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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i picked up a breeding pair of black calvus the other day and put them in there 70 gallon tank where they will have the whole tank to themselves. the next morning i couldnt find the female i thought for sure she had jumped out but i couldnt find a body but i couldnt see or feel her in the shells well 3 days later after i thought for sure she was a goner i seen the pair together. so i am not likeing the shell idea to much. my question is will i be able to have just as much breeding sucess useing clay pots with holes cut out in them or should i give the shells another chance?
 

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woogie0004 said:
i picked up a breeding pair of black calvus the other day and put them in there 70 gallon tank where they will have the whole tank to themselves. the next morning i couldnt find the female i thought for sure she had jumped out but i couldnt find a body but i couldnt see or feel her in the shells well 3 days later after i thought for sure she was a goner i seen the pair together. so i am not likeing the shell idea to much. my question is will i be able to have just as much breeding sucess useing clay pots with holes cut out in them or should i give the shells another chance?
I don't have experience with clay pots. The shells work great. When my fish are not spawning they stay out and are active. They do dissappear for long stretches when spawning. I got six of them so there is always some that are out to enjoy. Again, not sure about the clay pots (that's more of a frontosa thing maybe???), but the shells do work. You may need to decide what is important to you: breeding or viewing.

You could get another trio and that would help.

Russ
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
my goal is to breed them. what about calvus getting stuck in the shell? i thought it would beeasier to be able to remove the fish and the fry with clay pots that sit on end with a hole cut on the side kind of like a cave. im just not sure i want to risk my fish useing a shell
 

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woogie0004 said:
my goal is to breed them. what about calvus getting stuck in the shell? i thought it would beeasier to be able to remove the fish and the fry with clay pots that sit on end with a hole cut on the side kind of like a cave. im just not sure i want to risk my fish useing a shell
I've got large shells, never had that problem.
 

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Since the shell starts large and winds down to a smaller opening, the female can use the smaller part at the back that the male cannot get into.
 

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I would recommend getting some dither fish to put in with them, to make them feel more comfortable. Danios, small rainbowfish, larger tetras would do.
 

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Pots might work... I've had friends try it though they didn't have much success. Calvus tend to prefer nesting in a tight spot which they can control/protect. An upside down pot is too open, imo.

They do make breeding caves out of pottery if you really don't want to use shells.

I customized my shells, which are large conches(Large= about 4-6 inches from top to bottom)...

The only problem/complaint I've had using shells is that one time I was in a hurry to clean a tank because had to go to a B-ball game... Anyway, I hurried and filled up the tank and didn't have time to put the rock work back (At the time, before I started customizing shells, I would lodge them into and/or around the rockwork.). I was gone about 4 hours...

When I returned the male (Ihad 1 adult male and 4 breeding females (all were wild, so $! :( ) had knocked over 3 of the shells on their opening (If you've got conches you understand they are pointed on bottom and therefore cannot be set flat.) The shells tipped easily without rock support and suffocated 3 adult females!!! :x. Anybody keeping/breeding Calvus knows that the girls like to hide in the shells during cleaning time etc.

Anyway I learned my lesson and immediately started sawing off the bottoms of the shells so that they'll sit flat, and then I siliconed them each to their own 4"X4" sheet of glass which slips nicely underneath the sand bed and provides stability. (Plus, I can see through the bottom which is fun sometimes to see what stage the eggs are at etc.

Just remember, Breeding Calvus isn't difficult at all, it's keeping their dang fry alive that will drive you nuts!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
what about barnacle clusters? if there is an alternative to shells i would rather use it. *** heard to many stories of fish getting stuck in shells
 

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BioG said:
I customized my shells, which are large conches(Large= about 4-6 inches from top to bottom)...

Anyway I learned my lesson and immediately started sawing off the bottoms of the shells so that they'll sit flat, and then I siliconed them each to their own 4"X4" sheet of glass which slips nicely underneath the sand bed and provides stability. (Plus, I can see through the bottom which is fun sometimes to see what stage the eggs are at etc.

Just remember, Breeding Calvus isn't difficult at all, it's keeping their dang fry alive that will drive you nuts!
Nice tip - thanks. I wedge my shells between rocks but it means I have to use rocks that I don't really want to have in there,

I didn't realise there was a problem keeping calvus fry alive. My first comp spawn (I assume these are similar?) was a breeze. I waited until I saw the fry at the shell entrance (about 10-14 days after spawning activity) then just tipped the shell out into a marina breeding net which I hang on the side of the tank. I feed them with crushed flake, cyclops and red crumb (grade 3) and they are still in the net doing fine after 1 month. I have about 80 and have only lost 1 or 2 due to them being trapped in the net when I cleaned it. parents are guarding eggs again now again (which is a pain as I have a buyer for the pair coming this weekend - how to separate mum from the shell is concerning me.)
 

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when folks, like myself, don't use breeding nets (In many, many ways they're better) they can experience heavy Calvus fry losses :D The only reason I don't use nets is because I don't like the way it looks in my show tanks.

For the last several years I have taken to raising my Calvus in 50 gallon longs and I generally don't lose many, if any, now :thumb:

Just FYI, I would say that with ALtos you're not out of the woods until they're at least 3 months. Unless you're dealing with a breeding net with a lot of surface area I, unfortunately predict substantial losses.

They tend fool you by being quite hardy for about 3-4 weeks from the free swimming stage. Then you come home from work and 10 are gone/dead, then 20 and so on. My very first Calvus batch yielded me, I think, under a dozen adult survivors.

At least in a breeding net they'll not poison one another when one or two die for whatever reason. Anyway good luck :)

Also, I have had friends use Barnacles with good results, they just siphon the fry out when its time.

And also, I used a hack saw to cut my shells... Believe me they will not "crumble". I used a hack saw attachment on a sawzall and it was still quite the chore. If you have a vice to put them in before cutting you probably save a digit or two! :lol:
 

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Great info guys - thanks =D>
 
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