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Old 08-25-2003, 12:25 AM   #1
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Help me save some Harlequin Shrimp........

I found some Harlequin Shrimp in a local store.
I really want to save these little guys b4 someone buys them just bc they are cute.
I have been searching the web for info on these guys, but have YET to find any info on keeping them in a small tank.
I have a 10g tank that is empty that I can use, I really just want to get them away from the LFS.
I have no exp in SW but I have TONS of exp in FW.
Can any of you guys help me out???

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Old 08-25-2003, 12:49 AM   #2
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I admire your concern for these animals but I am wondering why you are so alarmed at their current location. I know LFS can be a rather dismal existance for many creatures but you sound more distraught than most.. 8O

>>Harlequins<< are exquisite animals and not really very hard to care for really. It requires a stronger constitution on the part of it's keeper moreso. >>This<< is what you must feed them..

They will do best in a LR tank with unaggressive tank mates. You cannot set up a SW tank and expect it to do well or be ready to house sensitive inverts. It quite honestly takes 4-6 weeks just to cycle never mind house inverts.

Got any friends willing to help...

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Old 08-25-2003, 01:57 AM   #3
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Most of the time, people feed them chocolate chip starfish as they are generally the least expensive. Harelquin shrimp flip the starfish over, and begin picking the feet off of the starfish(pretty nasty). They have to be fed live starfish...reiterate....have to be live. I admire your enthusiasm, but question your judgement


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Old 08-25-2003, 06:02 PM   #4
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sigh....

Ok, I can understand your lack of enthusiasm bc you guys don't know me.....
but instead of going on and on about what I DO know or have experienced I just want you to know that I have already done the research and I know all about thier diet.
Also I have obtained a source for thier food, should not cost me more than $15 to $20 dollars every two months. I think it would be quite fascinating to watch them devour a sea star, so there are no qualms there for me.
Further it appears that we have 1 of each of the coastal species and NOT a pair.
As far as cycling a SW tank goes I know all about that also......sigh......I just don't have the space for anything large and am not interested a nano reef.
This is NOT something that I am taking lightly. I AM a very serious aquarist and am quite confident that I can pull this off.
I am just looking for info on a setup that can accomodate ONLY these guys till I can get them into something bigger.
I was led to beleive that I would get the best info available from you guys.......
but I have gotten better responses and less judgement from other smaller boards.

Sorry to waste your time

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Old 08-25-2003, 06:40 PM   #5
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I dont understand i thought it was good advice. 8O
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Old 08-25-2003, 08:59 PM   #6
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I personally have a tendency not to reply when the question has been answered. I thought yours was, I had nothing further to add.

As for how I would set up a tank for these guys...I wouls add about 10-15 lbs of LR and about 1" of LS to the 10g tank, and a couple small powerheads (equalling 80-100 gph between the two). Nothing else is needed. You might consider a skimmer, but if you do weekly 10% water changes it shouldn't be necessary. If you purchase cured rock and LS, then you should have 0 cycle time. Let the SW mix for 24 hrs prior to adding the sand or the rock (remember only fill the tank about 1/2-3/4 full for displacement). Let it run for acouple more days prior to adding the shrimp.
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Old 08-26-2003, 01:26 AM   #7
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I completely agree. I don't think anyone will question your thoughts, now that we know the extent of your situation and knowledge. I believe that anyone here would be more than willing to help you out. BTW, how did you find a source that would only run $15-$20 per 2 months. I was under the impression that they had to eat once a week, 1 each. I may be wrong. Good luck
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Old 08-26-2003, 03:22 AM   #8
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i think they eat two weeks after they finish their star.. depending on the size.. you don't need much for harlequins, for they only need a hiding place and that is all.. you'd be lucky to catch it in the day time.. i've always wanted these guys so i kinda researched all i can about them.. hehe.. like any other invert, they are really sensitive.. i'm pretty sure you read about how to acclimate the type of star that you are going to feed it.. you don't want a star to be "melting" like everyone says happens when acclimation goes wrong.. that's going to be really bad in a ten gallon tank.. i think ten gallon is more than enough for one or a paired up harlequin shrimp.. i don't think you should put two that aren't paired in the same tank like that.. that's about it..
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Old 08-27-2003, 02:05 AM   #9
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Ok, maybe I was just a little miffed by having my "Judgement" called into question.
We have 14 tanks and keep and breed several species of rare africans.
I also have some hybrids that I have been playing with.
Since I am sooo tied up in my FW pets, I have yet to embark on a SW setup.
I do however have an empty tank that I am saving specificly for my first reef aquarium.
I have done the research and am in contact with several people who are very experienced in the SW side of the hobby.
But NO ONE has any concrete answers BC most of them have only seen them in books or on T.V.
I have friends who keep everything from Octo's to My buddy that breeds Seahorses.
The Harlequins are in a very small holding tank at the LFS where my friend works.
As far as he knows they have NEVER been fed, and they have been in the store for about a month.
I was not upset with the advice I was given, I do appreciate that.
As far as the "Source" for thier food goes, lets just say that I know a few people
As far as feeding goes.......
My research indicates that a pair of Harlequins will eat on the star and feed it to keep it alive until they have devoured it, this process can take upto 2 months.
I did not mean to seem ungrateful, I guess I am just not used to not being taken seriously.

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Old 08-27-2003, 06:42 AM   #10
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When I had my harlequin, I would get free linckia stars from the wholesalers (one of the perks for being the buyer at an LFS), Linckia stars are the preferred diet of the harlequin shrimp, although as noted above, some have had success with choclate chip stars. The free linckias would only last 3-4 days, before they melted, these stars were not acclimated properly at the wholesalers, nor at my house. Once I learned the problem I started getting good ones and acclimated them for 4-6 hours via the drip method. The harlequin would immediatel jump on the stars back and start eating from the legs inward. One harlequin, one small linckia, it never lasted more than a couple of weeks. I fed about once every two weeks.
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