Prepping for Babies! (In the food dish this time. Sigh.)

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wodesorel
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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:05 pm

None of the them made it. Once they had died and turned white it was easier to see them. The majority were deformed - twisted at odd angles, way undersized, some where not fully formed - and there were dozens of eggs that hadn't popped open. Something happened to either make her release too early, or they just weren't going to be viable at all so she gave up.

Hoping on the next set. There'll be at least one more, but I know which crab it is and I can only just see the hint of eggs back there, so I'm not trusting my ability of seeing eggs on any other crab in that tank. I'll just keep up with the daily water changes and checking the tank several times a day and maybe I'll get a surprise before Holo (the known pregnant one) has hers in a month.

I couldn't bring myself to just wash or throw the babies away, and I didn't want to bury a bowl of salt water, so I put them in the fiddler tank. I liked the thought of them nourishing the next generation of fids/guppies in there.

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:57 am

My husband and I talked about it all weekend, and we really want to make a go of trying for Holo's babies. So.... I just got done placing mega orders for proper supplies. I still need to pick up a few more things at the hardware store, and a new tank, and some live sand when the babies hatch. We might be getting help from his side of the family (if we treat it as an "investment"), and if not, well, I'm happy to discover that I do in fact still have credit! :banghead: :lol: It's worth it, and it can't be helped or we'd have to wait until next summer.

We'll have either a 20 or 30 gallon with an home-made in-tank sump, heater, filter material, powerhead, and bubbler. I bought a 200 gallon box (65 pound!) of Kent Marine Salt. (Which was freaking AWESOME given how cheap it was!! $45! Free shipping! Yeah!) Calcium, Iodide, and Kalkwasser since I'm hoping for a cycled tank and the elements will need to be dosed if there aren't constant water changes.

I also got starter cultures for rotifers and phytoplankton and bought everything I need to get those up and running. (And a real brine shrimp hatchery as well for ease.) I'm hoping that the cultures work as it would be perfect food for the fiddlers year-round.

Still trying to source a giant hunk of aquarium foam to make the in-tank sump work, but I think I might have some leads thanks to a very friendly reed forum. :)

With luck everything will get here in a week and it'll be set up and ready before she lays!! :D

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Tue Jul 31, 2012 1:30 pm

Really holding my breath for the next batch as it looks like everything won't be here until at least Monday. I'm assuming they won't be laid until the 9th or 10th seeing as that's when last quarter happens, but I'm not sure since wolf's were a few days sooner than that from fertilization to being laid. Just crossing my fingers!

Holo is doing well. The eggs are still there and still a rather bright orange. It's a bit unnerving though since she doesn't seem to be able to hang onto them very well and she had a bunch of dried out ones on her back and between her legs. :? Not sure why and I'm hoping it's not a sign of a problem. I'm also still not sure if there are others who are carrying. I swore I woke up two mornings ago to the aftermath of another mating party, but I just don't know if that's what they were doing.

And I positively LOVE Fosters & Smith! They had my order in the mail three hours after I placed it! It'll be the first to arrive on Saturday. :D The salt box shipped today. (Which is fine, I have a box of Instant Ocean just in case.) Thankfully most everything I need is in that first batch so if the babies do come early I should be able to get a livable tank set up for them and then can wait on the rest. (Petco was only the air pump supplies and the heater, and of course the cultures are coming from another place altogether. There will be brine shrimp to get them started at least. :) )

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 1:55 pm

I suddenly realized that all four packages shipped with Fedex. :smt076

I don't know if any of you remember all the fun times I've had with the ex, but I've never once got a package delivered on time or to my door. They deliver it to the neighbors who we've never met, or just hang on to it for days at a time. :(

Two are supposed to be here today, according to tracking. Wanna take bets that they aren't here by 9 tonight? sigh.....

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 2:58 pm

Three days or more... I'm hoping for next week (Last quarter), but it'll be 24 days on Monday.

And I spoke too soon (or maybe speaking up changes fate ;) ) but the packages just got here. :D Have to wait for the ones coming tomorrow to get everything set up, but the food is here and is waiting for air pumps. :)

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:19 pm

Yeah, but like an idiot I forgot to get starter food for the rotifers. *facepalm* I really hope hubby is up to running to Alliance tonight as the PSP there should have something I can use. So much more to get! Trying not to forget anything.

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 9:25 pm

OMG OMG OMG OMG

There's a third with eggs! And hers are farther along than Holo! :shock: Timetable is moved up to like, today!

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:06 pm

Yeah, I'm so not ready for them, and the brief glimpse I got (it was all "OMG EGGS SORRRYYYY!!!" and back she went into the tank) looked just like the photos wolf has of the day hers laid. So I'm thinking it'll be tonight or tomorrow. :shock:

The aquarium silicone I bought is 48 hour cure before use. :( So no tank until Saturday night. :crybaby: I didn't realize that until after I had used it. If they come they'll go into a bucket with an airstone for now. Food won't be ready for a while. :(

I thought that Mighty Man had been guarding another female all day, so I wanted to check to see if she had eggs, but I lost track of her so I started looking at all the crab in the area who were wearing Mexican Turbos, and while I was expecting little orange eggs I was so not prepared for a whole bunch of grey eggs with eyeballs!!

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by Charper » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:25 pm

Your house is gonna be filled with little hermit babies! :D

I don't know if this helps or not, but I found this ebay listing for some really small shells. Some of them look a lot smaller than the quarter in the picture, but I'm not sure if they would be small enough for any babies. The listing says there are many 1/4" and under.

Here's the link: http://www.ebay.com/itm/500-INDIAN-OCEA ... m4aba4c021

The best part is, it's only 4.00 and something for over 500 shells! :)

Edit: I just noticed that the same seller who sells the shells above has a bunch of other listings for really small shells. They appear to be affordable too.
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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wolfnipplechips » Thu Aug 02, 2012 10:29 pm

WOW!!!! :shock: :shock: :shock: I'm excited for you, and sorry at the same time. So. Many. BABIES! :shock: Hope you can keep them alive until you get a tank set up! My set up is basically a bucket with an air stone, so they should be just fine for a few days like that if you can find something to feed them with. :)
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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by Squeaky » Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:12 am

Is there any chance the more advanced-stage babies could eat the ones a few weeks behind? It's a horrible thought, but the newer ones will be smaller and seem more like "food" to the growing ones? Or no?

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Fri Aug 03, 2012 11:13 am

Squeaky wrote:Is there any chance the more advanced-stage babies could eat the ones a few weeks behind? It's a horrible thought, but the newer ones will be smaller and seem more like "food" to the growing ones? Or no?
Unfortunately I have a feeling it will be just like this. :( I don't have the space to set up another tank this year and I'm not sure I want double the work on my first try. However, they would be a good meal for those that are larger so it wouldn't be a total loss.

Hubby looked at me last night and said "next year I'm envisioning the front room as a giant hermit crab hatchery with tanks and tubs and kiddie pools everywhere". I just grinned! :lol:


I'm not so worried about keeping them in a bucket, but I am worried about moving them into another tank. I have visions of lots of hurt little babies and it scares me. :(

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Fri Aug 03, 2012 11:46 am

Shelving unit has been deconstructed and things moved around so once we get the hissers downstairs there will be room for the tank. :)

(I am totally not in love with hubby right now. I don't know what his obsession is with driving around with our tools, but when I need a power drill it's never in the house. :cry: I had to pull that thing apart by hand, and those were three inch deck screws!!!! Ow. )


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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by Squeaky » Fri Aug 03, 2012 12:52 pm

Too late for this year, but would a long tank with glass dividers be an option for multiple batches of babies? Holes in the glass with filter media wo the water can pass through and be shared (therebyenabling only one water change for all the sections) but not allowing the babies to mingle?

I can only hope to ever have eggs on one of my hermies, I can't believe what it must be like in your position right now. Consider this a "once upon a dream" idea if anyone ever goes the route of creating a hermie hatchery!

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Re: Prepping for Babies!

Post by wodesorel » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:09 pm

I wouldn't know what to use as dividers. I'm thinking maybe micron screens used for sorting plankton? It's a good idea for sure as long as you could get enough water movement and oxygenation to all of the sections without the babies getting stuck on the screening. Even then, wolf says that her 20 was barely large enough for the amount of babies she got from one crab. So a 55 gallon would give you maybe two good section, so having separate tanks would probably be easier. (Or, kiddie pool with dividers that are like pizza cuts. :lol: )


Wolf is going to make the history books, not me!!

I'm just refining what she's done. Her goal was to get a couple to survive (and I think it'll be much more than that ;) ). My goal is to set up something that doesn't require a lot time or effort past the actual set-up, and to go for maximum survival. I'm trying to prove that large-scale breeding is a viable alternative to wild harvesting, as long as one has females that become gravid. (And so I can attempt to breed fiddler crabs in the off season - the set-up would be the same, surprisingly, and they give me eggs in the winter months.)

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