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Thread: Bristlenose surprise

  1. #1
    Moderator Team Adam S's Avatar
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    Default Bristlenose surprise

    Found a few wiggly things on the back of a bristlenose growout/shrimp tank. Not too unusual on its own, but the "breeders" are ~2" TL and with only a few pieces of wood for cover, no caves. The males haven't even fully grown in their bristles! Weirder yet, there's at least one albino. Their parents, their parent's parents, and the generation before that were all super red. Barring a random mutation, it's pretty incredible for albinism to show up this late.

    If you look closely (and ignore the shakey hands holding the phone), you can see the heart pumping.


  2. #2
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Yes, I could see it. You're going to have to keep this little guy as a breeder and see what it throws. Very cool in every way.
    Mama Bear

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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    How exciting Adam! An albino bristlenose! That beating heart is so cool! I’ve watched it 3 times already! Congratulations!

    Patty
    If the discus are happy, Iím happy

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    Registered Member danotaylor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Very cool mate

  5. #5
    Moderator Team Adam S's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by LizStreithorst View Post
    Yes, I could see it. You're going to have to keep this little guy as a breeder and see what it throws. Very cool in every way.
    Thanks, Liz. It was your fish room cleanup post (and the looming threat of company in a few days) that let me find them. There's usually an aging barrel there, but it had to be moved for vacuuming.

    If it's a super red albino, they're pretty neat. Typical eyes and color but no spotting like normal albinos. Here's to hoping!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pices View Post
    How exciting Adam! An albino bristlenose! That beating heart is so cool! I’ve watched it 3 times already! Congratulations!

    Patty
    Thanks, Patty. It must be a disease amongst fish keepers, as it never gets old watching things like this.

    Quote Originally Posted by danotaylor View Post
    Very cool mate
    Thanks, Daniel.

    Found some normally colored fry on a log above dad(?). He was fanning the spot under the wood before a flashlight put him on high alert. Judging by their size and gut, they're probably 7-9 days old (eggs laid 12-13 days ago).



    Found another (up to 10) under a small anubias. Poor quality unfortunately, as you can already see some speckling along the back, but not every fish can be perfect! The momma shrimp creeping on him from the left is of no threat. Cherry shrimp won't bother eggs or fry like ghost shrimp.

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  6. #6
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Adam, I never thought that I could get interested in a tank like that. I wish I knew how to have a tank where there are healthy plants and both the shrimp are the BN are happy enough to breed. Please tell me all about the tank and the pH or TDS they need to breed. I never thought that I could get so turned on except by Discus. I just found out otherwise. I'm now going to watch the video again.
    Mama Bear

  7. #7
    Moderator Team Adam S's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Thank you, Liz, but anyone can do it! All the stuff in the video is tough as nails.

    It's a 20 gallon long, conditions are:
    TDS - 480ppm
    pH - 7.8
    Temp - 80F.

    I change 50-90% once a week. Lighting is a double incandescent fixture with two 60w daylight CFL bulbs, though a couple clamp lights with 40-60w CFL or LED screw bulbs would be better. Plants are gold Anubias, Anubias "Coffeefolia," variegated Anubias, trident Java fern, Susswassertang, and Crypt. spiralis.

    pH and TDS aren't important for bristlenose or shrimp, though this line of cherry shrimp turns pink in soft water (no clue why). The easiest way to get cherry shrimp going is to start with a colony of at least 20, give them a lot of surface area to graze on (mature sponges, plants, gravel, wood, ceramic media, dried leaves, etc.) and ignore them. They eat scraps the fish miss and multiply like crazy once settled in. Nothing special for breeding, females berry up like crawfish and do all the work. Plecos are fine, but most fish eat shrimp and shrimp babies as they're not much bigger than bbs when born.

    Could easily fill an entire page with mindless rabble about shrimp and plecos, but hopefully this at least skims the surface. Happy to answer more questions and can certainly send some stuff your way if you want to set up a tank like this.

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    Administrator and MVP Dec.2015 Second Hand Pat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    That is really cool Adam
    Pat
    Your discus are talking to you....are you listening


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    Silver Member Willie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam S View Post
    Found a few wiggly things on the back of a bristlenose growout/shrimp tank. Not too unusual on its own, but the "breeders" are ~2" TL and with only a few pieces of wood for cover, no caves. The males haven't even fully grown in their bristles! Weirder yet, there's at least one albino. Their parents, their parent's parents, and the generation before that were all super red. Barring a random mutation, it's pretty incredible for albinism to show up this late.

    If you look closely (and ignore the shakey hands holding the phone), you can see the heart pumping.

    So cool. If there were fish in that tank, that baby would never have survived exposed on the glass like that.
    Whenever you feel stupid, remember that there are people out there looking for Pokemon.

  10. #10
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    I found a place in the office where a tank like that would fit. I'd have to build a stand. I hate doing carpentry because it doesn't come easily to me, but I've built stands before and I can do it again.

    My tank is a 30 long. I have 2 huge Anubias in my 125 in the office that I could steal from. Java fern is easy enough to find. But I don't want to get ahead of myself. The first order of business is to do the part I enjoy the least...building a stand. Once I talk myself into doing that, the rest will be fun.
    Mama Bear

  11. #11
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Adam. please continue with your mindless babble about shrimp and plecos. I want to hear.

    I found an easy peasy to make a stand. http://pinkaspen.blogspot.com/2013/0...um-stand.htmlI don't care if it's not pretty because it will be in my office. If nobody sees it but me, pretty is an unnecessary luxury. I can buy everything I need at my local hardware store that also sells lumber. I am so looking forward to this project.
    Mama Bear

  12. #12
    Moderator Team Adam S's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by LizStreithorst View Post
    Adam. please continue with your mindless babble about shrimp and plecos. I want to hear.
    Can do!

    Neocaridina (cherry) shrimp are about the easiest thing to keep in an aquarium, but many new shrimp keepers suffer from "discus syndrome." Planted tank setups and RO. Unless the water is unsafe for drinking, tap water is fine. I've kept them in TDS readings of 40 to 500 ppm, and other than turning pink in soft water, there was no noticeable difference in shrimp health. Their temperature range is also very wide, about 64F to 86F. I wouldn't recommend going much higher, but they can probably survive much lower temps with 70F-80F being ideal. They reproduce more quickly in warm water. pH is a non-factor (within reason), though neos technically prefer pH readings above 7.0. Another mistake is tank size. I use 20 gallon tanks, but anything lower than 10 gallons is hard to manage. It'll work for a while with only a few shrimp, but colonies grow quickly. Maybe something happens, you get pinched on time for a while, skip a few water changes, and boom: the colony crashes overnight. I lost a colony of about 700 a couple years ago due to chemical contamination... The smell was something else. Planted tanks aren't an issue in the same way they are with discus (shrimp do well with plants), but catching a few hundred shrimp in a scaped, high tech tank sounds like a nightmare. Plants that can be moved around and taken out of the tank are preferred.

    Feeding is another thing that's easy to screw up the first time around, as they eat surprisingly little. In pleco tanks, they're fine with just scraps until the colony starts numbering in the hundreds. In shrimp only tanks, I feed once a day and mostly "fresh" foods like canned, french-cut green beans, boiled and frozen kale/spinach/squash with frozen brine shrimp and bloodworms maybe once or twice a week (seems to increase reproduction, though that could just be wishful thinking). Fresh foods are preferred because they don't rot out of sight like some dry foods can if overfed. If there's still food after a few hours, it's too much. That being said, they're definitely not picky eaters. I had a colony in high school that got neglected for a couple of weeks due to summer activities, and by the time I got back, almost half the bottom was covered in ramshorn shells. They ate every last snail in that tank. Snails are a very good addition to shrimp tanks (cleanup, backup food source), so if you can tolerate them, the shrimp will appreciate it.

    Air-powered sponges are arguably the best filtration method for shrimp. Shrimp babies aren't much larger than bbs, so prefilters are a must if using power filtration. I haven't had any issues with shrimp getting stuck in large pore sponges, but some sources are adamant fine pore is better. Bigger is better though, as shrimp constantly groom and pick at the material. The more surface area, the better (they love HMF's). That applies to other stuff in the aquarium too. Mosses like Java moss are definitely the best plants to use in shrimp tanks, as they provide hiding places and tons of surface. The shrimp will also keep it very clean, though they won't eat algae. Driftwood, dried leaves, and gravel are also well received. If you don't mind the look, ceramic media (the kind shaped like a short tube) is great for shrimp tanks. A couple big handfuls does wonders.

    My ideal shrimp tank would look something like this:
    - 20 gallon long, plus another tank
    - 30 ppi Poret HMF with Jeftlifter (makes water changes easier, just drain behind the filter mat. No prefilter!)
    - some pieces of Malaysian driftwood
    - fine gravel over at least half the tank bottom (doesn't have to be more than a couple grains deep)
    - a dozen dried oak leaves
    - handful of ceramic media
    - Java moss, Susswassertang, Java fern, Anubias, Bolbitis, etc. (plants with similar lighting requirements)
    - 2 60w screw bulb daylight LED's in clamp lights from HD/Lowes
    - at least 20 shrimp to start

    I mentioned another tank because it's the easiest way to keep a line strong; in this case, bright red. Even the best colonies will eventually start throwing oddballs or poorly colored shrimp. When that happens, just take the 50 best boys and girls and move them to the next tank. Sell off the rest and repeat. If another tank isn't an option, Marina breeder boxes work well if noise isn't an issue (they sound like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WrbRjOh1-q4). Put the best dozen or so in a large breeder box and let them party. The babies will exit through the outflow grate, but they'll have the genes you want so it doesn't matter. I cull a only a few cherry shrimp a year, but when I was still working with blues, maybe 50%. They sold for a lot, but it just wasn't fun.

    That about wraps it up for shrimp. The above is what I consider "optimal care," but consistency is the most important thing. My first successful colony was a 16 gallon Sterilite tub in the guest bathroom of my parents' house. I lined the bottom with a few layers of dried oak leaves, fed a couple times a week, and changed water maybe once a month. Lighting was provided by a Pixar lamp draped over the side. It also produced a bunch of mosquito larvae during the summer, but my parents didn't see it as "free fish food" opportunity like I did . Point being, just don't over manage them and they'll probably do okay. I'll do plecos tomorrow.

  13. #13
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Wow, that was great. Thanks. Looking forward to tomorrow.
    Mama Bear

  14. #14
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    I cannot believe that just 10 years ago I was Wonder Woman and now, my back rules. Carrying concrete blocks should be a piece of cake. I forgot that it no longer is. I didn't think to put my back brace on. It's OK. I have given myself until Sunday to get the blocks in and the tank in place and filled with water. So far I've only brought in 3 blocks, but I have everything I need to get the job done. I'm all excited
    Mama Bear

  15. #15
    Moderator Team LizStreithorst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bristlenose surprise

    Adam, I was planning on using a Big Block filter in the tank. I've had a hankering for one of these since he became a sponsor. In the picture it looks like i will work well, but I'll take a very close look at it to make sure that it won't suck up the baby shrimp.

    I want this tank two weeks ago but doing it right takes time. At least I don't have to do carpentry.
    Mama Bear

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