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Old 03-06-2011, 07:07 PM   #1 
Tujin
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An introduction, and some lessons learned the hard way.

Hello everyone,

I've been lurking here for a while, reading information, and have been able to find answers to most of my questions.

I spawned my two bettas, and got 9 or 10 fry as a result. (Could never get a good count, they kept hiding behind plants.)


Unfortunately, I decided to try feeding them only packaged food (Hikari First Bites and Instant BBS ordered from IBC). They seemed to be doing okay, as there was a lot of infusoria in the water from the plants. However, I needed to put a lot of food in there to make sure they all ate it (if I put it one spot, they would not come to it, it would just sink to the bottom and sit there. If I stirred it in, they would see it floating past and eat it).

Well, long story short, I did not keep up on water changes and removing the uneaten food as well as I should have. On one weekend in particular, my girlfriend's family visited us, so I kept feeding them, but didn't bother to remove the uneaten food. Monday I found a few of them dead, so I immediately spent the next few hours cleaning the bottom with a turkey baster (all I had at the time), but a few more still died throughout the week. I wound up with two survivors, one which has been growing pretty steadily, (his belly always looked orangeish with the instant bbs) and one little guy who seemed pale...belly always looked clear, I don't think he was eating the instant bbs.

This was (I think?) 3 weeks ago. I've been keeping their tank very clean, doing moderate water changes just about every day. The bigger guy has been growing, but the smaller one hasn't grown much.

Last week I finally decided to stop being hardheaded and order BBS eggs. Got them saturday, set them all up, and now I got to feed my babies live food. They went crazy for it! They both gobbled them up until their little bellies were completely stuffed. I even gave a few to the parents, and they both seemed to enjoy devouring them.

So, some lessons I learned (the hard way):

1) The instant products are okay in a pinch, but are not a good long-term solution. I'm not sure how many of my fry died of starvation, and how many of them died due to poor water conditions, but I'm 100% sure that the smaller of my two survivors would not have lasted this week had I not finally started feeding them live food.

2) Water quality! I know other people stress this, but even lapsing over a long weekend (granted, using packaged, non living food) resulted in the death of a bunch of my fry.

Sorry for the long post!
Cliffs: Spawned my bettas, tried to use only packaged food to feed them, wound up putting way too much in over a weekend, and most of them died. Hatching my own BBS now and they are loving it.

Now, on to a few questions (if anyone is still reading)

1) Is 10 gallons too much for two fry? Or am I good to continue using that, even to let them grow out in?

2) What do I do with all these brine shrimp?? I put a small amount of bbs eggs in there, and have way way way more than enough. They only live for about 12 hours after hatching, right? Should I feed the rest to the parents? I know they wont provide enough nutrition for a full grown fish, but it's a good snack, right?

3) Do most of you just put a small amount of bbs in the tank near the fry, or do you scatter it throughout the tank? Should I do that until they get big enough to easily find and feed?


Thanks guys
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Old 03-06-2011, 07:14 PM   #2 
1fish2fish
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Welcome to the forum :)

10 gallons isn't too much for the fry and with only 2 fry in the tank they should grow pretty fast with several weekly water changes. As long as they don't begin fighting you should be good to leave them in there for growout as well.

How much bbs are you using per hatch? With only 2 fry you only need to hatch like a pinch of BBS. You can feed the rest to the parents but remember they won't get all of them which means you'll have a lot of dead bbs in your adult tanks which means more water changes.

when I fed bbs I scattered it (but that was a huge spawn). I would do that until they learn to find food (approximately how old are they?). You can also use classical conditioning to teach them to come for food. Basically all you do is tap the glass when you add the food. Eventually they'll associate tapping with food and will come towards the sound and you'll be able to spot feed.

If you were to put them in a smaller tank you could just spot feed but since they're in a large tank (relative to the size of the fry) I would make sure there is food in multiple places in the tank.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:38 PM   #3 
Tujin
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They hatched around the end of January, I want to say the 27th. They are a bit behind the growth chart I saw, which is not surprising, considering they were not so well nourished.

I have considered moving them to a smaller tank for now, but I don't have a good heater for the smaller tanks I have. I keep my house at 73, which I think is too cold for the fry.

Regarding the bbs, how long can I leave them bubbling? I pulled some out earlier to feed my fry then restarted the bubble, will they still be good to use tomorrow? I started this hatchery yesterday around 9 pm.

I need to prepared the other bottle I have for hatching, and I'm going to start it tomorrow. Ill just throw a tiny dash in this time, so I'm not wasting massive amounts of bbs.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:02 PM   #4 
dramaqueen
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Hello and welcome to the forum. Thank you for sharing with us. I'm sorry about the loss of your fry. You made some mistakes but you learned from them.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:27 AM   #5 
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I'm not entirely sure about the bbs because I haven't used them in a long time.... Hopefully someone else can chime in that uses them regularly.
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:05 PM   #6 
Tujin
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My fry are growing like crazy now! Both of them are very healthy and active now. Im so glad I didn't try packaged food any longer!
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:14 PM   #7 
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I'm glad to hear that your fry are doing well.
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Old 03-10-2011, 05:24 PM   #8 
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1) 10 gallons is fine for 2 fry to growout in. If they are both males, they may need to be seperated earlier than a larger spawn due to their being only 2 fish and no other fish to disperse the aggression when it starts.

2) A very small amount of brine shrimp eggs goes a long way. If it helps, I raised 4 spawns with only one bottle of brine shrimp eggs. If you accidentally hatch out too much brine shrimp, you can seperate the shrimp from the egg shells and freeze the strained/rinsed remains to feed them later. Adult bettas do also love freshly hatched brine shrimp as a snack.

3) I usually scatter the brine shrimp through the tank with a medicine dropper. If there is only 2 fry, you could just aim the food in the direction of each fish. Be careful to not overfeed brine shrimp, because it could cause swim bladder problems. I usually do several small feedings throughout the day.
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Old 03-10-2011, 05:55 PM   #9 
Tujin
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Thank you. :) I have a divider, I'll probably put that up between the two if I start to notice aggression between them.

Is it okay to only feed them brine shrimp for now? I was considering ordering a microworm culture, but I'd rather not deal with them if I'm okay only feeding bbs for now. I'll probably start trying to get them to bite on the Hikari first bites soon, once they start to associate me with feeding.
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:25 PM   #10 
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I wouldn't mess with microworms. BBS will be fine and maybe when they're bigger switch to frozen daphnia. NLS grow is a great dry food.

If you do want to do a worm culture go with grindal worms. They're bigger than micros but still small enough for your babies to eat.
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