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Starakia

Breeding Bumble Bee Gobies

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Hi all - warning long post.

I've been incredibly slack but I thought I'd better start this thread as a few people have been interested in how I bred my Bumbles.

I've got my gobies in a 32L tank (Fluval Curve 32 to be exact) running both a marina i25 internal filter (that came with the tank) and an Aqua One 301F-LV internal. I don't run a heater because there is no need. I have a sand substrate, several Anubias on driftwood, some val, a few shells and three small hides.

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(Please excuse the algae growth)

To be honest I don't know exactly what my water parameters sit at. But my ph is generally around the 7.5ish mark. Ammonia 0ppm, Nitrite 0ppm and usually a reading of 10ppm Nitrate. I add Seachem's Brackish Salt at the Thailand/Cambodia ratio of 40g/12L.

I have a total of six gobies in my tank (two are definite females, two are males and the other two are unknown). They are fed primarily black worms as they are fussy eaters. Sometimes they'll eat frozen brine shrimp and bloodworms but nine times out of ten spit it out.

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Big girl full of eggs.

In relation to encouraging spawning I literally did almost nothing. I didn't set out to breed these awesome little fish in the beginning it was just by chance that they did. I just kept them well fed and very plump and one water change I didn't add any salt (reading that the addition of fresh water can induce breeding). Within a few days I discovered my 'suspected' now proven male guarding a shell full of eggs

https://vimeo.com/149130012

Despite reading several sources saying the eggs will hatch after three to fours days they hatched almost a week after being laid.

I moved the shell into a net breeder in the main tank for hatching. The fry however were too small and swan through the holes in the nets. All of them ended up as food or sucked up onto the filter.

Thankfully they bred for me again and this time I moved the eggs into a small 14L tank (filled a third of the way with water from the main tank) for hatching. This time round I was lucky. Almost all the eggs hatched except for a few who died in the egg.

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I ended up feeding the fry BBS as it was the smallest live food I could get a hold of. I lost a fair few due to the fact they weren't eating. But the ones that did thrived. They fry are now two months old and are growing bigger everyday (they are now at least 1cm long). I have moved them to a larger tank (Aqua One Ecostyle 38 with a sponge filter) which is half way filled and I'll keep adding more water gradually as they grow. The conditions I keep them in are much the same as the adults tank. I have tried to feed them crushed pelleted food and flakes but they won't take to it.

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https://vimeo.com/149131008

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They look great I'm trying something new with mine I really want to see them breed in fresh water I've read it can be done the only thing I'm not sure of is which ones are male and which are female I have an idea but they are still small. I originally bought two out of the five they had at the pet shop and the two I got doubled in size in about a month I then went back to the pet shop and bought the other three that they had. I was really surprised to see that theirs were still tiny and they came from the same batch. Maybe I feed mine too well they get live brine shrimp, live black worms, microworms, and sometimes frozen bloodworms they don't like me watching them eat but they do seem to get everything. I also have Caridina sp wa 4 shrimp in with them which are always berried with eggs so I'm assuming they get an occasional shrimp fry too so pretty spoilt I think.

If they don't breed in a few months I've got another tank I can convert to brackish just going to try this first.

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They look great I'm trying something new with mine I really want to see them breed in fresh water I've read it can be done the only thing I'm not sure of is which ones are male and which are female I have an idea but they are still small. I originally bought two out of the five they had at the pet shop and the two I got doubled in size in about a month I then went back to the pet shop and bought the other three that they had. I was really surprised to see that theirs were still tiny and they came from the same batch. Maybe I feed mine too well they get live brine shrimp, live black worms, microworms, and sometimes frozen bloodworms they don't like me watching them eat but they do seem to get everything. I also have Caridina sp wa 4 shrimp in with them which are always berried with eggs so I'm assuming they get an occasional shrimp fry too so pretty spoilt I think.

If they don't breed in a few months I've got another tank I can convert to brackish just going to try this first.

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As I've suggested previously Pineapples if you want to successfully breed and raise the fry of these fish that naturally live in brackish to salt water you need to add salt - it's that simple. Also need to be in a single species tank - not with Rasboras and the like which you have.

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Thanks for the advise [MENTION=8516]none[/MENTION] I've taken it all in I'll be setting up my other tank as brackish in the coming month too busy to do it at this point. Is there anything other than the standard type of acclimatising when swapping them from the fresh to brackish? My thoughts were to do it as per normal but slowly add small amounts of water from the brackish tank to the bag and get them used to it over 30-40 mins or so. Also are the shells the only thing they will breed in? Mine seem to like the Barnicals and i've also seen a video where one layed eggs on a piece of slate. I don't really like the look of the caves in the top picture but if it works I may try it. I'm assuming you'd have to burry them in the sand so that they have only one entrance?

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Thanks for the advise [MENTION=8516]none[/MENTION] I've taken it all in I'll be setting up my other tank as brackish in the coming month too busy to do it at this point. Is there anything other than the standard type of acclimatising when swapping them from the fresh to brackish? My thoughts were to do it as per normal but slowly add small amounts of water from the brackish tank to the bag and get them used to it over 30-40 mins or so. Also are the shells the only thing they will breed in? Mine seem to like the Barnicals and i've also seen a video where one layed eggs on a piece of slate. I don't really like the look of the caves in the top picture but if it works I may try it. I'm assuming you'd have to burry them in the sand so that they have only one entrance?

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Personally I would have the fish in the tank first then gradually increase the salt. It depends on the level of salinity you want - and it does not have to be high. at a SG of above 1.004 - 1.006 the biological bacteria take a long time to establish and stabilize. At levels lower than this I would gradually increase your salinity from fresh. In truth nearly all true brackish fish can take rapid salinity fluctuations although best to do it slowly to minimize stress. Barnacles, rocks, ornaments, shells, driftwood - can breed on all the above. Cheers

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Nice post [MENTION=16925]Starakia[/MENTION] .

* If you need very small artemia, send me a private message. I source a strain from Salt Lakes /San Fransisco Bay which are the smallest size artemia and I will decapsulate and post some to you. Decapsulated artemia also the most nutritious as they don't need to wait for cyst walls to weaken and hatch much faster with more stored energy.

* I can include some vinegar eel too if you want live food culture for later growth fry stage.

* A sponge over your filter intake will stop stray babies getting sucked up.

* a ladies stocking stretched over wire frame (or ice cream container ) makes a good fry tank.

* Adding a heater once you have eggs will reduce hatch times. Longer egg hatching times increases risk of fungus/failure.

If you have eggs that don't hatch, dropping the dissolved oxygen level will make them all violently wriggle and struggle free. Otherwise they will die a slow death trapped within. Wait until the majority of eggs have naturally hatched of course.

Keep up the good photos.

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Nice post [MENTION=16925]Starakia[/MENTION] .

* If you need very small artemia, send me a private message. I source a strain from Salt Lakes /San Fransisco Bay which are the smallest size artemia and I will decapsulate and post some to you. Decapsulated artemia also the most nutritious as they don't need to wait for cyst walls to weaken and hatch much faster with more stored energy.

* I can include some vinegar eel too if you want live food culture for later growth fry stage.

* A sponge over your filter intake will stop stray babies getting sucked up.

* a ladies stocking stretched over wire frame (or ice cream container ) makes a good fry tank.

* Adding a heater once you have eggs will reduce hatch times. Longer egg hatching times increases risk of fungus/failure.

If you have eggs that don't hatch, dropping the dissolved oxygen level will make them all violently wriggle and struggle free. Otherwise they will die a slow death trapped within. Wait until the majority of eggs have naturally hatched of course.

Keep up the good photos.

Thanks for the info Aquaholic :)

It's all still a learning curve for me with these guys but I must be doing something right.

They spawned again today for me. Definitely a nice surprise after coming home from work. Sorry for the poor quality video and pics.

https://vimeo.com/149249556

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I'll definitely be interested in both the brine shrimp and vinegar eels. I'm going away next week so I'll be in touch when I get back home :)

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Personally I would have the fish in the tank first then gradually increase the salt. It depends on the level of salinity you want - and it does not have to be high. at a SG of above 1.004 - 1.006 the biological bacteria take a long time to establish and stabilize. At levels lower than this I would gradually increase your salinity from fresh. In truth nearly all true brackish fish can take rapid salinity fluctuations although best to do it slowly to minimize stress. Barnacles, rocks, ornaments, shells, driftwood - can breed on all the above. Cheers

So I found myself with free time yesterday and decided to get things going on the brackish tank. I used the cycled fresh water and put the sand, rock and plants in first then let it settle. Followed by the gobies, once they'd settled I added a bit of marine salt still not sure of how much more I need to add but I've got a cheap hydrometer I figure around the first two lines from the top 1.000 should be about right.

I've also put a 3' air tube under the sand at the back to hopefully stop nitrogen bubbles forming.

Here's a pic.

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Questions I have at the moment would be.

1. Should they be completely species only or would a snail and some Amano shrimp upset them?

2. Is there any other things I should know about a brackish setup? From what I've researched it's fairly similar to freshwater.

3. I've got 5 now so I probably have room to add 5 more does anyone have some matured ones that they want to sell? (I've always had a suspicion that lfs sell one gender only so buying outside that may help)

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1) they will do best in a species only tank. Snails will die in brackish and any shimp that does OK will also likely eat the eggs.

2) brackish can be very different in some ways, best to do a heap of research on brackish tanks.

3) I would only put one more if any bumblebees in there, they like their floor space and won't use much of the rest of the tank. Ages ago i read that importation of makes only was allowed into Australia, near impossible to police as there is no clear visual difference unless they're spawning. You would likely have the same chance at sex from anywhere.

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1) they will do best in a species only tank. Snails will die in brackish and any shimp that does OK will also likely eat the eggs.

2) brackish can be very different in some ways, best to do a heap of research on brackish tanks.

3) I would only put one more if any bumblebees in there, they like their floor space and won't use much of the rest of the tank. Ages ago i read that importation of makes only was allowed into Australia, near impossible to police as there is no clear visual difference unless they're spawning. You would likely have the same chance at sex from anywhere.

https://vimeo.com/149600178

Prime added today and a bit of a cave change around so they have more space to themselves plus added a bit more sand and another air stone.

Hydrometer is on the first bar now so from my understanding that's 1.002 it's 5 Chinese sauce containers worth of salt each one holds about 12 heaped teaspoons to 120L

How am I doing?

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I generally only go with a single pair for breeding gobie.

Brackish can take longer to cycle, keep eye on ammonia and nitrite.

What KH and GH are you using? Worth test and recording. That way you can replicate any success.

Good point with the GH and KH I hadn't gotten around to testing that yet but just realised that I can't get GH to change colour it's normally 7-10 when it was fresh water. But I'm at 30 drops and still no change? This is confusing.

Is this to do with the prime I added or the marine salt? They are the only two things that I've changed.

My KH is 6

Also single pair won't work until I know the sexes it's kind of hard to tell. Do only males hide in the caves?

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That's with PH 8.2 Ammonia 0 Nitrite 0 nitrates 5 water temp is 28 I used mostly water from a cycled freshwater tank so i should have to cycle again it should be just as if I'd done a 50:50 water change.

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You dont cycle water. You cycle a filter more to the point filter media. If you are using an new filter or new media you WILL still have to cycle the filter. Adding old water doesn't maniacally cycle the tank.

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Good point with the GH and KH I hadn't gotten around to testing that yet but just realised that I can't get GH to change colour it's normally 7-10 when it was fresh water. But I'm at 30 drops and still no change? This is confusing.

Is this to do with the prime I added or the marine salt? They are the only two things that I've changed.

My KH is 6

Also single pair won't work until I know the sexes it's kind of hard to tell. Do only males hide in the caves?

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Your high GH is to do with the marine salt.

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I'm still not sure what's going on with the GH it turned red. I used the same filter as it was uncleaned. Never came out of the tank. All I did was drop half of the water out give the tank itself a clean, take the old gravel out, put the sand in, filled it up with new fresh water and some easy life. Marine salt has slowly been added in the last few days. And prime was added today.

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I normally do I test once a week on new tanks and then every two weeks once they are established. I keep a record on an app called tank mate that I can save it all. Probably no better than notepad but anyway.

From what I've read apparently the way to get these guys to breed is to have them settled in the brackish then do a 20-30% water change the fresh water makes them think it's monsoon season and that's when they breed.

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