pmasa

Breeding towards blues

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pmasa

Hi all, i am wanting to start a project of breeding towards blue cherry shrimp. I know that the process will take numerous years, so i wanted to start off right. To start with i was wondering what the best starting point would be chocolates or reds, with the aim of a blue shrimp endpoint? The other thing i was wondering is when it comes to getting different colour variations of shrimp is it best to breed for quantity, quality, or both? I figure it is best to try and breed as many shrimplets as possible inorder to increase the likelihood of encountering a genetic variation, but wasn't sure if a strict culling process for colour should also be employed. Cheers in advance for advice.

 

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Shrimpmaster

If you have the tanks for it: breed as much as you can. Select the top 10 females and 1 or 2 best males. Put them in a new tank, and start this process over and over again. Also when very good ones pop up in the big colony, you could use them for the top tank.

 

 

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pmasa

Thanks for the advice. In terms of the "top tank" would you put in those that have hints of different colour variations, or just those that displayed good colour?

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Matuva

I think he says the tank with the hints of different colors. If you're seeking for blue, and if you want to create your own blue line, you should start with the chocolate to reach the blue Topaz. They are just awesome! The blue velvet is nice too, but the topaz is, for my opinion, the nicest of the blue.

Or you can buy blue topaz straight ;)

Not blue, but you can get black rose from carbon rili. Awesome too! Fastone.jpg.23d7a8c8b12f17d5ca6dff2c0ddec428.jpg

Edited by Matuva

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pmasa

I do like the blue topaz, looks like i will have to source some chocolates, buying the end results just takes out part of the fun . Might also get some bloody marys out of the chocolates as well. Is there a good chance if i get say 10 females and 2 males that none of them will have the blue gene present?

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Matuva

If I'm not wrong, you won't get the bloody mary from the chocolate, but from the shoko.

If I remember correctly, the shoko will give you the bloody mary or the chocolate.

  • From the Bloody Mary then, you will have to cull to get the high grade Bloody Mary.
  • The chocolate will give you the blue offsprings only.

With 12 shrimps, I bet you have good chances to catch the blue gene

Edited by Matuva

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pmasa

Ah ok, i thought i had heard of chocolates throwing blues, blacks and reds but i could be mistaken. Well hopefully 12 will be enough, one would hope that sellers would know what colours their stock has produced in the past...

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Matuva

Well, keep us updated with your results. Depends on what the seller is going to sell you : shoko named as chocolate, or true chocolate.

Now, I might be wrong. Sure more expert will come and chime in? :)

Edited by Matuva

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jayc
2 hours ago, Matuva said:

Well, keep us updated with your results

+1 to Matuva's comment. And share lots of pics. This will be an interesting exercise in breeding.

Edited by jayc

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pmasa

Thanks for all the input. Now that i have a starting point i guess i can start the process of multiple years of frustration and hopefully at the end success. I will update this thread when i start/ when any interesting developments happen, with plenty of pictures.

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Shrimpmaster
On 22-2-2017 at 6:04 AM, pmasa said:

Now that i have a starting point i guess i can start the process of multiple years of frustration and hopefully at the end success.

Haha, don't take it to hard, it's fun to see the development these years, just enjoy every little step you can achieve :D

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pmasa

Hi all, just a quick update on this. I managed to acquire some chocolate and black shrimp from revolutionhope which showed some good potential when they arrived. At this stage i am just waiting for the shrimp to get to the right age to become berried, and will provide updates as a make progress/ try to resist the temptation to work towards a black line at the same time.

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pmasa

Just a quick update, quite a few shrimplets are now swimming around varying greatly in colour. Amongst the blacks, browns and yet to colour up shrimp there appears to be a couple of baby blue shrimp, so far they have grown and not turned into blacks so i am hopeful they will stay blue... Hopefully if they stay this way i will be able to start line breeding them. The chocolate shrimps in this line are pretty nice so i plan to keep those separate and have a line of those going, thanks a lot for such fantastic shrimp @revolutionhope . I still need to get a macro adaptor for my phone, but when i do i will make sure to post some pictures.

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pmasa

Another quick update, turns out my phone camera is better than i thought. Images still aren't great but here are the juvenile  blues from choc parents.

20170801_180723.jpg

20170801_180309.jpg

20170801_180214.jpg

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pmasa

As an aside to the blues, one of the males in the tank was a red-brown colour so i have moved him into a separate tank with 3 nice females. Hopefully i can perhaps get a bloody mary line out of it... I will post a picture of the male when i next spot him.

 

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Madmerv

Just saw this thread. You really got a jump start on that blue line with the shrimp @revolutionhope gave you. You must be stoked.

Watching with interest. Once your line is stable i will hit you up for some and help you recoup some costs.

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Baccus

It looks like you are on the road to success with the blue cherry shrimp.

I was recently culling undesired colours from my black cherry breeding project and discovered two distinctly blue sub adults. These black cherries have come from choc/ black parentage.  But I also did have blues appearing in one of my tanks when it was entirely red cherries. The blues that came up in the red tank however never held their blue, going blue over night and when the lights came back on the following day quickly returned to red. I suspect this was due to pH fluctuations during the night when the plants stopped photosynthesising. In this same tank I also started getting rilli's turning up, all the original reds had come from one local source, back when I had thought even having red cherry shrimp was not possible in my area because no shops stocked them, and I didn't know shrimp sites existed in Australia that people traded shrimp on.

It can be fun to develop your own line of colour, but also frustrating and you need to be ruthless in removing even a hint of the wrong coloured shrimplets before they get a chance to mature, breed and release their offspring into your carefully selected breeding program. (Believe me it is near impossible to remove newborn shrimplets from amongst gravel, and they are expert hiders in any plant life so daily if not twice daily inspections of the breeding tank is a must). Also keep in mind that shrimp can change colour drastically depending not only on their genetics but also the water parameters. So when you think you have stabilised the blue gene in your shrimp be sure to try them in different tanks, to make sure they hold their colour and intensity. I have moved cherry shrimp from one tank that looked amazing to another tank (same water source just different substrate/ timbers/ plants/ lighting) and often they have changed intensity of colour, sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse.

Something else I think seems to aid in the intensity/ quality of colour aside from food and water is paradoxically  the presence of what the shrimp see as potential predators. For some reason tanks that I have had potential predator fish in with the shrimp the shrimp have had better colour. I doubt the fish would be selecting only the poorly coloured shrimp and leaving the intensely coloured shrimp alone, so I actually wonder if the shrimp show their health and vitality (and ability to escape so not worth chasing to eat) by carrying intense solid colouration. Other tanks that have no such potential predators I find it much harder to get nice vibrant strongly coloured shrimp.

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revolutionhope

Interesting points@Baccus: - I remember reading that shrimp show a better colour when on dark substrate in an effort to camouflage themselves - unaware that by increasing the intensity of their shell markings/colouration is counterproductive since having been selected for bright colour ! Only speculation in any case.

@pmasa: with regards to selecting your blues from choc/black, and in line with what@Baccus: has said; I have more recently learned from some more experienced breeders than I that you might find a lot of them revert to choc later on when they mature.

 

Also, some choc juveniles might go blue later but that will probably be a less frequent occurrence. Ideally you'd want 3 divisions or tanks for this project to progress as best it can I guess!

 

Really glad you're having success with them, putting them to good use and enjoying the breeding process :-)

 

will

 

 

 

Ps there are ways to retrofit dividers into tanks. Poret foam being one of the best options apparently, unfortunately poret is fairly expensive but there's also other ways out there that you can get away with especially seeing as they are cherries and the disturbance won't be as big a problem as it would with other more sensitive type of shrimps e.g. caridina.

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KillieOrCory

Nice. Look forward to seeing the progress.

I am too impatient to start from scratch but the challenge seems worthwhile to attempt.

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pmasa

Thanks for all the tips @Baccus, the route that i am currently taking is to get a at least on blue adult then separate it with a male/female and go from there. At this stage i am still waiting for them to grow to adult and to make sure that they hold their colour through to adulthood. @revolutionhope i have a feeling that black shrimp start as blue and the colour gets deeper as they get older until the point that it almost looks black. I found when i first opened the parcel with the shrimp that the stressed state caused more of the underlying blue to come out, before darkening again. I currently have 4 tanks at my disposal for shrimp, however i would like to get into the caridinas and devote a tank to them... As an aside i have found that the 3 females (+1 reddish male) in my 60L community tank are significantly larger than those in their own tanks, i am wondering if the slightly warmer temperature and significantly more abundant food is playing a role in the size.

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Baccus

I think to a degree volume of water and stocking levels relevant to that volume assists in shrimp size. A couple of years ago I chucked a heap of cull cherry shrimp into my 1000L pond and months later when doing some maintenance on the tank found freakishly large cherry shrimp. This pond didn't get lots of special foods like the tanks did, instead might have only had commercial fish food put in once a week. However did/ does have a large lily plant, other weeds, leaves and fruit (mostly icecream bean fruit and leaves) falling into the pond and plenty of bloodworms naturally colonised, along with dragonfly nymphs which predate on the shrimp. I have never seen such large cherry shrimp again and certainly have never produced any of that size in any of my tanks even the 4ft tanks. So even though shrimp maybe able to do quite well in nano and small tanks I often wonder if we do them a disservice by having them in small tanks, in effect stunting them to some degree.

revolutionhope I had also heard about dark substrate bringing out the best colour, however I once had some of the darkest glossy red cherry shrimp on pure white sand, with live plants natural timber and fish. Other shrimp have been just as well coloured on natural coloured creek gravel. Less well coloured or have taken longer to show good colour potential have been on a gravel blend of natural and fluro coloured gravels like what most kids will buy for their first tank because they like the pretty colours.

In my black cherry tank I am actually getting to the point of trying to decide in which direction do I want to go with the black breeding program. Since I am now getting blue black shrimp. Some of the shrimp are still a nice solid glossy black but have a distinct dark blue undertone. I wish I could get a photo to show the variation between these blue blacks and true blacks. In this same tank I am still having to remove the odd chocolate, very occasional faint yellow and green, recently pale blue and thankfully even less often now wild type.

Oh and if possible with your divided breeding programs try to keep the separate tanks a good distance apart since shrimp are good climbers and sneaky escape artists. Where I have my tanks ( all open topped) one of the tanks has higher sides than its neighbouring tank which is lower. So even though the there is a gap between the tanks I am almost certain that shrimp from the higher tank have managed to flip over the side and by more good luck than planning end up in the lower tank. Some have not been so lucky and then I find crispy dried shrimp on the bench. So if tanks where the same height and butted up side  by side or even one tank divided there is the potential for shrimp to make escape bids and climb into neighbouring tanks. I have even seen photos of shrimp climbing against the flow of a HOB filter return to get into the yummy gunk inside the filter.

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pmasa

You might be right that it is the volume that affects it the overall size, i guess there are also a lot of external factors that could play a role in maximum growth size but it would be very difficult to pin down.

I am actually wondering if the blacks we produce come from two different base colours, one from a brown base and one from a blue base, all produced from a chocolate lineage. I guess if the end product is black then it doesn't really matter what colour is used to create it but it could explain why some of your blacks have a blue undertone. With the blacks that have come from my chocolates i have certainly noticed that some appear to be more brown, with some even having a black body but a brown line down the back, and others being more blue.

In regards to tank separation my two of my tanks are a couple of meters apart and the other two 6 km away, so if they make the journey i guess they deserve to be there ?.

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Baccus

I know the black/ brown with a brown stripe down the back, I have been finding a few of them in my tank. On mine Its really a muddy reddish brown with black sides and a brown stripe. I have been removing these ones from the blacks since I suspect it is these off blacks that are producing the odd wild colour and various shades of brownish red.

Good thing having the tanks separate, because I have had shrimp happily hitch hike even in weed when adding plants to other tanks.

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KillieOrCory

I used to grow my largest cherry shrimp in a 4 foot tank set up as cory grow out.

The shrimp never got specialty shrimp food instead they used to get Wardley shrimp pellets for bottom feeders and live blackworms. It is amazing watching cherry shrimp getting excited about blackworms. I never sat and watched if the shrimp actually ate any blackworms or whether they were interested in the blackworms slimy coat.

Currently have a 3 foot cory grow out with yellow cherries and the shrimp go crazy every time I put microworms in that tank.

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pmasa

Hi all, just an update on how things are progressing. The colour in the juvenile shrimp is holding and are getting close to adulthood, so hopefully it will stay this way as they will be the first adult blue shrimp from this line. In other news some milk chocolate coloured shrimp that i put in a seperate tank, one has almost completely changed colour.  The shrimp went from brown with a light brow line down its back to a teal colour with a ligh blue stripe. I guess this further supports what  @revolutionhope said in another thread, that adult brown shrimp can change colour as they get older, both from blue to brown and vice versa. Sorry for the bad picture of the "teal" shrimp.

20171002_115914.jpg

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