How to Grow Crayfish

Crayfish are not a typical aquarium inhabitant. Growing crayfish in an aquarium requires specialized knowledge because crayfish require special attention and have needs not common in other aquatics.

Crayfish can make for an interesting aquarium pet.

Although you will find raising crayfish a challenge, it is not impossible and if raised in the proper environment, raising them will be a rewarding experience.

  1. Select an aquarium large enough for the amount of crayfish you want to keep. You need 10 gallons of water for each crayfish. Crayfish are aggressive, so for most hobbyists, one crayfish per aquarium is sufficient. If you plan to house more than one, you must introduce each crayfish to the aquarium at the same time to limit aggression.

  2. Fill the bottom of the aquarium with aquarium gravel to a depth of 2 to 3 three inches.

  3. Place a bubble wand against the back of the glass just above the gravel and then connect the bubble wand to an aquarium air pump. Crayfish will dye without supplemental oxygen after as little as four hours. Bubble wands provide a higher level of oxygen than air filtration systems.

  4. Place a three-sided shelter into the aquarium to give your crayfish hiding places. You should have one shelter for each crayfish you plan to keep.

  5. Place a hang-on back carbon filter onto the back of the aquarium. A hang-on back filter removes water from the aquarium, filters it through carbon-activated filters and drains the water back into the aquarium.

  6. Fill the aquarium with tap water, place an aquarium heater into the water and regulate the water temperature between 55 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

  7. Place each crayfish into the aquarium upside down and hold it close to the surface of the water for a few minutes to allow air to escape its gills.

  8. Seal gaps between the lid, and filtration system with Styrofoam to prevent the crayfish from crawling up filter tubes and escaping.

  9. Keep the light on in the aquarium for no more than five to seven hours per day. Crayfish prefer dark places, so using a low-wattage aquarium bulb is best. Keep the light turned off unless you are looking at the tank or you are meeting aquarium requirements for live plants.

  10. Feed three-quarters of a shrimp pellet to each crayfish daily. On occasion, feed live minnows and weigh down a small piece of lettuce with a rock.