I want to do something new...

Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 1:38 am #1

so, about 20 years ago, i bought my first triops kit. i was 12 at the time. the biggest reason i remember the year is because i was in a nasty car accident on the way home from the local fish store. i was in the back seat of a van that got broad sided by an 18 wheeler doing about 60 miles per hour. the fish that i bought died, but the eggs in that tiny "triassic triops" kit survived just fine. since that day i have been hooked on all things aquatic. truth be told, i already was when it came to fish and aquariums, but something about ephemeral pools just seemed to draw me in.

20 years later, and i still have the descendants of the triops i hatched out of that kit. i try to raise some at least once every year. i usually manage to do it at least twice: once when i am home, and once when i am deployed. i am in the military and deploy every year, so i dont get to experiment with them as much as i would like. to make matters worse, out of the six months that i am home every year, i am usually away in some form of training for about four months of it. there are a LOT of experimenting i still want to do with triops, but alas, i can only think about it until i get a chance to set a tank up. this also means that i have had to learn how to best set up a tank that takes care of itself. basically, if i wanted to keep triops, i had to find ways to set up tanks so that i didnt have to rely on my wife, or anyone else, to take care of them. but, my daughter has recently shown a lot of interest in growing them herself. which brings me to the point of this thread...

i want to document the simplest possible method of growing triops. something that an 8 year old could do and be successful at. i am currently deployed though, so how might i do that? well, im going to video chat with my daughter and have her set up a tank. i recently ordered about a thousand T. cancriformis eggs, which just arrived at my house back home. the plan is to walk my daughter through it over the phone and document it here. ill have my wife take pictures and maybe video from time to time to document the tanks progress. i may have my daughter set up a few different tanks... i admit that i have never successfully raised T cancriformis before, but i only attempted it once, and im pretty sure i know where i went wrong.

all that said, here is the basic plan: set up a tank(probably ten gallon) with some play sand that has been cleaned up a bit with water and about a cup of crushed sea shell tossed in, a shop light on top(dome reflector kind) and an airstone in the top inch of water. ill then have my daughter go out to our pond and get about a handful of mud from just above the edge of the pond. ill have her shake that up in a bottle of water and pour it in. at the same time, ill have her add the triops eggs to a bottle of distilled water, shake them up, and let them set out while she is at school. when she gets back home, ill have her add them directly to the tank. on day two, ill probably have her shake some pond scum up in a bottle, pour it through a mesh flour sifter (my wife loves how i use kitchen utensils) and add the resulting dirty water to the tank. from then on ill have her do nothing but watch and take pictures/record until they are big enough to feed. well, ill have my wife help her with that last part.

i am ecstatic that my daughter is getting all excited about keeping aquariums and plants and such, so i figured this would be a good project that we could both work on. something that is kinda important to me since most of my interaction with her is through a video screen on a phone...

anyway, i have actually done a LOT of stuff with the triops that i have had for the last two decades. i have also done a lot with different kinds of vernal pool critters too... i love to mix them. not just the critters that can be seen, i also love to toss in various kinds of algae that i find as well. to me, a tank developing green water is a tank perfectly primed for fairy shrimp, ostracods, or daphnids lol. what can i say, i love algae. nowadays, i use triops and other vernal critters to cycle all my aquariums. here is an example of what i mean:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYyDyKJz5fs&t=5s

so, yeah, that is it in a nutshell. i want to see if my 8 year old daughter can be successful with the basic methods i use, document them here, and hopefully have some fun and learn from it in the process. over the years, i have learned a lot of little tricks to avoid a bunch of problems that arise when hatching and raising triops, so ill be talking about those as i go along. there is a reason for the specific steps in setting it all up, and for never turning the lights off. hopefully it works as well for the T. cancriformis as it has for my T. longicaudatus culture.
Last edited by Aubandain on May 15th, 2018, 1:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Technoduck
Larva
Joined: July 28th, 2016, 6:04 am

May 15th, 2018, 5:21 am #2

Interesting setup! 20 Years is a long time to be taking care of one species. Do you have any advice on increasing hatch rates?
yaw yeet
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Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 12:01 pm #3

increasing hatch rates...

yeah. hydrate the eggs in a water bottle first. get a bottle of distilled water, put the eggs in that, and soak them for 8 hours or so. it makes a HUGE difference. i have had eggs hatch in water that was essentially liquid rock after soaking them first.

when soaking, i keep the bottle of water in the dark. the idea is to keep them from hatching until they are released to the tank.
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Technoduck
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Joined: July 28th, 2016, 6:04 am

May 15th, 2018, 2:14 pm #4

I see. It must be that the eggs wont hatch until rainwater surrounds it or something. What if I hatch it in distilled water? As in I just put the eggs in distilled water. Would that cause issues?
yaw yeet
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Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 2:37 pm #5

Technoduck wrote:I see. It must be that the eggs wont hatch until rainwater surrounds it or something. What if I hatch it in distilled water? As in I just put the eggs in distilled water. Would that cause issues?
it likely would cause issues... the triops need a high osmotic pressure in order to hatch. but my own studies seem to indicate that in most cases, a puddle only maintains that high osmotic pressure for the first several hours. after that, stuff starts dissolving into the water. first, it is usually the readily soluble salts, like sodium chloride. then the other kinds of salts associated with rock and silt. by the time 24 hours rolls around, it isn't rain water any more.

so, it seems that the high osmotic pressure is a trigger. i would be willing to guess that the egg cannot fully hydrate without such a high osmotic pressure, and that it hydrates fairly quickly early on. after that, the egg needs light and oxygen, but is already hydrated.

to test this, i used to set up tanks several weeks ahead of time, well before hatching. some tanks were set up with peat moss to produce soft acidic water, some were set up with pure curshed oyster shells to produce hard alkaline water. then i would hydrate the eggs in RO or distilled water and transfer them to the tanks. it did not matter what the tank water conditions were, eggs that were hydrated in the RO or distilled water would hatch in the tanks. so that told me that the varying water conditions were not necessarily prohibiting the eggs from hatching, but were most likely interfering with a step that needed to occur. this is why i am guessing that the cysts simply cannot be fully hydrated unless the osmotic pressure is very high.

you can think of it like this: take a raisin and drop it into distilled water. it swell up as water forces itself into it. it might even burst. now, take the same raisin and drop it into something sugary. it will swell some, but it will NOT burst, and probably will never look fully inflated. i think something similar happens with triops eggs. they have to first hydrate enough so that their biological processes can start working again. but once they are working again, a contracting egg case may not prohibit them from hatching, so transferring them to water with lower osmotic pressure does not stop them from hatching.

this is a tremendous benefit for me, since it allows me to set up tanks ahead of time so that the tank has everything the triops needs to support them through to sexual maturity. pure RO or distilled water alone has very little food or dissolved minerals for the triops. aged fish tank water has a lot. i notice much lower survival rates in triops that hatch in pure RO water, which i suspect is due to a bit of osmotic shock, a lack of food, and something akin to sodium channel interference.
Last edited by Aubandain on May 15th, 2018, 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 3:36 pm #6

so, as for the "tank log" part of this thread, i asked my wife to stop by the store on her way home today and pick up the basic things my daughter will need. to make things easier on her, i told her to just go ahead and buy new stuff for it. i have about 100 tanks and hundreds of various filters and air pumps, but they are all locked in my lab right now, and the thought of trying to navigate that room to pick a tank that is not already set up as part of a system seemed daunting to her. easier to just buy all new stuff.

so, hopefully i will have an update tonight. hopefully pics of the basic setup.
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Technoduck
Larva
Joined: July 28th, 2016, 6:04 am

May 15th, 2018, 3:43 pm #7

I see what you're saying. The raisin analogy helped me understand it quite a bit. If my eggs are in a mixture of sand, how should I go about doing this?
yaw yeet
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Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 4:13 pm #8

Technoduck wrote:I see what you're saying. The raisin analogy helped me understand it quite a bit. If my eggs are in a mixture of sand, how should I go about doing this?
if they are in a little packet of sand, like most triops eggs come in, then just pour all of it into the bottle of water, shake it up, and let it sit for about 8 hours. then pour it into the tank you want to raise them in. or, if you want to be able to see them, pour them into a smaller tank that is set up similarly to the larger one. i do this sometimes when i want to be able to see observe them from the moment they hatch out. the down side is that it becomes necessary to transfer them to the larger tank later on, but if you are gentle with them its usually not a problem.

when you shake up the eggs/sand in a bottle of water, the eggs will float to the top. the water in the bottle wont evaporate, so you wont have to worry about keeping the water topped off. plus, the surface tension on distilled water is usually pretty low, and the meniscus does not form quite as strongly with plastic as it does with glass. all this adds up to being a better environment to hydrate the eggs.

8 to 10 hours later, pour all the contents of the bottle into the tank. the eggs will sink by that point.
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Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Aubandain
Triops Longicaudatus
Joined: August 21st, 2011, 7:46 pm

May 15th, 2018, 4:14 pm #9

Aubandain wrote:
Technoduck wrote:I see what you're saying. The raisin analogy helped me understand it quite a bit. If my eggs are in a mixture of sand, how should I go about doing this?
if they are in a little packet of sand, like most triops eggs come in, then just pour all of it into the bottle of water, shake it up, and let it sit for about 8 hours. then pour it into the tank you want to raise them in. or, if you want to be able to see them, pour them into a smaller tank that is set up similarly to the larger one. i do this sometimes when i want to be able to see observe them from the moment they hatch out. the down side is that it becomes necessary to transfer them to the larger tank later on, but if you are gentle with them its usually not a problem.

when you shake up the eggs/sand in a bottle of water, the eggs will float to the top. the water in the bottle wont evaporate, so you wont have to worry about keeping the water topped off. plus, the surface tension on distilled water is usually pretty low, and the meniscus does not form quite as strongly with plastic as it does with glass. all this adds up to being a better environment to hydrate the eggs.

8 to 10 hours later, pour all the contents of the bottle into the tank. the eggs will sink by that point.
i have one caveat to this: if the sand the eggs are in is already wet enough to let the eggs sink in the bottle as soon as you add it, transfer them to the tank after about three hours. i have had triops hatch within 5 hours in distilled water before, when they were already fairly wet to begin with.
Last edited by Aubandain on May 15th, 2018, 4:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Technoduck
Larva
Joined: July 28th, 2016, 6:04 am

May 15th, 2018, 4:31 pm #10

Thanks for the info! It's really helping me out. One last thing, how does reverse osmosis water effect hatching?
yaw yeet
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