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Cuttlefish Eggs!

Reef Geek

O. vulgaris
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Oct 14, 2008
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98
#1
So my 2 cuttlefish eggs from NYAquatics came in yesterday. I got them home and in my refugium. Both eggs appear to have a cuttle inside when I hold a flashlight to them, so hopefully both will hatch healthy.

As for pics, I thought my 8mp camera was pretty nice until I tried zooming in on these little guys. I see a new camera in my future!
 

Reef Geek

O. vulgaris
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#4
From what I've seen and read they appear to be sepia bandensis. I checked them this morning and no change.

Very pleased with the service I got from NYAquatic.com btw.
 

Reef Geek

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#5
I struck gold in that my LFS got in what appears to be sepia Bandnesis eggs. I picked them up Saturday and they appear to be in excellent condition. 10 eggs for $25!!!
 

Reef Geek

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#8
Ok, so my first 2 eggs arrived on June 22nd. The other 10 I got on the 26th. The first 2 are a bit smaller, say 2/3 the size of the "newer" eggs. The smaller eggs are also not as black as the larger ones. More of a tan color. So far I haven't been able to see any activity in any of the eggs. Seems I can make out a shape inside the smaller eggs, but who knows for sure.

I'm so impatient, I check the eggs like 3 times a day expecting to see a change. Isn't there a 'speed bake' option on these things? :)
 

snowmaker

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Dec 22, 2009
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#10
The eggs appear to get lighter and semi-transparent as the embryo develops. Have seen 2 - 4 week incubation. Water temp may have something to do with incubation time, but I am not 100% sure of that.
 

Reef Geek

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#11
On the 8th just before I left for the karate U.S. Open I check on the eggs and the 2 from N.Y. had turned white. Not really 'turned' white I guess. It looked more like a layer of dirt had sluffed off and left the egg clean looking and white. This got me a bit excited as flamboyant eggs are white, but this morning I checked again and one egg has all but melted and the other isn't looking much better.

The other 10 are looking good with one egg getting considerably larger than the others, so there's still hope!!!
 

Reef Geek

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#12
Took a closer look this evening and I can definitely see movement inside the bigger egg. The rest of the bunch certainly don't look as healthy. Odds aren't looking good. But if even the 1 survives, I'll be thrilled.
 

Reef Geek

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#13
I just checked the eggs and we have a cuttlefish!!! He's SO tiny it's rediculous. He was kinda behind the eggs so I moved them a bit and he just sat there. My wife thought he was dead when he suddenly did a little hover to the side to get back behind the eggs.

SO COOL!!!!!
 

Reef Geek

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#14
My single cuttle is still doing well though he hasn't eaten anything yet (that I've seen). Though he seems to have gotten notably larger even just in a few days.

I went out this morning looking for food in the ICW. I was able to catch a couple hundred baby shore-shrimp but even the smallest are twice the length of a mysis shrimp and a good bit bulkier. I threw a small one in with the cuttle to see what he'd do. Yesterday I threw in a frew brine-shrimp to give him something to chase. So far I haven't seen him eat anything. But he still happily buzzes around in the breeder net every time on I turn on the lights so maybe he's just not hungry yet.

I'd still like to find a source for live mysis without having to order them online. Any ideas?
 

snowmaker

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Dec 22, 2009
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#16
Many of the ones we buy online come from Fla. Maybe you just have to find the right spot during the right tide.
I am finding baby bent-back mysids in Maine that the hatchlings will take. Seems the more I go collecting and trying different spots at different tides, the more I get. I am also seeing some seasonality in all the different stuff I catch. Baby mummichog are in now... tiny.
A decent net I found (from a recommendation) is a swimming pool leaf net at Walmart - $13 and has about 1/32" mesh. Sporting goods places have "Eel nets" - nice! 18" hoop, 18" deep net, 1/32" mesh and the BIG plus - an extendable handle, I saw from 59" to 104". $25 here. Also, a butterfly net might be good and inexpensive as well.
 

Reef Geek

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#17
So I went back out to the ICW this evening just as it was getting dark. I figured any small critters would be coming out and luckily I caught a good number of pods in some seaweed clumps. It was barely 5 minutes after I shook a few out into the breeder net that the cuttlefish was eatting!!!! I'm so thrilled!!! Also, as I watched the little guy enjoy his dinner the cluster of eggs started shaking around a bit. So it looks like I'll have another hatchling here shortly!
 

snowmaker

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#18
That's great.
I was also pretty excited when seeing my hatchlings eat foods I caught myself.
IME, the more you try collecting, the more you'll learn and find places to collect (and catch). They seem to eat practically anything that wiggles and of appropriate size.
 

Reef Geek

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#19
Yep. A girl from a local college taking Marine Biology brought me a bucket of mysis yesterday. I threw a few in with the cuttle and he sure seems to prefer the mysis. But you're right, if it moves and he's not scared of it he'll try to eat it.

I seperated some of the eggs today to get a closer look. I can definitely make out the yolk in most and what appears to be a cuttle in at least 1. But I'm a bit worried as the outter shell seems to be sluffing off similar to the first 2 eggs from N.Y. that eventually melted. Time will tell I suppose.

Interesting behaviour out of the lone hatchling. He seems to want to escape the breeder net. He keeps running along one wall like he's looking for a hole. Then he'll burrow into the crevices of the net and just pop in and out like he wants out.

I seem to have plentiful supplies of food so that's not going to be a problem. Now I just need more to hatch!
 

DWhatley

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#20
Is there stuff moving that might look like food outside the net? I seem to remember one other cuttle keeper who's little guy "wanted out" but it has not been a commonly reported observation.
 

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