View Full Version : Keeping Larvae Suspended?

11/22/2015, 09:44 PM
I've raised ocellaris clowns a couple of times; nothing spectacular, I only managed to get a dozen or so through meta. that was a couple of years ago though, and i seem to have forgotten everything i learned during those attempts... :rolleyes:
My biggest obstacle with clowns (and now Chrysiptera damsels) seems to be keeping the larvae suspended in the water column. Most of the time, they just lie on the bottom of the tank (regardless of lighting brightness). because they're clearly not eating while laying on their sides, they stay there until either their yolk is exhausted, or bacteria gets ahold of them, sometimes several days. the fry that do start swimming in the water do well, I typically can get a ~75% survival rate after this point. (75% is pretty poor when only a handful of larvae make off of the tank floor though)
I tried to make a Kriesel out of a 5 gallon tank and a five gallon bucket, but i wasn't ever able to get the water flow low enough to be a gentle drift. (evidently, larvae bodies can be ripped apart very easily :facepalm: )

So here are my questions:
I know that many breeders use a BRT through meta, but how do these help with suspension?
Also, are these just set up like any other larva tank, just a tub with an airstone and a heater?
To anyone who uses BRTs, what is visibility like? it seems to me that it would be really hard the see development, siphon the bottom, etc with these types of setups.

Thanks in advance for all of your help!

11/22/2015, 11:08 PM
If the larva can't manage to swim against even a gentle flow then there might be something wrong with them. Also laying on the ground indicates that they did not fill their swim bladders right after hatching. That could be due to a film on the water surface the larva can't break through.

I kept clownfish larva in high flow from day one and they didn't have a problem holding up. I used custom build octagonal tanks and powerheads.

11/22/2015, 11:14 PM
Double post due to backup downtime

11/23/2015, 07:37 AM
What sort of screen did you use to keep larvae out of the power heads?

11/23/2015, 07:40 AM
do the larvae need to make contact with the water surface after they hatch? I built a snagger that sucks the larvae in right by the parents nest.

11/23/2015, 09:11 AM
Yes, to my knowledge freshly hatched larva need to go to the surface to fill their swim bladder with air.

11/23/2015, 10:27 AM
Well I think you may have solved my problem! I won't get any new larvae until Friday night, I'll see how it goes.