What’s it going to take to get a good batch of Lightning Maroons to hatch out?  Seriously!
So you’ll probably know that I’ve been having problems both in timing the pulling of the nest, as well as split hatches and/or eggs dying if pulled prematurely.  While it seems that eggs are often ready to hatch on the 7th night, historically the bulk hatch out on the 8th night.  Even with the last spawn, #8, 8 days to pull was the right number by my estimates.  A side note on spawn #8 – they underwent metamorphosis while I was away at my brother’s wedding (got the text from my good friend Mike Doty)…looks like we might have maybe 8-10 offspring growing up.  So in total, maybe 10 F1 Lightning Maroon offspring that could be released in 2014.
Back to spawn #9 – the night of August 20th, I looked at the huge viable nest from spawn #9.  Spawn #9 was laid on 8-13-2013.  By all accounts, the night to pull this nest for hatching was not 8-20-2013, but the evening of 8-21-2013. I left the eggs in the tank on 8-20-2013.  Just in case, I left ON a few extra lights in the room to help prevent a premature hatch…or so I thought.
Imagine my frustration when I went into the fishroom yesterday morning, 8-21-2013, and saw a clean tile with no eggs anywhere to be found.  That’s only 7 nights, with a 100% hatch!  I’m past the point of getting overly upset about such mishaps, primarily because the Lightning Maroon already appears to be ready to put down another nest.  Perhaps not being blinded by rage and frustration allow me to make an observation.  I left a few more ambient lights on than normal, did not move the nest, and got a 100% hatch all on one night – the first time I’ve not documented a split hatch over two nights.
Could it be that slightly elevated light levels replicate a “full moon” scenario (combined with the fact that we’re basically at a full moon right now) and encouraged a full and complete hatch vs. the split hatch?  In talking with other clownfish breeders, it seems that the “split hatch” tends to be a problem they wind up just “living with” and more than one seems to have this problem.  Perhaps we’re taking the wrong approach towards light on hatch night?