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Mantis shrimp

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Beckmola24

Hawkfish
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
1,112
Location
Columbus, OH
Ok now I'm starting to worry... I found my mantis about 3 weeks ago. He's grown quite a lot in that time period. Today while I was watching the copepods at the bottom of my tank I noticed about 20 more mantis shrimp... Tiny little things. They look just like the one I caught awhile ago. I guess the rest of the eggs hatched. Now I'm unindated with Mantis'. I'm positive they are all mantis shrimp. They look like praying mantis with their claws and they have all the physical characteristics of mantis shrimp. Not sure what I'm going to do with 20+ mantis shrimp. :confused:
 

jlehigh

Hermit D Crab
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
1,208
Location
Kirkland/Juanita
Time to fire up the barbi! :) WOW! 20! It sounds like it will be a species only tank in no time :( I would imagine they are hungry as sin and you could probably catch a bunch at a time with some form of baited trap..
 

Beckmola24

Hawkfish
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
1,112
Location
Columbus, OH
My big mantis is gaining some green and red color. I think he'll be beautiful when full grown. How large of a tank should I keep him in eventually?? I don't know how much room they need.
 

NaH2O

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
8,568
The probability that mantis eggs hatched and made it to the stage they are at is very small, but it is possible. Especially given the descriptions you have given - definately sounds like mantis. Anyway you can post a pic of your bigger guy?
 

Curtswearing

Mantisfreak
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
2,203
Location
St. Louis, MO
I wish you luck and I hope I don't bum you out too much. Apparently it is very difficult to keep the brood alive. Here is some info from Dr. Roy Caldwell.

It is not clear whether you are referring to eggs or larvae. Eggs will take from 12 to 21 days to hatch depending on the species. Once they hatch, their fate will again depend on the species. Gonodactlus larvae will remain with the mother for another week, molt three times and then enter the plankton where they will stare to death in a couple of days. It is nearly impossible to rear them without very specialized facilitiies and the proper live food.

They won't survive powerheads once they get to this stage so if you wanted to take a shot at keeping some of the babies alive, you will need a separate tank with only a sponge filter or airstone and heater. They are also cannibalistic so you need to separate them or provide proper hiding places.

Here's some more info....

Rearing young isn't impossible, but it is very, very difficult. Cannibalism is certainly a major problem, but so are disease and food. People have had the greatest success with gonodactylids. They start out relatively large when hatched (a little over a mm) and stay in the plankton for only three to four weeks. When they settle as postlarvae, they will be 6-8 mm total length. Brine shrimp naupli are NOT an adequate food. I have had some success treating brine shrimp naupli with additives such as Selco, but you probably should have other food available as well. Rotifers (for the first couple of stages) and larvae from cleaner shrimp are useful.

My only success came trying to rear young of Gonodactylus chiragra. We isolated 100 larvae the day after they became free swiming (fourth stadium) place each in a 250 ml beaker, provided food and changed the water daily, and after a month, two postlarve settled. All of the others had died.

My guess is that a large "edgeless" rearing tank similar to those used for cleaner shrimp might work if the proper food were available, but mortality from cannibalism would be very high.

Small egged species with long planktonic periods would seem to me to be nearly impossible. These would include Odontodactylids, Pseudosquillids, Squillid, and some Lysiosquillids. If you must have a go at it, stick with gonodactylids.

Roy


Secrets of the Stomatopod
 

Beckmola24

Hawkfish
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
1,112
Location
Columbus, OH
Well I finally did it. I put a tiny hermit crab in the mantis tank.
:( I'll see how it goes from there. The crab is bigger than the shrimp, but it's the smallest i could find. What else should I be feeding the shrimp, and what size tank should I eventually put him in??
 

NaH2O

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
8,568
Beckmola - here is a link to Stomatopod Care and Rearing. hope it helps a little

Great info Curt. I think it is interesting how they will cannibalise on each other...although it makes perfect sense. I wonder which one will make it :)
 

Curtswearing

Mantisfreak
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
2,203
Location
St. Louis, MO
It might ignore the crab for a while. Don't worry about that. Small snails are also good once it gets bigger (a LOT more protein). Also, be careful not to overfeed. If they get full, they will just bury the uneaten part in the sand and you will end up with nitrate problems.

Variety is the spice of life. A variety of seafoods from the grocery store can be very good. Obviously it is important to soak the seafood in RO/DI water to remove excess phosphates. This will help limit algae blooms later on. There's some more reading on this mantis forum
 

Curtswearing

Mantisfreak
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
2,203
Location
St. Louis, MO
Beckmola24 said:
My big mantis is gaining some green and red color. I think he'll be beautiful when full grown. How large of a tank should I keep him in eventually?? I don't know how much room they need.
Typically 10-15 gallons is sufficient. It's got to get big enough for us to figure out what type you have for me to say for sure. Identifying juveniles is VERY difficult. Most mantis don't need any special precautions in their nano-tanks other than changing the heater to a titanium one or moving the glass heater to a sump or stuck to the top with suction cups and covering over the pilot light with black electrical tape.

There are 3 species of smashers that, when full grown, are going to need special precautions. Your post indicated red and green. Hopefully you have an O.s. (Peacock or Clown) which is my favorite. Unfortunately, Peacocks are one of the 3 that eventually need to be moved out of a glass tank and into an acrylic tank when it starts getting to the 4.5 to 5 inch range.
 

Beckmola24

Hawkfish
Joined
Mar 17, 2004
Messages
1,112
Location
Columbus, OH
Already have that covered. I currently have a 12 gallon acrylic ready to go when he gets strong enough to avoid the powerheads and currents. This sounds like a stupid question, but I have been feeding him squid and various other frozen foods. I added a hermit today. Will it learn to go after the hermit?
 

NaH2O

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
8,568
They are a predator by nature, so going after live prey will be instinctual. However, if they have the choice of not working very hard for their food, or working for food - I think they'll choose the easier path. It is important for their health to smash things, so I'd toss in several small snails as well. They can lose their clubs if not "excercised". Curt can probably elaborate more about this, as I'm not certain in juvenile stages when the importance of smashing comes into play.
 

Curtswearing

Mantisfreak
Joined
Nov 20, 2003
Messages
2,203
Location
St. Louis, MO
Yeah, it will probably just watch the crabs and snails while it matures. Then one day, it'll go after them due to instinct. I'm not actually sure when it will start hammering on them (assuming you have a Peacock Mantis).
 
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