feeding a orange dwarf crayfish - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-01-2018, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
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feeding a orange dwarf crayfish

Okay so I picked up an Orange Dwarf Crayfish a week ago along with some Frozen cubes of brine shrimp, plankton, and bloodworms by my LFS recommendations. My question is if their is a way to keep it "clean". By clean I mean somewhat contained and not polluting my entire tank with food debris.

The tank has shrimp and Otto's so I also feed a sinking pellet and algae wafers, so I know the Cray eats that too. Sometimes I have to basically give him his own with tweezers cause the jerk will defend the food. I cut up the cubes into fourths because it's mostly just for the one little guy. But after sifting and thawing it just ends up everywhere. Should I limit his intake of the cubed food and just let him live off the biofilm, algae, and sinking pellets?

Brands of food;
San Fran Bay - Plankton (& ) Brine shrimp (recommended for Cray by LFS)
Bug Bites - Sinking Pleco Tablets (recommended by Petco for shrimp)
Tetra - Algae wafers

I feed the shrimp every other day normally a Wafer and / or Pellet. The Cray of course eats "with" them. I stopped feeding the cubes after seeing so much left over. I don't want to throw off my tank with so much food waste. But I was feeding him a 1/4 of a cube every other day (opposite of the shrimp feedings).

any DIY ideas to keep the cubes from flowing through the tank? Should I just save the cubes as a "treat" and let him eat the wafers and sinking pellets? Am i worrying about waste for nothing?

Tank: 29 gallon tall
filter: Tidal 75 with pre filters all over the place (I keep it low flow after seeing the food flying around)
Current population: 8ish Cherry shrimp, 3 otto cats, 1 orange dwarf cray

Last edited by jabrocious; 04-02-2018 at 03:07 PM. Reason: better clarity
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-02-2018, 06:11 AM
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Are you saying that you thaw and rinse it first before putting it in the tank?
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-02-2018, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Cokeman View Post
Are you saying that you thaw and rinse it first before putting it in the tank?
my apologies for the lack of clarity. I wanted to know if anyone had idea's about stopping the brine shrimp and planktons from spreading throughout the tank. Feeding the cray litters the whole tank with the food debris. I do thaw and sift the cubes my issue is with the actual meat of the cube. I end up with bits all over the place and eventually it's eaten but some always goes uneaten and with a planted tank cleanup can be annoying from the feeding.

So i wanted to know if anyone had a DIY feeding apparatus or different delivery method to decrease cleanup. Again I'm only feeding like a 4th or the cube and it's difficult to cut smaller bits at this point.

So again to rearticulate what I'm asking.

Has anyone come up with a DIY delivery for frozen cube food that doesn't get kicked up all over the tank. I thaw and clean the food, my issue is with bits of the brine shrimp, and plankton getting all over. Should i worry about excess food out of the 1/4th of a cube i fed every other day? It's mostly just to feed my Orange Dwarf Cray but my cherries do help eat it.

I haven't even tried the bloodworms because i can only assume the mess that will make!

Am i doomed to be eternally vacuuming debris? Will it be okay to let it decay? Will my plants help with the decomposition? Any advice would be great and again i will stop bumping this is i don't get another reply. I get their isn't always an easy fix or solution.

Last edited by Darkblade48; 04-04-2018 at 03:56 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-05-2018, 03:21 AM
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Are you buying frozen food just for the crayfish? Personal opinion from keeping these guys many times over the past 5 years or so, if your lfs told you that you need to feed them that stuff they are likely just trying to sell more frozen food. Pellets are just fine and as long as you give them good quality it's more than enough, I have mine with fish so they are there when I put in frozen food the crayfish mostly ignore it. (Though I assume pick at any that ends up in the substrate) With the one I currently have it's favorite food seems to be be pest snails. If you want to keep feeding with what you've got blood worms would probably be the easiest. When I used to feed them top my fish I would thaw it out in a small plastic cup and pick out what I am going to put in each tank with tweasers.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-05-2018, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Are you buying frozen food just for the crayfish? Personal opinion from keeping these guys many times over the past 5 years or so, if your lfs told you that you need to feed them that stuff they are likely just trying to sell more frozen food. Pellets are just fine and as long as you give them good quality it's more than enough, I have mine with fish so they are there when I put in frozen food the crayfish mostly ignore it. (Though I assume pick at any that ends up in the substrate) With the one I currently have it's favorite food seems to be be pest snails. If you want to keep feeding with what you've got blood worms would probably be the easiest. When I used to feed them top my fish I would thaw it out in a small plastic cup and pick out what I am going to put in each tank with tweasers.
Yeah the only one i bought it for was him. I mean the shrimp eat it to of course cause well they seem to eat anything lol. So i should get another pellet type then? Currently with just 3 otto cats, 7 red cherries, and the one dwarf cray I feed Bug Bite Pleco pellets, tetra algae wafers, bug bite tropic fish food, and of course all the frozen san fran brand stuff.

Should I get a higher protein pellet like the crab kind to throw into the mix, I've read all over the place that variety really helps.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-05-2018, 10:15 PM
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I don't know all of the pellet types so I can't tell you for sure if what you have is good or not. Good quality pellets, especially bottom feeder pellets are good. Algae wafers are good, just make sure they are actually mostly algae and not fillers like a lot are. Frozen is fine just overkill with the stocking you have. They will also eat vegetables so you can blanch stuff like peas and they will pick at them. They are easy as they will eat just about anything, so the important thing is to just make sure whatever you feed is good quality. The ones I kept always loved pest snails, so it might not be a bad idea to get some of those as well.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-05-2018, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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I don't know all of the pellet types so I can't tell you for sure if what you have is good or not. Good quality pellets, especially bottom feeder pellets are good. Algae wafers are good, just make sure they are actually mostly algae and not fillers like a lot are. Frozen is fine just overkill with the stocking you have. They will also eat vegetables so you can blanch stuff like peas and they will pick at them. They are easy as they will eat just about anything, so the important thing is to just make sure whatever you feed is good quality. The ones I kept always loved pest snails, so it might not be a bad idea to get some of those as well.
Well lucky for me a accidentally introduced snails with my frogbit... So far i've found 2 baby snails lol

Also funny enough just today i finally blanched some zucchini for the lot of them and my cray took off with a slice bigger then he is lmao. I may have to disturb his cave tomorrow to clean up the leftovers but glad he is happy! I also caught him eating a dead cherry I was gonna clean up after work today. Pretty sure it was a failed molt but glad it didn't go to waste!

Thanks again for the input!
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-06-2018, 07:22 PM
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Well lucky for me a accidentally introduced snails with my frogbit... So far i've found 2 baby snails lol

Also funny enough just today i finally blanched some zucchini for the lot of them and my cray took off with a slice bigger then he is lmao. I may have to disturb his cave tomorrow to clean up the leftovers but glad he is happy! I also caught him eating a dead cherry I was gonna clean up after work today. Pretty sure it was a failed molt but glad it didn't go to waste!

Thanks again for the input!
Happy to help. The crays get a reputation for attacking things, but I've never seen one attack anything healthy. If something dies or is clearly on it's way out they are more than happy to take care of it for you. Yes, they also like to run away with the food. If you are going to put something in for everyone it's a good idea to break it up some to prevent them for claiming it all for themselves. They never heard that sharing is caring.
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