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Refugiam prep, tank make over, and a new chapter!

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This does help me.
Along the lines of how much to plan spending a week- how much did you know to feed them and how often?
Also- were you able to transition them over to frozen food or did you stick to live?
I fed them as much as they seemed able to eat within a five to ten minute time frame every day. For about the first month it was two feedings a day. This usually amounted to like a very small dip net of mysids at first. They insisted on live prey for a LONG time. I think they were maybe three or so months old before they showed any interest in thawed krill, even when I tried to "re-animate" it by impaling it on a stick. Anyways, hatchlings are voracious, and my experience is just the one time, others here certainly have other experiences.

Oh, and many times it was more the fact that I couldn't keep the stupid feeder shrimp alive for longer than a week that necessitated ordering more at exorbitant prices.
 

KD5054

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I've read that you can keep bristleworms in your tank with cephs and that they are a good cleaner crew to manage inbetween rocks. I am seeing I have a good number of descent sized bristleworms in my tank- am I doing fine to simply leave them be. Or should I be more careful on that area?
 

DWhatley

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I hate them but I have tons in my tanks (unavoidable with FL live rock). The only time they seem to be a major bother is when the octopus is heavily in senescence. I tend to place the dying animal in a breeder net at the point that they start eating on the octopus (the octopus seems not to know or care at this point, it will flick them away when healthy)
 

KD5054

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Thank you so much. I was able to figure out it was a mushroom. A fellow hobbiest confirmed it to be a St Thomas mushroom.


Any thoughts on a coral called chili coral? For a ceph tank.
 

DWhatley

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Chili corals are difficult to keep but I don't believe there is any problem with them stinging.
 

KD5054

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Okay!
Just got the word that a batch of cuttlefish eggs are in and ready. A few of them have even already hatched. I was thinking of getting 3 as a good number if I am able.
Plan to go by there tomorrow (Saturday) to pick a few of them up to get started.
I purchased a marina holding and breeding box 0.5 gallon that is made so you can attach it to run with your main tank flow but keep them in a smaller area as fry grow.

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I am told there are several hobbyist who raise and sell brine shrimp and pods as well as the store has a starter for raising brine shrimp. Will this be a good enough of a nutrition for them? Everywhere I read states miasis shrimp. Suggestions here?
Any other tips for this next step will be much appreciated.
Whoohoo!
 

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DWhatley

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Brine shrimp have (over and over) been shown to NOT provide the nutrition they need. Often they will eat the brine but will not survive. There has been some success with amphipods but the only consistent successful new hatch food has been mysid shrimp. The need to feed them live mysid until they grow enough to eat frozen is the main reason many keepers do not continue to try to raise cuttlefish.
 

KD5054

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Brine shrimp have (over and over) been shown to NOT provide the nutrition they need. Often they will eat the brine but will not survive. There has been some success with amphipods but the only consistent successful new hatch food has been mysid shrimp. The need to feed them live mysid until they grow enough to eat frozen is the main reason many keepers do not continue to try to raise cuttlefish.
Spot on- glad to get this confirmed.
What about pods? I can get my hands on live pods-tiger pods?
 

DWhatley

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Size seems to be an important factor. There have been reports of a few successes with unspecific "pods" but I would try both and ensure they are eating the pods before trying to eliminate the mysid. Unfortunately, it is VERY hard to observe them eating when they first hatch (and they may not eat at all during the first few days) so it may be difficult to determine what they are eating. If you are willing to experiment, splitting your brood may be worth the effort but only if you double your egg purchase.
 

KD5054

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Okay- so I will say that while I have been preparing for my next cephalopod I was not exactly expecting them to come in so fast as I was waiting for news on a potential octopus that I thought was coming in. It was sorta a friend of a friend who told a store to get them for me without me knowing it. SO...a bit of a catch up here. I was hoping to have a better set up for feeding. But am working on that as fast as I can now. (Not exactly how I was planning but am going to sure as heck try and make this work)
So far I have 3 eggs and one already hatched hatchling. I added some very small live pods that they had at the store as it was all they had. The store actually wasn't too sure what to do with them.
I have also ordered some live miasis shrimp. Not sure if those will be too big as this guy who is so itty bitty. I have the eggs and the single cuttle separated by a divider in the breeder box. My thought/plan was to contact my local club as there are various raisers of pods and such. I want to see if I cant get the miasis to stay alive a little longer if I add them to the last compartment in the holding/breeding set up I have. IF not then plan B is to keep getting them for them. I found several online sources and one was not too spendie but want to see how they look when they come in before I give the name out. I know it says to watch and make sure they are eating but they are so small I have no idea how to tell other then just add the whole batch of pods and see what happens. They are flowing through both their tank and the main tank which I can feed. Giving lots of water flow to help with water quality.
It sounds like its mainly the small size that makes this stage hard-once they get to a certain size its not as difficult to get them to eat and then hopefully switch to frozen?

Please advise if I am missing any key points here as I really want to do this right.
 

DWhatley

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LOL, now you know why I mentioned that size of the food seems important and why it is so hard to tell if they are eating. One thing that seems to help is to add some floating seaweed/algae to the breeder. I am not sure if this helps because the cuttles like to hang out in it or if the food congregates there and are easier to find (or both). I found that frozen daphnia and very, very gentle water movement helped keep the mysid alive MUCH longer.
 

KD5054

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Haha-yeah no kidding. Yeah- I actually did add some Kato (spelling?) for that reason as well as a small rock I figure pods might be in. Wasn't sure how much to add. I also have just a small amount of sand in there for them as well. (will post photos when my phone to computer is working)
I also ordered some Grass Shrimp as recommended by the video to use for feeding this breed of cuttlefish. I figure I can add them to my refugium and get them going for when they are older or if luck maybe catch the larvae if they breed in the tank. I saw the video this was recommended as the most nutritious.
I am supposed to get the Mysid shrimp hopefully Tuesday which I will add and try the frozen daphnia. For now I have to cross my fingers the itty bitty pod critters in the tank will be suitable. Which they look about the right size. But hard to tell like you said.
My goal here-is to one day get all this down to a charm. :wink: So is the hope.
 

KD5054

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Here are some photos of what I have set up. I have the eggs separated from the one hatchling for the time being for fear of a size difference. The little guy that hatched has been mild to moderate in activity. Moving from on top of a shell to the side of it and has displayed some very nice colors. I still am not sure what it is eating. I have some very small pods in there as well as a few larger ones. I have myisis shrimp coming but alas they will not get here for at least another day or two with it being the weekend. Always scared I'm going to find him floating...hope I don't as he is pretty cute.
Should I add more seaweed/algae? Wasn't sure how much to add.

Also I was finally able to get my auto-top off going. Once I finally found directions for it. Turns out to be worth the hefty price I paid for it as its super quiet and working great!
 

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DWhatley

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I am not sure that it matters but you might let some of the Cheato float along the top. If you try floating some of it, journal any differences you see behavior (including none)
 

KD5054

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I have shrimp that is supposed to be shipped and arrive by Thursday. I hope this is fast enough as with the weekend it was the only option I could find for them. Hence the rush.
I am working on trying to figure out a weekly order set up for Mysid shrimp for the small stage and while working on that I am going to see if I cant start getting some of the glass shrimp that was recommended as the best source for feeding the larger size going in my refugium and perhaps a few in my main tank as there is nothing in there.
The eggs have not yet hatched-is there a reference of how long they take to hatch?
But I have the one little guy who came as a surprise that I hope I can get food for him in time. He seems fairly active moving around a bit. I have different size copepods in there for him and some small things. Not a ton as I don't want to make him feel scared but hopefully enough for him to hold out until Thursday.
 
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