristles that most people in the hobby recognize as bristleworms are all members of the family Amphinomidae which is within the polychaetes. The common name for the entire family, again predating the hobby- the fireworms. All but one species of fireworm in the hobby are harmless. That single species, Hermodice carunculata, the bearded fireworm, feeds on corals.

Another reason they get a bad rap is that the good guys are scavengers and they're good at what they do. If something dies, you can bet these guys will be on the scene to clean it up and if we happen to see them in the act, it might look like they caused the death.

To answer the original question, the worm in the picture is definitely a bristleworm (= polychaete), and looks to me to be a fireworm (harmless) as well, though I can't really tell for sure.
 
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