Being colorful is an eye-catcher. The same goes for the CrayFish which goes by the name Mexican Dwarf CrayFish.
Let us quickly know about the Mexican Dwarf CrayFish in this article and how to care for them with some FAQs.
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish: Overview
Mexican Dwarf Crayfish as the name suggests are mini-sized crayfish that resemble a lobster.
They are popular, colorful, and add life to the freshwater tank.
The origin of the CrayFish is evident from the name itself – Mexico. These are also found in the southern parts of the US.
They prefer slow-moving water with plants, woods, and lush green stuff. In the open water world, they live in small rivers, lakes, and ponds.
These are tiny creatures but have a dynamic personality, yet peaceful.
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish (Cambarellus Patzcuarensis)
Mexico and Southern Parts of America
Moderate to Difficult
Shallow, Slow Moving Water with lush green plants
Not compatible with large fish, better with Guppies, Platies, Tetra Fishes, etc.
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish: Appearance, Behavior and Diet
How does Dwarf CrayFish look?
What do they eat?
Are they aggressive?
Let’s find out.
Average Size: 1.6 to 2 inches
Interesting Fact: They have 19 pairs of limbs and are invertebrates.
As we know, Mexican Dwarf Crayfish are generally orange in color. The top part of the body is also orange in color with darker stripes and spots.
These look like tiny lobsters as already mentioned as they have a hard shell encased body with a long tail and are great swimmers.
One cool thing is that they have a long mustache, just kidding. They have antennae for detecting things nearby them and to smell food.
In addition to the commonly known orange dwarf crayfish, the Blue Brazos Dwarf Crayfish (Cambarellus texanus)There’s also a very cool-looking blue spotted one,
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish eat an omnivorous diet i.e. both vegetables such as peas, cucumbers and plants as well as worms and shrimps.
They can act as scavengers and also eat their own especially the offsprings.
FYI: The vegetables should be properly cleaned and then it should be given to the Dwarf Crayfish.
Importantly, keep the pregnant mother and offsprings in separate tanks so that they can be in peace.
Do not add any copper content in the aquarium as it can deadly.
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish are generally peaceful.
But as they can eat their offsprings, so their behavior is dynamic often.
They also molt a lot i.e. they can regenerate their lost limbs by this process.
Hiding behind plants and rocky substances is their liking.
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish: Care
1. Create a Natural habitat and keep a Cleaner Environment
Mexican Dwarf CrayFish are accustomed to their natural habitat.
Naturally, they prefer living in slow-moving waters with plenty of plants, rocks, caves, wood and sand as a substrate.
So, set up a tank with a layer of sand at the bottom and place plenty of plants.
This helps the Mexican CrayFish to take shelter.
Normal aquarium lighting is enough but a quality filter is necessary to keep the water clean and free from nitrates and ammonia.
Cleaning the tank and monitoring the water conditions regularly is beneficial.
2. Water Conditions in the Tank
We already know that Mexican Dwarf CrayFish prefers water with less current.
Try to maintain the water temperature between 60°F- 75°F with the help of a water heater.
Keep the pH levels between 6.0 and 8.0 and maintain the water hardness between 5-15 KH
Keep the water current coming out of the filter as slow as possible.
You can also buy test kits to maintain the above-mentioned water conditions.
3. Aquarium Size
The size of the aquarium depends on the number of CrayFish and other fishes you want to keep in your aquarium.
It is recommended to at least have an aquarium size of about 10 Gallons.
4. Mexican Dwarf CrayFish Mates
We know that Mexican CrayFish can be aggressive and they generally spend their time at the bottom of the tank.
So, it’s better to have topwater fishes as mates.
As Mexican Dwarf CrayFish are smaller in size, larger and/ or aggressive fishes or even different crayfishes which normally more than double in size should be avoided.
FYI: Mexican Dwarf CrayFish can become prey to larger fishes. Similarly, smaller fishes such as shrimps and small snails can become prey to Mexican Dwarf CrayFish.
Who are suitable then?
Tetra Fishes like Congo Tetra, Neon Tetra, Guppies, Platies, Swordtails, etc are suitable.
5. Keep the CrayFish healthy.
Generally, Mexican Dwarf CrayFish are not affected by any disease like the Ich disease.
But its mates might be affected and notably, the treatment of this disease uses a copper substance that is life-threatening for the Mexican Dwarf Crayfish.
Make sure to avoid this by placing the defected mate in another tank at any cost.
An already infected CrayFish with a disease named CrayFish Plague can spread this to other Mexican Dwarf CrayFish if they are kept in the same tank as it is contagious.
Stress can be a factor during the molting process, breeding, etc.
The CrayFish must stay healthy as it helps to maintain or increase its lifespan.
Follow the above-mentioned things to achieve this.
Breeding a Mexican Dwarf CrayFish is easy.
The female CrayFish lays about 25-50 eggs after the breeding and fertilization process.
The newly born offsprings spend the first one year with their mother usually in the wild.
The young ones should be kept separate in another tank to prevent the adults from eating them.
To feed them, you can place the food in different parts of your tank.
Related Questions or FAQs on Mexican Dwarf CrayFish
1) How to identify male and female Molly Fish?
The limbs nearer to the abdomen area known as pleopods differ in males and females.
These are softer in the female than the males.
2)Are Mexican Dwarf CrayFish aggressive?
3) Is an air pump and heater required for the Fishtank?
Not necessarily. A heater might be required if the temperature is not met.