WIGGLERS !!! HELP !!!

  1. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    HI ALL !!! I FINALLY HAVE WIGGLERS ;D !!! I don't know if they'll survive, but I am happy they made it this far. Up until now they'd all either turn white or would be eaten by the mother. This time I was very lucky. Even if the wigglers don't survive, at least I know now that it will be possible to have fry at some point.

    Here is the story. A couple of days ago when I turned the light on in my 30G community tank, to my great surprise I noticed a flat rock completely covered with eggs! And the dad was guarding them, even against the mother who wanted to eat them. The dad always does that, it's the mom who eats them! I don't know what kind of mom she is! Anyway, this time their breeding tubes were not that large yet and I thought I'll have a couple of more days before they spawn. But to my surprise they spawned sooner than I thought.

    Knowing that the eggs won't make it with the mom, I removed the rock to my 10G tank that has the same pH and the same temperature as the 30G has. I did a 50% water change in the 10G before I put the rock in there. And I left the eggs like this, with the light turned off and with the airstone positioned under the rock so that they get a good air flow. I also gradually increased the temperature to 80-81F.

    When I turned the light on today to examine the eggs, most of them were white, but among them I noticed tiny tails wiggling from transparent eggs!!! You have no idea how happy that made me :) These are the wigglers. There's around 30 of them I think. Once I saw that, I did a 30% water change and put a stocking over the filter's intake tube (since my LFS doesn't have a sponge filter for fry tanks). I hope this will prevent the fry from being sucked in (if they go free-swimming at all).

    Now, I have a couple of questions, particularly for you Carol if you're reading this, or anyone who has experience with breeding angelfish. (I still haven't read the book on angelfish - didn't have the time.) The eggs became wigglers today - when will they become free-swimmers? When do I start 50% daily water changes? And how to change the water so that the babies don't get hurt? Can I leave the lights on now, or will it hurt them? When do I start feeding them? (I have micro frozen brine shrimp for them - is that OK?) I also don't have a turkey baster to remove dead eggs - where can I buy a turkey baster fast? Will the wigglers die if I don't remove dead eggs?

    Please help anyone! Thanks up-front.
     
  2. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Plus, how much and how often to feed them? And will crushed flakes combined with frozen micro brine shrimp be OK?
     

  3. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    BREATHE Isabella your doing great!! You have 3-4 days to free swimming. When you see all of them free swimming wait one more day and the feed them. I have never used the frozen BBS but by all means try it. they will be too small for flakes for about two weeks.
    they need to be fed at least 3x a day Thats a good time to do your water changes
    the light won't hurt them at all, In fact they will eat more when the light is on so I leave mine on long periods of time for the first four weeks and then start a 12 hr on/ 12 hr off cycle.
    Start your 50% water changes now, just be gentle putting it back in.
    You can get a turkey baster at the dollar store/Walmarts just about anywhere in house wares.
    Now take your angelfish book to bed and read your self to sleep;)
    Good Luck!!
    Carol
     

  4. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Thanks Carol :) I will go and look for a turkey baster tomorrow, I hope I'll be able to find it. But I would be afraid to mess with the batch of wigglers anyway. They look so very frail to me and they're so tiny and so close to each other. The dead eggs are right next to, or mixed with, the live ones. I am afraid I will damage the wigglers when removing the dead eggs. They're so close that I will surely pull the live ones together with the dead ones. Is there any way to avoid this? What will happen if I leave the dead eggs until the wigglers become free-swimmers? Will they make the wigglers sick, or cause them to die? There's white cottony fungus beginning to grow on the dead eggs :-\ That can't be good, right? So far, the wigglers seem to be very lively among these dead eggs.

    As for the flakes, I meant to crush the flakes to a fine powder - would that be still too large for fry? Do you think they'll survive on frozen brine shrimp (as opposed to live brine shrimp)? And one last question about water changes: when the fry are are free-swimming, how do you clean the tank bottom so that the fry are not hurt or accidentally killed? It's REALLY hard to see them because they're so small. I have to look really close to see them well. And the filter won't suck them in, right? That is, they won't get "glued" to the stocking over the filter tube, right? I decreased the flow to low. Once again, they are so tiny and frail that to me even the airstone's gentle air flow seems too strong for them.
     

  5. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    First the air stone is fine, they need to be moved around a little by it. Mom and Dad would normally fan their fins over the to get water to flow past the. This makes them stronger.
    Even powdered flakes are too big to begin with then I use the tiny bites at about two weeks, and as I said I've never tried frozen shrimp only live so can't help you there.
    Just leave the dead eggs alone for now you can suck them out when they go free swimming. At first i Used a sponge to clean the bottom of the tank after feeding, now I have a tiny little vacuum brush I found in the automotive dept at Wal-marts. It's for cleaning computer keyboarda. this brush is attached to a small siphon tube.
    Carol
     
  6. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Thanks Carol. I am doing 50% daily water changes. The wigglers seem very alive so far (thanks God!). I didn't touch anything, the dead eggs are still there - I hope they won't affect the wigglers in any way. The wigglers' eggs seem to be getting smaller and the wigglers seem to be more and more detached from them. I also noticed they all have two tiny dots on what appears to be their heads - are these the eyes? So cute!!! ;D As you can see they're still attached to the rock and just wiggling their tails vigorously. The light is on during day and off during night. It's been 2 days since they're wigglers, so I suppose they'll go free-swimming tomorrow or the day after? I can't wait! Even one day seems so long. And I really hope they won't die - that would be terrible because they're so beautiful and all of these water changes ...
     
  7. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    Yes that is their eyes, and they are darling. They will lloosen a little bit, but may be stuck to each other for a bit. just a couple of days now and you will have a cloud of babies ;)
    Carol
     
  8. Jason Well Known Member Member

    Good Luck with the whole think Isabella! :D Your in good hands
     
  9. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Hi J-Man, I know I am :) I really trust Carol with this :) And I really do hope they survive. Only I am concerned if frozen micro brine shrimp will do for feeding (as opposed to live one). If they die after having reached free-swimming stage that will mean they died because of inadequate food. Because my water parameters are very good, everything is at 0, even nitrate (which is always difficult to bring to even 10 in my 30G tank). And I am doing 50% daily water changes in my 10G breeder tank.

    Carol, I noticed the wigglers are sort of spread out on the rock. It seems they're moving! Are they sort of crawling over the rock? Because I am 100% sure they were all closely packed together in the beginning and now they're spread out. Is that a sign they'll start swimming soon? I have read the chapter on breeding in the angelfish book. My only concern is that the book says I need an outside filtration. What do they exactly mean by this? Does that mean the filter tube inside my tank isn't safe? Do you think it's not safe even with a stocking over it? The flow isn't really strong either - it's set to low, and the stocking even further decreases the flow.

    I have been thinking a lot, and because I know for a fact my angelfish will breed regularly, now I am not so sure if I should be getting the otos for my 10G and further decorating my 10G. If I did that, I don't think that would be the right tank to raise the fry in. What do you think? Otos would need driftwood to suck on and plants to hide among them. All that can't be in a breeder tank. I think I'll try to buy online that right sponge filter for a breeding tank you know. Would I have to keep it running in my 30G while there are no fish in the 10G, in order to have it full of bacteria? And then simply put it in the 10G with completely new water, when the angels have babies, right?

    But I am still thinking about all of this. Nothing is final yet. The algae won't grow in a breeder tank, will they?
     
  10. chickadee Fishlore VIP Member

    LOL Congratulations, Isabella! The excitement in your posts is palpable. It is catching. I eagerly await the next installment of the story on what is happening. Aren't babies nice?

    It is always a good day when babies arrive, and 30 of them...oh my! I can hardly wait for pictures, you take such beautiful pictures.

    Rose
    :)
     
  11. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    Yes your babies are spreading out, and wiggling around. I think the stocking over the uptake tube should befine. although for the future a sponge filter would be better and keeping it going in another tank would be great.
    Your parametera are good also. Keeping the Nitrates at 0 is really hard but thats the reason for the 50% water changes each day. Nitrates are growth inhibitors and keeping it at 0 will help them grow faster;)
    Carol
     
  12. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Hi Rose :) Yes, I am very excited! I never had raised any fish before. But at the same time I don't want to get too hopeful in case they die (which is probably very possible). However, I'll keep doing my best no matter what. And yes, the babies are so beautiful. It's amazing how life can develop from such tiny eggs. All life - no matter what species - is a miracle to me. I will try and take the pictures for you if they survive and grow. Right now you won't see anything. Even if they survive, it'll probably be difficult to photograph such tiny fish. Once they're 2 months old (dime size), my LFS will take them from me.

    Carol, my angels lay eggs about twice a month. This means they have 24 batches of eggs during a year. I have calculated that at the rate of breeding twice a month, and giving away every batch at their being 2 months old, I would need 4 breeder tanks over the course of 1 year. I wouldn't have the time for raising every single batch of eggs they lay, and for maintaining 4 tanks (plus my 30G) all year round (so many water changes!). With 4 tanks, I'd also need 4 heaters, 4 filters, and 4 airstones with perhaps 1-2 airpumps divided among 4 outlets). One angelfish pair is so productive! Unbelievable.

    So all of this means ... that I can raise only 6 batches out of 24 having 1 breeder tank during the course of 1 year. What this further translates into is that the remaining 18 batches will never make it - they'll be either eaten by the mom, or by other fish in the main tank (the 30G one). It's impossible for me to have so many tanks and save every single batch - simply no time and no space for so many. All I am trying to say is that it will make me sad watching so many of them not being able to make it and dying like this :( I suppose you can't raise every single batch you get either Carol, can you? Kind of not fair, is it?
     
  13. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    P.S. Rose, I counted them today. I was wrong. There's about 50 of them! (And that's only about 1/3 or even 1/4 of the whole batch, the rest of which turned white). Yes, 50, LOL!

    I wonder if they're all supposed to survive? Even if they're only dime sized at 2 months old, that will be a tank full of fish. And my tank is only 10 Gallons.

    Carol, isn't 10G too small for a batch of angels? Is it possible to maintain a 10G with 50 baby angels clean until they're 2 months old and ready to go to the store? Can I maintain it clean with frequent and large water changes until they're 2 months old? If so, how frequent and how large should the water changes be?

    Finally, I am not experienced with sponge filters. What sponge filter do you recommend for a 10G angels breeder tank? What brand? Is it available online?
     
  14. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    A ten gallon is a little small but if you are diligent with water changes with this batch you can then decide whether you want a larger tank. I use twenty gallon breeder tanks and yes its very hard not to raise every spawn ;)
    I use the sponge filter Drs foster and Smith has.
    Carol
     
  15. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Caaaaarrolll !!! They are swimming !!! Yeeyyyy! ;D ;D ;D How beautiful they are ! I bought a magnifying glass (lol) today so that I could see them closer - I can clearly see their eyes and mouths. So tiny! Truly amazing. Now I'll be very very sad if they die. They're too beautiful! I was so happy to see them swim today. My whole family run to see them when I exclaimed (or rather yelled) they're swimming, lol.

    Now, let me calm down a bit, lol. Whew... OK. About 5 of them are freely swimming around the tank. They're able to resist filter's water flow - which means the water intake (and outflow) isn't too strong (thanks God). The rest are dispersed on the floor and on the glass and they look like they're "hopping" from place to place, trying to swim. I was able to remove almost all dead eggs today. And a small batch is still left on the rock but also very dispersed.

    So ... should I start feeding today? I could see their tiny mouths close and open under the magnifying glass. I think they're hungry !!! What do I do ?? Help!!! ;D
     
  16. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    It's already been one day since they went free-swimming. Some are still hopping and trying to learn to swim, but none are left on the rock. I am going to feed them today - I'm afraid they're going to die otherwise. And I still don't know if they'll survive on frozen bbs.

    The bbs that I have is in frozen cubes, much like adult frozen and frozen bloodworms. How much bbs should I give them with each feeding? Just a bit of the cube or, like, half of it at once? Really, I have no idea. Plus, will I be able to see them eat? How do I know if they're eating? How will they be eating? Will they know how to?
     
  17. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    Aren't they beautiful !!!!!!! thaw just a tiny bit and feed it to your babies. It doesn't take much. You can tell their eating baby brine shrimp by looking at them with a magnifying glass. their little tummys will turn orange. I guess it should work with frozen. Keep me up to date. This is so exciting!!!!!!!
    They will probably all be free swimming by tomorrow ;)
    Carol
     
  18. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    OK :) I already took one cube from my freezer yesterday and put it in a refrigerator. This way it stays soft, defrosted, and fresh. I'll be taking it from the refrigerator for feeding and putting it back in there so that it stays fresh until used up. I am going to feed them now :) I'll definitely keep you updated (and all of you reading my posts). I hope all will be well.
     
  19. Isabella Fishlore VIP Member

    Update (lol): I already fed them 3 times. I have seen a few of them grab tiny bbs with their tiny mouths, but I am not sure if they all ate. Some of them are swimming close to, or at, the water's surface (sort of glued with their heads to the water's surface - which I think was the way they were eating?). It was the other few that are swimming at all ranges of the tank that I saw eating. But most of them are swimming close to tank's bottom - kind of hovering over the floor. It was very hard to tell whether they were eating. I really hope they were! I stirred the food in water so that it fell to the bottom over the low-hovering fry. I think there is about 30 of them swimming freely now. It all looks so cute and funny. They're starting to swim in groups. One group of about 15 stays together all the time. It's amazing how nature works. Such tiny fish, barely able to swim, already knows how to stick together! Very few are left attached to surfaces. Keep your fingers crossed for me, whoever is reading my updates!
     
  20. Butterfly Moderator Moderator Member

    Can you get a look at their tummys with your magnifying glass/ some times they will just bulge :) and their tummys may change color when they eat.
    Carol