NANFA-L-- Feeding suckers and other benthic feeders

Jase Roberts (
Sun, 21 May 2006 23:36:59 -0400

Hey All,

Saw some notes today about getting adequate food to suckers and other benthic feeders. Here's a suggestion that I haven't tried but am pretty confident would work... Stick a large margarine tub or similar size container full of clean sand in with the gravel-in-the bottom (but not covered with gravel). Use a turkey baster (with an extra section of rigid tubing glued on?) to suck up some California blackworms (Lumbriculus) and inject them into the sand. They'll slowly migrate to the surface (I'm certain of this part), where they should be easy prey for your benthic feeders. I've been maintining a healthy colony of blackworms for a couple months now, and I consider them to be pretty excellent feed. My bullhead catfish especially love them (the closest I have to a truly benthic feeder).

If you were to use blackworms, you probably wouldn't even have to get that fancy. Using a clear plastic tube as Ben and Michael suggested and dropping into a gravel pile would probably cause them to migrate outward. The advantage of the blackworms is they're fully aquatic, so they're going to live in your system until they get eaten (no food rotting under the gravel).

If someone tries it, let me know how it works.

Blackworms are available in large quantities-in-a reasonable cost from

/ This is the discussion list of the North American Native Fishes
/ Association (NANFA). Comments made on this list do not necessarily
/ reflect the beliefs or goals of NANFA. For more information about NANFA,
/ visit Please make sure all posts to nanfa-l are
/ consistent with the guidelines as per
/ To subscribe, unsubscribe, or get
/ help, visit the NANFA email list home page and archive at