How many copepods for 2 mandarin fish?

Peach02

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Essentially I've finally found a source of live copepods in Australia and I was wondering how many I should order to start a population large enough (in refigiym) to feed 2 mandarin fish in the DT (up till now have been using frozen copepods and other foods with mixed success)

I can order ether lots of 2500 pods (500ml Harpacticoid) or 100ml roughly 500 pods (tisbee)

Any idea if Ether would be enough or which is better
 

Jesterrace

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I spent hundreds of dollars over the course of 3 months, had it adapt to frozen mysis and LRS Reef Frenzy and it still starved to death and that was just one. How big is the tank you are going to need a tank well over 100 gallons to support the rockwork, Massive amounts of Chaeto ect that pods require.
 

Phycodurus

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respectfully, the answer is subjective IMO. i do a “pod population check” by eyeballing pods on the glass several times a week + carefully observing how fat/skinny the mandarins look. right now, i seed my 180G tank with MO pods about every 3-4 weeks on average (3-4 16 oz. jars per order). i also stash little pockets of chaeto here & there in the tank inside little breeder boxes ... kind of like mini in-tank refugiums.

yes, it’s expensive but i acknowledged that cost in my desire to keep healthy & happy mandarins (3 green and 1 spotted mandarin ... a very fat spotted mandarin :)). eventually, i’ll likely set-up a proper sump refugium to lessen the number of times MO is necessary.

that doesn’t stop me from target feeding them live blackworms, frozen brineshrimp, etc. i’m inspired to also build a version of paul b’s little mandarin feeder so i can introduce pellets too (but i have yet to build one).

— rick
 
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Peach02

Peach02

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respectfully, the answer is subjective IMO. i do a “pod population check” by eyeballing pods on the glass several times a week + carefully observing how fat/skinny the mandarins look. right now, i seed my 180G tank with MO pods about every 3-4 weeks on average (3-4 16 oz. jars per order). i also stash little pockets of chaeto here & there in the tank inside little breeder boxes ... kind of like mini in-tank refugiums.

yes, it’s expensive but i acknowledged that cost in my desire to keep healthy & happy mandarins (3 green and 1 spotted mandarin ... a very fat spotted mandarin :)). eventually, i’ll likely set-up a proper sump refugium to lessen the number of times MO is necessary.

that doesn’t stop me from target feeding them live blackworms, frozen brineshrimp, etc. i’m inspired to also build a version of paul b’s little mandarin feeder so i can introduce pellets too (but i have yet to build one).

— rick
Can you send a photo of the pods in the density you like?
 

Phycodurus

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tank lights are out for the evening. i’ll take a photo when i get home from work tmrrw.

i’m not looking for any particular density per sq. inch on the glass ... too much variability, i think ... i just make sure that i can easily find them crawling around and go with the assumption that there are more all over the live rock. (in other words, i don’t let it get to a point that i can’t find a single pod on the glass).

more importantly, i watch the mandarins to make sure they aren’t looking skinny.
 
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JoshH

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Essentially I've finally found a source of live copepods in Australia and I was wondering how many I should order to start a population large enough (in refigiym) to feed 2 mandarin fish in the DT (up till now have been using frozen copepods and other foods with mixed success)

I can order ether lots of 2500 pods (500ml Harpacticoid) or 100ml roughly 500 pods (tisbee)

Any idea if Ether would be enough or which is better
How big is your DT? Is there plenty of live rock in it?
 

OrionN

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It's 120L with about 16-17kg of rock
This is unlikely large enough for 2 mandarin. You are lucky if it is big enough for 1. If you select your fish and arrange your tank and refugium in ways that is "pods" friendly, other than the Mandarin of course, it is possible that you can keep 1 without supplemental feeding. Otherwise , it you want healthy mandarin, it will be expensive. If this is what you want, then the more the better. You also need to research on food for your pods and feed them.
I have keep a healthy Mandarin in a 30 gal tank with a Magnifica anemone, a pair of A. percula and a Mandarin for years. Mandarin is a really easy fish if you give them the food they need. I have never try to convert or try to feed my mandarin frozen food in my long reefing history but @PaulB have ways he feed his Mandarin. If you are hell bend on keeping the mandarin, look up what he does and try to do it. Good luck.
There is a good population in the DT but the Refugium dosnt have any
Maybe you got this backward. If they are in DT, they will be in the refugium (not empty sump). You will need to turn your refugium into t a real refugium with lots of rocks and light. Not really bright light but just enough to grow food for your "pods" of various species.
 

nereefpat

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They will eat up to a couple thousand a day, if that helps you.

Agree that a mature tank and fuge, with copepods crawling on the glass, is your best bet. I also wonder about 2 in a 120 liter.
 

NS Mike D

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When I add pods (Reef Nutrition Tiggers) I add them both to the DT and the fuge. I also supplement with ROE (turning off the pumps to give the mandarin a chance to eat).

Algae and lots of rockwork help keep the pods reproducing. Other fish will eat food meant for the mandarin. I dump mysis/brine/LRS into the tank to get the attention of the clowns and chromis then add the ROE. The coral love the ROE and LTS Reef Frenzy.

My DT has chronic outbreaks of dinos, GHA and Cyano trying to keep the mandarin happy, so if your tank isn't large enough to support a pod population, consider the regular dosing of pods and the effect of overfeeding.

@Paul B has posts demonstrating his mandarin feeding contraption for adding baby brine that releases (well they actually are escaping) brine slow enough for the manadarins to pick off.
 
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Peach02

Peach02

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This is unlikely large enough for 2 mandarin. You are lucky if it is big enough for 1. If you select your fish and arrange your tank and refugium in ways that is "pods" friendly, other than the Mandarin of course, it is possible that you can keep 1 without supplemental feeding. Otherwise , it you want healthy mandarin, it will be expensive. If this is what you want, then the more the better. You also need to research on food for your pods and feed them.
I have keep a healthy Mandarin in a 30 gal tank with a Magnifica anemone, a pair of A. percula and a Mandarin for years. Mandarin is a really easy fish if you give them the food they need. I have never try to convert or try to feed my mandarin frozen food in my long reefing history but @PaulB have ways he feed his Mandarin. If you are hell bend on keeping the mandarin, look up what he does and try to do it. Good luck.

Maybe you got this backward. If they are in DT, they will be in the refugium (not empty sump). You will need to turn your refugium into t a real refugium with lots of rocks and light. Not really bright light but just enough to grow food for your "pods" of various species.
There is chaeto and some rock in the Refugium but it's relatively new compared to the DT so I don't think the pods have established down there yet or the filter sick is getting them.
What are you supplementing and how often
 

Jay Z

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It took me around 5 month for my pods to become self sufficient. I seeded 3 times over that period. I did add a HOB ref on the side of my main tank, just for pods to start in, fed photo every day or 2 for 5 months (1 ounce a feeding) I introduced apocyclops, tisbe, and tiger. Added everything to the HOB when I reseeded.

I have a 45 with 110lbs of rock, my tiger pods took up in the rock work and now every empty snail and conch shell. Pretty much every rock hole has tigers in it. They are so big at first I thought they were baby peppermint shrimp. Normal pods took up resident in 2 corners of the tank (can't see them on my rock work) they hang out in the 2 corners and in the substrate (Hawaiian black, larger grain) The HOB has thousands in it, and my display in the sump has thousands also. I added a watchman to my sump display to thin out those, he's fat and doing a good job, then a ruby and mandarin in my 45, both fat and happy, very fun to watch them. Also threw a watchman in my 6 that I started last month, pods have not established in that one yet as far as I can tell. All three tank are hooked together.

I have not feed photo in over a month now, seems scraping the algae growth off the sides on my main display every 3 days keeps everything fed. Bonus on the tiger population is all my fish are fat, I only feed them every 2-3 days now (3 tangs and 2 angels) Still have to take care of my corals though. My mandarin did start eating some mysis on his own. He docent eat a lot of it but will take a piece or 2 at feedings now.

It was a long slow process, 3-4 times I thought I was wasting my time and money trying to establish them. Eventually it paid off. Just stay persistent with it.

Also everything established in my tanks in the lower flow areas.
 

Jay Z

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Day time shot of copepod corner. 3-4 times as many when lights out. I leave the algae in this corner just for them.
49CFD322-D84A-480A-A908-13238C42D49C.jpeg
Mandarin cruising the caverns picking them off 666B39FA-E19D-4347-B64E-110C3C076051.jpeg
Side shot of my low flow and rock work everyone hangs out in. On my high flow side I do not have any on the glass. They only seem to like the low flow side.
421BED9C-7DE4-4B84-AEAD-E5C9EF2CC725.jpeg
 
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Peach02

Peach02

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It took me around 5 month for my pods to become self sufficient. I seeded 3 times over that period. I did add a HOB ref on the side of my main tank, just for pods to start in, fed photo every day or 2 for 5 months (1 ounce a feeding) I introduced apocyclops, tisbe, and tiger. Added everything to the HOB when I reseeded.

I have a 45 with 110lbs of rock, my tiger pods took up in the rock work and now every empty snail and conch shell. Pretty much every rock hole has tigers in it. They are so big at first I thought they were baby peppermint shrimp. Normal pods took up resident in 2 corners of the tank (can't see them on my rock work) they hang out in the 2 corners and in the substrate (Hawaiian black, larger grain) The HOB has thousands in it, and my display in the sump has thousands also. I added a watchman to my sump display to thin out those, he's fat and doing a good job, then a ruby and mandarin in my 45, both fat and happy, very fun to watch them. Also threw a watchman in my 6 that I started last month, pods have not established in that one yet as far as I can tell. All three tank are hooked together.

I have not feed photo in over a month now, seems scraping the algae growth off the sides on my main display every 3 days keeps everything fed. Bonus on the tiger population is all my fish are fat, I only feed them every 2-3 days now (3 tangs and 2 angels) Still have to take care of my corals though. My mandarin did start eating some mysis on his own. He docent eat a lot of it but will take a piece or 2 at feedings now.

It was a long slow process, 3-4 times I thought I was wasting my time and money trying to establish them. Eventually it paid off. Just stay persistent with it.

Also everything established in my tanks in the lower flow areas.
Well done! What is a HOB?
 
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