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Seahorse Training Program — get certified now!

Ocean Rider Seahorse Farm and Tours | Kona Hawaii Forums Seahorse Life and Care Seahorse Training Program — get certified now!

Viewing 15 posts - 211 through 225 (of 236 total)
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  • #49604
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Symons:

    As an experienced reef keeper, I have no doubt that Ocean Rider seahorses will thrive under your diligent, conscientious care, and a 60-gallon aquarium with a 20-gallon sump can make a magnificent seahorse habitat.

    I would be very happy to enroll you in the training, but I must inform you that the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program is conducted entirely via e-mail. When we begin the training, I will send you a free copy of the seahorse training manual as an attachment to an email so that you can download the manual, save it on your computer, and then read through the information at your leisure.

    As you do so, it will then be your job to contact me via e-mail whenever you have any questions or concerns about the material in the lessons, and I will then do my very best to answer all of your questions and clarify everything for you.

    The seahorse training program is very comprehensive, consisting of several hundred pages of text with more than 250 full-color illustrations, and it will explain everything you need to know in order to keep Ocean Rider seahorses successfully in a home aquarium. But first step is to establish contact by e-mail.

    Just send a quick e-mail referencing the seahorse training to the following e-mail address and we can get started at once:

    [email protected]

    In the meantime, best wishes with all your fishes, Symons!

    Happy Trails!
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Training Program Advisor

    #50116
    marebe555
    Participant

    Would like to join the program – been 25 years since I’ve had seahorses and things have changed!
    thanks!
    Marianne

    #50143
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Marianne:

    Yes, indeed, there have been amazing advances in seahorse keeping in the last 25 years. The first and foremost of these is the advent of hardy, colorful, captive-bred-and-raised seahorses that are wonderfully well adapted to aquarium conditions and pre-trained to eat frozen Mysis as their staple, everyday diet from an early age.

    I will contact you offlist and send you your copy of the official Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Manual right away so that you can get started on your new seahorse project immediately.

    Happy Trails!
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Training Program Advisor

    #50271
    peggy
    Participant

    Hi Pete, not new to seahorses but would like to take your training course anyway. I got a beautiful new tank for my ponies, upgraded lol now instead of a 60 gal tall I have a 120 gal with 25×25 x31 the ponies look so small in there. I love sitting and watching them ride the gentle current at the top snicking up newly hatched brine shrimp, I also have dragonets. Thanks Peggy

    #50327
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Peggy:

    Sure, I would be very happy to enroll you in the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program and to send you your free copy of the training Manual, Peggy, but the training is conducted entirely via e-mail so I will need to know your e-mail address in order to get started.

    Just send a brief e-mail that mentions the training programs to me at the following address and we can get started right away:

    [email protected]

    If you can keep the gorgeous dragonets well fed, then I have no doubt that Ocean Rider will also thrive under your diligent, conscientious care, Peggy.

    While I’m waiting for your e-mail address, here is some additional information about dragonets that you may find interesting:

    Variously known as mandarinfish, Mandarin gobies, dragonets, Mandarin dragonets, or simply mandarins, these little jewels are members of the genus Synchiropus. There are two main types – the spotted or peacock Mandarin dragonets, which have a series of bright, multicolored bull’s-eyes scattered all over their bodies and fins, and a greenish variety which features a psychedelic pattern of green, blue, and orange swirling stripes over its body and fins. Both are extremely colorful and gaudy, as well as completely passive and nonaggressive, and you will be pleased to hear that they make wonderful companions for seahorses.

    I absolutely love the spectacular coloration and peaceful nature of Mandarin dragonets, Peggy! There’s no disputing that they are gorgeous little fishes and make ideal tankmates for seahorses. They are docile, slow-moving, passive fish that are beautifully marked and very deliberate feeders. And they are quite hardy fish providing they can be fed properly.

    However, until quite recently, feeding mandarins and providing them with good nutrition in the aquarium was nearly impossible, and most wild-caught Mandarin dragonets were doomed to a depth by slow starvation in the aquarium, Peggy. For that reason, they were considered extremely difficult to keep and a fish that should only be attempted by expert aquarists with large tanks having sandy bottoms and live rock and a large population of copepods and amphipods in their aquariums.

    Nowadays, thank goodness, it’s largely a different story. Captive-bred-and-raised Mandarin dragonets from Oceans, Reefs and Aquariums (ORA) in Florida are trained to eat prepared foods and are hardy little fish that are relatively easy to keep in the right type of aquarium. They are every bit as spectacular as the wild-caught Mandarinfish, perhaps even more so, and infinitely easier to feed. ORA has even developed a reddish color form of the Mandarin dragonets, which as much more of the bright red orange swirling stripes than the normal psychedelic Mandarins do. So, as long as you can get the tank bred specimens that have been raised in captivity, Peggy, there is no compelling reason for you not to include a Mandarin Dragonet in your seahorse tank.

    It has been my experience that the captive-bred-and-raised Mandarin dragonets from ORA are quite hardy when they are maintained in a suitable aquarium with compatible tankmates such as seahorses and pipefish. I suspect that the home hobbyists who are unsuccessful with the tank-bred Mandarin dragonets are either attempting to keep them with incompatible fish that are active feeders and that outcompete the mandarins at feeding time, or they are offering them the wrong type of prepared foods, or both.

    Often, the best way to feed captive-bred-and-raised Mandarin dragonets is to set up a special feeding station for them, just as you would do for seahorses. One thing I have noticed about the captive-bred-and-raised Mandarin dragonets is that they tend to be lazy feeders. They are not great at hunting for food and seem to have lost some of the foraging skills of their wild counterparts. But they do really well when provided with a feeding dish they can come and go from as they please. When they are hungry, they will come and sit in the feeding dish and pick out choice morsels to eat, and then they will go off and about their business when they have had their fill, returning to sit in the feeding dish and pig out again the next time they are hungry.

    Also, I find the favorite food of the Mandrins is chopped frozen bloodworms. That’s what I would fill the Mandarin feeding dish with, Peggy, and you can be quite confident that your Dragonet will love bloodworms of suitable size. They also go for frozen baby brine shrimp, for a change of pace, but that’s messier to feed. For that reason, I prefer to provide them with live newly hatched brine shrimp from time to time, rather than the frozen baby brine shrimp. Aside from finely chopped Hikari Frozen Blood Worms and live baby brine shrimp, Mandarin Dragonets will often eat Nutramar Ova and other fish roe, as well as frozen Daphnia (which is messy to feed them), and if you can get them to accept the New Life SPECTRUM Small Fish Formula pellets, which some of them will do readily, then they will really thrive in the aquarium.

    So, I think if you set up your own Mandarin diner and then offer your Mandarin Dragonet the proper prepared foods, I think you will find that he will do very well, Peggy. Heck, I’ve even known the tank-red mandarins to visit the seahorses’ feeding station to clean up scraps of frozen Mysis!

    For best results, I would recommend equipping your seahorse tank with a well-stocked, well-planted refugium that includes thriving populations of copepods, Gammarus amphipods, and larval shrimp, if you will be adding a captive-bred-and-raised Mandarinfish to your herd of ponies, Peggy.

    I have had good luck establishing the populations of Gammarus amphipods, copepods, live Mysis, and other larval shrimp species in a refugium that’s connected to the seahorse tank, Peggy. That way the Gammarus and copepods and other small crustaceans can build up a very large population well they are safely protected within the refuge, and some of them will be released into the seahorse tank to provide tasty treats for the Mandarin dragonets and your ponies.

    A refugium is simply a self-contained protected area, isolated from the main tank but sharing the same water supply, which provides many of the same benefits as a sump. A refugium can help newly added fish or invertebrates easily acclimate to a new tank. It can provide a safe haven for injured fish or corals to regenerate damaged tissue without the need for a separate quarantine tank. But perhaps its main benefit for the seahorse keeper is provide a protected area where macroalgae can be grown and small live prey items (copepods, amphipods, Caprellids, etc.) that will eventually become a food source for the inhabitants of the main portion of the tank can be cultured safely, allowing their population to build up undisturbed.

    For instance, Charles Delbeek likes to use glass shrimp and cleaner shrimp that are too large to be eaten in the refugium for his seahorse tank, where the regular reproduction of these hermaphroditic crustaceans will provide a continuous supply of nutritious nauplii for his ponies: “There is a method that can be used to offer an occasional supply of live food for your sea horses. By setting up a separate system housing several species of shrimp such as peppermint shrimp (Lysmata wurdemanni), or Rhynchocinetes uritai or R. durbanensis, you can get a fairly regular supply of live shrimp larvae. These species are best to use since they can live in large groups and spawn on a regular basis. Such a system is commonly called a refugium. A refugium is a small (10-20 gallon) aquarium that contains live sand, live rock and/or macroalgae such as Caulerpa or Gracilaria. It is plumbed such that water from your main system is pumped to the refugium and then returns via an overflow to the main tank. Some of the pods and larval crustaceans will then be carried from the refugium into the sea horse tank in the water that overflows from the refuge. For this type of arrangement to work, the refugium must be slightly higher than the main tank. Shrimp are added to the refugium and within a few months they should start spawning and hatching eggs every few weeks. The larvae are then carried back to the main tank by the overflow, where they become a food source for your sea horses. Of course other life will also thrive in the refugium and it is not unusual for copepods, mysis and crab larvae to also be produced on a regular basis. The key to the refugium is to keep predators out of the system so that the smaller micro-crustacean population can thrive. You would need a fairly large and productive refugium to produce enough food to maintain even a pair of sea horses, so at best, a typical refugium can provide a nice source of supplemental live food; the basic daily diet still needs to be provided by you in the form of the frozen foods mentioned above.” (Delbeek, November 2001, “Horse Forum,” FAMA magazine)

    Aside from the one Delbeek favors, refugia are available in a number of different designs. For example, there are easy-to-install external hang-on refugia and in-tank refugia as well as sump-style refugia that are mounted beneath the main. Here are a couple of online sites where you can look up more information on refugia, including articles explaining how to set up and install a refugium of your own:

    Click here: Refugium Setups Information – From About Saltwater Aquariums
    http://saltaquarium.about.com/od/refugiumsetups/

    Click here: Refugiums
    http://www.wetwebmedia.com/refugium.htm

    Best wishes with all your fishes, Peggy!

    Respectfully,
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Tech Support

    #51490
    aeverist
    Participant

    I would love to get certified! I am an elementary school teacher and want to have seahorses in the classroom. Please let me know how to proceed! Thanks!-Allie

    #51492
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Allie:

    Sure, the seahorse training program is very comprehensive and will teach you everything you need to know in order to keep seahorses successfully in a closed-system aquarium.

    However, the seahorse training is a correspondence course that is conducted via e-mail, so we will need to establish e-mail communication in order to proceed. Just send me a quick message about your interest in the training program to the following e-mail address and I will send you your free copy of the seahorse training manual so that we can get started, Allie:

    [email protected]

    Best of luck with your ponies and your classes, Allie! Here’s hoping that your elementary school is able to stay open. Stay safe!

    Happy Trails!

    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Tech Support

    #52360
    norika_asuka
    Participant

    Hi Pete,
    .
    Previously I have kept the tiger tail seahorse, but they died from Gas Bubble disease or rotting tail.

    Now I am starting it over again with a new tank and also interested in enrolling for the training program.

    #52362
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Norika:

    I’m very sorry to hear about the bad luck you had with your tiger tail seahorses (Hippocampus comes).

    Sure, I would be happy to get you started out with the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program, Norika.

    It’s a correspondence course that’s conducted entirely via e-mail, so it will need you to send me a brief e-mail offlist in order to get started.

    Just send a brief message saying that you want participate in the seahorse training to the following e-mail address:

    [email protected]

    In the meantime, stay safe and stay healthy!

    Happy Trails!
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Tech Support

    #52495
    urvashim
    Participant

    Good Afternoon, Pete!
    I just sent you an email asking to enroll in your classes.
    Thank you!
    Warmly, Urvashi

    #52500
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Urvashi:

    This is just a quick note to let you know that I received your e-mail and I have sent you your copy of the seahorse training manual. We can proceed with the training whenever you wish.

    In the meantime, stay safe and stay healthy!

    Happy Trails!
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Training Program Advisor

    #52589
    caroline.mason407
    Participant

    I am interested in this course. Had a dream since I was in elementary school. Did well with saltwater fish. Thank you for making this possible

    #52510
    debracole11
    Participant
    #52593
    Pete Giwojna
    Moderator

    Dear Caroline:

    Sure, I would be happy to get you started out with the Ocean Rider Seahorse Training Program, Caroline.

    It’s a correspondence course that’s conducted entirely via e-mail, so it will need you to send me a brief e-mail offlist in order to get started.

    Just send a brief message saying that you want participate in the seahorse training to the following e-mail address:

    [email protected]

    In the meantime, stay safe and stay healthy!

    Happy Trails!
    Pete Giwojna, Ocean Rider Tech Support

    #52630
    LeahW
    Participant

    Hi Pete,
    I would like to start the course please. I sent an email per your instructions in your most recent post.
    Thanks,
    Leah

Viewing 15 posts - 211 through 225 (of 236 total)
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