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Monthly Update: December 2019

I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season so far. It’s been a roller coaster with Australia Post having record breaking amounts of deliveries to make and once again, the ongoing bush-fire crisis throughout Australia. I’m thinking that next year we may extend our shipment cut off times to as early as December 1st next year due to the growing popularity of buying things online and having them shipped before Christmas. We are set to resume shipping orders on the 6th of January onward, but I’ll be keeping an eye on the heat and bush-fire situation in regards to shipping perishables! 

Shrimp Photos/Videos

New shrimp photos and videos showing our breeding colonies and shrimp for sale have been added to all shrimp listings! You can also find these videos on our Shrimp Colony Showcase playlist, and we’ll be releasing photos on our Instagram and Tumblr for those looking for some aquatic aesthetic photos. As always, we’ll take new shrimp photos and videos every three months to make sure that what we sell is as accurate as possible. 

We’re going to do some major colony splitting and selection within the coming months. It was supposed to happen this month, but preparations for Christmas, New Years and birthdays had me busy with family. I’ll write up an article on the selection process and the different techniques that are used to selectively breed shrimp once I get started. 

Mantis Mourning

There is a bit of sad news in the invertebrate room that I’d like to get out of the way. I believe that at the moment mantis breeding may have to be shelved for the meantime. Recently we had two mantises molt successfully, though one has major issues with a very bent up leg and may not survive her next molt.

My male archimantis sobrina finally molted into a wonderful winged adult after living a hefty 14 months as a juvenile! Unfortunately, his life as an adult was short lived. This mantis had somehow injured one of his limbs during or after molting, which necrosed. The infection eventually killed him within 2 weeks of moulting into his adult form. 

It’s quite upsetting to lose a mantis after all the work it takes to raise them and see them through each moult. Adding to this sting, none of the ootheca from my mated False Garden Mantis have shown any signs of hatching. I’m still holding onto the hope that they may just be late, but overall I won’t be obtaining new mantises for a while. 

Beetles are Pupating!

On the upside, the Rhinoceros Beetle larvae we got some time ago are starting to pupate! Our first pupae to show up is this rather small horned male. It’ll be exciting to see what the other pupae will be like. Hopefully we will have a good mix of male and females to breed them in the future. 

Aren't pupae just so odd looking? Initially looking at the container I was afraid that the larva that died until I took a closer look! 

Endler Update

The tiger endler colony has been doing very well and we have something like 50 or so adult endlers in our tanks. But the catch is, they’re almost all entirely females! There have been very few males so far from each batch of fry. I’ve upped the heat in hopes of better sex ratios, but we shall see in the following months. It does look like there are a few more developing males than before. It’ll likely be a few months before we can offer any on our store, since I want to be able to offer males, females and trios. 

Another important note I need to make is to treat any livebearers you obtain with deworming medication! It’s incredibly common for livebearers to have parasites and worms. In late November we discovered that our endlers have camallanus worms (symptoms of which take a while to show up). As a precaution we’ve started a 6 week treatment process on all aquariums- including those that don’t appear to be affected or have no fish, along with the sterilisation of any equipment that comes in contact with any aquarium. We’re on week four of treatment with no signs of parasites left, but just in case we’re going ahead with the next two weeks of treatment. 

Treating many aquariums is quite pricey, but worth the peace of mind. 

A New Year... 

That’s all for now! In the meantime I’ll be reflecting on the year and looking where Sans Vertigo and I can improve the business and experience for everyone, where we’ve fallen short and succeeded. There’s always a lot of work to be done, but I hope everyone can have a bit of rest and respite before launching into this year’s goals, work and activities. 

Have a safe and happy 2020! 
Jennifer Mai