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Kaylenna

Live fish food

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Kaylenna

Hi guys,

Does anyone here happen to culture their own live fish foods?  I'd love to hear your preferred types of critters and their culturing methods. I'm aiming for Grindal worms and bigger - to about small black worm sized (1mm to 1.5cm or what a guppy-sized fish can eat). 

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bluestarfish

My husbands father cultured grindal worms, he fed them on ground up oatmeal with a bit of water mixed in. He also did brine shrimp, though I'm not sure if he did a culture or if he just had a big hatching factory going. He had a pretty big guppy breeding operation back then.

 

I've been looking into culturing either daphnia or brine shrimp myself. I want to do daphnia cause they're smaller, and extremely low maintenance...also I want to watch them, because they're cool.  I want very small things because my barbs tend to bloat up, no matter how little I feed them, or how good the quality of the food.

The problem with the daphnia is the only reputable place I know of that sells eggs has triops eggs mixed in, which is a problem because the triops hatch first, and will eat all the other eggs and any hatched daphnia they can find. I could try to catch some daphnia wild to start a culture with but then I'd be concerned about parasites...

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jayc

I do baby brine shrimp for my fry.

Clean, no parasites or diseases, and easily obtainable. 

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jc12

I have a few cultures of vinegar eels and microworms going and I hatch baby brine shrimps when I needed them.

I have just started to try culture blackworms so will have to see how I go with them. Time will tell.

I used to keep soil-less grindal worms but find them too much hassle so I stopped doing them.

I like low maintenance live food and vinegar eels are the easiest by far. I only check on them once every 3 months.

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Kaylenna
On 10/7/2016 at 5:00 AM, bluestarfish said:

My husbands father cultured grindal worms, he fed them on ground up oatmeal with a bit of water mixed in.

I've been looking into culturing either daphnia or brine shrimp myself. I want to do daphnia cause they're smaller, and extremely low maintenance...also I want to watch them, because they're cool.  I want very small things because my barbs tend to bloat up, no matter how little I feed them, or how good the quality of the food.

The problem with the daphnia is the only reputable place I know of that sells eggs has triops eggs mixed in, which is a problem because the triops hatch first, and will eat all the other eggs and any hatched daphnia they can find. I could try to catch some daphnia wild to start a culture with but then I'd be concerned about parasites...

Yes, low maintenance is what I want!  Something I can spend a few mins at a time, sporadically to keep going.  The sporadic and low maintenance is important because otherwise, I likely won't be able to keep it up.

Is it a big enough time gap for you to hatch the triops, remove them, and let the daphnia hatch?  And then perhaps start a fresh batch with those daphnia to avoid more triops?  A bit of trouble... but if it worked, you may only need to do it once (in a while).  The other thing you could try - find a local fish club/group and see if some of the hardcore members have cultures they could give/sell you a starter from.  That's what I intend to do for some of mine.  I missed my last opportunity since I only had my grand scheme of growing live fish food AFTER the last local Aquarium Society of Victoria meeting.  Actually... I had the idea because I'd bought some live blackworms at the meeting.  I was given instructions for keeping them alive, but that made me wonder why I couldn't just culture them instead!

I suppose I ought to try daphnia too... just to see... 

How large was your father-in-law's grindal cultures?  Did he find them easy/worth the effort?

 

On 10/7/2016 at 4:59 PM, jc12 said:

I have a few cultures of vinegar eels and microworms going and I hatch baby brine shrimps when I needed them.

I have just started to try culture blackworms so will have to see how I go with them. Time will tell.

I used to keep soil-less grindal worms but find them too much hassle so I stopped doing them.

I like low maintenance live food and vinegar eels are the easiest by far. I only check on them once every 3 months.

My issue with vinegar eels is I THINK they are too small to use as regular live food for the adult fish.  But I've never actually HAD them and could be completely wrong; if you've done fine with them, please do tell me.  I do plan to try them anyway - when I can beg a starter off someone nearby.  How much do you get from your cultures? How big/how many do you have? 

Why were the grindals a hassle?  I have a very few that I'm trying to get started, but they're not cooperating just yet (it's only been 4 days).  The source I bought them from used soil/manure and I'm trying to swap them to soil-less since I'd sooo not going to have manure in my house.

I also half-heartedly tried culturing blackworms - they're in a 5Lish bucket with sand/small gravel and sacrificial floating plants.  They don't seem to be DYING...but I can't tell if they're happy/multiplying.  No heater or filter or anything.  I replace about 1/2 to 2/3 of the water with old tank water when I do water changes on the shrimp/community tanks.  I suspect I'll need a much bigger container if I want them to produce anything in useful amounts.

I've also started "infusoria".  The protozoa and friends are about the only thing that's more or less working as intended.  Too bad I haven't succeeded in convincing the fish to lay eggs.  I haven't been TRYING particularly hard or very long, so I'm stressing about that yet.  I wanted to get a decent set of live foods producing well before I focus on the fish breeding.

I was trying to avoid brine shrimp since it's a fairly high maintenance when my main goal is to feed live food to about 40 small fish a few times a week long-term rather than just raising a batch of fry.

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Kaylenna

Soo... You know how I mentioned the local fish club as a source?  I asked one of the ones in mine... and he's offered to drop off some microworms in an hour.  How's that for instant gratification?  And general super nice people who not only won't look at you like you're nuts when you say you're trying to grow worms, but offer to deliver said worms to you!  

Edited by Kaylenna

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bluestarfish

Oh that's nice luck to get some that quickly :D

I don't know how time intensive he found the grindal worms, we're going to have lunch with him tomorrow though so I can ask him about that, as well as the other things he cultured.

I have thought about removing the tripos as they hatch, but there would be hundreds if not thousands of them mixed in with the daphnia. Really I just don't want to have to kill them (which is what I would have to do with the present amount of space I have) I decided I'd do daphnia once we have a house, then I can set up a tank for the triops to live their blood thirsty little lives.

Daphnia are supposedly pretty easy because they can survive in very low amounts of oxygen, you could probably set up a bucket with green water, and as long as you keep the population under control they'll be fine.

 

I ended up setting things up for brine shrimp, hatched some out this afternoon they are hypnotic. I also fed a few of the little umbrellas to my fish...they enjoyed them even if they were very tiny snacks.

 

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jc12
On 9/10/2016 at 11:20 AM, Kaylenna said:

My issue with vinegar eels is I THINK they are too small to use as regular live food for the adult fish.  But I've never actually HAD them and could be completely wrong; if you've done fine with them, please do tell me.  I do plan to try them anyway - when I can beg a starter off someone nearby.  How much do you get from your cultures? How big/how many do you have? 

Why were the grindals a hassle?  I have a very few that I'm trying to get started, but they're not cooperating just yet (it's only been 4 days).  The source I bought them from used soil/manure and I'm trying to swap them to soil-less since I'd sooo not going to have manure in my house.

I also half-heartedly tried culturing blackworms - they're in a 5Lish bucket with sand/small gravel and sacrificial floating plants.  They don't seem to be DYING...but I can't tell if they're happy/multiplying.  No heater or filter or anything.  I replace about 1/2 to 2/3 of the water with old tank water when I do water changes on the shrimp/community tanks.  I suspect I'll need a much bigger container if I want them to produce anything in useful amounts.

I've also started "infusoria".  The protozoa and friends are about the only thing that's more or less working as intended.  Too bad I haven't succeeded in convincing the fish to lay eggs.  I haven't been TRYING particularly hard or very long, so I'm stressing about that yet.  I wanted to get a decent set of live foods producing well before I focus on the fish breeding.

I was trying to avoid brine shrimp since it's a fairly high maintenance when my main goal is to feed live food to about 40 small fish a few times a week long-term rather than just raising a batch of fry.

VEs are indeed very small and they are mainly used for small fry e.g. blue rams, bettas, killies, etc. I only use them for blue ram fry for the first 3 days. They then get MWs and sometimes BBS, only when I hatch some for the discus fry.

I had to feed the grindals daily to get them established... apparently after they are established with a healthy population, you can get away with feeding them twice a week. I gave up on them before I could get them to established. Too much work... haha.

The blackworms are set up in a hang on breeder box on a 480L system. There was a post on SimplyDiscus forum that someone has been successfully culturing them this way for months.

I don't try to culture BBS. I just hatch, feed, rinse and repeat when required. Given that VEs and MWs have similar protein levels as BBS, I try my best to avoid them. VEs suit surface feeders and MWs suit bottom feeders... BBS go everywhere so I use them more for my discus fry.

I usually use live food for fry and try to get them onto high protein dry food ASAP. Live blackworms are great conditioning food for breeding and microworms suit smaller species like pygmy corys.

I recently fed live blackworms to my pygmy corys and they pretty much spawned the next day. :)

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Kaylenna

ZOMG... I'd be ecstatic if my pygmy spawned!!!  Err... how did you know they spawned?  Are they in their own tank?

How many blackworms do you think can be cultured in a breeding box?  I'd considered putting the blackworms in breeding boxes, but I don't have enough boxes and it seemed rather small for the numbers of worms my fish will gobble, given any chance.  I'd even considered dumping them into the red cherries tank... but I don't REALLY want to see a bunch of worms in my tank all the time!  I'll see if my 6 year old son lets me dump some into his almost-ready Betta tank.  Of course... the Betta will likely eat them all.

The other day, I noticed my blackworms had taken to twining themselves into the roots of the frogbit I had in their container... there were enough that it'd make a 1.5cm ball under each frogbit clump.  When feeding time came, I just picked up a frogbit clump and dropped it into my tank - fast, clean, and easy!  Also... since the worms were slow to unwind, it mean fewer made it anywhere near the bottom of the tank.

Daily feeding of grindals would definitely put them in the "too much work" category.  My "starter" seems pathetic...but there is finally some evidence they're IN there somewhere.

I managed to klutz it up today and spilled one of my infusoria bottles... yay for stinky water all over my kitchen counter and floor.  I'm sooo doing them outside when it's warm enough.  Or possibly giving up on them.

On the other hand...that "starter" culture of microworms the fellow ASofV member delivered?  yeah... it turned out to be a huge container.  I rinsed off 1/8th of the lid and got more worms than both of the starters I'd bought from stores/online.  The fish approved and were happy to have me rinse the lid in their tank.  I just wish they were BIGGER.  Lol.

 

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jayc
On 07/10/2016 at 4:59 PM, jc12 said:

I like low maintenance live food and vinegar eels are the easiest by far.

@jc12, where can I get some VEs for my killi fry?

Need some urgently.

 

 

@Kaylenna, congrats on the cory fry! Woohoo!

 

Edited by jayc

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Kaylenna
42 minutes ago, jayc said:

 

@Kaylenna, congrats on the cory fry! Woohoo!

 

Nono... @jc12  has the baby cories!!  I just WISHED I did.

Hope you find your VE.  and Grats on your killi fry!  I might well try those next.

See, that's why I'm fiddling with the life foods NOW...before I try to encourage egg production!  I figure I'd rather mess up my cultures when it doesn't matter.

Edited by Kaylenna

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jc12
30 minutes ago, Kaylenna said:

ZOMG... I'd be ecstatic if my pygmy spawned!!!  Err... how did you know they spawned?  Are they in their own tank?

How many blackworms do you think can be cultured in a breeding box?  I'd considered putting the blackworms in breeding boxes, but I don't have enough boxes and it seemed rather small for the numbers of worms my fish will gobble, given any chance.  I'd even considered dumping them into the red cherries tank... but I don't REALLY want to see a bunch of worms in my tank all the time!  I'll see if my 6 year old son lets me dump some into his almost-ready Betta tank.  Of course... the Betta will likely eat them all.

The other day, I noticed my blackworms had taken to twining themselves into the roots of the frogbit I had in their container... there were enough that it'd make a 1.5cm ball under each frogbit clump.  When feeding time came, I just picked up a frogbit clump and dropped it into my tank - fast, clean, and easy!  Also... since the worms were slow to unwind, it mean fewer made it anywhere near the bottom of the tank.

Daily feeding of grindals would definitely put them in the "too much work" category.  My "starter" seems pathetic...but there is finally some evidence they're IN there somewhere.

I managed to klutz it up today and spilled one of my infusoria bottles... yay for stinky water all over my kitchen counter and floor.  I'm sooo doing them outside when it's warm enough.  Or possibly giving up on them.

On the other hand...that "starter" culture of microworms the fellow ASofV member delivered?  yeah... it turned out to be a huge container.  I rinsed off 1/8th of the lid and got more worms than both of the starters I'd bought from stores/online.  The fish approved and were happy to have me rinse the lid in their tank.  I just wish they were BIGGER.  Lol.

 

I watched them spawn and even took a video. :) Super cute. Let's see if I have success hatching and raising them. They are in a mixed tank... actually I am in the midst of closing down a few tanks so I chuck the CPDs, pygmy corys and 2 peppermints all in a two footer bare bottom tank with some plants potted in plastic take away containers. Super basic setup really.

This is the first time I am trying to culture blackworms so I really don't have good proven advice for you. Sorry. However, I have put a LOT of blackworms in it as I was given a LOT of blackworms recently... like 500g worth... haha. It was insane and I still have some in the fridge. @buck would totally know what it is like having so much worms. Haha. I have a 1-2cm layer of Seachem matrix off spec in the breeder box and chucked in some dried oak leaves and been feeding them some sinking wafers. So far seems ok but it has only been a few days so still early days. I'll try your frogbit method. Thanks for sharing.

This is the post on Simply Discus forum: http://forum.simplydiscus.com/showthread.php?123314-Blackworm-Culturing-Made-Easy!

Sorry mods if the link above is not allowed but I reckon it is information sharing and not selling stuff competing with sponsors so should be ok???

@s1l3nt had kept live blackworms for a long time using this similar method. Maybe he can share more about how he set it up and how much worms he kept in it but he keeps them alive for feeding, not for culturing. Apparently they keep better this way than in the fridge. He used to have soil-less grindals as well so hit him up for advice. He has been super slack so I think all his grindals have crashed.

I didn't close the lid of the container holding the blackworms in the fridge tightly and I ended up with a LOT of blackworms in the fridge. Luckily they were in a compartment dedicated to pet stuff so wife wasn't upset and I didn't get in trouble. Haha.

I was given a recipe for MWs that work really well. Let me know if you want it. Send me a PM with your email address.

43 minutes ago, jayc said:

@jc12, where can I get some VEs for my killi fry?

Need some urgently.

You can get them from me. ?

Send me a PM with your address. Depends on how urgent you want them... just pay for shipping if you want it express posted in a satchel. I also have MWs too if you would like some.

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Kaylenna
5 minutes ago, jc12 said:

I watched them spawn and even took a video. :) Super cute. Let's see if I have success hatching and raising them. They are in a mixed tank... actually I am in the midst of closing down a few tanks so I chuck the CPDs, pygmy corys and 2 peppermints all in a two footer bare bottom tank with some plants potted in plastic take away containers. Super basic setup really.

See now... you know you're going to have to share that vid.  I'd love to set up a separate tank to breed the pygmys... but I don't have the space for another tank!!  I'm considering umm... moving them to the red cherry tank...poor abused cherries.  (mmmm peppermints... they're cute too.  But I think it'll be a WHILE before mine are mature.)

 

42 minutes ago, jc12 said:

This is the first time I am trying to culture blackworms so I really don't have good proven advice for you.

Ah, but if you share your experiences, maybe we and others can learn from one set of mistakes instead of all making the same mistakes many times!  Every bit helps... if only to give me more time to make OTHER mistakes.

I can't see the pics in the discus forum link (cause I'm too lazy to sign up for that forum too!), but his description's pretty good.  I'm not sure why everyone's worried about the "waste" they produce... they're just little living things, just like all the other little living things in the tank... If they stay alive, they shouldn't cause the nitrate spikes or other assorted issues that crop up when you just store them in the fridge and they slowly (or quickly) die off.  I think the step from keeping alive to culturing isn't that big - they reproduce quite readily, if asexually, by fragmentation and regeneration.  Of course... I have yet to see how quickly they reproduce.  I'd be happy if I could basically keep enough around (in decent conditions for them) to feed the fish small amounts regularly, possibly with occasional re-supply if I'm feeding them off faster than they reproduce.  I mostly objected to the idea of just storing them in the fridge, merely delaying their slow death by starvation in unpleasant environments.  Also... I'd be QUITE annoyed if the worms got out of the box in the fridge!  I don't have a separate compartment... so they'd have just been all over everything.  (Watch, next week I'll spill my bucket of blackworms all over my carpet or something.)  My buckets do not have tops on them... perhaps I'm overly optimistic about their staying in the water of their own accord.

1 hour ago, jc12 said:

I was given a recipe for MWs that work really well. Let me know if you want it.

Of course I want it... but you know I'm just gonna paste it somewhere here if it works!  lol.

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bluestarfish

Talked to the father in law, and he said he just kept his little worms in a mash of oatmeal and that's it, doesn't sound very hard for me, but I couldn't get very many details out of him. He's given kind of mixed information, having described them as being mixed into the mash, but also as being fed on just the juice with the mash strained out. Maybe he did both at different times.

I'm doing the brine shrimp slightly more for my own entertainment and curiosity, than for feeding to fish. I doubt I'll need to hatch another batch for a long time because even reducing the amount I started with I have...too many.

 

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Kaylenna

I've been tempted to buy some brine shrimp eggs to hatch to amuse my kids... yay sea monkeys!   (I've already hatched them for my own amusement in the past, of course.)

I can kind of see why your father-in-law might describe it like that - from my very limited observations, they are most obvious swimming around in the err... juicy/wettest parts of the culture.  And I think older cultures end up wetter too.

 

AAAAHHAHAHA!  My typing of this post was interrupted by my 6 year old son's questions about why there was another fishy in the tank with HIS fishy.  His fishy is a male Betta.  The other fish was a female betta and I'd been trying to convince them to mate.  He then claimed he could see eggs in the girl fish.  I came over to check and explain that he couldn't see eggs IN the girl because they wouldn't be visible IN her (as they are for the shrimp and guppies, which he has seen).  But... it turns out he was right... he could see eggs!  Because they were in the midst of mating.  There are a few dozen eggs visible in the bubbles around some frogbit.  It looks like my infusoria culture was well timed after all!  Hopefully the eggs will hatch and my various goofy, smelly jars and boxes will be able to justify themselves.

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jayc
1 hour ago, Kaylenna said:

he could see eggs! 

Didn't I say congrats on the fry??!! I must have been prophetic. ?

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s1l3nt

Yep i'm super slack lately :) Slowly working my way back into the fish hobby and forums, etc! For anyone interested, i don't do much different to @jc12. I didn't use any gravel in mine, mostly because I didn't really think they'd reproduce fast enough for my feeding rates... I bought about 250g or so from memory and put them in 2 empty breeder boxes. They don't seem to mind clinging to eachother but the frogbit root idea is a good one. I fed them mulberry leaves most of the time and that was great for me, they would be nice and dark in colour and thick without breaking up. They were all active also. I have also fed them algae wafers, left over fish food (frozen foods usually), shrimp snow/barley etc, they are not picky at all.... I just sucked them up with a pipette and fed to my fish once daily. Don't over feed IMO, fish go nuts for them and will overeat and cause problems.

Blackworms will climb out of water that is fouling, it's their way of surviving bad condition I believe. They sometimes are half in the water to keep moist while breathing air I assume. Not really scientific or necessarily true just my experience :) Haha. Worms should have water changed daily if kept in fridge or buckets or similar, and any dead or weak worms should be removed immediately. This was too much hassle for me, so i just used the breeder box... I kept mine for about 4+ weeks this wya, with no issues at all. They probably cultured a little since they lasted me a while, but this was not my goal. The gravel i suggested to jc12 was because blackworms are cultulred by breaking themselves apart into multiple segments, the sharp gravel helps this occur.

Also, FYI blackworms that crash are VERY bad. I forgot about some in a small container with lid on. Remembered a week later and came back to literally black sludge that was the WORST possible smelling thing i've ever smelt in my life so far... 

Grindals are one of my favourite foods but are a bit time consuming until they are mature (daily feeding/misting for moisture, drops to 1-2 times a week after depending on how often you want to feed the fish with grindals ), i find all fish love them and fry can start eating htem quite young. I personally noticed quite a growth spurt on fry fed with grindals vs ones that were not. But this is not very scientific :) 

I have a few types of live foods coming this week, so will be getting them back up and running if anyone wants some in a few weeks time once mine mature enough.

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jayc

jc12 has hooked me up with some vinegar eels.

So I'm all good for now.

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Kaylenna
39 minutes ago, s1l3nt said:

I have a few types of live foods coming this week, so will be getting them back up and running if anyone wants some in a few weeks time once mine mature enough.

Which are you getting? 

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s1l3nt
11 minutes ago, Kaylenna said:

Which are you getting? 

Paramecium, Micro Worms and Grindal worms. Vinegar eels to come shortly too... @jc12 - looking at you.... :) I also have BBS eggs on hand always so I have them whenever they are required.

I'm keen to try all kinds of food myself, i believe them to be the "secret" to fish breeding constantly and successfully... I however have not seen too many varieties of food though :(

Edited by s1l3nt

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Kaylenna

Where are you getting your grindals from?  The first source I bought from had relatively few in stinky media... I'm trying to nurse them along and get them out into something I'm not going to hate having in the house, but it's a tad slow. 

For the paramecia/protozoans in general - one thing that I read somewhere and seemed to have worked well: use the gunky bits from a vase of flowers (oldish flowers - the ones you're about to throw out, for example).  The day I read that, I happened to have a few stems of freesia I'd cut from my garden and stuck in a vase.  The flowers were quite pathetic by then... so perfect for my "infusoria" culture!  And completely free.   I don't know what type of stuff was in there - I should dig out the little toy microscope I'd gotten for my kids and see if I can ID them.

By the way, I THINK I've mostly got the microworms down and if anyone wants a starter, let me know.  I got carried away... there's 6 new cultures + the massive mature one I was given.  Being the dorky type, I plan to start some more in a slew of different media and conditions to see what works best, lasts longest, and stinks the least!

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s1l3nt

Grindals are coming from a friend, they are on peat moss. I will try to move them over to a soil-less culture if I can clean them up... My first ever source of grindals came with like 5 worms... Took over a month to just get some visible worms, it was painful. Setting up cultures after that was much faster because I used much more worms, or even a whole scourer pad that I was using as their medium. So 1-2 weeks before they were "mature" enough to collect a chunk of worms daily. Grindals shouldn't really have a bad smell unless culture is crashing IMO, you will notice worms will try to escape the box in this case too. I use scourer pads, 3 stack high, worms in middle, top to hold moisture, bottom pad is soaked to provide moisture. Food between middle and top layer, small piece of plastic grid over food so they eat food and climb over this, all you have to do is shake this grid into a tank to feed :) Short version of it anyway. You need to mist them for a while to keep moisture in, they love moisture. Only feed enough to be eaten in 24 hours or so to prevent mold.

Paramecium is easy, how I do it is 1.25 or 2L bottles filled with tank water (no chemicals, etc), add paramecium, add a pinch of powdered skim milk (i've used full cream, skim, etc milk in the past, and this works just as good but produces a layer of protein on the top which tends to stink a bit, and have to avoid it when collecting for a feed), shake bottle a bit and your done. The skim feeds bacteria, which the paramecium feed on. I found if you mix other things into the culture you end up with infusoria of all kinds rather than tiny paramecium (which is what I wanted myself).

You can actually let micro worm cultures dry out (they lay eggs) and store them somewhere for a while, when you wet them again they will hatch and restart the culture :) I use the bread and water method for micro worms. Cut crust off sliced bread (some people cut it up, i dont bother), wet it udner the tap enough to be moist similar to battering fish, put wet bread in takeaway container 1-2 layers high. Put worms in, sprinkle some dry bakers yeast over them and your done. I find the bakers yeast helps get htem going faster, and they feed on the bread. Cultures need refeeding like once a week or so.

 

I'll do a proper write up for all 3 once I get my new starter culture if there is enough interest in this being an article or something?

Edited by s1l3nt
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jayc

@s1l3nt I'm interested. Please write that article. 

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Kaylenna
2 hours ago, s1l3nt said:

Cut crust off sliced bread (some people cut it up, i dont bother)

Ok... Why cut the crust off???  (I mean, I have to do it for my 3 year old or else I get bits of crust he's picked off scattered everywhere, but I don't think the worms are going to do that!)  Does it affect them in some way?

Have you tried using just flour?  (or the ingredients that go INTO bread, minus the kneading, rising, baking)

2 hours ago, s1l3nt said:

Cultures need refeeding like once a week or so.

So do you just keep 1 culture going with refeeding?  Most of the stuff I've read had you re-starting a culture every X days, but refeeding would likely maintain a more steady supply.

2 hours ago, s1l3nt said:

Grindals shouldn't really have a bad smell unless culture is crashing IMO

My grindal starter smelled because they'd used manure in the media.  It looked a LOT like they'd just grabbed stuff from a composting worm bin that had manure.  This of course made me wonder if I could just grow them in my vermicomposting bin.  I HAVE seen small white worms in it before... but they were not out when I checked today (perhaps too cold still and they're hiding in the media). 

I am trying the buried potato method of gathering worms - has anyone tried to culture the results of such a starter?  Are there things I should watch out for/pick out from such a culture?   Yes, I know I'd get a random selection that will differ from anyone else's gather and will likely differ every time I try... but I was wondering of anyone has ANY experiences to offer regarding such efforts.

 

Edited by Kaylenna

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s1l3nt

I'm to lazy to quote :) So:
Reason for cutting crust is i found they do not eat it as readily as the yeast in the white bread itself, and it take a longer time to break down. Crusty mess, like mine and your kids make :) The yeast is the key part of the bread they eat, but no I havent tried or bothered since we always have bread in the house.  I have a friend who has used live yeast with results that'll blow your mind haha. Thats just expensive and too much effort though :)

I always keep 2-3 cultures of any given live food, it WILL crash at some point. I prefer to refeed, you can usually get away with refeeding once, sometimes twice, before you have to restart the microworm culture. 

Manure for media? That sounds pretty filthy... I've heard of coconut fibres being used with great success, me I prefer soil-less. Much less effort, smell and way cleaner. All you need is a take away container (or shoe box) and some scourer pads. I feed grindals with farex branded rice cereal. Lasts a while, and is cheap as chips. People feed worms all sorts of stuff like cat/dog food, etc. All that just sounds too smelly for me :) We were in an apartment until recently and my wife has the nose of a i dont even know what, but she picks that smell up a mile away. And i like my balls no busted, so I prefer the less smelly way.

@jayc will do a write up as soon as i get some time, most likely this weekend :) Cultures are due for delivery today, so I will start taking photos as I go.

Edited by s1l3nt
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