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realypk

Copepod & Amphipod Cultivation, Rotifers??

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Background:

So I have a nice phytoblend culture going right now that i feed my tank for my corals and featherdusters. But I've noticed my scooter blenny is constantly pecking at sand and parts of the aquarium that really dont have anything (hopefully finding some microscopic pods. I used to have a lot of amphipods and no doubt copepods in my main tank, I still have lots of visible amphipods in my fuge but the visible stuff in the tank is gone and I'm fearing that my poor blenny is slowly starving. I wanna fix that permanently and avoid having to buy pricey live pods! Also I'd like to add a male female pair of mandarins and know all three would starve without additional pods.

 

Question.

1. For my situation with plenty of phyto to go around, what would be the best culture to start? I would prefer a 5 gallon bucket or easy 10 gallon type setup that I can easily harvest from. 

2. What kinda live pods would be best for feeding my future mandarins and current scooter?

3. Are there any frozen or freeze dried options I could try in meantime? (He doesn't even glance look at frozen brine or mysis.)

4. Can i just throw a bunch of different pods in one culture and let them all breed together or will larger amphipods eat the copepods? I was thinking of getting all the different types going in one container?

5. Rotifers seem super easy to raise considering how successful my phyto operation is.... would they be a good option or too small? Will they survive in my tank or just be there right after feeding? Can I put Rotiers in with the pods?

6. I constantly see culture guides talking about phytopaste.... if I have live dense green phyto water can I just add it to the culture or do i need to turn it into some sort of paste? If so how?

7. What does each type eat? Ie copepod vs amphipod vs rotifer?

8. Any good local source for a 6 blend copepod solution or someone that has a nice culture going? How about rotifers? (i still have some amphipods I can collect from my sump.)

 

Conclusion: I want to see my scooter thrive and am always sad when I see others happily eating and him just pecking at sand spitting it out. I also love mandarins and want them but cant even contemplate the possibility till i have a food culture going considering 1 scooter dragonette wiped out the grand majority of my visible mature amphipods, is still see small ones ever once in a while if im really looking hard in the main tank usually after I'm done moving something around, they are definitely hiding in terror of the scooter. 

 

 

Thanks for all the help!

 

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Cheato in my fuge grows a ridiculous amount of pods. Bigger fuge? Unless you have a giant tank, you can't grow enough pods to feed a scooter and 2 mandarins.

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I've been reading about people having success with mandrins by gulturing and feeding white worms and grindal worms. It won't make use of your phyto, but seems to be a good food source.

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My fuge is also growing a ton of pods... I'm just not seeing them move into the main tank area through the return, perhaps the scooter blenny is just ruthlessly efficient at killing them the second they arrive. 

 

I was thinking of getting an out of tank culture of pods started to feed extra pods into the main tank on a regular basis. I'll definitely try grindals if they work they work!  

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I've seen Mandarins eat bristle worms. You have those? The tank bred ones will eat frozen.

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So I have cultured phyto in the past to raise brine shrimp and copepods. I just used a couple of 5G buckets, lights, and air pump and it was fairly straight forward. Raising the brine shrimp was easy, the copepods, not so much. Or well I guess it wasn't hard but it was hard to do in the numbers I needed at the time. I was able to raise some copepods but not very many for all of the effort involved and not enough to really meet my needs. (I was raising seahorses at the time)

 

Not sure if I was doing something wrong or what the deal was but I just couldn't get the pods going in the numbers I needed. Now there are a bit more resources for doing this than there were 5+ years ago, more articles online and a better selection of fertilizer for the phyto and options for copepods to start a culture so you may have more luck with it now.

 

One thing you need to be careful of is contamination, I lost several phyto cultures due to this, which while not 100% sure was likely some water from my DT getting into my cultures and some other organism basically winning out and killing it all. Luckily by that time I had plenty of phyto in bottles in my fridge so it was just a cause of cleaning everything really well and restarting but it is still something to be careful with.

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I've been culturing pods for the past 3-4 months and I suggest you get come Tisbe pods since their  life/reproduction cycle is very short (7-11 days), and you can keep adding to your tank on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. I've tried Tiger pods and they are not worth it... I get my pods from Podyourreef.com

 

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I dont have bristles and have been kinda happy to avoid them thus far. Thanks about the cultivation and contamination tips matt!

 

@A.ocellaris seeing as you've had a level of success how do you do it? Do you put them in a 5 gal bucket and just green up the water and when water goes clear you just add more phyto? Also how do you go about harvesting pods?

 

Also as far as phyto goes I've been having mixed results. Some of my batches turn out AWESOME and some end up turning into a yellow clearish liquid that quite frankly gross... it seems to be random. I'm also kinda winging it on phyto fertilizer. Is there a suggested amount of fertilizer to give? Can you over do it on lighting?

Edited by realypk

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I only cultured pods and used phytofeast and other phyto available on the market (I don't have room in my place to do it myself). For the pods, I went to Walmart and bought 2 jars (probably 1 gallon each, you can go bigger is you want to increase production, but this just worked for me),  an air stone with 2 outputs and small heaters (since my apt is always too cold),. You will need to use a sieve (53 microns) to harvest them (

 

I bought my sieve from:

http://www.aquaculturenurseryfarms.com/categories/sieves-plankton-collectors/sieve-sets.html

 

29717757827_2bd79c90b0_z.jpg

 

 

Untitled

Video of harvested pods.

 

Edited by A.ocellaris

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This is awesome, exactly what I was looking for :) Thank you so much for the knowledge!!!!  Once you sieve them how do you do it? Just like a water change but with water flowing through sieve? and then you dump sieved pods into the tank?

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On 1/28/2019 at 1:51 PM, A.ocellaris said:

I've been culturing pods for the past 3-4 months and I suggest you get come Tisbe pods since their  life/reproduction cycle is very short (7-11 days), and you can keep adding to your tank on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. I've tried Tiger pods and they are not worth it... I get my pods from Podyourreef.com

 

 

So I bought a couple of bags of tisbe from this company, add them to my tanks, and every tank is now FULL of pods. It is pretty ridiculous. I have never seen pods all over the glass even during the day.

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Wow thats really nice, my mandarin pair would have a heck of a feast. I seem em in my sump but never DT as they tend to power through them fast. 

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I started doing a tiger pod culture using a pretzel container from the bulk buy stores about 2 weeks ago. I started culturing phyto about 2 months ago with two 1G apple juice containers and needless to say it is starting to be way more than I need and is filling up my fridge. I made a DIY sieve with some 4" PVC and coffee filters and did my first harvest this past weekend and still lots of smaller babies, but can easily tell the culture had more than when I started. I am doing just regular 1.025/1.026 saltwater and some rigid airline with a clip on light on it and all seems to be well. I too am just wanting to get my population going to keep my scooter blenny happy.

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37 minutes ago, wildcrazyjoker81 said:

I started doing a tiger pod culture using a pretzel container from the bulk buy stores about 2 weeks ago. I started culturing phyto about 2 months ago with two 1G apple juice containers and needless to say it is starting to be way more than I need and is filling up my fridge. I made a DIY sieve with some 4" PVC and coffee filters and did my first harvest this past weekend and still lots of smaller babies, but can easily tell the culture had more than when I started. I am doing just regular 1.025/1.026 saltwater and some rigid airline with a clip on light on it and all seems to be well. I too am just wanting to get my population going to keep my scooter blenny happy.

 

Tiger pods are not the best. They do not reproduce when they reach certain population number and the form they swim, they will be gone in seconds in a DT. 

 

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