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Phyto and Rotifer culturing

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Electrobes

Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2004
Messages
21
Hey everyone, I am interested in setting up a work-bench in my new house, and want to set up a culture station on it. I have a 37G tank (not that big or anything) with a 12-13G refugium. After rading a lot on culturing these live foods, I am a bit confused on a couple of things.

One: Is it easier to feed rotifers live phytoplankton or do they require too much... so much that it would be better to use a product like Roti-rich?


(Both below refer to a heavily stocked 37G a with refuge tank)
Two: How much phyto should I be growing?
Three: How much Rotifers should I be growing?


Thanks!
 

Wink

Crazy Seahorse Lady
Joined
Nov 3, 2003
Messages
128
Location
Federal Way, WA
I'll give it a shot. I feed my rotifers live homegrown phyto. I've tried rotifer foods but find there are always larger particles that they don't eat. The uneaten food fouls the water and is almost impossible to remove (you can't separate rotifers from small particles as everything gets caught in a rotifer sieve). I get much less debris in the rotifer culture with phyto and it's free since I'm growing it anyway.

I feed my rotifers about 1/2 cup phyto per gallon jar of rotifers twice a day. This is not enough to create the optimal reproduction rates (mine are kinda starved), but they reproduce fast enough for my needs and I work so I can't be feeding them all day long.

You HAVE TO harvest 25% of your rotifers every day (whether you need them or not) to avoid overcrowding and culture crash. So your culture should be 4 times as much as you want to feed out. I have no idea how much you need to feed out.

I use 1 gallon clear plastic jars I buy at Walmart and I keep at least 3 each for phyto and rotifers... sometimes more depending on current needs. With 3 cultures going, 2 can crash and it won't be a major problem.

If you haven't read it yet, there is an excellent article pinned at the top of the Fish Breeders Forum at Reef Central.

Good Luck,

Vicky
 

Macbeth417

Reef Monkey
Joined
Oct 18, 2003
Messages
563
Location
Seattle, WA
I know this isn't an answer persay, but for those of you that haven't seen Dwayne Sapp's toys take a look at the geosapper. It's basicly a mini borneman surge in three levels that cultures phyto to rots to BB. Earlier this week I saw a picture of his recent version and they are mighty interesting.

Here is the original article:
http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-07/nftt/index.htm

A DIY culture station by Dwayne:
http://www.usinternet.com/users/dsapp/DIY2.htm

I'm sure you could contact him and he could help you. Just don't tell him I sent you. I'll get yelled at.

-Erik
 

Wink

Crazy Seahorse Lady
Joined
Nov 3, 2003
Messages
128
Location
Federal Way, WA
Thanks Eric! Excellent links. I've had something like that kicking around in my head for quite awhile but I never got as far as the specifics of it. Also, never thought of the surge, I was only thinking of dripping. Maybe I'll actually set something up.

Vicky
 

Macbeth417

Reef Monkey
Joined
Oct 18, 2003
Messages
563
Location
Seattle, WA
Vicky: I PM reeffan about it and I'm going to see if he is willing to work with me on coming up with a version of the Geosapper.

Electrobes:
Where do you get your cultures? As I think im going to set something up.

Right now this is more out of my love to tinker than of pure necessity. But I will be sure to post info if the project goes underway.

-Erik
 
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