By BENJAMIN SARONDO
Jovito P. Mabulac Jr., a 27-year old licensed electrical engineer and owner of Nature Trip Farming in Batasan Hills, Quezon City, first encountered the ARC crayfish while browsing online videos in 2021.
At first, he got interested in the species as a hobby and source of stress relief. But considering the high demand from restaurants as a delicacy, as well as from individuals who want to care for it as pets, he decided to turn his hobby into a business.
READ: From hobby to money: Quezon City engineer cultures and markets Australian red claw crayfish
Mabulac Jr. shared five things you need to know about Australian red claw crayfish.
ARC crayfish are known to be natural breeders; there is no high maintenance needed to help these species during mating. The owner must provide hides, which can be made of PVC pipes, mesh bundles, driftwood, and other materials, since it will serve as the area for the ARC crayfish to breed.
Another thing to know about ARC crayfish is that they are nocturnals. Awake in the evening while at rest during the daytime. Too much exposure to the light can harm them, which is why it is important for them to avoid overexposure.
Hibernates, then wakes
Ideally, the temperature should be around 73–82°F (23–28°C); the growth of ARC crayfish ceases when the temperature decreases, and the higher it is, it will also have a negative impact on them. The technique of putting them in a styrobox will help the ARC crayfish hibernate, and once one decides to wake them up, they only need to be put back in the water.
For those who are planning to start a business with ARC crayfish, they must be fully aware of the most stressful and critical period of keeping them. ARC crayfish have shells, which limit their growth; they undergo a molting process where they shed their own shells. This process makes them vulnerable to predation and cannibalism and prone to dying since they cannot fight back for themselves.
Cannibalism and predation
There is a cannibalism characteristic of ARC crayfish. It is the nature of this species to be a predator of other ARC crayfish, especially those who are laying eggs and undergoing the molting process. And this results in a low survival and production rate for ARC crayfish.
Photos by Jovito Mabulac Jr.
Credit belongs to : www.mb.com.ph