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Yabby tank set up

lennylenny Member Posts: 8
Hi I’m setting up a tank to keep yabbies for bait. Just looking for ideas and possibly getting them to breed. Will be keeping possibly 50+ in a tank so I’ve made many hides so they have there own space. All ideas appreciated thanks


  • Dr MattDr Matt Member Posts: 81
    You're aware that yabbies are omnivorous predatory territorial cannibals right?

    I'd doubt you'll have 50 in that tank for very long, its just not big enough for that many.
    Plus while its nice and neat now, they're not named "Cherax destructor" coz it sounds funny. Expect to find the tank re-landscaped within the week :#
  • FraykFrayk Member Posts: 1,009
    Yabs are better off in a large outdoor pond, i doubt they will breed in an aquarium.
    Good luck anyway. :)
  • lennylenny Member Posts: 8
    Dr Matt
    Will having sufficient hides for each yabby so as they have there own territory help with them not killing each other?
  • Dr MattDr Matt Member Posts: 81
    Hi Lenny,
    you'll need sufficient hidey holes and floor space for each yabbie to keep them happy. Plus sufficient food otherwise little ones will very quickly find themselves on the menu.
    They'll need a good sized chunk of driftwood (preferably river redgum) to gnaw on.

    I'd suggest you start off with eight to a dozen in that tank. 2:1 or 3:2 ratio females to males. If they're happy, they'll breed. If they're unhappy, you'll find bits of yabbie all over the tank.
    The tricky bit is females won't breed with males they can beat in a fight so successful mating often result in lost limbs anyway. Males who lose mating fights to females are often badly hurt or killed outright.

    If you're really unlucky, you'll get a bastard who simply hunts tankmates for fun.
  • lennylenny Member Posts: 8
    Cheers dr Matt. I’ll let you know how it goes. They will all be 60-100 in size already. May just introduce a few at a time over a couple of days/ weeks and see what works. Only have to keep them initially for a few weeks till I go fishing but was going to keep any berried up females at home if I had any then any surplus from the trip will end up back in there for next time.
  • lennylenny Member Posts: 8
    My ammonia levels got high in half a day. Would it have been high to start with or is having so many in the tank (around 100 at the moment) be causing it? 70-80 litre tank. Had the filter running for 2 weeks and had a water test back when I started it up. Only required a PH adjustment at that point.
  • Heintz.GHeintz.G Moderator Posts: 1,363
    If you added them all at once that would be the reason for the Ammonia spike, check your Nitrite and Nitrate as well.
    That tank is way to small for that amount of yabbies, start doing frequent small water changes, until you can get a bigger tank.
    Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes & dreams.
  • BobBob Member, Classifieds Posts: 708
    edited April 2018
    That many yabbies produce a serious amount of waste (ammonia). Having a filter running for two weeks does nothing other than move the water. No “life”, no waste, no ammonia, no development of nitrifying bacteria colonies, ie, you have no biological filtration. As a result you ammonia level will continue to climb and, if nothing is done, you will lose your yabbies.

    You can try to control through water changes but ammonia, even at low levels, can be lethal. Once you have some deaths the decomp process will increase the rate of ammonia accumulation.

    Just a note on Heintz post, no nitrifying bacteria, no nitrIte or nitrAte.

    You really need to have some “mature” filter media in there to control the situation and yes, way overstocked in any case.
  • lennylenny Member Posts: 8
    I’ve split them up into 3 tanks now and added some quick start to speed up cycling. Dead ones have been removed and molting yabbies are put into another seperate tank
  • Heintz.GHeintz.G Moderator Posts: 1,363
    Good to see you split them up, I hope things work out for your Yabbies.
    Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes & dreams.
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