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daphnia

electric eel

Member
5 Year Member
i've had mixed luck with these guys this summer.i seeded a 600 gallon stock tank and got loads of them for a while and as it got hot they have slowed way down.my 300 gallon tub didnt do well at all had it out in full sun and it produced for a little while.i did something though that turned out to be kind of interesting though.i started a culture of infusoria months ago in a quart jar(no air stone) with a sprig of naja grass and a couple of rabbit pellets and some tank water.it had cleared up one day a few months ago and i squirted 5 or 6 adult daphnia in there and sat it back up in the window(east window of my house only gets sun until maybe noon) i had been seeing 2 or 3 in there all this time.last week there was only maybe an inch and a half of water in the jar.i picked it up and looked and saw that the daphnia were still in there so i filled it up with tank water.the jar is now full of baby daphnia and i have been feeding them green water out of a 29 gallon tank i have been keeping going on the back porch with dried chicken manure.the point of all this is that i had read before that people cultured them in gallon jars and ever being the skeptic that i am,i really didnt believe you could produce enough to really do anything in a gallon jug.i have decided to set up 2 or 3 gallon jugs with tank water and a few rabbit pellets in the bottom and seed them with a few daphnia and see what happens.i have a bunch of live food cultures going grindal worms,white worms,micro worms,vinegar eels and a half ***ed attempt at culturing earthworms and the daphnia.don't even have that many fish right now but i wanted to work the bugs out of keeping the live food as i hope to get a fishroom going again soon.
 

sasikan

Member
white worms vinegar ells grindel worms no problem for me, but like you i cant seem to do anything with the regular earthworm! its easier for me to just dig them up (in the summertime)
 

electric eel

Member
5 Year Member
i had good luck with them before but this time i put them in a much bigger,shallower container.i havent been feeding them often either.i fed the crap out of them before.also ended up with some nightcrawlers in this bunch.they were all really small when i collected them and i didnt think nightcrawlers would live anyway.i thought they had to be kept really cool.now i have at least a dozen huge full sized nightcrawlers(i wonder if they could be eating the tiny earthworms) in there and as you said its been easier up till now to just feed out of it but i have to cut them up(there are redworms too)its so dry here now it would be impossible to collect anymore.i will probably buy some from a wholesale bait store(theres one really close) and try again.its awfully convenient to be able to collect the tiny babies out of a culture and feed them without having to chop them up.i had no problem before .i collected them ,fed them and boom a bunch of little worms.i kept them in a square styro that i duct taped up so it wouldnt fall apart.i've got these in a probably 2' by 3' by6" deep plastic container in the basement.
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
Like "electric eel" says you need the right type of worms. Red worms (Lumbricus rubellus) are the ones you want. There are culture details here: <http://www.apistogramma.com/forum/index.php?threads/blackworm-apistogramma.10448/#post-56427>, ignore mention of L. terrestris (Night Crawler or Lobworm) or Brandling or Tiger Worm (Eisenia foetida), L. rubellus is the one you want.

Intensive Daphnia cultures are very productive, but they are quite labour intensive, you have to re-culture frequently as they are very prone to boom and then bust crashes. Caudata.org has a very useful article on Daphnia culture:
<http://www.caudata.org/daphnia/>

cheers Darrel
 

electric eel

Member
5 Year Member
you always have such good info darrel!i still have the papers that you emailed me about duckweed for purifying water.they were pretty interesting .
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
I should have added in all of this that I've now found a really useful article about using hay as a long term food source for Daphnia on the caudata.org forum <http://www.caudata.org/forum/f1173-...ation-daphnia-cultures-alternate-feeding.html>. This is something I've noticed myself from my Blood-worm/Mosquito Larvae buckets, where I add grass cuttings. In these buckets the Daphnia remain productive for long time periods without the problems of "boom and bust" cultures.
i still have the papers that you emailed me about duckweed for purifying water.they were pretty interesting .
I'm still pushing the "Duckweed index" as both a mechanism for estimating plant health and for nutrient reduction and the "lowering BOD" concept for tank management, but it is an up hill task. Original "Duckweed articles" were at: <http://www.mobot.org/jwcross/duckweed/practical_duckweed.htm>.

Duckweed index (with apologies for the cross-post, but there are pictures here: <http://www.ukaps.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=14400>
I like to keep low nutrient levels in my soft water planted tanks and I use a conductivity meter and the colour/growth of Limnobium and Lemna as indices of this. If I have small, slow growing, pale green floating plants and a conductivity of about 100 microS, I know water conditions are pretty good.
BOD
I use the reduction of BOD (Biochemical Oxygen Demand) concept for tank water management, rather than saying something is "good" or "bad", you look at each item in terms of what nutrients it contains, how readily available they are, and how much effect it will have on BOD. If you understand the processes that effect aeration and dissolved oxygen levels in the aquarium, it allows you to make educated guesses about what is likely to cause problems and why.
I think part of the problem is that the aquatics industry has a commercial imperative to sell ion-exchange resins, new wonder substrates etc. and telling people that floating plants that you only ever have to buy once are the answer to water quality isn't a great move commercially. I also think this is why Diana Walstad had to publish the wonderful "The Ecology of the Planted Aquarium" privately, it wasn't that it wasn't worth publishing, it was more an effort to "shoot the messenger" so the good news didn't get out.

cheers Darrel
 
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