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Seabass's Banggai Cardinalfish Nursery

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Pjanssen
14 minutes ago, seabass said:

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Congratulations!

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seabass

Yay, just sold 5 more of them to my LFS.

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Tired

Oh, I love 'em. It's a shame they don't stay that tiny, they're like little striped snowflakes. Wonder how much trouble it'd be to breed a (healthy) miniature variety. 

 

And it looks like your RFA is reproducing, too! Babies all 'round.

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seabass
12 minutes ago, Tired said:

Wonder how much trouble it'd be to breed a (healthy) miniature variety.

I assume that it might take several generations to breed a notably smaller variety (not that they are huge fish to begin with).

 

16 minutes ago, Tired said:

looks like your RFA is reproducing, too! Babies all 'round.

Yeah, it's becoming a PITA. :lol:

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Ratvan

And how is Eddie in the Carribbean tank doing? 

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seabass

That's a great name.  He's doing good (managing to stay out of the anemones and the sea bass's mouths).  He eats like a champ too.  I thought about moving him, but he seems to be doing quite well where he's at.

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Tired

Oh, yeah, it'd definitely take a few generations to get anywhere. But it should reasonably be possible to breed anything smaller, and I'm just picturing a bunch of bangaii cardinals, half the size of usual ones, in a nice little group. That'd be amazing in a nano with nothing to scare them. The question would be if it's possible to breed them notably smaller and still have them be healthy. 

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seabass

When I fed the parents tonight, the father gulped down some food.  This means more babies. :rolleyes:

 

I checked the overflow and saw three newly released babies.  Realizing that my external overflow needed modding (based on the last attempt to use it), I cut apart a dirty filter cartridge.

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Safe for the little ones:

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Here they are:

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The anemone provide some shelter and helps reduce the flow in the fuge.

 

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seabass

I guess not so safe.  One already got sucked out.  So I stuffed some filter material in the plumbing to slow down the flow.  Should be good for tonight anyway.  I might have to come up with something else tomorrow.

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SeaFurn
8 minutes ago, seabass said:

I guess not so safe.  One already got sucked out.  So I stuffed some filter material in the plumbing to slow down the flow.  Should be good for tonight anyway.  I might have to come up with something else tomorrow.

Wow - surprised they got sucked out with that filter pad in place.

How long do you expect they will continue to have babies? 

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Tired

I don't know for sure that banggais do this, but many species of small fish (i.e. ones that get eaten a lot) will pretty much breed until they die. A lot of small animals do. Given that banggais don't live too long (I don't think), they probably don't run out of breeding time.

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seabass

I believe Tired is correct.  Which sucks for the male, who has been lucky if he gets to eat for a couple of weeks before scooping up more eggs (followed by another month long fast).  It's crazy how little time he has to build back up.  I figure that he has to be eating some of them to survive.

 

I've read that breeding pairs have shorter lives due to the demands of breeding.  And actually, I believe it's the female that tends to die first.  Hard to believe that egg production is harder on her than not eating for a month at a time.

 

Average life spans in the wild also tend to be significantly shorter than their captive counterparts.  I got this pair the first of November 2018; which must make them around two years old.  From what I've read, I suspect I'll lose one of them before the end of this year.

 

2 hours ago, SeaFurn said:

surprised they got sucked out with that filter pad in place.

It's not a well engineered nursery.  By blocking the overflow with the pad, a bit of water spills over the top.  I suspect one of them just got too close to the edge.

 

I plan to drill a hole in the plumbing to reduce the pressure (and amount of water entering the refugium).  This will likely be more reliable than blocking the outlet.

 

I'm tempted to build my own external fuge.  I'm pretty sure I could come up with a better design.  Maybe I'll take another look at what's commercially available.  I might just need to buy a different fuge.

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Tired

If I were you, I'd be feeding the male as much as he'd possibly eat during his eating periods. Does he visibly gain and lose weight? That's a very bad thing for most species, gaining and losing fat (which is part of why being somewhat overweight is much healthier for you than fighting it constantly) at a rapid pace. Bangaii cardinals might be more resistant to it, though. Or they may just not be designed to live very long in the first place. Clearly whatever they're doing is working, since they exist as a species. 

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seabass

Yeah, my clownfish love it when the male gets to eat again.  When possible, they get three a day meals.

 

I wonder how many of the babies are eaten by the other fish before they make it to the overflow.

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mcarroll
12 hours ago, seabass said:

I've read that breeding pairs have shorter lives due to the demands of breeding.  And actually, I believe it's the female that tends to die first.  Hard to believe that egg production is harder on her than not eating for a month at a time.

Not such a big deal for a fish with such a big mouth IMO.   The mouth is no coincidence -- it enable LOTS of calories to be eaten in ONE BIG BITE.   Even under "normal circumstance" I wouldn't feel too bad feeding a fish like this well only once a week or even every other week.....from there, going to once a month isn't THAT MUCH of a stretch.  Especially if they're designed for it, which they clearly are!

 

👍

 

Seabass this is one of my favorite threads!  Thanks for having this tank and raising these fish and continuing to post about it!

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mcarroll
Surprisingly neither of these addresses the question directly of whether your cards can eat while brooding, but the second one seems to indicate it's no problem...and that the male would probably eat the whole brood if it were a problem:

(Both are interesting nonetheless.)

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picoreef78

Kudos to your Baggai's!! Good luck!

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seabass

Eddie:

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seabass

The last four on the way to the LFS.

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The male is holding another batch.  We'll see if I get to start the fun all over again. :unsure:

 

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picoreef78

Most impressive. I secretly wanted to rear Baggai Cardinal Fish, Unfortunately not a luck in keeping them. 

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seabass

Three more this week:

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Going to try to raise this batch.

 

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seabass

I've been decapsulating brine shrimp eggs to feed the three babies.  Then I put some of the eggs in a hatchery overnight to feed them the next day.

 

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Tired

Oh, little snowflakes. So cute at that size! 

 

Do you ever have any trouble getting the babies to eat, or do you just have to put the food in with them? 

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seabass

IME there are a few key stages.

  1. Initial feeding, with live baby brine shrimp, seem to help trigger feeding.  I also try to feed decapsulated brine shrimp eggs (which are fairly nutritious).  At this size, it's sometimes hard to see when or what they are eating.  Some of the babies seem a lot more adventurous than others.  An established biofilter is a must, as you don't want ammonia levels climbing.
  2. Transitioning to frozen food (frozen cyclops)
  3. Switching from frozen cyclops to frozen mysis shrimp

Once they are eating frozen mysis, I haven't had any problems.

 

What's weird is that I had one accidentally get released into one of my other tanks.  Several weeks later, I saw it come out to eat the frozen mysis shrimp that I was feeding the other fish. :whoa:  It must have survived by eating random pods in the tank.

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Christopher Marks
16 hours ago, seabass said:

What's weird is that I had one accidentally get released into one of my other tanks.  Several weeks later, I saw it come out to eat the frozen mysis shrimp that I was feeding the other fish. :whoa:  It must have survived by eating random pods in the tank.

Now that is cool! Finding Nemo 😄 

 

Great the see the nursery going seabass! You're planning to keep these three for one of your tanks?

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