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Old 03-09-2011, 10:55 PM   #1
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Cardinalfish breeding success?

I have two Banghai cardinalfish that keep trying to breed. They'll lay eggs into the male's mouth, he'll keep them in his mouth for about two days and then, boom he's empty. I've never seen a hatched cardinal in or around his mouth and I can't get am urchin because he's in a reef aquarium. Any ideas?
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:12 AM   #2
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What size is the tank? Why can't you get an urchin?? I have a long spine black one in a reef tank. Anyways that is not why they are loosing the eggs. The first few times they breed it is common for the male to loose his eggs. If you see them doing the mating dance try to feed them more. The male does not eat while he carries the eggs so if he does not have enough stored up food he will drop/eat the eggs.

Mine have only bred once and he had the eggs for about a week before losing them. I'm hoping they will try again soon. Try googleing some articles on breeding the cardinals, that is what I did and a lot of them have great info. here are a few

JoM Article: Raising and Breeding the Banggai Cardinalfish, by Frank C Marini Ph.D.

Breeding Banggai Cardinals
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Old 03-10-2011, 03:10 AM   #3
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We have a 36 gal corner tank with two Banghais, a powder brown tang and a green mandarin. Our local fish guy suggested forgoing the urchin because of the types of corals we have. They seem to be really happy without it anyways, and they gave adopted our Kenya tree on one side for protection. I think perhaps he just got too hungry, they laid eggs two weeks in a row to no avail, so that's a long time to go without food. Any thoughts on what to do with them if they hatch?
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:04 PM   #4
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Urchins will not go anywhere near corals (for food), they are algae eaters. There is a possibility that they might accidentally knock something over but that's about it. I would return the kenya tree, many people see them as weeds more than a nice coral. They grow very quickly and very easily will take over the tank. They reproduce by dropping their arms which will then float around and attach to another rock. I just returned two that i had in my nano. I thought if i kept them isolated they would not spread but once they started dropping their arms i was picking out probably about 10 chunks a day. They definitely had to go haha. The powder brown tang will also not live long in a 36 gal corner tank. Tangs need a 6ft long tank for swimming room, if not they will get stressed and die eventually.

If you get any baby cardinals i would catch them and separate them from the other fish. If not they will be eaten. They spend awhile (i forget how many days..its probably in those articles) in the fathers mouth after hatching so i would catch the father a couple days after you noticed they have hatched and move him with the babies to another tank (that has been set up and cycled). Once he releases the babies you can move the father back to the display tank. The babies also love a place to hide in. I have read of people making their own replica of a long spined urchin and the young took to it right away. The babies will need to be fed live brine so you will need to get some eggs to hatch them. It's all in that first article i posted actually im pretty sure.

Good luck! and make sure to post if they ever decide to keep their eggs
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:16 PM   #5
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:13 AM   #6
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We are in the middle of a new five footer, just waiting for it to cycle so I'm sure the tang will love his new running room. I'm not a fan of the Kenya trees either, but I'm not the only tank enthusiast in this house so we agreed it could stay until it became a nuisance. On regards to the Banghais, the next time I see his cheeks full I'll try to snap a quick picture and post for you. I'd be so excited to have baby Banghais, and frankly I feel honored that they like thier home enough to want to breed in it. We'll see how it goes and I'll try to give them extra food when I see her do the funny swimming dance.
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Old 03-11-2011, 09:50 AM   #7
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Good idea and good luck! I'll post if my couple ever try to breed again too. I've read that they tend to try more in the spring so fingers crossed! The babies are so cute too, look at some youtube videos if yah get the chance.
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