mantis from DownUNder


New member
hey all.
i've got my mantis house up & running but the other day in some LR that i got to get the tank started i got a mantis! no big surprise as the rock was really fresh, i got it straight from the box.
i've been trying to look for some Aussie mantis species to try to ID the guy that i've got. naturally i don't have a pic. i can give you a description if anyone wants to hazard a guess.
ok, it's brown/black stripes/bands, underneath is yellow. there may be a bit of red on it too.
naturally i'll try for a pic.
i do have a problem though as i'm not 100% sure that he'll be able to survive in the tank seeing it's only new & still going through it's cycle. i tested the tank yesterday & the levels were pretty whacked (it's a 28L tank) i did a small water change (4L) & took the new bit of LR out & gave it a scrub.
this morning the water was looking cloudy again & the ammo alert was moving up so tonight i took the LR out again & scrubbed it better, then did about a 10L water change. if i keep doing this regularly do you think that it'll work or should i cut my losses & get another mantis when the tank's ready (if something happens to this one)
typical isn't it, everyone tries to annihalate these things but the people that actually really want to keep them lose them.
oh well. any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
I"m really confused about what species you might have. The yellow and brown banding is typical of a lysiosquillid spearer, but these guys are sand burrowers and do not live if LR.

Assuming that the anima is two to three inches long, you can keep it for weeks in a 1 or 2 liter tub. You will need a supply of seawater, but if you feed it a small amount in the morning and change the water in the evening, two or three times a week, the animal will live for months. We keep research animals this way with no worries.

sorry i confused you, it's brown/black bands. the underneath of it's body is yellow. it's a "smasher" too. oh yeah & only little about 1" long.
it's still alive this morning, the levels are starting to come down in the tank & i did another 10L water change this morning & took the rock out for another scrub. at the moment the rock's sitting in some water outside in the sun with a powerhead in the container. water changes aren't a problem either as i live near the coast.
thanx & sorry for the misunderstanding
smelly mantis house

smelly mantis house

As you know i've set up a little CR-320 tank for a mantis house.
to recap the tank's 28L with an undergravel filter plate with powerhead, i've also added a small atman powerhead/filter.
the tank was initially set up on the 7th August, the base is crushed coral (was lurking in the garage for years, unused before) i added 2L from my reef tank & put the sponge from the atman in the reefs sump to try to colonise. also added a tiny piece of LR to get the tank on it's way.
initial readings the next day the SG was low 1.021 but all else was ok, so i concentrated on getting that higher, now it's about 1.024 - 1.025.
seemed to be going ok, there was no die-off on the tiny bit of LR that i got, the SG was still good so on the 13th august i got more LR (about 1.5kg) complete with a mantis shrimp
tested the tank the next day & the pH had dropped to 7.8 (was initially 8) & there was nitrite & ammonia on the way up. the rock had a bit of "fluff" on it so i did a small water change (4L) & scrubbed the rock.
the next day (15th) the rock was all furry & stunk to high heaven so out it came again for a scrub & i then did a 10L water change.
the next day (16th) the rock was even worse, it was fully retching material so i scrubbed the rock & then placed it outside in a container in the sun with a powerhead blasting on the rock & did another 10L water change in the tank. i left the rock out there all day & night & the next morning it wasn't furry at all & smelt a little better. even with all the water changes the pH was still 7.8, nitrite was 0.25 & the ammonia alert was saying "alert"
from that day to this each day i've pulled the rock out, scrubbed it again & done a 10L water change. i think that the rock's definately better then initially but it still stinks. yesterday the pH was 7.8 but an hour after todays water change it was 8.1 & the nitrite's more 0.5-1. the poor mantis was doing the "dance of death" in the corner so i pulled it out & put it in the reef tanks water in a hopital container with mesh over the top, i don't think that he's going to survive though, but funny thing, there's another "feeder" shrimp, a crab & a snail still in the mantis tank & they're still fine.
i guess the point to this essay is, am i doing the right thing with all the scrubbing & waterchanges? should i do something to try to stabilise the pH, if so what? (i've got some seachem reef builder)
tonight i'm leaving the lid open on the mantis tank & i've got a spraybar off the powerhead breaking the surface of the water on top of the rock (set that up yesterday)
thanx in advance for any info.