How to Make a Bristle Worm Trap

Updated February 21, 2017

Bristle worms are aquatic creatures that grow inside aquariums. They are parasites that not only eat fish food but also eat plant life, coral and soft-bodied sea creatures. They also grow rapidly and can reach lengths of 24 inches, taking up valuable aquarium space. For this reason, eliminate bristle worms as soon as you first notice them. A few basic kitchen supplies are all you need to make a trap.

Set an opaque plastic food container on a flat surface and fill the bottom with a single layer of some type of meat to use as the bait. Some suggested bait options, according to the NetPet website, are small cooked shrimp, raw mussels, raw scallops, raw fish or raw clams.

Lay the lid to the container on a cutting board and cut a small "x" in the centre of it with a utility knife. Make the size of the "X" the same size as the worm's body. If you don't know the size of the worm, start smaller then increase the opening size later.

Push down on the centre of the "X" gently with your finger to create an opening to allow the worm to get inside.

Secure the lid on top of the container.

Insert the trap into the bottom of the aquarium in the approximate location of the worm. Most worms hide near rocks and coral.


Make the bait the size of a pea. To determine if you have trapped all of the bristle worms, turn off all lights and wait at least two hours. Look at the aquarium with a red light to see if any worms are visible.

Things You'll Need

  • Round plastic food container with lid
  • Bait food
  • Cutting board
  • Utility knife
  • Red light (optional)
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About the Author

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.