In the text below I shall try to give a short overview of some of the basics when breeding crayfish. Particular species may have other behaviours and demands. It should be said that my main experience as an aquarist is with relation to fish, but I shall try to convey what little knowledge I have.
Sexing crayfish isn't always easy. The genital openings are located in different places on the body depending on whether it's a male or a female. Males have their genital openings behind/under their posterior pair of legs. Females have their genital openings under the third pair of legs counted from the posterior. However, many individuals have a male as well as a female genital opening, making the sexing much more complicated. But these are always either male or female; usually male but you can't be sure.
Mating and egg carrying
In aquariums, spawning is possible any time of year. The male makes a little sperm packet and places it on the female's stomach. The female then spawns her eggs, passing them through the sperm packet so that the eggs get fertilized. It is not uncommon for the female to lose a claw during this process. She then places the eggs under her tail where they will be kept until they are ready to be released. How long this will be depends on the water temperature and the species, but it will be at least 4 weeks. A lot of other factors can also affect the length of the egg carrying period, such as water quality, and food supply and quality. The mother will watch over the young for a short time after birth.
The fry are very small when they are born but are fully developed miniature crayfish. Fry are usually detritus feeders, which means that they will feed on any decomposing plant parts and food leftovers they can find while scouring the bottom. Vegetable food is preferred and they can be fed boiled lettuce leaves that are left to decay in the aquarium. Be aware of the water quality. Fry are often very cannibalistic and a large aquarium is required if you want a higher number of fry to survive. Sorting fry for size may help the survival rate.
Now you know about their breeding behaviour and how to raise the fry, but how can you get them to breed in the first place? Well, first of all you have to give them the right environment and good food to get them in a condition in which they can spawn. Some species also need different triggers to breed. These triggers may be a change in the amount of light and number of light hours, a change in temperature, change of circulation, etc.
Crayfish usually accept most kinds of food, and I would recommend feeding them a diet based on boiled lettuce, sinking pellets, shrimps, and once or week or so, fish meat. This will get them in good condition and help the female survive the spawning period since she usually doesn't eat while she is carrying eggs.
Many crayfish species can be kept in relatively small aquariums, but I recommend using larger aquariums since this lowers the pressure on the females by the males. The aquarium should be decorated so that a lot of hiding places of suitable size are provided. Hiding places can be created using rocks, roots, flowerpots, coconuts, PVC pipes, and so on. It's important that there is at least one, and preferably several hiding places for each crayfish.
By William Berg of Sweden, for http://www.aquaticcommunity.com
About The Author
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Take Me Fishing 6 On Your Side
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Ever Said: We Should Have Caught Bass By Now?
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A New World Record Bass
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A Technique To Catch Trophy Size Bass
There is a craze going on that produces big bass, it's called flippin. Flippin puts the lure where the big bass are.
Fishing Charter Need To Know
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How To Find Fish
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Choosing The Fishing Trip Destination Thats Right For Your Group
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The Things You Wont Look Out For (But Should) When Night Fishing
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Fly Fishing Journals - Keep Track of Your Trips
Fly fishing is addictive. Once you start, you'll never stop.
The Value of Observation
The beginner must learn to look with eyes that see. Occurrences of apparently little importance at the moment may, after consideration, assume proportions of great value.
Photographing Your Trophy Fish
When it comes to catch and release lakes, it is important for you to be ready to catch your fish, take a prize-winning shot and release your giant back into the water for others to enjoy. Before setting out on your trophy trout fishing trip with your fishing partner or guide, keep these few photo tips in mind.
The Joys of Trout Fishing
The thrill of trout fishing! It is the best, isn't it? No matter where you plan to go trout fishing, you know you are more than likely going to enjoy your trip. The sport is a sport of its own, set aside from other types of fishing.
Something Is Buzzing And Its Not Bees
We all have used buzz baits and we know why the bass like them right? It's because of that little stream of water. Wrong! It's the sound! Yep, sound attracts the bass then sight.
Cabo Sport Fishing is Like a Box of Chocolates
As Forrest Gump would say, you never know what you're going to get.Not too many things get me more excited than the prospect of hooking and landing big fish.
Why Water Skiing and Fishing Dont Mix
With the fourth of July weekend freshly behind us, I am reminded of one of the darker moments in a long and illustrious series of dark fishing moments..
Caring for Your Inflatable Boat - Common Sense & Consistency Are the Keys
Thousands of years ago, the first inflatable boats, made from animal skins, were used for transportation. People used them to cross rivers, ferry goods to other locations, and move military troops.
Swordfishing in South Florida
Southeast Florida Swordfishing - "Purple Fever"Once you have your tackle ready to go, let us describe a typical drift out in South Florida's Gulf Stream. We are basing this drift using 4 lines.
Fishing Team Gear Helps Teams Market To Sponsors
Competition between offshore and inshore anglers has skyrocketed within the last few years. As the competition increases, so does the need for fishing teams to differentiate themselves and stand out from other teams.
Introduction to Lake Fly Fishing Techniques
Often lake fish will gather in schools and cruise around looking for food, but often it is the small fish that rise to take surface insects while the bigger ones feed in deeper water.Where the fish areFish in lakes aren't much different than fish in rivers.
The Fishing Mark of Mablethorpe on the East Coast of England
MABLETHORPE, is a beach resort on the East coast of England. The beach is a long stretch of clean sands with some great fishing.
Making The Most of Your Time - Fishing Safety Rules Everyone Should Know
When you are going fishing, whether nearby your home or on a long distance trip, there are many fishing safety rules that you need to keep in mind.These rules can help prevent injury to yourself and others while shore and boat fishing.
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