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Old 12-29-2005, 01:32 AM   #1
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Seahourse fry help

I have a 30" tall 50 gallon with two pipe fish, gorgonian corals and four black Brazilian seahorses (H. Reidi), two female and two male.

I got a surprise when I checked the tank last Thursday morning; a tank full of seahorse fry. I got all of them into a 5 gallon and they were looking great initially! I went to seahorse.org and read all I could. Unfortunately, I lost all of them after a week.

Here's the set up, and feeding I was using;

Five gallon with a 2# piece of live rock removed from my main tank.
Sponge filter
50% water change using water from main tank every day; it's parameters are perfect, nitrates near zero. It also has a bunch of free swimming copepods in the water
Fed small amounts of baby brine, rotifers and cyclopeeze 4 times a day, liquid plankton once a day.
Piece of live haetomorpha algae for hitching and nitrate control
Heater set at 78, lights on for 16 hours

Now my second male is getting ready to give birth. Please help, I'm sick about losing the first bunch...

What went wrong? What can I do to keep them healthy? LFS recommended the set up I used, and something went wrong. I can't figure out what happened. I used seahourse.org as a reference, and still lost them...
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Old 12-29-2005, 10:04 AM   #2
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I've had no success with Reidi fry either. They are supposed to be one of the most difficult seahorse fry to raise. I have a male ready to pop right now again as well but lost my first batch. From what you say, sounds like you are doing all you can, they are just very very hard to rear. I'd keep doing what you are, keep plenty of food with them and hope for the best. The nice thing about the Reidi seahorses is they breed constantly and you'll always have fry from them. Just gotta keep trying. Good luck.
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Old 12-29-2005, 10:43 AM   #3
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Just imagine if you do save a few of them, and then you get some 4th and 5th gen horses going, you could have a nice hardy horse to sell to other aquarists and would be saving the ocean.

IMO it sounds like you tried your hardest and knew what you were doing.

That sounds like a LOT of food. And from personal experiance, large water changes can cause a lot of stress, atleast for my tank. On a 5gal tank, you could be throwing the salainity off by as little as .001 and it could be causing death during those changes.

I would think cutting back the feedings to maybe half, and then doing 20% changes everyday would make more sense.

Another thing to consider would maybe to setup a permanent 12g nano cube fry tank.

12g with 24 lbs of LR and a softball size thing of chaeto in the main with maybe a 2-3 inch sand bed a dozen nassarius snails, some astrea and a handfull of hermits to keep it clean till you need to use it.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DragonForce
That sounds like a LOT of food. And from personal experiance, large water changes can cause a lot of stress, atleast for my tank. On a 5gal tank, you could be throwing the salainity off by as little as .001 and it could be causing death during those changes.

I would think cutting back the feedings to maybe half, and then doing 20% changes everyday would make more sense.
I disagree but will only point out this the error in this comment. Feeding alot is absolutely necessary for raising baby seahorses. Especially Reidi fry. I've been told this by one of the best seahorse breeders, of this particular species as well as others, on the east coast. Also, I don't feel it's necessary to have a tank set up all the time. They can be reared in a bare tank and is actually better so they find the food easier.
Unless you've raised them or researched it, you have no idea how difficult it is. I would keep doing what your doing and hopefully at some point you will be successful. Good luck.
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Old 12-29-2005, 12:10 PM   #5
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Another point is that you do not want to have the sand and the rock, nor any other items as they can introduce harmful elements into the nursery. If you get them past the microscopic food stage, you may then want to consider an intermediate nursery tank.

Multiple water changes daily is an integral part of the success of raising baby seahorses.
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Old 12-29-2005, 06:24 PM   #6
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I think also that he said he was doing water changes from the main tank which will be more milder than a fresh saltwater change. It sounds like ya`ll know the deal.
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Old 12-29-2005, 06:36 PM   #7
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I agree with a bare bottom tank with maybe just a piece of macro in there for hitching purposes.

Feeding a lot is also helpful. When seahorses are first born they are very fragile and need all the energy they can get. Seahorses do not have stomaches to hold excess food in so multiple feeds are needed.

And don't worry, almost everyone's first batch dies, it's perfectly normal.
Read up on it abit and consider setting up a little 5 gallon tank with a simple filter just incase it happens again.

Just remeber seahorse.org is your best friend on this subject.

And yes seahorse babies are hard to keep alive, even experoenced breeders have troubles with them. i hvae heard of somebody keeping 45 of them alive though from one batch, of course though they had been doing this for 20 years and had a very good rearing station for them.
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