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CrayolaViolence
11/23/2015, 04:14 AM
I was wondering if people found the dwarf seahorses to be more hardy than the standard ones? Also if I started with some dwarf ones could I add a couple of standard ones later on?

My goal, if I can do well with the regular seahorses is to one day have a tank with a sea dragon in it. But that is a LOOOOOOONG way off and I have to see if I can manage the whole saltwater aquarium agenda to start with.

vlangel
11/23/2015, 05:10 AM
Dwarf seahorses are not compatible with the standard. I researched both when I first got into it and decided the daily hatching and enriching baby brine shrimp was too rigorous for me to keep up long term. It seemed to me that the cost of the set up would be significant less but the daily commitment of feeding and tank maintenance would be much more. Dwarf seahorses only need a small tank, a 5.5 gallon aquarium works well with an open airline tube or sponge filter with some artificial plants. However they need frequent water changes to keep up water quality from heavy dense feedings of bbs 3 Xs a day. Also if you go away you need to have someone trained to also hatch, enrich and feed your dwarf seahorses.
For those reasons I elected to go with h erectus, a standard specie known for being more hardy. My initial set up was substantial but I have corals instead of artificial decor and that required reef lighting and a chiller, (2 rather expensive pieces of equipment). Still you need a minimum of a 30 gallon tank for 1 pair of seahorses. Although not necessary, a good oversized protein skimmer is a very worthwhile investment. You need a filtration system that won't trap detritus or be extremely disciplined about keeping it clean so dangerous bacteria can not get a foothold in the tank. Seahorses succumb to bacteria more readily than other fishes. For that reason I stay away from filter pads and filter socks unless only used temporarily to capture debris when I do a deep clean. Even the standard seahorses should eat a minimal of twice a day. True captive bred seahorses are the best choice but sometimes lfs label seahorses captive bred when they really are not. Seahorse Source is an excellant place to get true captive bred. Also Ocean Rider has true captive bred but they are more pricey. Both of those have healthy robust seahorses that are trained to eat frozen mysis. This is only a portion of the things you should know before embarking on keeping seahorses. It's heartbreaking to watch them perish if their needs are not met, (I am speaking from experience) so do your research ahead of time to determine if you really can make the commitment necessary. Rayjay has some good information on seahorses under, My thoughts on keeping seahorses. Also Ocean Rider provides a free online course that is very extensive and informative. I would start there.

PfenWendt
11/23/2015, 11:25 AM
For me, i've wanted to do a seahorse tank since i started saltwater. I just didn't have the space for a larger tank to go with regular sized seahorses, So i elected to go with dwarfs. Ive learned almost everything i know about dwarfs from RayJay here on RC. The dwarfs will be more work yes but trust me...Its well worth it. I feed mine twice daily, I hatch a weeks worth of bbs and keep them in a 2.5 gallon holding tank with spirulina mix so they will survive the week. I have 2 pop bottle hatcherys set up to enrich the bbs I start the first one in the morning and the second in the evening. Fast forward 24 hours, i take the bbs that have been enriching for 24 hours now, its seperated into 2 12 hour enrichment processes, turn off the filter in the tank and pour the brine into the tank. give them about an hour and then turn on the filter. then i put more brine shrimp into the pop bottle hatchery and start the enrichment process for the next morning over again. Then do pretty much the same thing in the evening feeding, Turn off filter pour in the brine shrimp enrich more, and so on. In my personal opinion...It's alot of work at first. but after about a week of a daily routine it really doesn't seem like that much...And as you go you will learn things to do that make it go a bit faster and more efficient.

Keep us updated on what you decide :)

rayjay
11/23/2015, 11:36 AM
My thoughts are based on my experiences plus my interpretation of what I read over the years.
Others have been completely successful using other methods so it's important to get the view of ALL experienced keepers, not just one.
While I've been in the seahorse keeping hobby for about 13 yrs now, I only kept the dwarfs for 2 yrs before it became so much of a PITA that I stopped.
I did however keep up with the raising of the fry of standard seahorses though until lately now I can't find homes for the last ones.

CrayolaViolence
11/23/2015, 05:25 PM
My thoughts are based on my experiences plus my interpretation of what I read over the years.
Others have been completely successful using other methods so it's important to get the view of ALL experienced keepers, not just one.
While I've been in the seahorse keeping hobby for about 13 yrs now, I only kept the dwarfs for 2 yrs before it became so much of a PITA that I stopped.
I did however keep up with the raising of the fry of standard seahorses though until lately now I can't find homes for the last ones.


You can't find homes and I can't find seahorses. LOL

PfenWendt
11/24/2015, 12:21 AM
Seahorsesource is a great place

rayjay
11/24/2015, 08:17 AM
Yes, no place better than seahorsesource.com.