Culture food

Discussion in 'D.I.Y.' started by Peter, Jun 11, 2007.

  1. Peter
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    Peter Algae harvester

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    Hi

    JP popped round to help with a cool upgrade on my sons DIY C02, we got onto the topic with regards to the use of Astaxanthin as a supplement food for live cultures, like Daphnia and Brine Shrimp.

    Would this be an alternative way (expensive) to maybe improve the nutritional value a bit on these cultures? I didn’t find anything on the net apart from BS naturally getting it, but a home culture would not have this available, so.....was wondering :scratch:
     
  2. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Peter, it's a nice idea, but as you state it may be quite expensive!

    When it comes to BBS cultures the younger the hatch the better as the baby shrimp still have their egg sacks attached and are excellent nutrition for young fry. Older shrimp will consume algae and although not as nutritious as the babies they would probably be good for such fish as Tanganyikans and Malawis.

    IMO bbs is by far the most nutritious and easiest live culture to feed fish, Daphnia would be a close 2nd.

    BTW, how much is it for Astaxanthin?
     
  3. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    Peter was gracious enough to give me a small bit of the red powder to test on my Daphnia culture, and after hearing what Astaxanthin costs per Kg it really is as he sayd "RED GOLD"
    will keep you posted if the daphnia takes on a different color and what effect it has when they are fed to my Multies...
     
  4. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    JFYI, Daphnia turn a reddish colour when the water they are in is low in dissolved oxygen. So just be careful you don't get mixed colour readings.

    Would'nt it be better to just mix the powder in with the live food rather than feeding it to the live food? :)
     
  5. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    probably, but its just an experiment at this stage... i ogygenate the water for the Daphnia quite well, so hopefully i wont get mixed readings... the true test will be in the fish that eat eventually... multies arent too colorfull, except the one old male that has a much darker background color in his body with more visable vertacle stripes...
     
  6. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    and on this subject... where can i get my hands on "Algae Power"? ive read alot of articles on the web in raising live food cultures, and almost all of them use Algae powder, but thats in the States....
    Astaxanthin is Red Algae crushed into a poweder, but in the long run it would be way too expensive to use on larger scales of live cultured food...
     
  7. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Depends on which live food cultures you are referring to. Worms for instance won't need algae powder while bbs and Daphnia will. I would'nt waste my money trying to get hold of algae powder, my hobby should cost me as little as possible and live food should be for free or at best cheap!

    If you want to sustain a Daphnia culture for the summer season then you can do the following:

    The bigger the container the better, fill it up with water and let it stand outside in the sun, fill an old sock or pantihose with chicken poops (this will be a source very rich in ammonia). You need an ammonia source in order to get algae spikes (green water). Let the sock soak in the water, within 2 weeks you will have pea soup, it should turn so dark green that you can't see through the water, wait another 2 weeks until ammonia levels have dropped a bit and then add your Daphnia culture. The adults will live off the free floating algae in the water, they will lay eggs and in no time you'll have loads of baby Daphnia. When harvesting use a net with large holes so that the babies fall through the holes and only the adults remain in the net. Rinse under some running water, make sure there are no unwanted critters in there like Dragonfly Nymphs etc and then you can feed directly to your fish. Keep the ammonia sock in the container the whole time, if the green water begins to thin then you need to add some fresh chicken poops!

    At the end of Summer the weather cools and Daphnia will lay loads of eggs, let the water in the container evaporate naturally over a couple of weeks, as the water levels recline the Daphnia's eggs will gather at the bottom of the container. When the container is bone dry you need to collect all the dirt and dust from the container, store in a jar in the fridge until Summer returns.

    When warm enough you follow the same directions as above, add the dirt in the jar from the fridge into the water once it has turned green, the eggs will hatch, they go through a process known as Diapause (same as Killi fish) and the eggs will hatch when they have water again. Interesting hey? This method is also great for Mozzie larvae which fish love to bits, the mozzies lay egg rafts on the surface of the water (looks like a small speck of dirt). So you can also harvest Mozzi larvae from the same container. Just be sure to harvest them before they fly away or your neighbours may get upset with you :)

    Good luck.
     
  8. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    sjoe.... thats extremely interesting info!! surely an excellent addition to Dart's FAQ, wouldnt you say?
     
  9. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Apparently local hobbyists have also used dried dog turds instead of chicken poops with good success! :)

    What a shitty subject :)
     
  10. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    having turds peaking at me when i harvest Daphnia aint my idea of having fun.... ill stay away from all the crap and stick with yeast for now untill i can get a good alternative that wont make me feel sick if i have to stick my hands into the water... haha
     
  11. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Don't be such a sissy :)

    You should'nt have to put your hands in the water anyway, that's what the net is for.
     
  12. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    sorry Peter, we totally went off subject here....
    the main question me and Peter were wondering about is what opinion do you guys have on using Astaxanthin in the hobby? it has capabilities of bringing out or "highlighting" natural color that is already in the fish, so it isnt a miracle powder... but it will make color show up in much younger fish, and if the fish for instance has a red color that hasnt come out yet, then Astaxanthin will make it appear...
    does anybody else have experience using Astaxanthin?
    but at R2500 per Kg excluding import and postage costs its way out of the league of most, especially if it has no extaordinary improvement to your aspect of the bobby...
     
  13. dart
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    dart Green fingers

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    It certainly is!


    Its been 'harvested'. I'll updated the FAQ later this week
     
  14. Peter
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    Peter Algae harvester

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    That’s great info on Daphnia, thanks Cameron.
    It never occurred to me to collect the dirt and store it for summer, that’s cool.

    Is it possible for others who have live cultures on the go like micro worms, worms a b c or Flightless Drosophila Hydei (walks) for example, nice yummies for fish. This would be great to read on how to maintain different cultures and for those wishing to start some up.
     
  15. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    On the daphnia... Is it possible to keep a culture running all year round? Im currently keeping them in a aquah2o 50l tank, the average tank temp is 12deg C (the heater is in my yeast bucket... haha)
    and i feed them yeast, green water and a bit of that red powder i got from Peter... Also sum snails cleaning up a bit in there... Am i pushing my luck or are they able to take the cold temps in my tank and go through winter? There are definately more in the tank than what i started on, and ive harvested once already... They seem to populate almost as quick as multies! lol
     
  16. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Daphnia do prefer cooler temps but not too cold or they die off and the eggs go into Diapause state. Keeping the tank at about 24 degrees should help keep them going all year round, I've never tried mind you but it *should* work.
     
  17. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    so need to go get a heater for the tank after payday then to use for the yeast bucket, then i can put the original heater back into the daphnia tank...
     
  18. HellRaiser
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    HellRaiser Algae harvester

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    Ok, i must be hooked in this hobby since i just bought a very nice heater... For my daphnia!
    Hahaha
     
  19. abraham
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    abraham Algae harvester

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    hi

    hellraiser you saw my setup with the daphnia outside - when i gave you that daphnia is was still using a fine net - ie i was harvesting big and small. i have changed the net - the population density has gone up. The containers are still standing outside were you saw them. The algae tank is still green.

    A comment here.. I started the algae tank with a few teaspoons of LAN... limestone ammonium nitrate. a common garden fertilizer. The high ammonium content certainly got the algae going real fast - but it killed the batch of daphnia I put in that tank!. Thats why I have the other containers for the daphnia.

    OK NOW for an alternative to chicken poop. I used FRESH horse manure in the third container.. Works like a charm. The fresh horse manure has a large number of bacteria and other microorganisms in it that are also eaten by the daphnia. So the daphnia have food from day one.. by the time they have depleted that source the algae have started growing due to the ammonia etc that is in the horse manure after that it is the normal life cycle as with the algae. I often see the daphnia actually sitting on the horse manure..

    These organisms are the things that actually digest the dry grass etc that the horse eats and they supply the horse with his nutrition..
     
  20. Cameron
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    Cameron Green fingers

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    Nice one Abraham, is the Horse sheeit still stable (scuse the pun), meaning it has'nt been so strong and killed your culture?

    Sprinkling some yeast into the container will also help feed the Daphnia.

    Regards
    Cam
     

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