hatching cuttlefish?

Discussion in 'Cuttlefish Care' started by Tamara, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. Tamara

    Tamara Blue Ring Registered

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    I happened across a cuttlefish egg mass while diving the other day and noticed some eggs looked deflated and empty whereas others had what looked like fully developed cuttlefish inside. Do cuttlefish normally all hatch at the same time? I"m trying to figure out what the chances of the more deflated/ripped looking eggs having already hatched vs having been eaten by something.
    How long is their incubation (I saw one laying eggs yesturday and plan to keep an eye on her eggs)?
    Also do your captive cuttlefish generally lay all the eggs in one place or distrubute them in a few little bundles?
    Thanks for any help!
    Tamara
     
  2. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Tamara,
    :welcome:

    I am an octopus keeper and not overly knowledgable with the cuttles (yet) but do know that the eggs don't all hatch at the same time. The bendensis will lay eggs multiple times throughout their adult lives but different species have different reproduction strategies.

    Most of our members are in the US but we have a nice contingent of folks on other continents. Since there are no cuttles in the Western Hemisphere (the ones we keep in home aquariums are virtually all bendensis and imported, generally as eggs, with occassional captive breeding and selling), there is an assumption you are elsewhere but it helps a bit to know where. To expose your location, you will need to edit your profile to allow it to be seen.
     
  3. Tamara

    Tamara Blue Ring Registered

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    I'm in Northern Malaysia, Pulau Perhentian if that helps anyone to answer my question.
    The cuttlefish I saw had just finished mating with a male and had several scars on her back from the encounter, after the male left she turned a dark brown she looked a bit wary of my presence so I backed off a bit and could see what looked like her scouting for a good place to deposit her eggs. I know cuttlefish can store sperm and fertilise their eggs later, if I could add one more question- how long do they normally wait to lay their eggs presuming there is a suitible place to deposit them?

    If you can think of any links that might have some of the answers (or know the answer yourself) I'd be really grateful!
    I will ask my dive buddy if I can take a copy of the developed egg we found too in case that helps.
     
  4. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    :welcome: Tamara. Thales and Cuttlegirl probably have the most experience with captive cuttle eggs, so hopefully they'll chime in shortly.
     
  5. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Hi Tamara,

    Cuttlefish (at least in captivity) can lay eggs over a period of weeks or months. In the ocean, it is possible that more than one female cuttlefish has laid eggs in the same place. The deflated eggs could have been infertile or already hatched. Could you see a yolk sac on the cuttlefish in the eggs? It would look like a little bubble coming out of the end of their tentacles.
     
  6. Tamara

    Tamara Blue Ring Registered

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    This is a photo of one of the eggs.
    The first time I saw the batch of eggs was about a week and a half ago and at that point some eggs looked destroyed but I could make out a shape in some of them but they were tightly grouped under a tire and almost impossible to get a good look. 3 days later I went back and my buddy took this photo. At the time there was around 4 eggs that were seperated from the bunch and they were the only ones that were inflated, the others either hatched or eaten... went back again two days ago and there was one tiny inflated egg. but lots of empty "shells" laying around the area
    The pair I saw mating were fairly far from that batch of eggs (50meters) I'm guessing that the eggs I've seen were not layed by the pair I saw mating, I couldn't spot eggs from that pair anywhere in the area... but if they often wait a long time before laying then I'm probably not looking in the right area.
     

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  7. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Compliments to your dive buddy's photography! Did you get any photos of the adults to try to identify the species?
     
  8. Tamara

    Tamara Blue Ring Registered

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    Sorry no photos of the adults, maybe common reef cuttlefish or prehaps paroh cuttlefish? I'm not to sure. So I know they grow pretty fast- these cuttlefish are about the size of a football when fully grown, assuming they hatched over a week ago what size should I be looking for next time I"m on the site? The egg size was about the size of my thumb... I think I read somewhere they almost double in size in their first two weeks?
     
  9. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Great photo!

    My captive dwarfs were seen mating first on Apr 8 (17 - 18 weeks old) and laid a clutch of about 35 - 40 eggs probably last night - May 2
    I did not notice very much growth until after 3 weeks old, then the grew pretty fast to around 3.5"
     
  10. Tamara

    Tamara Blue Ring Registered

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    Thanks, that's a way longer time carrying around the eggs then I expected. I guess that means I still have luck looking for new eggs around where I suspect the mating female wanted to lay. It will probably be a few weeks before I can visit that site again, my buddy found more eggs in better condition although not yet developed enough to see the guys inside. Anyone else have cuttlefish that have mated then laid eggs- how long was it between mating and depositing the eggs? Do all the eggs usually get laid in one spot?
     
  11. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    This clutch of eggs were all deposited in one spot, + 3 free singles on the sand bed.

    I am looking for info on - estimated time frame from laying eggs to hatching of these dwarfs.
     

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