Angelfish Wigglers Die Just Before Free Swimming

three fish
  • #1
I remove my slate within an hour of the eggs being layed (making sure the male is done fertilizing). A one gallon jar with RO water and RO Right added to match hardness, PH and temp. is prepped and aerated. 10 drops of hydrogen peroxide is added to the 1 gallon jug before placing the slate in the jar. a 100 percent WC is done each day until they start to hang from the thread on their head. I then move them to a one gallon jar with the double sponges and lift tube in the middle. This is inside a 10 gallon tank with a mature sponge filter. I wait 5-6 days (they are wiggling that whole time) I do not feed and no water changes are done at this time. Aeration is on at all times. Temp 78.

They just never swim. I see nice and round stomachs the whole time.

I use well water for my pairs and they spawn consistently. I started using the same water for the eggs but had problems with fungus even with peroxide. Switched to RO water and RO Right with better results. Biggest issue I see is my PH. Pairs are at 8.2 (natural from my well) and wigglers water is at 8.2. General Hardness is also very high at 14-18.

Thanks.
 
Floundering_Around
  • #2
"After hatching, the fry stay as "wrigglers" for 5 days and won't need to eat anything" from my understanding of quick googling. Could you be missing the point where they transition from wrigglers to free-swimming and they starve to death? Try adding food to the tank around the fifth day

Also, have you tried letting the angelfish rear the fry themselves? The fry can apparently eat a mucus film provided by the parents
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Thanks. The wigglers never come off the bottom sponge, the just wiggle for about 5 days and then stop wiggling and die. I would love to have the parents take care of eggs but they eat the eggs within a day. I feed the parents my own mix containing a huge variety of foods with the bulk being beef heart.
 
Mcasella
  • #4
They need water changes daily at that stage, do daily water changes on them around 30-50% to keep it pristine. If it isn't clean they can succumb to various things in the water (even though they aren't eating and pooping there is still a need to keep them clean as bacteria can kill them).
They should be free swimming days after hatching, normally by day six from hatch they have depleted their egg sack and will need tiny live food in the 12-24 hrs following that point.
Beef heart is not good for constant feeding of fish as it is too fatty for a long term consumption (while it is good for growth it can cause issues because fish are not designed to eat high quantities of mammal meat/muscle). I would not use a sponge until they go into the 10, use a medium powered bubbler that doesn't push them around.
Bump up the temp to 80 degrees, have brine shrimp or other live foods ready for them by the forth day (brine shrimp will hatch in 16-18 hours at 74 degrees if the eggs are good, you want to feed bbs soon after the bbs hatch for best nutrition).
If you are having issues with peroxide switch to methylene blue (fungus preventative, will keep it from growing and does not harm the fish or eggs, turns water blue). If fungus is growing water changes need to be done.
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Current setup.
62979af91a73c8828c11f40366afabc7.jpg

Lots of good info. I am suspecting the sponge might be my problem. Even though I rinse it in tank water before placing it in the 10, it still has some detritus that comes off as you can see at the bottom of the tank.
 
bizaliz3
  • #6
Could moving them around multiple times during those first few days be a problem? And 100% water changes? it seems like a lot of stress. I would only move them once....I am not saying that your method hasn't worked for people...but it doesn't seem to work for you, so maybe try something a little less stressful.

When I removed eggs, I put them in a 10 gallon right away with Meth blue and an air stone putting bubbles over the eggs gently. I did partial water changes every day (not 100%). Meth Blue kills BB, so a cycled sponge accomplishes nothing until the meth blue is all gone. By the time they start freeswimming, all the meth blue is gone from the daily water changes and you can add a cycled sponge at that point.

If you get them to free swimming in the 10g, then continue to do daily water changes for a few weeks and then you will need to get them a larger grow out tank.

Also, just a side note....they don't have "nice round stomachs" when they haven't eaten yet. What you are seeing is their yolk sac. Once that is depleted is when you need to start feeding them baby brine shrimp, and THEN you will see what a baby angelfish stomach looks like! lol But if they are not free swimming, they probably won't eat it.

Good luck! I only did the egg removing process twice. With my pairs I prefer to move them once they have hatched. Luckily most of my pairs don't eat their eggs.

When are yours eating the eggs? is it at night? if so, you can try leaving the light on and see if that will prevent them from eating the eggs.
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
Could moving them around multiple times during those first few days be a problem? And 100% water changes? it seems like a lot of stress. I would only move them once....I am not saying that your method hasn't worked for people...but it doesn't seem to work for you, so maybe try something a little less stressful.

When I removed eggs, I put them in a 10 gallon right away with Meth blue and an air stone putting bubbles over the eggs gently. I did partial water changes every day (not 100%). Meth Blue kills BB, so a cycled sponge accomplishes nothing until the meth blue is all gone. By the time they start freeswimming, all the meth blue is gone from the daily water changes and you can add a cycled sponge at that point.

If you get them to free swimming in the 10g, then continue to do daily water changes for a few weeks and then you will need to get them a larger grow out tank.

Also, just a side note....they don't have "nice round stomachs" when they haven't eaten yet. What you are seeing is their yolk sac. Once that is depleted is when you need to start feeding them baby brine shrimp, and THEN you will see what a baby angelfish stomach looks like! lol But if they are not free swimming, they probably won't eat it.

Good luck! I only did the egg removing process twice. With my pairs I prefer to move them once they have hatched. Luckily most of my pairs don't eat their eggs.

When are yours eating the eggs? is it at night? if so, you can try leaving the light on and see if that will prevent them from eating the eggs.
I am open to all options. The eggs are eaten between the time they are laid and lights out. After the male does his fertilizing run some eggs pop off and the female eats them instead of sticking them back on the slate. More pop off when they start fanning and those get eaten too. They have been spawning about 3 months now.
 
bizaliz3
  • #8
I am open to all options. The eggs are eaten between the time they are laid and lights out. After the male does his fertilizing run some eggs pop off and the female eats them instead of sticking them back on the slate. More pop off when they start fanning and those get eaten too. They have been spawning about 3 months now.

ok....the eggs should not be falling off that easily. If the eggs are falling off just from some simple fanning, i'd be concerned about the quality of her eggs. It doesn't sound like she is laying quality eggs...

What do you think Mcasella I have never had eggs fall off other than maybe a few while the eggs are being laid. But once they are laid, the fanning doesn't result in them falling off.

What do you think would cause the eggs to not be sticky enough? Diet issues??? Could it be what she is being fed? (or not fed?)

Edit: how fast do they eat them? An hour later? Two hours later? what?

Edit#2 and if the wigglers you remove keep dying, maybe that is also due to the eggs/fry being weak/poor quality?
 
Mcasella
  • #9
ok....the eggs should not be falling off that easily. If the eggs are falling off just from some simple fanning, i'd be concerned about the quality of her eggs. It doesn't sound like she is laying quality eggs...

What do you think Mcasella I have never had eggs fall off other than maybe a few while the eggs are being laid. But once they are laid, the fanning doesn't result in them falling off.

What do you think would cause the eggs to not be sticky enough? Diet issues??? Could it be what she is being fed? (or not fed?)

Edit: how fast do they eat them? An hour later? Two hours later? what?

Edit#2 and if the wigglers you remove keep dying, maybe that is also due to the eggs/fry being weak/poor quality?
Angel eggs almost stick as well as nerite eggs in the first 24hrs. They should not be popping off, the only thing I can think of is the protein the eggs are made of isn't strong enough for sticking? Which would be an egg quality/pair quality issue as well as a possible food issue (for what is put into the development of the eggs/sperm).
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
Eggs are mostly eaten on the day they are laid, by morning only a couple dozen are left. My food is beef heart based with shrimp (with a handful of shells for chiton), krill, scallops, all purpose flake, Spectrum pellet, spiralina powder, astaxanthin powder, red algae sheets, squid, clam, mussel and garlic.

The wigglers sure look good, big eyes, robust yolk sac, lots of wiggling action. I will make some water related changes and report back at next spawn.
 
bizaliz3
  • #11
The wigglers sure look good, big eyes, robust yolk sac, lots of wiggling action.

That doesn't really mean anything if they are weak babies though. My albinos looked great too, they even ate for a week, but they were weak fish and didn't make it. Even though they looked excellent for a period of time.

I also had a non-albino pair once that I purchased from a local hobbiest as a supposed "proven pair". Well, ya, they spawned regularly, but their babies never made it to free swimming. PROVEN MY BUTT!!!! lol I finally tried moving the eggs like you did to see if it would make a difference, and all the wigglers dropped dead one day. After wiggling and looking healthy for several days as you describe.

Some fish just don't produce good offspring. Hopefully that isn't the case with your pair if you are hoping to raise babies!!

See if you can find a different female for your male. That would be my best suggestion to test things out. Because he isn't responsible for this if the eggs are a problem from jump....
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
That is my fear. I have two males but just one female. I could try the other male.
 
bizaliz3
  • #13
That is my fear. I have two males but just one female. I could try the other male.

But the male has nothing to to with the eggs being bad...or Not sticky or whatever. Unless they are all infertile....which we know they are not.

But you could try. Maybe I'm wrong.
 
three fish
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
But the male has nothing to to with the eggs being bad...or Not sticky or whatever. Unless they are all infertile....which we know they are not.

But you could try. Maybe I'm wrong.
Success!!!!!!

Ammonia and temp were the problems. Added Amquel and bumped temp to 84. Added a black background to the bottom of the jar. Didn't do any water changes and didn't add a sponge (yet).
7a5b80be4a2503f986d74e04ddd8d582.jpg
 
Niyaz
  • #15
Its the 4th attempt Im failing. Im moving the slate to a small rearing aquarium with Aeration and Methelyne Blue, With daily 50 - 60% water changes. Everything seems working well until free swimming day. Is it ammonia or bacterial issue or something else? How can I help with it.?
 

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Joshaeus
  • #16
Welcome to the forum! That's no fun...I lost a whole brood of 2 month old Microctenopoma fasciolatum to an ammonia spike in the past. Can you give us your water parameters? Ammonia/nitrite/nitrate? Hardness (GH and KH) and PH also? That will help us determine what went wrong.
 
Niyaz
  • #17
Welcome to the forum! That's no fun...I lost a whole brood of 2 month old Microctenopoma fasciolatum to an ammonia spike in the past. Can you give us your water parameters? Ammonia/nitrite/nitrate? Hardness (GH and KH) and PH also? That will help us determine what went wrong.

I dont have a test kit. Earlier I never had issue raising angelfish frys. Only two tests i have is Ph ans TDS tds is 140 and Ph is 7.2. I do daily water change in rearing tank to eliminate ammonia and nitrite spike. And now due to corona lockdown all pet stores in my city are closed. I have prime water conditioner which detoxify ammonia nitrite. Should I use it with water changes although Im using aged water?
 
Joshaeus
  • #18
Did your town switch to using chloramines recently? Chloramines are not readily removed by aging the water and will poison fish in a similar fashion to ammonia, so I would recommend using the prime on your WC water. Might not be a bad idea to order a test kit online either, just in case...I don't use my test kits crazy often, but they are good to have lying around for troubleshooting.
 
FinalFins
  • #19
I am not sure on this but alot of people age their water to let the pH stabilize and to prevent 'microbubble sickness'?
 
Joshaeus
  • #20
I am not sure on this but alot of people age their water to let the pH stabilize and to prevent 'microbubble sickness'?
I have not heard of this 'microbubble sickness' before...I will have to look it up Anyhow, sounds like he is not currently using any dechlorinator in his new WC water, so if his water supply has chloramines that could easily be the cause of his problem.
 
FinalFins
  • #21
to OP, have you tried letting the parents care for the fry untill they are of age where they can be separated? Also on what day are you feeding them after the yolk sac has dissapeared?
 
Niyaz
  • #22
Did your town switch to using chloramines recently? Chloramines are not readily removed by aging the water and will poison fish in a similar fashion to ammonia, so I would recommend using the prime on your WC water. Might not be a bad idea to order a test kit online either, just in case...I don't use my test kits crazy often, but they are good to have lying around for troubleshooting.

Its only chlorine and not chloramine. And what is the issue buying freshwater test kit online?

to OP, have you tried letting the parents care for the fry untill they are of age where they can be separated? Also on what day are you feeding them after the yolk sac has dissapeared?
 
Joshaeus
  • #23
Its only chlorine and not chloramine. And what is the issue buying freshwater test kit online?
Oops! That is not what I meant to say...I meant that it would be a good idea to pick up a test kit online and have it on hand in the event problems like these surface.
 
Niyaz
  • #24
I usually feed when they are free swimmers with infusoria for two days and then BBS.

Oops! That is not what I meant to say...I meant that it would be a good idea to pick up a test kit online and have it on hand in the event problems like these surface.

I think its the right time to buy one
 
Mcasella
  • #25
It may also be that if you haven't remove the methylene blue before they have hatched out it can cause health issues in the fry.
I would also adjust the lighting so it is very dim - this is important while they are developing because it can cause them to sit on the bottom of the tank when they should be getting ready to swim and be eating.
 

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