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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone kept any of these shrimp? I am thinking of starting a brackish water tank for these guys. But I can seem to find what type of water parameters are needed for these shrimps.

In particular, what salinity is needed for these guys? I have never tried to go salt water before so please share your experiences with brackish water tanks. Like how you change the water for them.

Also what tempertures is best for them? I assume the kh value doesn't matter but at least a 5 gh value. Correct me if I am wrong.

Does anyone know what plants can be grown at that salinity?

Does anyone know where I can get some with out buying a kit or the tanks that come with them?
 

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opae'ulas - halocaridina rubra

Hi,

I've kept them for 4+ yrs. now.
started out with a 1/2gal with 25 juveniles.
stayed at 25 until a few months ago.
this past summer, after I guess they got old enough, they started breeding and didn't stop until the weather turned colder.
there are now over 100 of them.
I recently - last week - trasferred them over to a 3gal tank - 78*F, 7.6pH, 1.008sg. I've read they can tolerate 1.000sg-1.040sg, if acclimated slowly enough, but have only had them as high as 1.014sg. Their preferred range is supposed to be 1.005sg-1.010sg.

since the new tank is heated, I'm hoping they start breeding again after they get used to it.

make sure they have plenty of algae to eat. Barring that, feed them crushed spiralina algae. Also, build a small mound with lava rocks. This provides them with plenty of nooks and caves to get busy in.

good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey thanks very imformative. Where you able to keep any plants with it at all?

Also by any chance would u be willing to sell any? Or do u know someone who can?

These seem pretty awesome
 

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opae'ulas - halocaridina rubra

no problems.

the old 1/2gal only had lava rock with dense growth of green algae (in a thick mat) and a little bit of red-brown algae (also in a thick mat). The algae grew on the lava rock mountain I made and I allowed the green to grow on the back wall as well. The shrimpies delighted in picking on it constantly, keeping it nicely under control.

when they started breeding, I supplemented more spirulina - once every 2 days instead of 3 days.

in the new 3gal, I have java fern (16 leaves), java moss (2.5"x7" carpet), and bolbitis (as well as the transplanted green and red algae lava rock). If you want to set up a planted tank, you'll have to choose similar salt-tolerant plants:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/BrackishSubWebIndex/bracplants.htm
http://www.aquariumplants.com/Brackish_Water_Plants_s/22.htm

And, unless you buy them brackish, it will take you a few weeks to transition the plants over to 1.005-1.010 Make sure you ask them about their water parameters.

sorry, I'll probably not sell any shrimpies until I get to at least 500! But you can buy them here: http://www.aquatic-store.com/en-us/dept_307.html
be sure to inquire about their water parameters before, so you can setup your tank accordingly.

here's an excellent resource: http://www.fukubonsai.com/micro-lobster.html This is where I got my 1/2gal habitat and original 25 shrimpies 4 years ago. They sell fully cycled and complete oape'ula habitats.

the opae'ulas are pretty awesome. Easy to care for, unassuming, easy to breed (when old enough - they live long for dwarf shrimps), and very interesting (they like to swim around a lot - if you keep them in a cylindrical tank, they will generally "herd swim" all in the same direction, round and round and round. Too bad my 3gal nano is a bow-front, so they all do their own thing now.

good luck, and keep me posted!
 

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opae'ulas - halocaridina rubra

also, make sure the filter is covered with a sponge pre-filter (don't want to lose any) and that the flow is really slow (they don't seem to like too much current - which makes sense, since their native habitats are anchialine ponds in Hawaii).
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·

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Hey Doc...I've only got a few left...the nauplli were in the hundreds, but were all eaten by my seahorses...was going for a sustainable set-up

might order some more...could pool on shipping though its only about $15 or so...

they are very animated little shrimp and look like a mini CRS...

i currently have about 100 +/- mysis shrimp...they are vocacious little guys!
 

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Hi,

I've kept them for 4+ yrs. now.
started out with a 1/2gal with 25 juveniles.
stayed at 25 until a few months ago.
this past summer, after I guess they got old enough, they started breeding and didn't stop until the weather turned colder.
there are now over 100 of them.
I recently - last week - trasferred them over to a 3gal tank - 78*F, 7.6pH, 1.008sg. I've read they can tolerate 1.000sg-1.040sg, if acclimated slowly enough, but have only had them as high as 1.014sg. Their preferred range is supposed to be 1.005sg-1.010sg.

since the new tank is heated, I'm hoping they start breeding again after they get used to it.

make sure they have plenty of algae to eat. Barring that, feed them crushed spiralina algae. Also, build a small mound with lava rocks. This provides them with plenty of nooks and caves to get busy in.

good luck!

Hi,

Great info. So does this mean their life expectancy is a lot more than 4 years, and they are not sexually mature until 4 year or older? Very interesting read. Thanks.

Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey Doc...I've only got a few left...the nauplli were in the hundreds, but were all eaten by my seahorses...was going for a sustainable set-up

might order some more...could pool on shipping though its only about $15 or so...

they are very animated little shrimp and look like a mini CRS...

i currently have about 100 +/- mysis shrimp...they are vocacious little guys!
Sure that sounds cool. I just don't like to ship from Hawaii at this timeof the year.

The only thing now is that how to I get such a salinity? Do I just get a sea water mix pack and how about water changes? Do you just mix up a batch before changing? I never had any experience with salt water set up.

Also t33k thanks for the list I didnt know so many common plants are salt tolerant.
 

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i set up a gallon jar with rock a few weeks ahead...using instant ocean...prob need to cycle...after its cycled, i'd just replace 25% 1x a month...haven't gotten them to breed in the 1-g culture, but they breed fairly often in the 7g with the seahorses...
 

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opae'ulas - halocaridina rubra

"Great info. So does this mean their life expectancy is a lot more than 4 years, and they are not sexually mature until 4 year or older? Very interesting read. Thanks."

Kevin

My original exposure to this was 8yrs. ago. In 2001, my gf (now my wife) bought a Migi-cube from a co-worker as a present for me. The Migi-cube was one of those inexpensive "self-sufficient" eco-sphere things and contained 4 opaes, a snail, and about 5oz. of water. The system wasn't completely sealed - there was a plug at the top for gas exchange. No instructions other than leave near indirect sunlight for algae growth.

Well, the snail died for lack of sufficient algae within 4 weeks. Ironically, by the 5th week, I had quite a bit of algae. Still, things were hardly in balance. Something went terribly wrong, the system probably crashed, and one by one, the opaes died over the next 9 months. The survivors turned cannibal until there was just one guy left. I'm pretty sure they didn't kill the live ones, just ate the dead.

I knew nothing about them at the time, not even their common and scientific names, and so it was tough to find out much about their ecology. I assumed they were just short-lived. But, that last guy lived in that death chamber for another 3yrs. all by himself, eating the algae that formed on the walls, and thinking lonely shrimp thoughts.

In 2005, I stumbled on more info about these opaes, did some research, ordered the 1/2gal habitat from fukubonsai, and dremeled the lone survivor out of the Migi and put him in with the 25 or so in the 1/2gal. He was different: smaller, paler - it turns out he had SHRANK because he wasn't getting enough nutrition during those first 4yrs.! I feel terrible about that.

Anyway, he lived happily with his new buddies (lots of bigger females in the 25) for the next 4yrs. and I could always tell him apart from the rest of them because he was the smallest. About 4 months ago, they started breeding. The kids grew up quick, and now I have a bunch of smaller opaes swimming around, so I can no longer tell him apart. He could be dead, he is 9yrs. old. Or he could still be alive and a midget.

To answer your questions: yeah, that first dude lived at least 9yrs. and may still be alive. As for sexual maturity, since I didn't change any of their water parameters, I'm assuming they came of age in August (which would make them ~4yrs. old), and then did what comes naturally.
 

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Some thoughts.

The first seller of the shrimp listed is using other people's photos. Some getting credit some not. His new site he took the fish photo graphic thing from the Boston Aquarium. To my eyes, that doesn't look good but I may be mistaken.

Secondly, These shrimp are said to have a very quick maturity time but very very long life. This has to do with the ecology of the environment they come from. You probably know that they are indigenous to the pools of water in the Hawaiian Islands and are very hardy because of this. This is also why they are treated terribly in the ecospheres or biospheres or whatever they are marketted as these days.

Lastly, the natural history museaum has one of the largest ever "Eco Spheres" in their planetarium building in NYC. This is where I first saw the shrimp in person (In October/early Nov. or so) after reading about them for a while (years) Neat shrimp.

Also, Bill Southern has a colony as well, or did.

Neat shrimp, let me know how they work for you guys I might be interested in getting some before summer next year.

-Andrew
 

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I am at work now and cannot access my e-mail (but strangly, this site isn't blocked...) but I have contact information from someone selling them $25 shipped for I think 20 of them. Live arrival guaranteed.
 

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"Great info. So does this mean their life expectancy is a lot more than 4 years, and they are not sexually mature until 4 year or older? Very interesting read. Thanks."

Kevin

My original exposure to this was 8yrs. ago. In 2001, my gf (now my wife) bought a Migi-cube from a co-worker as a present for me. The Migi-cube was one of those inexpensive "self-sufficient" eco-sphere things and contained 4 opaes, a snail, and about 5oz. of water. The system wasn't completely sealed - there was a plug at the top for gas exchange. No instructions other than leave near indirect sunlight for algae growth.

Well, the snail died for lack of sufficient algae within 4 weeks. Ironically, by the 5th week, I had quite a bit of algae. Still, things were hardly in balance. Something went terribly wrong, the system probably crashed, and one by one, the opaes died over the next 9 months. The survivors turned cannibal until there was just one guy left. I'm pretty sure they didn't kill the live ones, just ate the dead.

I knew nothing about them at the time, not even their common and scientific names, and so it was tough to find out much about their ecology. I assumed they were just short-lived. But, that last guy lived in that death chamber for another 3yrs. all by himself, eating the algae that formed on the walls, and thinking lonely shrimp thoughts.

In 2005, I stumbled on more info about these opaes, did some research, ordered the 1/2gal habitat from fukubonsai, and dremeled the lone survivor out of the Migi and put him in with the 25 or so in the 1/2gal. He was different: smaller, paler - it turns out he had SHRANK because he wasn't getting enough nutrition during those first 4yrs.! I feel terrible about that.

Anyway, he lived happily with his new buddies (lots of bigger females in the 25) for the next 4yrs. and I could always tell him apart from the rest of them because he was the smallest. About 4 months ago, they started breeding. The kids grew up quick, and now I have a bunch of smaller opaes swimming around, so I can no longer tell him apart. He could be dead, he is 9yrs. old. Or he could still be alive and a midget.

To answer your questions: yeah, that first dude lived at least 9yrs. and may still be alive. As for sexual maturity, since I didn't change any of their water parameters, I'm assuming they came of age in August (which would make them ~4yrs. old), and then did what comes naturally.

Thanks for such detail info. Wow, they live that long! neat shrimp. I will probably setup a 10G for them.
 

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opae'ulas - halocaridina rubra

Actually, I was kind of surprised that opaes have almost no following. I figured it was because they're brackish, making them less suitable for most planted setups.
 

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Pretty cool looking lobsters/shrimp. I have a lot of interesting lava rock in the garage if you need some for your tank.

I live in Las Vegas and collect it from the desert before it gets scraped off and crushed when the land is developed.

My shrimp love it. PM me if you need some.
 
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