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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone,

Turned the light on today and saw what I think is a planaria. I've never seen any in person so wanted to confirm.


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Yep. Planaria. New plants lately?

I had a couple that came in on some Jungle Val. Got eaten by one fish or another.


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Yup! Planaria!

But... I can't tell if you have 1 planaria, 1 leech... or 2 planaria!


You can try simple removing but if they are overtaking the tank, you may need to do a whole tank treatment. Just, don't smash them!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well that's unfortunate. The tank has only been up since August and I have a habit of cramming in new plants when I find something interesting so hard to say when they came in.

I may have seen one a few weeks ago but it was small and I could not tell if it had a triangular head. These are the first definitive planaria. I removed them as soon as I saw them.

I really do not want to dose the tank as things are finally settling into a good balance. I even have a little colony of cyclops that hitch hiked in and took hold which I think is pretty cool.

This tank is only neo shrimp and some snails as the fish I want are proving difficult to find. I feed the shrimp a spinach leaf or piece of carrot once a week max, often less. The shrimp rarely seem intrested in the food so I assume they are feeding on biofilm etc. Weekly 60% water changes during which I rinse one or two of the three sponge sheets in the sump and suck gunk out the hair grass carpet. So I think my feeding and tank cleanliness is okay?

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Feeding regimen sounds fine to me.

And while 60% is a lot of water to change in a shrimp tank, it's fine if parameters are pretty close.

I wouldn't worry too much at all about the planarian you saw. Doesn't look like you've got a full-scale planaria outbreak. Honestly doubt they'd be a problem if you didn't remove them but it's probably best you did. While they can harm shrimp, there's been an overreaction among new shrimpers the past 5-10 years focused on immediate eradication.

White ones are only really a threat to shrimplets - and then, it's mostly right after molting. I've only seen one instance of a planarian going after a healthy adult shrimp on this forum in nearly 20 years. And even that was just what someone said was going on with their photo. (Who knows if the shrimp was already dead or dying?)

Black and brown ones have a slime trail that could (could! it's not always) be toxic to shrimp if they consume a lot of it. It could theoretically harm them if they came into physical contact with enough of it, as well, but that'd require a pretty absurd planaria population. The videos I've seen of them harming adult shrimp are... questionable. Partly because I've never seen an adult shrimp sit still while a worm tries to crawl over them. Partly because there's no way to tell if a shrimp was healthy from videos like that. Doesn't mean it's not possible, obviously.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks @somewhatshocked ! I'm glad to hear it's probably nothing to worry about. I haven't seen any more since but will keep an eye peeled for them.
The 60% water changes are due to EI-esque dosing which I know is not typical for a shrimp tank. In all honesty, I never intended for this to be a shrimp-only tank as I planned to also keep Tanichthys micagemmae. Unfortunately, I still haven't managed to find them and now have a 20 long high-tech shrimp tank that's running on a 10-gallon sump. Definitely seems to be a bit outside of the norm.

I use tap water in my tank which seems to be pretty consistent here. I also make sure to temperature match. Since I got them a few months ago I've had multiple rounds of babies and the population is growing. However, it's hard to say how quickly their numbers are increasing since I rarely see more than a handful at any given time due to all the plants. I will say that the color of the newer generations isn't as intense or deep as the original. I suspect this is due to a few wild types that snuck in as Amano shrimp before I realized what they were. Since then I try to scoop out any lower grade shrimp and banish them to the sump which now has a good little population going. However, it's tough to tell how many of the low-grade shrimp are in the main tank with all the plants.

Other than that the only issue I have had is a single instance of an adult that appeared to be paralyzed except for very limited movement of its mouthparts. This occurred the day before a water change was due so I don't think it was parameter shock. Ammonia and nitrite came back zero at the time with nitrate around 30 which is where I typically run it. I observed it through the day with no improvement and eventually decided to euthanize.
 
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