FINALLY got my cuttlefish, but now I'm having issues! Help please!

Discussion in 'Cuttlefish Care' started by L8 2 RISE, Feb 28, 2010.

  1. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    I had my cuttlefish arrive here yesterday afternoon from California. They were packed well but only had a 12 hr heat pack so were pretty cold when they made it here. There were three bags, two with a bunch of eggs in each, and one that had two cuttles that had hatched before shipping. Five eggs hatched in shipping in each bag. One of the bags was very cloudy and mercy and none of the cuttlefish were looking good off the back. I think a few of them must have inked or one of the undeveloped eggs could have popped, spewing yolk everywhere. Anyways, I slowly acclimated and split everything between two net breeders. The cuttlefish/eggs from the bad bag in one breeder, and the cuttlefish from the bag that was fine, and the two that had hatched before shipping in the other. By yesterday night, 2 of the cuttlefish from the bad bag had died. Tonight, 4 of the cuttles from the bad bag are dead, so only one remains. From the good bag/already hatched net breeder, five have died, leaving two. I've now put all three together in one net breeder and put a bunch of mysis in there for them. As for the eggs, I can clearly see live cuttlefish in five if not six eggs so we'll see how they turn out when they hatch.

    My problem is that I've now had nine die and I'm not sure what from. It becomes obvious that they are going to die because I am able to clearly see the cuttlebone inside of them when I shine a flashlight at them. This is because it seems like the skin with any pigmentation/ chromatophores is coming off leaving just a white, milky covering behind. What could be happening? I'd really like to save the rest of these as they weren't cheap and it took me a LONG time to track them down and purchase them.
     
  2. MAKOOKAM

    MAKOOKAM Wonderpus Registered

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    Gee, that sucks! :(

    I would assume it would have been from stress and poor water quality. I would keep them as stress free as possible, put in macro algae or rubble for them to hide in and keep lights out or very low and would avoid flashing them at all. If you have them in a large enough tank space outside of the nets, dont worry about taking out the ones you are going to lose if they arent going to pollute the system by letting them sit. I would really just keep the stress levels at a minimum and not even worry about feeding the hatchlings unless you are certain they have been out for more than 4 or 5 days. Just my opinion.

    GOOD LUCK!
     
  3. davelin315

    davelin315 Wonderpus Registered

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    Feeling Sam's pain... he stopped by to drain off mysids and gammarus amphipods from my reef again and we discussed how this looked very similar to what happened to the octopuses that I failed to properly temperature acclimate. Hopefully with these being young or in the egg, they will tolerate the shipping swings in temperature better than the octopuses did.
     
  4. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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  5. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Ok, that's what I've been doing, thanks!

    I got them from an LFS in California called The Mystic Reef. I was told about them by a fellow tonmoer and have been speaking to them 1-2 times a week for about a month and a half.

    As for the yolk, I figured it was maybe an unfertalized egg or something that popped open, so there was never any actual cuttlefish in there, but maybe that's not possible... If you think it could have been the bacteria then maybe it was that, either way it doesn't matter, the bag was just very murky so there was obviously somehting in there that wasn't right.

    For the shipping, I agree, there should have been more heat packs in there, but it was a mis-communication and I didn't realize that it was that little. Are there 24 hr heat packs? Or what could they have used?

    Apparently I didn't explain correctly. I'm sure everyone here has seen what happens to the outer layer of skin (or whatever it is) on ceph's when they die. The colored part peels off and you're just left with this white, milky stuff. See this pic of a giant squid, for example: http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200707/r159355_581058.jpg The skin is usually reddish but in this pic of a dead one, it's peeled off. That's what happened to all of the ones that ultimately died so you could see the cuttlebone VERY easily. With the (apparently) healthy ones, you can still see it, but it's not as obvious.

    They only sent me eggs apart from two that had hatched the day before shipping. Five eggs in each bag hatched during shipping which is why I immediately had babies. So I recieved 12 hatched cuttlefish, nine of which, died in the way described above. I'm not going to screw around with money with these guys because they were VERY helpful and went out of their way to get these eggs for me, a guy that had never been in their store and lived on the other side of the country. I'm sure that if I end up losing all of these cuttlefish in the end, they will help me out and give me a good deal for some more.

    So in summary you think they probably just couldn't adapt to such a severe temperature change and that's why they croaked? What about the one's still in the eggs? What's the odds of those doing better than the one's that hatched? Thanks a lot for the help, I really appreciate it!



    As of now I have four hatchlings. Three of these were the one's that survived shipping, and one hatched last night. All look very healthy and aren't losing skin like the one's that died before. I'm definitely hopeful that the rest will make it. For those that have had these, how do they tend to act? Mine just squat in one spot and stay there, sometimes for a whole day. Does that sound right?

    Thanks again!
     
  6. corpusse

    corpusse Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Most places use at least a 30 or 40hr heatpack incase the package is delayed. I was shocked to find a heatpack still hot 2 days after I had recieved some mysids but that was most likely a defective pack that just lasted super long.

    How many adults are you planning for? You might be okay with the number you have if you don't lose anymore. I agree there is no point getting mad at the store when they are basically doing you a favor, but still explain. If you are planning on getting more see if they can ship them faster. I don't know if they are holding them too long or if their supplier is or I they are simply being collected too late but I've always had to wait about 2 weeks for my eggs to hatch and I've had 2 or 3 bundles.

    Don't be discouraged you still have some. When you have a large group of babies the cost of feeding them is extemely high. At least now you can go through less mysids.
     
  7. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Where could I get one of those heat packs? I'm planning on 4-6 in my main display and maybe a few others in other tanks just for breeding purposes. The price of feeding isn't an issue for me, thankfully, just for Dave Lin because he'll see more and more of me :grin:.
     
  8. davelin315

    davelin315 Wonderpus Registered

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    Sam, I'm going to have to start charging you admission to the zoo.

    Oh, and grab some sponge filter and bring it by, I'll toss it in the system so it can get filled with various critters again. If you've got some dry rubble, we can also toss that into a container and submerge it into the sump so it gets populated and then you can take it back, kind of like rotating food farms.
     
  9. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    haha, will do!

    I now have eight hatchlings and I have been able to get better stock on the eggs I have left. I can see fully developed cuttlefish in three eggs, so those should come out any day now. In one egg I have what may be a live cuttlefish, but it still has it's arms in the yolk sack (I don't know about in, but I'm sure those of you that have experience with this know the stage I mean). The rest of the eggs are relatively small and a few look deflated so I'm not thinking they will hatch, but we'll see. Things are definitely looking up and I'm a lot more optimistic. I have mysis in with the cuttlefish but have yet to see them all disappear and I haven't seen the cuttles eat at all.
     
  10. davelin315

    davelin315 Wonderpus Registered

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    ...pictures...
     
  11. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Feeding my babies

    Well my cuttlefish are now about two weeks old and apparently eating like crazy. I fed live mysis for the first week and those disappeared pretty quickly. Now I'm feeding live amphipods and they're disappearing very quickly as well. What I've noticed is that the cuttles are very nocturnal and aren't out at all in the day, so I haven't actually seen any of them eat. The foods disappearing and they're getting bigger, but I haven't seen them eat. Any suggestions? What should I do? I'd like to start wheening them onto frozen but can't stay up all night until they come out and then feed them...
     
  12. MAKOOKAM

    MAKOOKAM Wonderpus Registered

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    I had the same issue. I just kept the nursery stocked (did a nightly dump of pods) and didnt even try frozen until well after I let them out in the main tank (like 1 week ago...now that they are huge). Hopefully someone else can be of more help.

    Good luck! :)
     
  13. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    How long was that? Thanks!
     
  14. Uber Alezz

    Uber Alezz Blue Ring Registered

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    Hm, I haven't even had cuttles for a week but I've already seen mine eat twice. Both times I've watched have been in the late evening, around 9, and my Cuttle wouldn't be too active until I put a mysid in. He'd just wait for it to swim near and quickly snatch it up then sit in the same spot for a while.

    I've never seen my cuttle eat in the morning, but when I wake up at around dawn they're very active and happily swimming around their nursery exhibiting all kinds of neat behavior. Today in the morning I actually saw my cuttle walking around on 2 legs making elephant trunk movements with its two front arms like MAKOOKAM's cuttle did in that video he posted a while ago. Maybe instead of staying up all night to view them feeding just feed in the morning. And maybe instead of keeping a constant supply in your nursery try putting a small amount of either your mysid or amphipods in at a time, like maybe 1 per cuttle.
     
  15. MAKOOKAM

    MAKOOKAM Wonderpus Registered

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    Like...a little over 2 months. :)
     
  16. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    I noticed that your breeder is bare though. Mine has a shallow layer of sand, some rubble, and some macro which makes it easy for the mysis/pods to hide when I first put the in. As for timing (the tank the breeders are in recieves overflow light from my display), actinics go on at 10 and I usually notice a little more activity starting around 10:45 or later, and then lights all out at 11. I usually don't stay up that late so don't plan on being able to watch later into the night. As for the morning, I can barely get myself out of bed in order to make it out of the house on time as it is, let alone adding feeding/etc to that! I feed 1-2 amphipods per cuttlefish per night (which is what you suggest). Does anyone think I should feed more?
     
  17. Uber Alezz

    Uber Alezz Blue Ring Registered

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    Well how many cuttles do you have, how old are they, and are they all growing at the same rate?

    If your cuttles aren't eating the second the amphipods hit the water the amount you're feeding should be fine, but maybe you should split it up into two separate feedings of 1 per cuttle.

    And by the way, ever since I got my cuttles I've stopped pressing the snooze button :mrgreen:
     
  18. MAKOOKAM

    MAKOOKAM Wonderpus Registered

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    I'm a paranoid cuttle raiser...that being said, I always made sure they were outnumbered 4 to 1. Not enough to drive the cuttles crazy, but enough to make sure they could always find the pods and make a kill. I had a lot of rubble and macro in the nets, so the pods weren't always visible. Hence, the overkill. I would drop in 12 or more pods every night.
     
  19. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    6 cuttles in one breeder all two weeks old, 2 in another hatched yesterday. When I put the amphipods in the lights are still on so the cuttlefish aren't swimming around but are hiding, and when the lights are off, the amphipods duck for cover in the macro or rubble as soon as they hit the water.
     
  20. MAKOOKAM

    MAKOOKAM Wonderpus Registered

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    I'll tell you right now, pods are just as nocturnal as the cuttles. They will come out to feed during the night.
     

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