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My L134 fry are about 1 month swimming free now. I kept them in a 10 Inch tank inside the big tank (made some holes in it and have a filter outlet in it). They grew better in this little tank than with the parents. I believe that's because of the food (excess of it and no food competition). I feed them an artemia replacement pouder and gave some Catalpa leaves. I'm thinking of giving them more space & want them get used to adult's food (mysis, shrimp/pea mix, pellets, etc). I did feed 1 pellet when they were approx 1 week and 2 of the young died. So any ideas when I could start getting them used to other foods?
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I think they could be on the adult food now, except perhaps serve it in smaller pieces for now and intermix it with a little of their baby food fir transition.
Good luck, Eric
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My experience has been that some foods are fine for both new fry and adults while others are not. I have never had issues with feeding fry anything that is soft or which gets soft in water. Sinking sticks and wafers are fine for small fry when they get soft. Repashy foods are excellent for this as they are soft when they go into the water.
Picture of fry eating an Aquadine sinking wafer.
On the other hand things like Brine shrimp, blood worms, mysis shrimp are not foods fry can eat unless one chops them into smaller bits. When I want to feed these foods to breeder tanks which contain fry, I will first feed frozen/live foods which are fry sized. These include things like Baby Brine Shrimp (I use frozen rather than live because these must be fed almost as soon as they hatch out), cyclops, copepods etc. Then I add the adult foods.
I find that foods which tend to float or to stay in the water column are of no use in pleco tanks. Further, uneaten food in a tank creates toxic areas for fry as wastes breaks down. If small fry get into any kind of "yucky" substance it can kill them as it will get into their gills and end up choking them to death. I found I needed to learn where waste tends to accumulate in a tank, this can often be in unseen places as well as in plain sight. This way I am sure to clean any build up of nasty materials before it becomes an issue. In bare bottom tanks I will flush clean water down the back glass holding the output near the bottom of the tank (I have a sprinkler head on my water return). This water goes down and then from the back towards the front of the tank which flushes out a lot of hidden stuff. Unfortunately, this won't work in a tank with substrate, especially sand.
Contrary to your experience, mine has been that fry grow faster when left in breeder tanks than when removed. One of the reasons I ended up working most with Hypancistrus plecos was a love of the black and white ones combined with the fact that they did all the work in terms of making babies. I did not have to pull eggs, I did not have to pull fry (until I had too many). Very rarely have I needed to hatch eggs in a trap. What some breeders do is they pull eggs/wigglers to hatch and use up their yolk sac. But not to long after they go free swimming the fry are returned to the breeder tank.
This all said, what works for one fish keeper does not guarantee it is right for another nor that it will work for everybody. Every tank is different and a lot of the success one has results from their learning what works best in their tank. Even with advice from experts, one still has to go through some trial and error on the way to success.
“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”" Daniel Patrick Moynihan
"The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it." Neil DeGrasse Tyson