I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

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Motörcrab
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I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

Post by Motörcrab » Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:20 pm

On Tuesday one of my crabs was all over the tank. Pacing every square inch all night. Since they are usually active I didn't think much of it.

The next morning I saw two of my straws in the saltwater pool. Yay! The new pool paid off! The male was actually holding the female. Upon further investigation I noticed zoea floating all over! He was helping her remove her eggs! He held her os the wide part of the shell was up. We are assuming to help the eggs escape easier! I was totally unprepared for this. I had no idea I had an egg carrier.

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Unfortunately Mary said Abby dropped her eggs and couldn't find them in the tank. After seeing the male holding the female Abby needed the male for assistance.

I managed to baster as many as I could out of the saltwater pool and into three, one quart mason jars. That took about 3 hours! With the help of AussieJJDude he suggested to add freshwater into the 10 gallon tank they are in and also add the saltwater I'm using for water changes. That way everything will be the same temperature so we don't shock them.

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With both of us working full we unfortunately can't dedicate the time we would like for their care. We feed them in the morning 7:30am. Then they are feed again around 5:30pm followed by their water change. Another feeding at 11pm then repeat.

This weekend we will attempt to do a count of how many we actually have.

Ok, onto the baby pics!

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Still in the saltwater pool.

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Just a picture for a size comparison.

I will attempt to update this as we progress. Not sure how often that will be. Finger and Pinchers crossed!

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Last edited by Motörcrab on Sun Aug 25, 2019 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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JoeHermits
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by JoeHermits » Thu Aug 22, 2019 10:03 pm

That’s awesome!

What are you feeding them? I don’t have access to anything small enough for them unless I order it, so if I had a surprise like that I’d be out of luck.


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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by Motörcrab » Thu Aug 22, 2019 10:06 pm

Decasulated Brine shrimp eggs from The Cholla Queen on Etsy, and Instant Baby Brine Shimp from Ocean Nutrition found on Amazon.

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curlysister
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by curlysister » Thu Aug 22, 2019 11:35 pm

Wow!! You two are awesome!
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RiNiKy506
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by RiNiKy506 » Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:10 am

Congratulations you two! So amazing! We are rooting for you!

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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by PinchersAndShells » Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:37 pm

You got this!!!! :clap:
5 PPs + 1 E = Dusty, Edd, Momo, Merle, Dottie, & Elvis
3 Captive Bred Babies = Randy, Roxie, Marco
37 + 10 Gallon Crabitats | Crabbing Since 8.11.2015
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Xenocrab
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by Xenocrab » Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:58 pm

They are amazing little animals! I'm in love!ImageImage

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5 store bought, 6 rescues and 7 adopted.

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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by aussieJJDude » Sat Aug 24, 2019 5:14 am

It can imagine.
Gotta admit, it's gotta be a perk to have two of yours in this adventure compared to going solo!

Awesome pics guys, keep em comming!

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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by Motörcrab » Sat Aug 24, 2019 6:55 am

Thank you for all the encouragement. We are still amazed we have these little guys. It never would have happened without all the knowledge we learned from everyone here, other hermit crab groups all the vendors we purchase our foods from and of course our crabs.

We did a count last night. We are estimating we have around 187 total after day four. I'm estimating we started with 300-400. I thought it was higher at first. It is soooo hard to count them when they won't stay still!

We did find out they are very responsive to light. We have been doing water changes in a dark room. We hold a flashlight on the jar and they swim toward the light. When we gound up a bunch we siphon them out. We repeat that when they are in the baster too. With talking with Mary other species don't seem to be as responsive to light like strawberries. This makes transferring them a lot easier. It is still a pain when you are down to the last few and they are deciding they want to snack of food bits at the bottom for the jar.

I find it a bit strange we have never seen any breeding signs from our 20 purples. We had 6 strawberries. We gave one female to Mary carrying eggs in July. Two females with eggs this year from the straws none from the purples.

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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea!

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Aug 25, 2019 3:01 pm

We are currently at Day#6. Mary believes Straws have a much shorter transition to megalopa compared to other species. 16 days so we are hopefully about a third of the way there!

During our day 5 water changes we did another count. Our numbers the day before appear to have been low. We actually counted 217 compared to 187. Being over is deffinately better than under!

We noticed one jar was very sluggish and not responsive to light compared to the night before. Once we put them in the new water they really perked up and acted normal quickly. We are going to start doing a 20-25% water change in the morning to freshen things up a bit. I did a test run this morning and it took about 20 minutes compared to an hour plus for complete changes.

We also noticed either exo sheds or partially eaten pieces. Mary is unsure which it could be. While doing water changes we noticed they head to the bottom to feed on food that settled. We saw some holding tiny bits of food in their mouth while siphoning! We're going to start turning the bubblers off every 2-3 hours for 10 minutes to allow them to feed at the food that settled on the bottom. I don't think the oxygen levels should drop that much.

It's so cool to be experimenting in these basically uncharted waters. This must be how the first astronauts felt stepping onto the moon the first time. "This is one small pinch for crab, one giant pinch for crabkind!"

Here are some cool videos we managed to get.

Here is Mephy and Wendigo releasing their eggs in the saltwater pool!ImageImageImage Notice how he is gently holding her with the wide part of her shell up so the zoea can easily float up and out of her shell! This is proof that the males actually assist the female with the eggs.
https://youtu.be/G_cZEgFlm5U

Here are the zoea reacting to light. It makes it a lot easier to catch and siphon them. Using the flashlight.
https://youtu.be/JG7C3UY7moU

Here is a close up of a few zoea swimming in the baster before being transferred into the new water!
https://youtu.be/Evbt_2UFZAw

Finally a few more pictures!

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Our makeshift mad scientist laboratory!

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Day 5 Zoea

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Either a shed or leftovers from a snack!

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RiNiKy506
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

Post by RiNiKy506 » Sun Aug 25, 2019 3:27 pm

You two are doing an amazing job! We need some straw babies, you got this!

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Sillymel
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

Post by Sillymel » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:27 pm

Wow, that’s all I can say. This is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing!


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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

Post by Xenocrab » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:53 pm

It's a great feeling that our crabitat conditions, foods, waters and everything are suitable for them to mate and release eggs! Watching these teeny guys is such an overwhelming happiness! We are optimistic. We know things can go south at any time, but these Z's are getting the best care we know how to give. We really appreciate all your support. The idea of getting strawbabies onto land sounds so outrageous! We are ready! It's a bit stressful to say the least! I mean what are the chances of it on our first try? Or, hey we can do this! It definitely weighs on our minds 24/7! The support has been phenomenal! Thank you all so much!

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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 11 water change Update

Post by Motörcrab » Sat Aug 31, 2019 9:44 am

Unfortunately while doing the water changes last night we did not find any live ones. After day 5-6 we started seeing a large drop in numbers every day.

We tried to tweak our bubblers to create more air flow with suggestions from GotButterflies and Mary. Our water temperature began to become on the low side 73 degrees. Ideal temperature is 78. We added a small heater inside the 10 gallon tank and used an airline to circulate the water. That brought the temperature up to 79.

We tried the best we could with limited time and not being prepared at all. Being away at work 10 hours a day doesn't help with giving the proper care. By the time the zoea were taken care of, the other crabs it was time for bed.

On the bright side of things I we had two Strawberry females with eggs this year. The same male for both. With the breeding season winding down when will have a good chance to try again next year!
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Re: I have Strawberry Zoea! Day 5 water change Update

Post by PinchersAndShells » Sat Aug 31, 2019 5:27 pm

Drat, fingers crossed for next year!
5 PPs + 1 E = Dusty, Edd, Momo, Merle, Dottie, & Elvis
3 Captive Bred Babies = Randy, Roxie, Marco
37 + 10 Gallon Crabitats | Crabbing Since 8.11.2015
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