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NFC: Moina - Intensive Culturing Method

Here is an article on Moina culturing as talked about on the NFC chat
Sunday night


Moina - Intensive Culturing Method
One should note that here we are describing an intensive culture method.
Intensive culturing always runs the fine line between maximum production
for amount of culturing medium used and "crashing and burning".
Intensive culturing means stocking at the rate of 5 individuals per
teaspoon (1individual per milliliter) of culture medium and twenty four
hours later having more than 15 individuals per teaspoon (3 individuals
per milliliter) of culturing medium.  You will need to harvest one-half
of the culture each day after the first 24 hours of incubation or
starting the culture.  Harvest at full production is 4 to 6 tablespoons
of Moina per day per 10 gallon culture media.  Moina are generally
harvested twice a day, one-fourth to one-third of the culture each
morning and again in the evening.  Sometimes Moina will also have to be
harvested at some intermediary time.  Moina are very prolific ! 
Less intensive cultures are easy to maintain with a little bit of water
and food.  Keep small, cultures that pretty much rely on the natural
conditions in their culture containers and feed green water about once a
week when they are checked on.  Consider these as reserves or banks to
be used if and when the intensive culture crashes and crash it will. 
Intensive Cultures:  
Each 10 gallon culture container is stocked with enough Moina to result
in an initial density of one individual per ml.  Provide a gentle air
stream of bubbles, two to five per second for aeration and incubate for
24 hours.  The culture temperature should be kept in the range of 75 to
80 degrees Fahrenheit, the closer to the maximum the better.  A strong
light source approximating noon sun light with a duration of 18 to 20
hours per day.  
Feed Moina culture with yeast dissolved in water, 1teaspoon of yeast
dissolved in 1 pint of 100 degree tap water and allowed to cool to room
temperature.  The amount fed is dependent on the amount of Moina and the
clarity of the water.  This is the hard part about growing Moina as
every person must learn to adjust this for themselves.  Feeding should
be done on a regular basis at about the same time(s) each day.  Feed a
minimum of once a day or feed smaller quantities twice a day.  However
remember that for maximum production, there is not much of a buffer,
time wise, built into when feedings should be occurring. 
In cultures of several gallons or more, it takes a few days for
overfeeding toxicity to build to critical levels, in the mean time the
Moina happily multiply.  This will give a false sense of one's doing
everything right.  But when the critical level of toxicity is reached
the Moina crash even more quickly than they multiplied.  This  means
that if your culture is constantly crashing, you probably are a bit
heavy handed in the feeding department.
On the other side of the equation is underfeeding.  When Moina go with
out food for too long a time the culture will also crash.
The happy medium between over and under feeding takes a lot of practice
to achieve and maintain.  The saving grace is that a crashed culture can
easily be reset and usually be back to full strength within 3 to 5 days.

Start new or reset old cultures using green water mixed with clear aged
aquarium water as the initial culture media.  This mixture should be a
light green in color.  If possible set it up a few days in advance so
that the organisms that constitute Moina food can multiply.  If you
experience a crash, catch any Moina that have managed to survive the
crash and add them to the new culture.  Re-seed or reset Moina cultures
as part of the daily morning harvest and check to see how they are doing
that night.  If it looks like they have eaten up all the food, i.e.; the
water is clear, then feed the Moina. 
Harvesting is a must!  It must be done every day after the first 24
hours of incubation, even in cultures that are not at full strength.
Harvesting some of the Moina seems to stimulate the rest to reproduce.
BUT consider how much Moina is being removed when figuring the feed
Two methods of harvesting.  If the Moina are on the surface of the
water, use a brine shrimp net to gently skim off the harvest.  If not,
use a bail and pour the culture water through a brine shrimp net into a
bucket.  The water is then returned to the culture container.  When
using either method to harvest it is important NOT DISTURB DEBRIS ON THE
BOTTOM of the culture container any more than is necessary.  
It is easiest to check how the Moina are doing at night with a
flashlight.  This is something that is hard to describe and must just be
seen for oneself.  

	1 Teaspoon		=      5 Milliliters
	3 Teaspoons	=      1 Tablespoon 
	1 Tablespoon	=      0.5 Fluid Ounce
	16 Tablespoons	=      1 Cup
	1 Cup 		=      8 Ounces
	2 Cups		=      1 Pint
	2 Pints		=      1 Quart
	1 Quart		=    32 ounces
	4 Quarts		=      1 US Gallon
	1 US Gallon		=      3.7854 Liters
	1 US Gallon		=  231 Cubic Inches
	1 Liter		=    61.025 Cubic inches
	1 Liter		=      2.112 Pints
	1 Liter		=      1.057 Quarts
1 Cubic Foot	=      7.48 Gallons