General Information of Triops
Triops are prehistoric creatures that existed before the dinosaurs. They have been around for almost 300 million years. There are many species of Triops. The common species are Triops australiensis, Triops baeticus, Triops cancriformis, Triops emeritensis, Triops longicaudatus, Triops mauritanicus, Triops newberryi, Triops vicentinus, and so on. Triops are usually found in swamps and marshes in North America, South America, Europe, Eurasia, Africa, Japan, New Caledonia, and Australia. Triops have three eyes and a distinctly elongated double-pronged tail. They have a short life-cycle of 1 to 3 months and grow quickly with doubles in size every day. Triops have many legs (35-71 pairs) for swimming, carrying food into their mouths, and breathing. Their legs have the special gill-like organ of other aquatic species. When moving or swimming, they will get oxygen from the water through their legs.
Triops can be found in the arid area of the wild. When the rain pours, those areas will be drenched, and the life will be restored, including Triops eggs that were laid before the drought.
Biology of Triops Longicaudatus
- Average age: 90 days
- Adult size: length 1.5-2 inches
- Reproduce after 8-10 days of age
- Lay eggs only
Start to culture
Prepare the necessary equipment
- Triops eggs
- Tray [0.1 gallons (0.38 liters) in size for hatching]
- Tank [size should be a minimum of 3 gallons (11.3 liters) for culture]
- Aquarium air pump and aquarium air control valve
- Aquarium fishnet
- Aquarium heater or heat lamp
Recommended water source
- Tap water is an easy and popular choice, as long as it has been treated to remove chlorine and adjusted condition properly.
- Freshwater from your aquarium
- Bottled water. It is the most expensive way. The mineral water is not recommended because the mineral level is too high.
Recommended water condition
- Ammonia level is less than 1.5 milligrams per liter.
- pH between 7 and 9 (pH 8 is optimum.)
- Low in salinity (fewer than 8 grams per liter)
- Do not use any chemicals.
Optimize the environment
Place a heat lamp above the tray for hatching. Place a heater inside the tank to keep the water temperature between 73 and 90 °F (23 and 32 °C). Put an aquarium thermometer in the tank to monitor the water temperature. If you live in a place with suitable temperature ranges, the heater may not be needed. If the temperature is low, it will take an additional 3 to 5 days for hatching. Hatching place is important. It is best to hatch inside to prevent invasive species and keep the temperature steady.
Sunlight is good to increase hatching capacity. Let the eggs receive sunlight 3-4 hours per day in the temperature range. Be careful overheating. If sunlight is not available, you can use the lamp instead. The eggs still hatch even though they do not receive sunlight.
Fill up the water into the tray. Open the microtube carefully to sprinkle the eggs into the water. Make sure that the eggs do not accidentally get stuck on the edge of the tray. Floating or sinking eggs do not affect with hatch rate. After sprinkling the eggs into the water, it will hatch within 3-10 days.
Add oxygen to the water. In the early days, adjust the air control valve to the lowest level because Triops is very small and may lose control in swimming. Gradually adjust the air control valve to the level that suits the population of Triops.
Look closely. Triops is so small and almost invisible to the human eye for the first few days. You can use a flashlight in the dark to confirm the hatching. Shine lights on the water surface and watch the shadows move.
After 3-10 newly-hatched appear, that means the eggs begin to hatch. Then transfer the Triops and eggs to the tank for culture by pouring the hatching tray into the tank and add the water.
If the eggs do not hatch
If the eggs do not hatch within 10 days, dry the eggs by pouring them into an aquarium fishnet and wait for 2-3 days. After the eggs dried, start the hatching process again.
Triops eats shrimp’s food, carrot, lettuce, potato, chlorella, etc. Feed Triops 1-2 times per day.
For 1-8 days old Triops, crush the food into small pieces and add a tiny amount in the water to feed them.