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The key to successful crawfish farming at home is to purchase a breeding colony. They will easily reproduce in your home aquarium, aquaponics system, or backyard farm. Here at liveaquaponics.com you will find the very best quality of crayfish for your breeding/stocking needs. Farming crawfish at home let's you know what you are raising/eating, because you will have the knowledge of its whereabouts from its birth to your dinner table.
Our breeding colonies consist of carefully selected mature males and females. They are fed an organic diet, disease free, non-GMO, completely hormone free. In addition they are also fed a high protein Non-GMO diet to ensure they are a high quality crayfish that will grow rapidly. You will receive a sustainable, reproducing colony when ordering from liveaquaponics.com

Why A Breeding Colony?

If you are looking to raise crayfish for personal consumption or to raise for profit, a breeding colony will allow you to achieve your goal for a faster return. Crayfish in most cases can take up to 3-12 month to become sexually mature from the time they are craylings.
In nature crayfish typically breed in the fall and on occasion in the spring. This will typically give you about 1-3 spawns a year. In a controlled hatchery crawfish will generally reproduce continually threw out the year, leaving you with an abundance of crayfish. Depending on the species of crayfish you purchase, each spawn could produce 100-1,000 eggs. With the Louisiana Crayfish averaging 100-500 depending on size and health of female & the Australian Red Claw Crayfish averaging 100-1,000 depending on size and health of the female. Not all egg's / craylings survive, in fact on average 30% of eggs are lost during incubation, and in the wild on average 97% of craylings do not make it. With aquaculture and closely monitoring your breeding colony your survival rate of craylings is many times better than in the wild. With plenty of hiding places, proper diet, & proper water quality you will be on your way to raising your own abundance of crawfish.

Before embarking on your new venture, please make sure you check with your state and local laws concerning aquaculture.



Red Claw Reproduction

The key points to successful maintenance and reproduction of brood stock in indoor holding systems include:

select healthy mature adults
maintain warm temperatures (preferably 75 F to 85 F)
maintain good water quality
provide proper nutrition, and
isolate berried females to hatching tanks

In a hatchery red claw can spawn almost continuously throughout the year if conditions are suitable. Red claw generally reach sexual maturity by the age of 6 to 12 months. Mature male red claw develop a distinctive red or orange patch on the outside margin of the claws. Individuals of this same size without the reddish claw patch are usually females. The sexes are best identified, however, by examination of the genital openings on the underside of the cephalothorax at the base of the walking legs. Females have a pair of genital pores at the base of the third pair (counting from the head) of walking legs. Males have a pair of small genital papillae (small projections) at the base of the fifth pair of walking legs.

Individual females do not spawn when going through a growth phase (i.e.,molting). Each female will produce 100 to 1,000 eggs per spawn depending on her size and general health. The first spawn of young females usually has fewer eggs than latter spawns. Newly spawned eggs average 10 eggs per gram of female. About 30 percent of the eggs are lost during incubation, resulting in an average of 7 eggs (that hatch) per gram of female. For example, a female weighing 3 ounces (85 grams) would produce about 600 eggs. This can be used to estimate the number of eggs a female of a given size will produce.

Broodstock And Hatchery

Mature broodstock Red Claw crayfish can be kept at a density of 1 to 2 per square foot of tank bottom. The ratio of females to males in each tank should be between 1 to 4 females for each male. Good spawning success has occurred using tanks with water depths of 1 to 3 feet. Small rectangular tanks of 15 to 20 square feet have been used successfully, as well as large circular tanks of 15 feet in diameter with 1-3 feet of water. Example: a 20 sq. ft. tank 2 ft deep could be stocked with 5-10 males and 15-30 female mature Red Claw. Broodstock tanks should maintain a water temperature between 75 and 85 F for optimal reproduction.

Breeding tanks should be checked every one to two weeks for berried females (females carrying eggs). Once the fertilized eggs are affixed to the female's pleopods, "swimmerets" situated on the underside of the tail, It is highly recommended that berried females be moved to a separate tank. Berried females should be carefully netted, keeping them with their abdomen curled around the eggs during transfer to hatching tanks. (to prevent egg loss). Incubation takes approximately six weeks and the newly hatched juveniles rapidly become independent. The hatching tank will then become the nursery tank for raising the young Red Claw.

"Homes" are essential, RedClaw have a low level of aggression, but do require housing. PVC pipe sections in multiple sizes, mesh bags, burlap, rocks, or anything that the crayfish can climb threw and hide in for shelter. Young crayfish will molt many times during their first year of life, as they grow quickly, while mature redclaw crawfish will molt only once or twice a year. The shed exoskeleton ( molted shell ) is used as a source of calcium and is typically eaten by its owner or other crayfish. Red Claw in tanks can handle a temperature range from 60-90 F. Temperatures below 55 and above 95 will result in casualties.


Louisiana Crawfish Reproduction

The key points to successful maintenance and reproduction of brood stock in indoor holding systems include:

select healthy mature adults
maintain warm temperatures (preferably 72 F to 86 F)
maintain good water quality
provide proper nutrition, and
isolate berried females to hatching tanks

In a hatchery crawfish can spawn almost continuously throughout the year if conditions are suitable. Louisiana crawfish generally reach sexual maturity by the age of 3 to 6 months. The male makes a little sperm packet and places it on the female's stomach. The females eggs are then passed threw the sperm packet where they are then attached to the swimmerets on the tail. The female will release her eggs several weeks to months after mating occurs, depending on water quality, food supply and other various conditions. She will then brood her eggs for 6-10 weeks depending on water temperature.
The number of eggs laid is varied with size and condition of the females and usually range from 100-500. When hatched fry are generally 5mm long at 2 days old, growing to 2cm 1 month later, and up to 3.2 inch in 3 months.

Broodstock And Hatchery

Breeding tanks should be checked every one to two weeks for berried females (females carrying eggs). Once the fertilized eggs are affixed to the female's pleopods, "swimmeretts" situated on the underside of the tail, It is highly recommended that berried females be moved to a separate tank. Berried females should be carefully netted, keeping them with their abdomen curled around the eggs during transfer to hatching tanks. (to prevent egg loss). Incubation takes approximately 6-10 weeks and the newly hatched juveniles rapidly become independent. The hatching tank will then become the nursery tank for raising the young Louisiana Crawfish.

"Homes" are essential, for crawfish, Louisiana crawfish are canabalistic so they do require housing. PVC pipe sections in multiple sizes, mesh bags, burlap, rocks, or anything that the crayfish can climb threw and hide in for shelter. Young crayfish will molt many times during their first year of life, as they grow quickly. The shed exoskeleton ( molted shell ) is used as a source of calcium and is typically eaten by its owner or other crayfish. The fry prefer vegetable food, boiled lettuce leaves left to decay, along with a high protein sinking pellet. Fry are very cannibalistic, so for a higher survival ratio a large tank is required.