invasion of strange plant hitchhikers - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 02:42 AM Thread Starter
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invasion of strange plant hitchhikers

Quite a few months back I added some live plants to my 55 gallon tank. I treated them with alum before I added them to the tank to get rid of any nasties. Well, evidently some nasties survived. They look like sesame seeds. They glide slowely along the glass and plants in a snail like manner and have a hard covering that crunches when you squish them. They are the shape and size of a seasame seed. They are kind of a whiteish transparent color with a darker black/brown color towards their centers. Each week I squish as many as possible, and wipe out as many as I can but it is a loosing battle. Each week the glass, plants, and gravel are peppered once again with these little creatures. I think they are feeding on algae. None of my fish will eat them (ottos, pearl gourami, corydoras, rasboras). I haven't been able to ID them. I posted a similar message at a different messageboard but no one there seemed to know what they are. Maybe someone here can help. I'd like to know what they are, and how to get rid of them. I am desparate enough to try chemicals (with my fish in a separate holding tank) if necessary.
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 02:44 AM
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Sound like Limpets.
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 02:49 AM
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I got into it with someone on another board on this one.

I think a better guess than limpets would be baby snails. Best way to get rid of these things, in my opinion, is to smash them. Use an old credit card, lay it over the creatures against the glass and press the little buggers into oblivion!

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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 03:31 AM Thread Starter
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invasion of strange plant hitchhikers

thanks. At first I did think they were baby snails. But they are oval, and also after 5 months they should no longer be babys. I'm sure they aren't snails. I do spend lots of time each week squashing all the ones I can see with my thumbnail, only they reappear a few days later - can't get them all. Seems to take only a few survivors to repopulate the tank. Sometimes I let them go a few weeks. They just get to be bigger sesame seed sized and increase in number. It's frustrating, and distracting to see them in the tank.
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 05:24 AM
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Looks like the only thing a Limpet will eat is algea. Anyone have any other experience with these?

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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 07:35 AM
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salt 'em good?

They must be good eats for certain species of fish?

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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 09:13 AM
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I don't like anything that has the word "limp" in it! I agree, it sounds like baby snails, but it seems like snails would be pretty easy to recognize.

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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 12:37 PM
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I have a few limpets in my nanotank. I assume they came in on some unwashed plants I collected in the wild.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 02:05 PM
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You have them too Urk?

Think you could snap off a couple of photos for me? I know what a limpet is, but I have never seen one in an aqaurium.

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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 07:02 PM
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Maybe a couple types of loaches will eat them?
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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 07:25 PM
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I tried taking a pic but it just looks like a white dot, here is a magnified pic I found on the net. The freshwater limpets are small. http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.ed...h/069.rjb1.jpg
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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 07:40 PM
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That sure looks like what nightowl's describing!
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-04-2004, 07:51 PM
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I would just let them be. They might initially raise in numbers, but then find a balance with whatever they eat. I have some of them in one of my tanks, but they are just part of the system.


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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-05-2004, 08:59 AM
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Orinarily I would say it sounds like Scuds, burt they move fast and you would never be able to squish one. Scuds look kinda like a flea,


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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 09-05-2004, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for all of the input. they move very very very slowely. And they have a very smooth, regular, unbroken oval shaped footprint (with no antenna's or feelers or anything of that sort). They tend to adhere to the glass so that if you swipe the length of the tank, all that you pick up along the way will end up in a little row or clump at the end of your swipe. Then I can crush little groups of them . The larger ones are only about 2 mm long. I think if I were able to greatly magnify them they may kind of look like the photo Urkevitz posted. Only mine seem a little whiter. Maybe thats because of the lack of magnification at my end. At least that is closer than anything else I've seen. I took a photo myself. It's posted at the corydorasworld forum under the planted tank topic (the, you guessed it, strange plant hitchhikers thread). My photo isn't the greatest, but it was hard to take a pic of something so small in the tank with my digital camara. If they are freshwater limpets is there a good way to get rid of them without adding more fish. Like, is there some relatively safe chemical to medicate the tank with. Does such a thing as 'rid-a-limpet exist'
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