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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Long term success in keeping Crayfish with cichlids?
No, Crayfish ate/fatally injured a tankmate410.26%
No, Cichlid(s) attacked and ate Crayfish2358.97%
No, Crayfish died prematurely and cause of death not known37.69%
Yes, Crayfish and cichlids have lived in peace and harmony for 6 months with no deaths923.08%
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
There have been plenty of "Can I put a crayfish/blue lobster in my tank" questions lately (and all along really) so I was thinking a good use for a poll would be to see what the long term success rate is for crayfish in members' cichlid tanks. In this case, "long term" will have to be longer than 6 months because Crayfish and Blue Lobsters molt anywhere between 2 and 8 times per year as juveniles (depending on species) and this is when it is most vulnerable to cichlid attacks so I want to make sure they have a chance to molt before a judgement is made.

In order for your crayfish keeping to be considered successful over the long term it must have lived in harmony with all tankmates while not killing any fish or being eaten itself.

Personally, I had a blue lobster in my tank a year ago who lived happily enough until a month down the road it molted and was nowhere to be found the next morning. So let's hear your experiences and don't forget to cast your vote!
 

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This poll is a really good idea can you put a sticky on it so it stays up top it might answer a few questions before their asked.
 

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"Cichlids" is such a general term. If I kept a crayfish with dwarf species I'd expect the crays to eat the cichlids. If I add them in with my red devil, they'll be dead before they hit the bottom.

If the fish is large enough to eat the crayfish, it usually will.

If the crayfish is large enough to catch and eat the fish, it usually will.

I catch crayfish with the sole intent of feeding them to my fish, so I voted #2.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
True, there is plenty of variation depending on each tank's inhabitants and their size, along with specific tank setup, availability of tight hiding spaces, etc. I figure although the poll will not produce 100% validity it will at least show some kind of trend and hopefully be able to give a general statistic to potential crayfish owners out there.

I decided to break up the "no's" into 3 categories simply out of curiosity and to make it a little more interesting. For all intents and purposes 1 and 2 are the same answer and 3 really doesn't lend itself to a "no" or a "yes", it's almost like the "I don't know" you see on many public opinion polls :lol:

Frameshift, if I had your setups and feeding tendencies I would have voted #2 as well.
 

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I did have this guy last 4-5 months in my 100 gallon with a couple oscars, my 12" lutino finally did him in my biting off it's tail (the only part that would fit in it's mouth) after I moved the log he hid under during a water change. It was about the size of my hand.

God that blue gravel was disgusting.

 

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My crayfishes was doing well for about 9 months. I took a log out of the tank to do some UGJ plumping and didn't check it well enough. I put the log back in and about 20 minutes later my daughter said that there was a dead crayfish on the floor. My Akita crunched it up. It was a nice crayfish too. It Lived with a SM Bass, Giraffe Hap, Auratus, Frontosa, JD, pumpkinseed sunfish. The SM bass was getting large enough to eat it in one gulp it but my dog got it first.
 

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I once had a crayfish...She killed my subdominant male acei and my brother killed her.....Please don't ask why or how. But in my experiance, it seems that crays are more vunerable to the cichlids.

Ted
 

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Most crayfish can only dream of attacking a cichlid, anything big, like Jack Dempsey, Oscar, Bumble Bee even, and sometimes angels, may or may not comsume your crayfish. Some small cichlids may be compatible, but I have to say steer clear of crayfish and other crustaceans. Even a dwarf cichlid could eat a small crayfish when it molts (sheds it's skin). The only thing I've kept crayfish with is bluegill, which I think look god in an aquarium.
Artemis
 

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i agree with frameshift - although i voted #4. the only fish i ever lost to my crayfish was a labidochromis cerulae, and she was small. The rest of the cichlids in my tank were the same size as the crayfish. They fought sometimes, but didn't kill each other.
 

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I kept a "blue lobster" in with my cichlids for about 6 months with no problems.

That is, until it molted.

We saw the "shell" of the lobster laying on the floor of the tank, and a claw sticking out of my Texas Cichlid's mouth.

mmmmm, good
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ok, so far we have a 25% success rate for crayfish keepers and 75% failure rate. That's about what I expected. Crayfish and cichlids (or fish in general) are natural enemies! There is certainly no obvious symbiotic nature of the relationship between fish and crayfish in the wild and trying to encourage one in the aquarium is difficult and usually ill-fated. This is especially true when an aquarium setting promotes an even greater amount of interaction between the species because of such close proximity and fewer hiding places (in most cases).

So, it is possible to keep crayfish in the aquarium but be aware of the risks involved and recognize the fact that there are better ways to spend $20 for the tank than on a pretty blue lobster :)
 

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what size fish would crayfish attack/intend to eat? fish their size? fish half their size? im partially considering putting one in my african cichlid tank. as far as im concerned, its ok if my fish eventually eat the cray, but not the other way around. and could i possibly deter the cray from attacking my fish if i keep it well fed? i have labs, acei, 1 tret and 1 brichardi.

thanks a bunch. :)

- jb
 

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I have been breeding blue crayfish for about a year now. I mix them in my tanks, but not randomly.

The very small crayfish do well in growout tanks - they are too small to catch and eat things, but do a nice job of keeping the bottom clean. The larger ones are fine for medium sized cichlids, but I wouldn't dream of putting them in with something that has a mouth larger than them :eek:

Crayfish have their place. Interesting and GREAT scavengers. My biggest problem with them is that they eat each other. When they molt (lose there out shell in order to keep growing) they are very easy targets - it weakens them for a day or two. I started out with 8 small ones, but within 4 months was down to 3 - 2 females and a male. Both females had a clutch and them ate the male. I just sold a bunch of the little ones to the LFS, and have enough to keep them going. :)

Also - they are very hard on live plants. I try to grow anubias and java fern - they will shred these if not fed to their satisfaction :x

All the time I had kept the adults in with nothing but feeder guppies. The babies I put in a grow out tank with small cichlids (african and CA). I just moved the adults to my 150 where I have mature peacocks and victorian haps. Time will tell. They are trained to come out and eat the pellets when I feed the rest of the fish, so I see them regularly. The fish seem to ignore them and the crayfish are always waving their claws around like they need to prove how tough they are. :)

Patrick
 

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When I was a kid, I had caught a crayfish along the river bank in the city. It lasted a few months in my cichlid tank. It caught and ate at least one small cichlid in the tank but got a claw bitten off by an oscar very early on. It hid under a rock and seldom came out, but the oscar eventually got 'em.
 

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Here is a picture of the biggest of my baby blues:



I am hoping he will mate with the two adult females (and not get eaten). :eek:
 

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I saw a blue lobster at my LFS last night...was considering putting him in my tank, but since I haven't decided which species I'm going with yet I decided against that after reading this thread.

See, I wouldn't want to lose the lobster or any fish.
 

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Well, I am a novice, but I guess I can add a "NO" to the list. My blue was dead this morning, about three weeks in. It looks like he molted in the last day or so. My Snow White was hovering over it. I am amusing a scuffle ensued last night. With the failure rate everyone is having, I don't think I'll get another....any suggestions for something unique that wont cause a disruption.
 
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