Bristle worm trap diy fail. Is there a better way?

BRS

Levinson

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The number of bristle worms in my tank have grown quite a bit, probly in hundreds. They compete with my other animals for food and I end up feeding more to make sure that my shrimps, etc can all get some food, I end up with more bristle worms and so on.
I like the bristle worms in my tank but I wanted to get some out. Kinda like a nutrient export.
So I made a bristle worm trap last night out of a plastic bottle and some straws. I've put some bait and rubbles inside to weigh it down.
IMG_20210824_193800.jpg

IMG_20210825_111605.jpg

I've checked it this morning and it didn't catch a single worm. These worms would tease me by sticking their head inside the straw a little then pull out, all while I'm watching too.
I know for certain that the bait is not the issue. Could the issue be that the straws are too long or the placement of the trap?
Is there a better trap to make? Maybe something made out of mash of some sort?
Or maybe I should just give it more time?
What do you reckon?
 
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IKD

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I usually point the straws to the ground so they can crawl into it versus trying to slide down a tube. Maybe try it that way?

What are you using for bait?
 
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Levinson

Levinson

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Tweezers. Just pluck em out.
They hide in the rock too well for me to try tweezers.

I usually point the straws to the ground so they can crawl into it versus trying to slide down a tube. Maybe try it that way?

What are you using for bait?
Thanks, I'll try a different placement. I've used dried anchovy gut as bait. They love this stuff.

Looks like something I could give a try if things don't work out. Thanks.
 
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CryptoNautical

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I've heard of rumors of buying some cheap pantiehoes. Cutting them in half and sticking a chunk of shrimp down into the foot. Then just tossing it in the morning. Then you'll also have a second trap if need be.

Now I've never needed to do this. But I've heard it works for a cheap trap
 

Saltandfresh

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The number of bristle worms in my tank have grown quite a bit, probly in hundreds. They compete with my other animals for food and I end up feeding more to make sure that my shrimps, etc can all get some food, I end up with more bristle worms and so on.
I like the bristle worms in my tank but I wanted to get some out. Kinda like a nutrient export.
So I made a bristle worm trap last night out of a plastic bottle and some straws. I've put some bait and rubbles inside to weigh it down.
IMG_20210824_193800.jpg

IMG_20210825_111605.jpg

I've checked it this morning and it didn't catch a single worm. These worms would tease me by sticking their head inside the straw a little then pull out, all while I'm watching too.
I know for certain that the bait is not the issue. Could the issue be that the straws are too long or the placement of the trap?
Is there a better trap to make? Maybe something made out of mash of some sort?
Or maybe I should just give it more time?
What do you reckon?
Not worth the effort. The vast majority of bristle worms are actually beneficial to the system. This isn’t a war you will win.
 
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Levinson

Levinson

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Not worth the effort. The vast majority of bristle worms are actually beneficial to the system. This isn’t a war you will win.
Just so there is no misunderstanding, I do not want to eliminate bristle worms.
I want them there. They are very important for my system.
Not really trying to start or win any war here.
Kinda like how trimming tree leaves and branches for maintenance isn't starting a war with the tree.
Just trying to export some out of the tank time to time, much like cleaning a filter sock or siphoning out algae bits.
 

Saltandfresh

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Just so there is no misunderstanding, I do not want to eliminate bristle worms.
I want them there. They are very important for my system.
Not really trying to start or win any war here.
Kinda like how trimming tree leaves and branches for maintenance isn't starting a war with the tree.
Just trying to export some out of the tank time to time, much like cleaning a filter sock or siphoning out algae bits.
Ya I get it. I just mean unless the bristle worms are crawling around all over the rock work or bothering corals, I wouldn’t worry about them. The 3 or 4 worms you might end up catching pails in comparison to the hundreds or thousands that are in the sand bed, rock work, sump etc that you don’t see. I have a few inverts and fish that keep the population of bristle worms in check. That might be a more productive and long term solution for you. Good luck!
 
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Levinson

Levinson

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First thing to do is vac your gravel.
Can you get something that eats bristle worms?
coral banded shrimp
Arrow crab
There are a variety of worm eating fish
It's a inverts only with live rock tank without sandbed or corals, with sexy shrimps being the main inhabitants. I wouldn't want to put anything that eats bristle worms inside cuz I fear they might attack or harass the sexy shrimps.

Ya I get it. I just mean unless the bristle worms are crawling around all over the rock work or bothering corals, I wouldn’t worry about them. The 3 or 4 worms you might end up catching pails in comparison to the hundreds or thousands that are in the sand bed, rock work, sump etc that you don’t see. I have a few inverts and fish that keep the population of bristle worms in check. That might be a more productive and long term solution for you. Good luck!
Thanks.
Most of the worms are inside and on the rocks. Since they cover so much of the rock, whenever food lands on a rock often they'd get to it before the shrimps do. So I try to get the food to land on the bottom (in which case, the shrimps almost always get to it first. the worms rarely venture the bottom for some reason) but it's not always easy to aim with the flow.
It's not like I'm desperate to catch them or anything but I thought it'd be nice reduce their numbers a little so the shrimps would have a better chance with the food landing on the rocks. That's only if it is easy enough to catch them of course. It's probably not worth setting a trap if I can only manage to catch 3~4 worms with it.
 

Saltandfresh

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It's a inverts only with live rock tank without sandbed or corals, with sexy shrimps being the main inhabitants. I wouldn't want to put anything that eats bristle worms inside cuz I fear they might attack or harass the sexy shrimps.


Thanks.
Most of the worms are inside and on the rocks. Since they cover so much of the rock, whenever food lands on a rock often they'd get to it before the shrimps do. So I try to get the food to land on the bottom (in which case, the shrimps almost always get to it first. the worms rarely venture the bottom for some reason) but it's not always easy to aim with the flow.
It's not like I'm desperate to catch them or anything but I thought it'd be nice reduce their numbers a little so the shrimps would have a better chance with the food landing on the rocks. That's only if it is easy enough to catch them of course. It's probably not worth setting a trap if I can only manage to catch 3~4 worms with it.
I think a coral bandit shrimp would definitely harass your fish and inverts. I purchased a tiny coral bandit shrimp last year and it was a model citizen. It is huge now and it has caught and eaten several fish and inverts. I spent weeks trying to catch it and wasn't able to. I got aggravated and tried to smash it after it ate one of my clowns. I hit it with a hanger and thought I unalived him. He came out of the rock work a week later looking fine. So, I've given up on trying to solve the problem. He's a nightmare, constantly trying to catch my clowns. Good thing, they are now afraid of him and swim away when he chases them. I think you might try an arrow crab or a six line wrasse. They have a somewhat aggressive reputation but I have two and they are model citizens.
 

Backreefing

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How about those tiny purple fish ( dottyback, or cromis ).
A 6line isn’t Going to eat any worms. Maybe a yellow coris wrasse. They are small and pretty not aggressive.
 
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Levinson

Levinson

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Thanks to @Tamberav I got one of those glass tube traps. I'm not getting my hopes up but I got one for about USD6~7 shipped so I don't have much to lose.
IMG_20210827_131047.jpg


I've used frozen shrimp bits as bait this time and it's catching some bristle worms (although not as many as I'd like).
IMG_20210829_201406.jpg


Will wait and see how it goes.
 
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Levinson

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Hmm maybe I'm not using it right but it's not really working for me. I've catches like 4~6 a day and that's too little for me to bother.
There were a couple of issues. The worms would often stick their head in, extend their body to eat the bait and pull back. Didn't know those sneaky jerks were so smart. It's hard for me to control the placement of the bait inside the trap once it's in the water. Also, the worms would get stuck and block the hole most of the time.
When I pull the trap out, I noticed the water in the trap would smell real bad in just 24hrs (and the worms would often die in it). I don't think it'll kill my tank but I don't want to foul the water too much so I can't be lazy with the harvest which sucks.
I'll experiment with it a bit more and if things don't improve, I will look for another way or just give up.
 

Billdogg

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You say you have to feed more to make sure other critters get food. This may sound a bit counterintuitive, but instead, feed less. Doing so will starve out the bristle worms. Their populations tend to be self limiting. The more you feed, the more you will have.
 
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Levinson

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You say you have to feed more to make sure other critters get food. This may sound a bit counterintuitive, but instead, feed less. Doing so will starve out the bristle worms. Their populations tend to be self limiting. The more you feed, the more you will have.
Thanks for the input.
I worry that feeding less would also starve out my shrimps. There are aprox 45 sexy shrimps in the tank. Most are small (even for sexy shrimps) and spread out in the tank. I want to provide enough food for them all. I think things would get a little easier once they grow larger.
 
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Levinson

Levinson

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I tried a different diy trap.
Nothing fancy, just a mesh box with rubbles and some bait in it. I also tied a string to it so I can put it in and out of the tank without getting my hands wet. It doesn't trap the worms so they can move in and out of it but the idea was to make a place where the worms would like to move into.
IMG_20210908_221515.jpg


After 3 days I reeled it out to see I many worms I caught and this is what I've got.
IMG_20210910_103047.jpg


It kinda works but the worms caught were mostly small and I was hoping for more worms. Going through the rubble to get the worms was also quit bothersome.
Maybe I should have waited longer?
Not sure if I will continue to use this trap or not.
 

Tamberav

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Hmm maybe I'm not using it right but it's not really working for me. I've catches like 4~6 a day and that's too little for me to bother.
There were a couple of issues. The worms would often stick their head in, extend their body to eat the bait and pull back. Didn't know those sneaky jerks were so smart. It's hard for me to control the placement of the bait inside the trap once it's in the water. Also, the worms would get stuck and block the hole most of the time.
When I pull the trap out, I noticed the water in the trap would smell real bad in just 24hrs (and the worms would often die in it). I don't think it'll kill my tank but I don't want to foul the water too much so I can't be lazy with the harvest which sucks.
I'll experiment with it a bit more and if things don't improve, I will look for another way or just give up.

Maybe you can attach bait where the stopper is so they have to come in further? Will they go after nori? Could probably just put a piece and put the stopper in to squish it in. I have no idea if worms eat nori though lol

It looked like the other person caught bucket loads of them but I could see bigger worms getting stuck so maybe hers were all smaller.
 
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