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Establishing Water Fleas And Other Small Critters?

Discussion in 'Inverts' started by Native_MS, Jan 18, 2018.

  1. Native_MS

    Native_MS New Member

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    Hey guys, I'm new to planted tanks and am working on getting a low-tech 29 gallon established. I am interested in establishing at the least a population of Daphnia but also potentially other copepods, rotifers, hydra etc. But from what I can glean from the forums, these are things people are generally trying to get rid of in their tanks. Any suggestions on establishing a more robust micro ecosystem in the tank but avoiding potential problems?

    I do intend to have fry and shrimp in the tank but will have separate breeding facilities so as long as adult Neocaridina (i've never kept them but want to) aren't harmed, I don't mind if the populations are kept in check in the main tank.

    I've also been pondering a refugium tank delivery system for select critters. I would also like to add a bivalve bed eventually. Any/all advice or insight from your experience is welcome, thanks!
     
  2. tiger15

    tiger15 Member

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    Don’t tell me you want hydra. It’s a dangerous pest to fry and shrimplets everyone try to avoid.. Daphnia, copepods and rotifers are fish food hobbyist cultivate to feed fry, but never for ornamental purpose.

    I cultivate daphnia in outdoor tubs, rather easy, just provide sunlight and nutrients. I introduced a small potion of daphnia in my shrimp bowl, and it comes with other critters you mentioned. With fish, daphnia will be eaten quickly. They survived a long time in my shrimp only bowl and eventually vanished. I don’t think shrimp eat daphnia or any live critters. But without green water algae in indoor water, daphnia is slowly starved to death.
     
    #2 tiger15, Jul 5, 2018
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2018
  3. Fishfur

    Fishfur Subscriber

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    If it is not too late to help, you might consider an amphipod population. Aka gammarus & often derisively called scuds. I raise them mostly for fish food, but they are eager algae eaters and scavengers. But, if food is scarce, be warned, they will eat plants, especially mosses.

    They'll strip every leaf off a moss, leaving nothing but threads of stems. But only if they have no other food. They vastly prefer algae, almost any green form will do nicely. They are small crustaceans, bottom dwellers, scavengers, detritus eaters, they look something like a shrimp when mature, but the biggest one I've seen so far didn't quite reach 1/2" long. I've had them in many tanks and if you start with enough of them, even hungry fish will have trouble eliminating all of them. Kind of cute in their way.

    Just an option to consider.
     
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