Red Clawed Lobster
The red claw lobster or Cherax quadricarinatus is a tropical invertebrate that isn’t really a lobster at all but a species of crayfish. The species is also know as red claw crayfish. Other names includes Red claw Freshwater Lobster, Red Fresh Water Lobster, Australian Red Claw Crayfish.
It can be found in Australian waters and can be a spectacular addition to any aquarium. Red claw lobsters are relatively non aggressive but can be hard to keep with small slow moving fish as these might end up on the lobster menu. The lobster can be aggressive towards other specimens of the same species and I only recommend that you keep a single lobster unless you got a large aquarium with a lot of hiding places.
Red claw lobsters should be kept in water with a pH value of 6.5-8 and at a temperature of 77-90 ° F / 25-32 ° C. The water should be kept as clean as possible and water changes of 20% per week are recommended.
Red claw lobsters are mostly active during the night and will spend most of the day hiding in a cave somewhere. They are mainly bottom dwelling but will be found climbing everything that is climbable so an aquarium cover that doesn’t leave any escape routes are a must. You can keep hardier plants with red claw lobster and a moderate amount of plants should be considered a minimum when keeping lobsters as well as a number of caves created by roots and rocks that give the lobster places to hide.
Red claw lobster live for up to 5 years and grows to be approximately 30 cm / 12 inches although most specimens never reaches that size and a sizes of around 20 cm /8 inches are more common place. Red Claw lobsters are scavengers that accept a broad variety of frozen and dried food. Their diet should however include vegetable as well as carnivorous elements. Their diet can affect their color. Lobsters, as most other invertebrates, have the ability to regenerate lost limbs and the new limb will usually grow out within a month.
Red claw lobsters can be breed in aquariums and they reach sexual maturity at the age of one. The male deposits his sperm on the belly of the female after a courting process and the eggs are released within 24 hours. The eggs will then take up till ten weeks to hatch. Each batch may contain up to 1000 eggs.
Red Claw lobsters are not only an interesting aquarium inhabitant but also a sought after food item among other reasons for their nutritional value and low fat content. But is still recommend that you try to keep a lobster in your aquarium rather then eat one no matter how tasty a food source they might be.
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