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I've been trying to ID these things myself but to no avail. They came with a shipment of California blackworms from Florida. I've heard so many ID's and apparently it's not uncommon to get these kinds of flatworm like hitchhikers with blackworms, but apparently different suppliers have different hitchhikers, so what one layman claims they are doesn't necessarily apply to another supplier.

I've heard these guys are planarians, leeches, or some sort of parasite specific to blackworms. I can probably eliminate most of these guys, but I just noticed they gave "birth" or something. I thought they reproduced via fragmentation, but I saw one with what looked like legs, and realized it was actually dozens of smaller babies wiggling underneath.

I'm worried, because I don't want them to kill my blackworms, or accidentally kill my fish.

The creatures are about a half an inch stretched out? the creature is inside of a standard 3ml pipette in the later pictures. They tend to wiggle back and forth (see the video). They scrunch up into a small ball when I disturb them.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

It's hard to tell because they are transparent, but the below gif is definitely the same type of creature. Basically half the time I see them, they stick their heads out of the water and wiggle back and forth like that (but not sway, like the blackworms). My phone isn't good enough to capture this behavior well.

enter image description here

https://imgur.com/a/4S4EPBB

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Biology.SE! You need to upload individual images (e.g. files ending in .jpg). I expect the problem you are having is that you are trying to upload your entire page of videos and images, which this system wont do. Each image in imgur has a separate url that must be individually uploaded. If you want to include information from videos you need to capture stills from that and then upload them. HTH 😊 $\endgroup$
    – tyersome
    Aug 3 '20 at 4:56
  • $\begingroup$ @tyersome All the images are too large, and in linking it claims that the images are not the right format. I also have no idea how stills then uploading works? $\endgroup$
    – Krupip
    Aug 3 '20 at 13:19
  • $\begingroup$ (+1) Glad you got the images figured out! Can you provide some additional details about what we are seeing in the final gif? It looks to me like an entirely different type of organism ... $\endgroup$
    – tyersome
    Aug 14 '20 at 19:27
  • $\begingroup$ @tyersome It's hard to tell because they are transparent, but it is definitely the same type of creature. Basically half the time I see them, they stick their heads out of the water and wiggle back and forth like that (but not sway, like the blackworms). My phone isn't good enough to capture this behavior well. $\endgroup$
    – Krupip
    Aug 14 '20 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ Wild — I hope someone comes through with an answer for you. If you don't get an answer here you might want to try iNaturalist, which specializes in identifications. If you do get an answer there please post an answer here to your own question so others can find it in the future. Good luck! $\endgroup$
    – tyersome
    Aug 15 '20 at 4:28

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