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Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

This is a discussion on Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms? within the Live Food General Discussion forums, part of the Food: Live, Frozen, Freeze-Dried, Pellets, etc category; Hi Everyone, I am wondering if there is a valid risk of disease or parasites from feeding specifically red wigglers ...

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Old 10th July 2014   #1 (permalink)
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Question Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

Hi Everyone,
I am wondering if there is a valid risk of disease or parasites from feeding specifically red wigglers or earthworms.
I own axolotls, and feed red wigglers to my sub adults and occasionally to my adults, but have only been feeding these for about a month.
I would hate to have my axies get internal parisites as a direct result of feeding this live food. I cannot find anything on the internet about this topic when it comes to wigglers and the like.
Thoughts, anyone?



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Old 16th July 2014   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

Earthworms normally carry nematodes, but they are non-parasitic. If someone is taking a fecal sample for examination by a vet, this is something to be aware of.

Any live food carries some small risk of "carrying something" (virus, bacteria, parasite, whatever). But I've never heard of a problem like this from worms, and it seems likely that the benefits outweigh the risks.



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Old 16th July 2014   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

If you maintain a worm farm you have much more control over the environment your worms live in, and you're less likely to get invaders or nasties you could find in the 'wild'.

Many thousands of axies have eaten many millions of worms for over a hundred years - you can be assured that there is a very, VERY low risk of anything nasty being introduced to your axies via live worms.



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Old 16th July 2014   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

Earthworms and red wrigglers seem to fit into a category of food near enough to the axolotls natural foods to be nourishing but sufficiently unnatural to not form part of a natural parasitic cycle. Earthworms often carry parasites which can harm cats, birds and occasionally humans and it is possible that some of these settle in axolotl muscle, but I've not seen any reports they do.

Personal experience suggests axolotls thrive on earthworms, I've three seven year olds and several younger ones to prove it.

At worst axolotls could be paratenic hosts, that is an eaten parasite encysts in them but does not multiply, waiting to be eaten by a definitive host. This is only a problem if you intend to eat them raw or feed them raw to a pet.

Feed worms-the benefits far exceed the risk.



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Old 19th August 2014   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

I just wanted to thank all of you for the input! I will continue to supplement my axies food with live worms, because it does seem like the benefits outweigh the risk.



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Old 8th June 2016   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

Hello Bette!
Just wanted to ask you if live feeding live earthworms has turned out well for you? I had a three month old gold albino axie who i fed live earthworms and passed away last night to what seems to be a bacterial/parasitic infection. I dont want to scare anyone or jump to conclusions but im just looking at all possibilities bc its the only things that kinda makes sense to me right now, as he was a healthy and active axie living in great water/habitat conditions.



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Old 17th June 2016   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Parasite Risk from feeding Red Wigglers/Earthworms?

Well I don't have an axolotl but from what I know of caudates bacterial and parasites are unlikely. a few questions may help narrow it down like how long have you had her and what was the tanks temperature.



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