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Gammarus, Strange Culture, Auction with Live Foods...
> Our local live food supplier has two sizes of Gammarus. The large size > is about as big as a pencil eraser. And the dwarf type is a little > smaller than adult brine shrimp. Has anybody had any luck raising > > these. I was thinking of a plastic shirt box and feeding them either > > lettuce or water sprite. The starter culture contains about 30 of the > small ones or 12 large ones. How prolific are these little critters > and are they easy to raise?
> Norm in Somers, WI
Good Afternoon Norm!
I have had small gammarus blooms after bringing in "wonder bulbs" -
usually Aponogeton hybrids - from a whole saler. They did very well on
the Aponogeton leaves until some Epilatys lamottei were introduced to
the tank. The larger gammarus are even available from some bait dealers!
Oxygen is useful in their culture.
Lettuce, some more than others, is pretty thin fare for a lot of fish
and food cultures. The water sprite will be appreciate, as would most
aquarium plant trimmings. (Actually I would have a better use for water
Try left over pea shells too. I feed a lot of cooked peas - the
insides, crushed or broken to size - to a variety of livebearers,
cichlids, rainbows, and even killies (Fundulopanchax, Rivulus, natives,
Aplo. spilauchen...) A few extra veggies from the table (non-buttered
please) such as green beans might also be cheerfully accepted. Probably
any vegetable fed to fish could be fed to gammarous. I would try tree
leaves if I knew they were non-toxic. Interestingly some leaves are
supposed to be poisonous, although I can't remember which ones.
Others on this list can undoubtedly add veggie items and leaves they
have fed to cultures and fishes...
> Subject: Strange culture
> Hmmmm, this IS strange. I got the culture from a fellow hobbyist from a
> local fish club. At any rate, the fish really likes it and they are really easy
> to grow. I dumped some of them in my unused pond and they just grew ever since.
> If anyone would like some culture, I can probably mail you some.
Check back with that hobbyist if you can. Maybe he can ID them. If not
try to get ahold of Charles Masters Encyclopedia of Live Foods (your
aquarium society may have a copy). Other good sources might include
Jocker's 1972 volume on Live Foods for the Aquarium and Terrarium (TFH)
or Needham et al's Laboratory Culture of Invertibrate Animals (Dover
about 1962). Less useful might be the Baensch Atlas vol. 1.
A surprising number of times one of those books can be found through a
public library system. If you live in an urban area or your library is
hooked up to a regional or state wide network, you can use their
computer listing to find one of those books and then bring it in on
Again it would interesting what books other list readers have found
Although it is primarilly a killifish show, this next weekend, March
29-30, there is a show being put on by the Chicago Killifish Association
at the Schiller Park Days Inn, on Mannehim Road a couple of miles south
of O'Hare field. There will be lots of talk and presentations on
collecting and keeping killies on Saturday and an auction on Sunday.
Quite a number of food cultures find their to the Sunday auction. If you
are looking for some or have something to sell and you are in the
neightborhood, drop by.
In all honesty food cultures only sell for 50 cents to $8.00 depending
upon the culture and who wants them, so you are not going to get
independantly wealthy peddling microworms, but it is a nice time and the
noon auction is only about three hours long. I for my part will bring in
some Daphnia (pulex?) starters for those who want to get going this
spring with a culture. I expect a a 50-50 auction return which will pay
a few tolls on the interstate, but it is fun to see people get a new
live foods culture.
All the best!