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CAUTION: Bloodworm Allergies Can Sneak Up On You

The below linked article from Reef to Rainforest Media is about something that is not all that common in the hobby but something we hobbyists should look out for. Things live in our tanks that can be dangerous. We recently talked about palytoxin which comes form a type of soft coral that is a great beginner coral. There are also types of bacteria that live in our tank that can be harmful. It’s rare, but does sometimes occur. That is one reason I don’t stick my hand in the tank if I have a cut on it. Gloves are a great way to avoid coming into contact with these things. The bristles of bristleworms are another hazard that gloves can prevent. I’ve been stuck once by them (my fault)

There is one thing this article talks about that I had not heard of as a hazard until now so I thought I would share it. Bloodworms are a common fish food, especially for freshwater fish keepers. It turns out that some people can have an allergic reaction.

“The science behind bloodworm allergies points to the hemoglobins that give bloodworms their trademark bright-red coloration. These hemoglobins, which are powerful oxygen scavengers,¬†are what allow bloodworms to thrive in the oxygen-deprived¬†bodies of water they call home, but they are also what triggers an allergic reaction in some people.”

According to the article the potential is there for about 20% of the population. Since the aquarium hobby isn’t that widespread of those 20% I can only guess that a small number are keeping fish tanks and feeding bloodworms. This could be potentially deadly in people who have asthma because the symptoms include respiratory problems.

Just be aware of all these things and the possibility something undiscovered might be lurking. Don’t let this dissuade you from the hobby though, this is only a small danger and with gloves you can avoid it.

Blood Worms

Could your fishes’ favorite food be a health concern for you?

Source: CAUTION: Bloodworm Allergies Can Sneak Up On You – SHORT