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Thread: California Blackworms information

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    Default California Blackworms information



    There are many important reasons to choose Live Blackworms for your fish instead of frozen and machine prepared "fast" foods. Obviously, live foods are the truly perfect nutritional source for your tropical fish, but are you aware of some of these other reasons?...
    Our Blackworms are small enough ( no larger then one inch long or the size of a pin) for all tropical fish to devour them.
    The uneaten worms will not die and decay in your aquarium gravel bed and filtration system. Our California Blackworms ( our Blackworms are not Tubifex )are raised in controlled conditions and are free of parasites and pathogenic (disease causing) bacteria.
    Aquatic Foods uses a high protein manufactured feed along with an advanced reproduction environment which allows our live food to compete with the basic flakes and frozen foods that are available.
    Your fish will love devouring these live Blackworms. Thus, following nature's instincts, they will glow with emotional health.
    And something we never forget here at Aquatic Foods, you always want to give your tropical fish the very best because.. they belong to you!
    Summary, these rich, succulent Blackworms are teeming with nutrition. Your tropical fish will quickly show the vibrant glow of health that nature intended for them when you include live foods in their diet.
    California Blackworms provide the most excellent source of protein, and are extremely useful as a conditioning food for breeding preparation.
    Be sure of your source! Insist on Aquatic Foods. Visit our website at
    Aquatic Foods

    http://aquaticfoods.com/worms.html


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    Default Re: California Blackworms information

    Hi all,  
       I have been asked alot why I feel that California  Blackworms are one of the safest foods to feed my Discus. I  have a considerable amount of time looking into this food source and   have posted a lot of the information I have come across, and will continue to do so.  In my evaluation I also  contacted  Dan at Aquatic Foods as I wanted  to get more info  than what they post on their website.  Here is that info on exactly how these  worms  are  cultured and processed prior to  us getting them. Looking at this system , and the care that has gone into  it was the final basis  in my decision  to  Feed  Live California blackworms. I post  am posting here for those interested in knowing how their worms were  treated prior to them receiving them.

    this info is directly  from  Aquatic Foods...

    Al
    Here is a write up of some of the things we do in a kind of an outline.
    I hope this kind of gives you an idea of how serious I am about providing
    the best, cleanest and safest worms available.
    Thanks for your time.

    Dan

    The Farm:
    1. We have 3 large ponds 2 2-acres and 1 3-acre
    2. All three are aerated and covered to keep the ducks and all   birds out,
      every one eats Blackworms.
    3. We pump in water from the river and a deep well on the property, this way we
        can control the temperature during winter and summer month. The river intake
        is screened to prevent anything from being brought into the ponds. When the
        water is discharged into the ponds it is run through a small micron screened box.
    Remember everything eats Blackworms.

     Raising and Cleaning the worms:
    1.  We feed them a very high protein pellet salmon feed during the winter and a
       lesser protein feed during the summer. This stops "Hot" spots in the pond.
    2.  The worms are 4-6 weeks old before we harvest them. During that 4-6 weeks we
       feed daily and rake them daily.
    3.  When we harvest, its plain old hard on the back work. We bucket them and the
       mud they are in out of the pond bucket by bucket.
       Cleaning: They are brought indoors and placed in our cleaners. Without getting
       into this much I can say the cleaning uses extreme heat. they are in this process
       2-4 hours.
    4.  They then are removed and placed in holding tanks. Here they kept 7-10 days
       so that they can be purged to the Max. They are feed nothing. For shipping it
       is very important that they no feed in them. The stress of shipping will make them
       discharge their waste in the shipping boxes.

    Holding and Shipping Facility:
    1.  The worms are then brought to my warehouse in town. There they are kept in holding tanks in    a  2500 SF cold box in a 40-45 degree chilled water closed system.
        There they are held for 36-48 hours for shipping. Remember purging is very
        important for shipping.

    Shipping:
    1.    As everyone knows we use Airborne Express. Their freight rates are why we use    
    them. Other carriers would double the cost of the landed worms.
    2.    As for Airborne they do not guarantee their service or my product if they
    deliver late, kill the worms or loose the package. This is the price we pay
    for the favorable freight rates.
    3.    Our policy is we do guarantee the worms if Airborne delivers a day late during
    the summer months and the worms arrive DOA. During the winter months they
    arrive fine. We cannot guarantee the worms if Airborne says they attempted to
    deliver and had to return the next day with DOA worms. Also we cannot
    guarantee them if Airborne says they deliver and something happens to the
    package after delivery or if the recipient does not receive and give them the
    proper care needed    
    4.    However it is our policy that if this happens we will reship for the Airborne S & H only and     not charge for the worms.

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    Default Re: California Blackworms information

    Blackworms and disease....

    Hi  all,  
    I know recently  we have been discussing  the pros and cons of blackworms  as a live food.  In teh past I have received literature from a scientist  that specializes  in Invertebrates, and has written extensively  on Blackworm Biology.  His Name is Dr.Charles Drewes. If you recall my writings on blackworm  culture, I referenced  him  there. Biological supply laboratories also include his research  when they  supply live  worms.

    I recently sent him an email  to ask his opinion on the disease aspects we have discussed....

    Dear Dr. Drewes,
    >   I raise a tropical fish, called Discus as a hobby. The
    >question has been raised by my fellow hobbyists as to
    >whether  or not Lumbriculus variegatus  can act as an
    >intermediate  host for Tape worms to be passed then on
    >to our fish.  Also the question was asked if they could
    >possibly ingest  eggs of parasitic worms, and gill
    >flukes, and then pass them along  the Discus.  I am also
    >a biologist  and  I have searched the literature and
    >found no research to support  this.
    >   May I ask you opinion on this matter? I know from my
    >literature searches that you have  researched this
    >organism extensively.
    >    Any information you could give me is greatly
    >appreciated. Thank you very much.
    >
    >  Sincerely,
    >Al Sabetta
    Dr. Drewes reply...

    Dear Al,
    You are correct. There is no published evidence whatsoever that Lumbriculus  
    is an intermediate host for tapeworms.  I suppose that any scavenging  
    organism, including many fish, could inadvertently ingest tapeworm eggs and  
    then, through either predation (being eaten) or by defecation, pass them  
    onto another organism.   To avoid that remote possibility, I suppose it  
    might be prudent to let newly acquired organisms (worms and fish) clear  
    their gut contents in a separate container, if you don't know what they  
    have been eating.  I continue to glean the Lumbriculus literature but have  
    found no support for the concern and claim about tapeworms.  Thanks very  
    much for your message and interest.
    Charles Drewes
    Professor of Zoology and Genetics

      I am sharing this information not to prove that blackworms  do not  carry these diseases, but to show that  they have not been  proven  to carry these diseases.  This  doesn't  prove  that they are a safe food, for the time being we will all have to make that  decision  on our own.

     I also have an inquiry out to Dan at Aquatic  foods to see how much time elapses between  harvest  time, shipping, and the method in which they handle the worms.

      My personal feelings are, any accidental ingestions by the worms of parasites/eggs   would be voided  before we even get them.  

      This doesn't address  the question of bacterial probelms have been associated  with black worms in general.

    It is  the my hopes that this adds to the body of information we have on Blackworms as a food  for Discus.
    Take care,  
    al



    and ....

    have received a copy of another  letter  from Dr.Drewes in sponse  to another Hobbyists inquiry.   heres  that letter...

    Thanks for your message and questions. I consulted with a professor-colleague here, who is an expert fish parasitologist, and he tells me that parasites ( several species of which certainly do infect fish) DO NOT use any intermediate host ( such as oligochaete worms or any other species) to harbor and transmit the parasite. Instead, one fish can directly infect another fish by releasing the parasite into the water in its feces and then by another fish ingesting the parasite. So, transmission is like Giardia, in respect, and involves only a single host and no intermediate hosts. So, your concerns about Hexamita infection occurring from worms themselves is not warranted. Of course, the water that the worms were in might be a potential concern if it was water that came from infected water. To be " safer " when you feed worms to the fish, you couls rinse and drain the worms several times in distilled water to help flush away any fish feces. I might add, that if the fish feces were consumed by the worms, then I supect that any Hexamita therin would most likely get fully gigested in the worm gut. As I mentioned, there is no evidence of invertebrates being an intermediate host for Hexamita. I verified this information through a search of research publications using the Biological Abstracts data base.
    In regard to your questions about blackworms and tubifex worms...they are both oligochaete worms, but they are quite different in terms of taxonomy, ecolgy, and biology. Tubifex is most abundant in habitats where there is silty mud and organic and thermal pollution. Lumbriculus (blackworms) orefer more pristine habitats. Blood Worms are insect larvae. See http://www.dph.nl/sub-article/cat-01/bloodworms.shtml <http://www.dph.nl/sub-article/cat-01...orms.shtml>
     
    I hope this answers your questions and clarifies things a little. Feel free to share this informatin with your colleagues. Charles Drewes Professor of Zoology and Genetics  

    HTH,  
    al

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Hi all,
    I've brought this up to the top and updated all the links. I'm leaving it unlocked for now, just no blackworm wars please.

    thanks,
    al

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Al,
    You got nutritional analysis for these worms?
    If you don't mind posting this important information.

    Thanks

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Hi roundhead,
    I don't have that info, though I wish i did. If I had some spare cash, I'd see about asking Dan at Aquatics to send somem worms out for nutritional analysis.

    As of yet I have not found that info published. If anyone has it I'd be great to post!

    -al

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    hey round head and Al i dont have an exact % on the protien levels of blackworms but i have heard on another forum that they are the highest available source of protien available. I guess thats why Discus Grow so well on these things. Dans got an awsome set up going for him at Aquatic Foods. best thing is a LFS near me gets a fresh batch in every thursday from him. Im going through 1 lb of them every 3 weeks with my operation.
    Brian Bender
    Keystone Discus
    www.keystonediscus.com

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    1 pound every three week! Brian- stop being so cheap! Frank

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Man, I only have 30discus and im using about a lb every 3 weeks, wonder if im feeding too much, they only get them for last feeding at night.

    Ken

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    I feed cbw twice a day.
    Carol

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    equals.............................

    Nice... Fat.... Healthy.... (providing the worms are too) Fishies....... !!!

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Hello everyone
    I keep mostly wild discus, i have at the moment peruvian greens, heckels,
    tefe greens, xingu, manucapuru blues, rsg and madeira blues. I have been
    reading alot on this forum about the CBW and would love to try some as i do feed
    my wilds on live food but find it quite expensive here in the UK. So my
    questions are. Would it be possible to post worms to UK, would they survive, is it legal to post to another country, and if the answer is yes is it
    easy to culture the worms to keep a fresh supply going. I will be very interested to see what you have to say on this query.

    regards ...............pete daniels

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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Hello. I am new to this forum and new to discus. I just bought some CBW and my question is how to give them to the discus. Do I rinse them first? How much and how often should I give? How long do they last in the refrigerator. Thanks.


    Greg

  15. #15
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    Default Re:California Blackworms information

    Greg,
    Welcome to Simply Discus.
    When the CBW first arrive you need to rinse them with aged chilled water. The water needs changed atleast twice a day. When you go to feed the worms, put them in a plastic bag and fill half full with water and shake them, then pour out the water and refill and do it again. Most of the time it takes about 3-4 times and the water will be clear. Then put the worms back into the holder and fill with water and pick out the leeaches and feed a small portion to your fish. I feed what they will eat in 30 seconds. I feed CBW twice a day. They will eat thereself til they get sick so do not over feed them! And when you are done put them in the fridge. I have them last a week or so, I feed 2+ lbs or more a week.

    P.S. DW just posted the results from the last CBW test on DAAH.

    HTH
    Miles

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