How nice that there are so many available

Discussion in 'Cuttlefish Care' started by Thales, Mar 26, 2008.

  1. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    It just struck me how amazing keeping cuttles at home has become in the last few years.

    5 years ago there was basically nothing...today at least three people are selling captive reared bandensis.

    Brilliant!

    :grin:
     
  2. shipposhack

    shipposhack Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    If only there were a market... I haven't sold any yet :/.
     
  3. cuttlefishguy

    cuttlefishguy Blue Ring Registered

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    I have.
     
  4. hobogato

    hobogato O. vulgaris Registered

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    ill be in the market soon to buy one or more bandensis - once i do a some more research....
     
  5. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    We are running into the problem of price vs want. There aren't that many who want cuttles to start with, and charging barely what these animals actually cost to raise is often a turn off to some buyers.
    The worry for me, now that wild cuttle eggs are often available, is that we will see people selling hatchlings cheap in an effort to move them and then no one will be interested in paying a reasonable price, just the lowest price. I worry a little about quality with quick hatches and quick sales of the hatchlings because it is not uncommon to for hatchlings to die off in the first month. We'll have to see how the DAA to the end keeper works out. Maybe I'm worried about nothing :smile:
    There is also the difference between 75 for 3 monthers and 40 for hatchlings. I think people would rather take the risk with the seemingly cheaper hatchlings, even though feeding them can potentially cost hundreds of dollars. I had limited interest in the 3 monthers, but much more interest in the hatchlings and that struck me as odd until I thought about how people sometimes feel about initial cost.
    There is also some worry about who is buying them, and do they really know what they are getting into. I know I field lots (too many!) of emails about purchasing cuttles, but many of them fall through when the idea of how to keep them starts to take shape, or perhaps they are getting them cheaper somewhere else.

    FWIW, it think all saltwater animals should cost more than they do now, and I worry very much about animals as a volume business where lowest cost is the deciding factor because low cost often equals disposable in peoples minds - 'just get another one'. I sincerely hope this doesn't happen in the ceph world.

    But however you cut it, its still cool that there are any non adult wild caught cuttles for sale in the US. :smile:
     
  6. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Same thing I've been saying. I've often wondered why cephs are sold for so little. Just look at the prices for tropical fish and corals, and you'll find so many of them selling for more than an octopus or cuttlefish - sometimes much, much more. And Rich has a point that they probably should be sold for more than is asked at the present.

    It makes it difficult for home aquarists to breed and sell cephs because it's hard to recover their costs, let alone make a profit.

    Nancy
     
  7. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Traditionally, harder to keep animals are sold at lower prices so they can be moved before they die. There are bagillions of people who want fish and corals, but not so many that want cephs which leads to being able to sell corals at a premium and cephs at a low.

    I think there will always be a market for home raised cephs because of the long term quality produces - we have already seen it on TONMO. Hopefully more people will see that benefit instead of shopping just for initial price. At the same time, if a facility were set up near a free food source, and could produce captive bred, not captive raised, cuttles or cephs at low prices I would be really really really happy.
     
  8. cuttlefishguy

    cuttlefishguy Blue Ring Registered

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    I say that we come up with a tonmo forum price range that everyone abides by.
     
  9. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    That's a great idea, but I'm worried about how it would work out in practice.

    That might be fine if everyone agrees to it, but I'm not sure that I'd want to set things up for a conflict if some supplier doesn't think the price is fair. If we start deleting people's posts if they post a different price, we're likely to drive all sorts of people away or get in huge flamewars or other such badnesses.

    I've been assuming the interest in hatchlings is high because people know that ceph lifetimes are short, and so people prefer to get them as young as possible.
     
  10. hobogato

    hobogato O. vulgaris Registered

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    as a ceph newbie, this is my thinking exactly. i know that it will be more expensive to feed them as hatchlings, but the more time i can keep them, the better.
     
  11. Paradox

    Paradox Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    I think the prices are pretty fair at 40 for hatchling 75 for 3 month olds. In my opinion, a great time to sell a Bandensis would be when they are taught to eat frozen. Its been recently found in my experience and others that we have been successful in training them to do this younger and younger.

    For hobbyists interested in cuttlefish, I would assume the most intimidating thing is the fact you need to keep live food. This means a whole separate tank system to keep them alive plus the costs of food+overnight shipping. Add this to the fact that young cuttlefish can mysteriously die in the first month and its challenging to feed/train them, it would save a whole lot of time and resources to just buy one at 1-1.5 months old trained to eat frozen. I think if these difficulties are removed, more people would be willing to keep these creatures.

    I dont know how many times people have shown incredible enthusiasm to wanting cuttlefish until they learn of the costs and requirements for the live food.

    Once I got mine eating frozen, my costs at keeping them is pretty small. I currently have 6 FAT bandensis in my 150 and its costing me about 20 dollars every 1-1.5months to feed all of them. It costs me more to feed my corals!
     
  12. shipposhack

    shipposhack Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    A live food system does not have to be spectacular. I get shore shrimp in lots of 100 from Paul Sachs and keep them in a 5 gallon bucket 1.5 gallons full of water. The bucket has one rock and an air pump on it. I change the water every time I get new shrimp. The shore shrimp ship fine Priority - which Paul offers for free.

    Funny thing with frozen is that my cuttles will eat frozen mysis as soon as it gets in the water but if I put krill in there for them to eat they are reluctant and not all of them are eating it. I wish I could get them on bigger frozen food so my costs would go down.
     
  13. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    The way they are weaned is often the issue. Freezing shore shrimp is also a way to wean them, as Krill seem to be often rejected as food by bandensis.
    It also depends on the live food you are keeping. SW mysis seem to be problematic, where warm water shore shrimp are easy peasy.
     
  14. Paradox

    Paradox Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    Ive had minimal success with frozen krill. Even with my adults now, only half of them will go for krill. Our bait shops here often have live grass shrimp. Ive recently found a shop that sells these shrimps frozen. They seem to be a perfect food. You may want to check out local bait shops if there are any. If I werent super busy, Id probably send some around in bulk to ceph owners.

    Thales-I froze FW mysis and was able to wean a couple of the heartier cuttles at a little over a month. The more difficult ones were taught using frozen shore shrimp at around 2 months. I think Ive I focused on this more when they are young they can all be taught to eat frozen mysids by 1-2 months. I was too impatient to keep poking at dead shrimp animating them in front of confused cuttles so I mostly just fed live since it was easier. Maybe If I make a smaller feeding contraption it will be easier.
     
  15. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Yep! My experience as well. I have a couple ideas about a mysis feeding contraption, but haven't yet had the time to do something about it.
     
  16. Paradox

    Paradox Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    A mysis tumbling chamber!
     
  17. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    You could just add a small powerhead to the chamber and voila - Andy Lister used to do that for S.o's. I am looking for something more like the feeding contraption with little clips for mysis.

    Oh - its important to note that there may be pollution issues with bait shrimp. There might not be, but there may be.
     
  18. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Shipposhack,
    Are you feeding PE (Piscine Energetics) mysis or another brand? The PE are significantly larger.
     
  19. Octavarium

    Octavarium Wonderpus Registered

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    The cephalopod revolution is only rivalved by the industrial revolution
     
  20. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    Steampunk cuttlefish are Paradox's department :grin:
     

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