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[Cuttlefish Eggs]: Ray's 125G Cuttle Rearing System

magnetar68

O. vulgaris
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Feb 25, 2012
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84
Here are some shots of my new cuttle rearing system. I hope to start by ordering some cuttlefish eggs and live mysids after Thanksgiving. I am sure it will take a few trys to get this right, but I am excited about the journey.


The Main Tank
125G custom acrylic built by ZeroEdge in Chicago. The lights are DIY LEDs. I still need to aquascape the rock.



Plumping
The drain is a BeanAnimal(ish) design: one full siphon, one open channel, and one emergency siphon. In a true bean animal the open channel should be able to go full siphon, but in my setup, this tube goes from 1" to 1.5" so I can Tee in the gravity overflows from the support tanks. If this goes siphon, it causes some water to push up out of the silencers in the support overflows. Everything drains out through the wall to the closet behind. You can also see the DIY LED power controller. Yes, I need to hope I don't spring a leak.



This is the "ultra-flex" PVC from MarineDepot, although 1/2 of it is not what I ordered, so it is really a combination of regular spa-flex and ultra-flex. The gate value is for the full siphon. The trick to running the full siphons such a long distance is that the tubes must run continually go down. If they don't, they have trouble starting. The open channel and the return are the ones in the back going up and then down. In my setup the open channel won't go full siphon. The emergency drain will and it will make a lot of noise so I know the main siphon is clogged.



The Sump
36"x16"x18". This needs some wire management :smile:. I will wait until it is all dialed in before making it more permanent:

  • ATB 804v2 cone skimmer
  • NextReef SRM biopellet reactor (far left in blue)
  • BRS dual reactor for GAC and GFO
  • Refugium w/Chaeto and Home Depot LED
  • Two returns, one for the main 125DT and one for the two 20G and 29G tanks.
  • ATO: line from 6-stage RO/DI unit, float switch that activates a solenoid, and a manual float switch that the RO/DI line runs through in case the float switch fails
  • BRS 2-part Dosing Pumps (not shown and not yet installed - currently dosing manually since load is small)





The Support Tanks
The Blue are plumbed into the main filtration system for the 125G and the pink ones are standalone with a heater and a sponge filter.


Here's a video too:
 

magnetar68

O. vulgaris
Registered
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
84
I have ten eggs in a breeder net in the cuttle rearing tank. Not all look viable but I can see cuttles moving around in a few of them. I ordered through a friend who has a retail business, so they were drop shipped from one of the LAX wholesalers.

I also order 250 young mysids and a rotifer growing kit from Reed Mariculture. I will feed the mysids the rotifers. My theory is that the younger ones should last two weeks instead of one week and the smaller size should be OK for the new hatchlings. We'll see.
 

magnetar68

O. vulgaris
Registered
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Feb 25, 2012
Messages
84
8 Days Post Hatch Update

Last Saturday (12/8/2012) at 7:00am, I woke up and checked on the cuttle eggs and there were two cuttles in the net. :biggrin2: I went to find the camera (which I had a hard time locating), but when I came back, there were 8 cuttles in the net. Some may have already hatched and been hiding in some of the algae, but I don't think so. I think I have a pretty good assessment of when they all hatched. Of the 12 eggs, 3 were small and not viable. There is still one unhatched egg that appears to be growing, but it is clearly well behind the others. I now have this in a separate net.

I have been adding several mysids in the morning and evening and they have been disappearing. Until last night, I was not sure if the mysids were dying or killing each other or being eaten by the cuttles, but last night, I watched two of the cuttles attack and eat mysid pray under a red light flashlight. :smile:

As for the mysids, 250 arrived via Reed Mariculture on Thursday Nov 28th and I have been feeding the mysids live rotifers 2x per day and frozen rotiers 1x per day (will the help of the nanny at noon when I am at work). I still have about 30 mysids and I have a new order of 500 coming this Tuesday. I also ordered the rotifers from Reed Mariculture. I had a ciliate explosion yesterday, but a fellow Bay Area Reefers pitched in and supplied another culture, so I will have two going today. I expect the first culture to rebound. I can always feed frozen and crushed fish food, but I have been trying the rotfiers in preparation for raising clowns some day if my broodstock ever starts laying again (they stopped after I moved them our of the 125G which will be the DT for the cuttles).

Here are some pics and vids:








 

DWhatley

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Likely just perspective but the cuttle in the glass looks big to me for bendensis. The fact that they are eating immediately is also odd for the reports we have on bendensis (everything else looks like I would expect but I am not a cuttle keeper). This makes me wonder if we see premature hatchings and the possibly failure/success rates being related.
 

magnetar68

O. vulgaris
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Feb 25, 2012
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84
The apparent larger size is definitely from the magnification of the round cup. The actual size is spot on in terms of size for the bandensis. I am 99.9% sure these are bandensis. I can only say for certain they ate at hatch+7 days since that is the first time I observed it; but I do believe it is likely they have been feeding earlier since ~12 mysids usually disappear overnight. They probably did not eat the first few days because most of the mysids were still there the next morning. Also, as you can see from the video, they were not born with an egg sack and were very active within an hour of hatching.
 

DWhatley

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Sorry, did not mean to imply that I did not think they were bendensis only that they looked larger. I missed that your first observation was after 7 days, which is about the norm for successful animals. Being active this young is new though and likely a good sign.
 

magnetar68

O. vulgaris
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Feb 25, 2012
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11 Days Post Hatch. I still have 8 cuttles. They were very active feeding last night. I tried putting a frozen one in front of a couple of them last night and used a pipette to move it around, but they did not go for it. Shining the red light on a live one, however, and they sneak up and ate it.
500 lab raised, pollution free, disease free mysids from Reed Mariculture showed up yesterday. $126.39 including the overnight shipping. These should last me until the first week of January; but the holidays will make the next shipment a little tricky. This should get me to 20 Days Post Hatch, so maybe I can wean them onto frozen starting 12/28?. I might just order another 500 for delivery 12/28 to be safe.

The 9th cuttle hatched this morning. Still has the egg yolk attached. I don't think he is going to survive. He is much smaller than the others when they hatched. I have him in a separate net for now.
 

DWhatley

Kraken
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Did you try shining the red light on the frozen? I am curious if the light makes a difference. It would be a nice discovery if it does.
 

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