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Thread: Recipe for a freshwater Plankton Culture

  1. #16
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    Definitely not snails. They look like small daphnia/moinia type critters.

    I have been running two plankton cultures in 80 L plastic garbage bins for ages. I have found that once they get properly established you can maintain them almost indefinitely. I harvest more daphnia from them than my fish can eat. I generally try to harvest one for a week or two, and when I notice the numbers of daphnia dropping I let it recover while I harvest the other. They need to be continually harvested otherwise the critters will breed up to such high densities that they eat all the phytoplankton and starve. Crystal clear water is a sure sign of trouble. I add more fertileser (nitrosol) when the water goes clear. After a while you also get a build up of sediment on the bottom that harbours bloodworms and tubifex worms.

    My gudgeons and larger rainbows will stuff themselves to the gills with daphnia. The little spotted blue-eyes and threadfins are less keen on them, but they will eat the tiny ones.
    Cheers,
    Scott

  2. #17
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    i have a question about the daphnia that probably belongs in another thread. When you syphon them out, do you then rinse them in clean water before feeding them to your fish?

  3. #18
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    Very nice schedule Dave.

    I used to have a few moina and daphnia pulex cultures myself. They were cultured in 2litre bottles and used a 20L tub.

    Tasian, you can siphon them out but the easiest and simpliest method is to buy a brine shrimp net. On easy scoop and you will have hundreds of daphnias.

  4. #19
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    Melbourne
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    Is the breeding process similar as brine shrimps?

  5. #20
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    East Brisbane, QLD
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    2 questions:
    would this process still work in the winter?
    would it work better with it being aerated by an airstone or an air-uplift-tube?

    I've got some 55l and larger containers in my backyard at the moment with heaps of green water in it. The winter in Brisbane is mild compared to the winters of those who live in colder areas, and I've just started noticing that it has less critters in it now and more mozzie lavae and little red crawly worms at the water surface.

    Matt

  6. #21
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    Aug 2007
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    Townsville, Qld
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    Just wonderiing where is the easiest place to get calcium chloride and epsom salts in quantities larger than what you can get at the supermarket?

    cheers
    Matt

  7. #22
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    Not sure what you mean by larger quanities, but I use the 1.2kg refill bags from Damprid for Calcium chloride and I walked past a pretty big bag of epsom salt at Bunnings the other day.

    If you want bigger than that, you'd have to contact a chem supplier or hydroponic shop, I'd imagine.
    [SIGPIC]http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d9/wolfy80/otellia10200a.jpg[/SIGPIC]


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  8. #23
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    Hi, 1.2 kg bags will probably be perfect, I didnt realise damprid was calcium chloride.. I have a bag sitting on top of the fridge!

    thanks

    Matt

  9. #24
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    Everything slows down in winter even up this part of the world. Aeration will help improve the yield.

    Cheers
    Dave

  10. #25

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    matireland....i get calcium chloride freely availeable from any swimming pool shop as pool hardener and for best price on epsom salts(magnesium sulphate) i buy in bulk from stock feed places,i think they may give it to horses for some reason but i use it in my tanks.Sodium bicarb is also cheap in the stock feed places hth

  11. #26
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    Do you use these for fish food?

  12. #27
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    Fish food is the main purpose, you can start off a fish pond this way, then add your breeders, pretty soon there are many fish provided the fertilisers have not lowered the dissolved oxygen too much for fish comfort. It is this type of schedule that is used by Aquaculture Techs to grow prawns and other fish on a large scale. A dry billabong will be hard to find at present but flood water should be full of little critters. You can make plankton net from stockings. Another place for fine mesh, about 200 microns is silk screening material. You can buy meshes of various sizes, I have just bought a series of fine meshes to try for a culture of critters 20 to 40 microns to raise goby fry. The mesh sizes I have here are 11 micron, 50 micron, 100 micron, 200 micron. remembering there are 1000 microns in a millimeter. The finer meshes are very small. The 11 micron mesh was about $400 a square meter from scientific equipment supply place. I have been trying to culture euplotes and rotifers.

    http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2002/10/breeder

    There is some food culture recipes here, you will beed a microscope of reasonable quality to measure and count these type of critters. There is an account of some recent failures of mine in the Aquagreen section about beach rock gobies. I did get some gobies to 9 days and could see them feeding and pooping under the microscope, they started at 1.9 mm and were 2.2mm at 9 days. Then I went on a holiday to NZ with obvious results, they were gone when I got back.

    Cheers
    Dave


    Quote Originally Posted by Chunks View Post
    Do you use these for fish food?

  13. #28
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    I feel like such a twit!!! After having read this, I am now kicking myself for cleaning out the golfish tank we have for aquaponics that was completely green - thought it was bad for the fish as I was getting one die about every week. Now think it may have been due to a very naughty cat who has a keen interest in anything fishy.
    12 tanks of various sizes, trying to cut back. MTS Anonymous Member - down to 7 now

  14. #29
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    Jun 2012
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    Bassendean, WA
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    Hi, I am just wondering if this recipe would work in a small tank, say about 75L? I live in a town house and there isn't much room to place a huge pond, let alone somewhere that is going to get enough light for this. Also, could I replace the billabong sand with sand from a wetland or creek? There aren't to many billabongs in Perth

  15. #30
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    The recipe can be scaled down but I dont how well it would work in a few litres. The dry soil from the bottom of a pond is to start off a culture from the resting stages of the planktonic life. If you are using artificial light then things will be different. There are recipes to grow daphnia in small containers that may work. Also recipes for plankton feeds such as http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2002/10/breeder/ may work in fresh water. Each place where you get your starter from will produce different life. The best way to find out is to look, just do it.

    Cheers
    Dave
    Last edited by Dave; 25-07-12 at 11:30 AM.

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