What I am going to cover in this page is the fascinating way crayfish reproduce. Crayfish are a highly desirable source of food for many other creatures. Fish, turtles, birds, and even humans, therefore they produce a high number of babies. On average , one can expect over 100 babies from a single hatch. I personally documented a hatch of 459 babies from a single Orconectes immunis female.
















First, you must find out if you have a male or female crayfish. There is detailed pictures and explanation on the FAQ Page, however this picture usually does the trick.




Crayfish will mate in captivity, however it is difficult for all species to produce eggs. The procambarus alleni also known as the Florida electric blue crayfish can produce babies in aquariums right at home.



Shown in this picture is a male and female crayfish mating :



The male crayfish has to be in the correct "form" to mate. It is the shape of the genopod that that allows him to mate a female. Moulting changes the "form" he is in. This is referred as "form 1" and "form 2". Form 1 is the mating form. If a crayfish is in form 2, and cannot mate, he can get upset and kill the female, tearing it limb from limb in the process. So it is best to keep the males and females separate, only introducing the male into the female's aquarium for a short visit. It is often that the male will start mate the female within one minute of being introduced to each other. So keep a watchful eye on them. Mating goes on for about a half of an hour, then it's over and the male can be removed. If for some reason you wish to change parentage for some reason, a different male can be placed with the female and he will remove the other male's sperm plug and replace it with his own. Eggs are already inside the female and has to be mature enough to be extracted, so there may be a long period of time before the eggs come out. Sometimes the wait can be days, or several months before anything happens. The sperm that the male deposited will be stored inside the female, known as a "sperm plug". The eggs are extracted and fertilized on the way out by the female and carefully attached to the swimmeret's.

Here is some pictures of eggs :



Baby Picture

This is a picture of the baby, It is very important to provide cover for the babies, In the two top pictures,eurasion  milfoil was used and in the bottom dead grass. Both provide cover and food for craybabies. 


The babies can be kept together for a period of about a month. After that, splitting them up will encourage growth and reduce cannibalism.