Mexican Dwarf Crayfish are one of the best suitable crayfish for a freshwater aquarium as well as Nano tanks as a whole. These guys are very easy to keep and blend in well in any community tanks and thrive as well.
But if you are looking forward to breed them, here are some steps you can follow:
Having the right set-up for the tank will make your Mexican crayfish more at home. There are more chances for it to breed and stay healthy. A stress free environment will only add on better chances of your crayfish to breed.
Make sure you have at least a 10 gallon tank to create a surface area suitable for these guys to move around the aquarium. This will make them feel more comfortable and at their natural habitat.
It is not mandatory to add active soil or sand into your tank, as Mexican crayfish thrive well even in inert soil substrates as well. This will reduce your expense and you can also use that excess money to buy some beginner plants and driftwoods for the tank.
However, you can use a small portion of ADA soil substrate in small areas of your tanks to pot some aquatic plants, but you can leave most of the area of your tank with normal soil substrate.
Hardscapes are very important for Mexican crayfish and will bring more hiding spaces for them. Make use of driftwood, dragon rocks, and lava rocks to scape the tank. Mexican dwarf crayfish love to move about the tank and look for their private space around the aquarium. So, make sure you add in some good amount of hardscape into the tank to create caves, hideouts, and more surface area for these guys to move around.
I would suggest you use any of the beginner aquarium plants to scape your crayfish tank and bring better aesthetics to your aquarium. Mexican crayfish love to climb these plants and move from one plant to another whenever they like.
Plants like Water Wisteria, Bacopa, Christmas Moss, Vallisneria, and Amazon swords would go great for your Mexican Crayfish tank set-up.
Add some Tank Mates
I’d suggest you add some tank mates because it would help in creating a better ecosystem and clearing off some excess food scattered in the tank. Try adding in some Cherry Shrimps and Corydoras into the tank.
Best Type of filter for a Mexican Crayfish Tank set-up is the Hang-on Filters, it is safe for the Mexican crayfish and their babies. These filters are easy to maintain, are silent, and can easily customise them as well. Hang on filters are safe for the Mexican crayfish and their babies.
Adding a moderate aquarium light is more than enough to sustain the healthy growth of the plants and you don’t need to worry about making it mandatory to keep the lights on throughout the day as well. It does not affect the breeding of the crayfish.
Feeding plays an essential role as the crayfish needs to stay healthy and have the required nutrients to sustain throughout the breeding period of the crayfish.
Feed them a mixture of fish food pellets, algae wafers, bloodworm flakes or Tetra bits. This will keep them healthy and sustain a healthier diet.
You don’t have to feed them everyday, you can feed them every alternative day or once in every 3 days as well. Just avoid over feeding them as it may damage the water cycle and cause algae bloom and resulting in green water in your tank.
Male and Female Ratio
I would suggest you add a 2:1 ratio of female and male respectively. This has worked out pretty well in my experience and will also help you out.
For example: if you are adding 3 crayfish, make sure 2 of them are females and 1 is a male.
Water parameters help in sustaining a healthy water cycle and provide a healthy habitat for the babies and the mexican dwarf crayfish.
The Ideal water temperature is between 68-80 degrees Fahrenheit.
The pH scale needs to be between 7-8. You can use a pH meter for this purpose.
Regular Water Change
Perform regular water changes up to 40% of the tank once in every 2 days for the first week of setting up the tank.
The female will carry the eggs for 1-4 weeks and then lay dark brown eggs in her saddle with a protected mucus around it. In another 2-3 weeks, the babies will come out of the saddle and start living alongside their mother till they are able to survive on their own.
Do not separate the babies from the mother until they are big enough for survival on their own.
The above process needs to be carried out promptly in order to sustain most of the babies and let them grow healthy. But however, if you need any in depth understanding on how to care for the babies once they are born, you can refer our guide on how to care for Mexican Dwarf Crayfish.