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Old 05-02-2011, 05:00 PM   #1 
nowzem
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Live Blackworms

Oh garsh! So I read somewhere (a couple of places) that feeding live Blackworms to your betta was a good idea, so I went out today and bought some. When I was looking up what to do with them (where to keep them, etc) I read that they can actually tear the stomachs of fish when fed whole (I might also add here that I've already fed all my bettas 2 live blackworms before I read this) and that lots of betta owners have had death and dropsy follow feeding these! So I'm kinda peeved that the places the recommended these as great for getting your females ready for breeding/a great treat didn't bother to mention the freakin' common side effect of DEATH! Rar! My bettas better be a-ok or.......... I'm gonna get really mad and sad and have no one but me to blame it on! :P

Anyone feed these regularly/ever? I won't be buying them again. >:-ı
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Old 05-02-2011, 06:30 PM   #2 
pumpkinspikepie
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One of my roommates works at a fish wholesaler and every now and then she brings home blackworms for everybody's fish. My platies, mollies, and bettas have all eaten blackworms and I've never noticed a problem. If it makes you nervous, I'd stop feeding them just to be on the safe side.
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:01 PM   #3 
DarkMoon17
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I've never heard of any side effects to feeding blackworms (aside from those caused by overfeeding). You know, it is a common myth that mealworm/superworms will eat through lizard stomachs when fed alive, killing the lizard. However, the myth most likely began when someone's lizard died of more or less natural causes and she found a runaway (uneaten worm from another meal) eating the carcass. Superworms/mealworms cannot eat through a lizard's stomach. This is most likely the same thing that caused the blackworm myth. Blackworms don't have teeth so they could possibly "eat through" a fish.

The only problem related to feeding live black worms is increased risk of parasites. Other than that, they are a wonderful food for bettas. High quality fish breeders/sellers from all over the world feed them without incident. You should be suspicious of claims like that since many inexperienced fish owners do not understand what causes disease and blackworms make an easy scapegoat.

Last edited by DarkMoon17; 05-02-2011 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:17 PM   #4 
nowzem
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Actually I read this in a book I bought LOL but...it seems unlikely...more likely seems that the betta eats so much he bursts? Thanks for making me feel better guys! <3. I think i'll finish this batch and then keep em for rare treats :)
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:28 PM   #5 
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I'm stupid...
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkMoon17 View Post
Blackworms don't have teeth so they could NOT possibly "eat through" a fish.
Out of curiosity, what book did you read it in? I've been feeding black worm to my fish for years and have never had a problem. I even fed them exclusively to my mudskippers without any disease. Of course, don't feed the black worms if you don't trust they are safe :)
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:35 PM   #6 
nowzem
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It is The Betta Handbook by Robert Goldstein, Ph.D. Page 93
Copyright 2004

Quote: "Bettas may engorge on black worms, resulting in gastric distress and sometimes death. Many aquarists cut them into pieces with a razor blade before feeding them to bettas. Black worms that survive partial ingestion can tear the stomachs of small fish, killing them."

Ugh. :) It goes on to talk about their pathogenic capabilities. Lovely!
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Old 05-02-2011, 07:49 PM   #7 
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Interesting, well it sounds like it is the same as with other foods=just don't overfeed. I'd like to see empirical proof that they can tear through stomachs though, I can't find anything proving that it is possible.... It seems more probable that the stomach tore from overfeeding, but that's even farfetched considering how much stomachs can stretch! Who knows... but unless the author cited a credible source for that information it might just be something that he heard somewhere and wanted to include in the book.
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