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Berghia Breeding Trial

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This is a setup I put together in order to begin collecting and propogating aiptasia in end attempt to breed and raise berghia nudibranchs. Hoping to breed them for future needs and to have excess for others. 




The top section is a flood tray mostly used for hydroponics. I am planning to keep trios of berghia in cups with lids in the tray; using cups to keep berghias separate from aiptasia production and also to maintain nudibranchs' temperatures. I plan to move trios to new containers when I notice they have produced eggs. The system's water drains from the tray through four buckets (to house aiptasia) and also overflows in the drain pipe to a fifth (chaeto chamber). Some giant DIY clothepins regulate the amount of water allowed to the nem buckets. There's some lump charcoal in each bucket to reduce toxins during/after propogation events. The four remote buckets can be moved away from the system (after the pump is off) for systematic rotating, harvesting, and/or anemone propagation. The bulbs over the nem propogation buckets are all LED - smaller one to allow for mild environment laceration healing - the other ones are 6700K spotlights. 8 bulb T5 with light mover over the tray - shared with some plants.






The stacked containers on the right are for an RODI res (on top) to a float valve, and the bottom one is for (holding up the top-off res and water surface/volume expansion at the sump because I was worried that the water level would flood the holes (cut for the buckets) in the sump when the pump was turned off because of the surface area/volume of water coming down from the tray. I'm also going to stick some rubble in there. A small pump moves water out of the bottom bin to pull water from the sump through the 3/4" tube connecting the two bins at below water line.




It's cycled, went through a brown hair algae tantrum - distributed 25 blue leg hermits, 50+ dwarf ceriths - it's starting to clear up - started adding aiptasia after quickly blending them (about 2 weeks ago):




Will be ordering some berghia when I think that there's too much aiptasia


Thanks for reading - comments/suggestions greatly welcomed!

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Looks like a good idea, and definitely worth a try. I'd experiment a bit to see what foods the aiptasia grow fastest on, and feed them on that, as heavily as you can without outright crashing the system. You could also look around a bit and see if anyone in the area might have other species of them- some seem to grow faster than others, and you'd probably want the fastest-growing ones possible for if/when you get your nudis breeding. 


It may also be worth doing some testing to try and figure out exactly how much a berghia needs to eat. I'm wondering now if someone could do a berghia display, if it had a sump full of aiptasia rocks that could be rotated in for the nudis to eat. If that would work, they'd be about the easiest nudibranch in the hobby, and not a bad-looking one either!


Edit: I don't know if you've read these already, but I found these bits of info that may prove useful. 



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For feeding, I had been thinking of just broadcasting brine shrimp (frozen, sometimes live) for the aiptasias since they should be able to reproduce sufficiently from almost just light. My concern with "nutritious" foods is that it may foul the water when hundreds upon hundreds of anemones are individually performing the excretion ceremony. I have been made aware that this system has an enormous evaporation rate (huge surface area), so much that the 12G top off container has a hard time keeping up within a week, I often catch the pump blowing bubbles..... soooo I'm going to run an RODI line straight to this thing shortly. The aiptasias are growing - there's little ones all over - I have not manually propogated them again yet. I added several blue leg hermits and dwarf ceriths snails to all compartments of this system to help with algaes - nothing is out of control though. Need to try propogating a few times and order containers still before I order nudis - just a few more weeks I think.

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