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Re: [Live-foods] Best Daphnia Foods

Hey Sandy!

While it sounds like so much sophistry, the best Daphnia foods for you are the ones which work. I am pretty casual in feeding them, so greenwater indoors (working off of a couple of crowded tanks set up for plants without the plants and using filters w/o any media) and leaf litter outdoors work very well. The leaves in the outside shaded containers (20-40 gallons) are controlled by using a piece of weathered hardware cloth to remove "excess" leaves.

For people with the ability to take a little hot water and dissolve yeast, add cool water and then actually just tint their Daphnia culture, that is one of the best foods. However yeast is easy to overfeed and I tired of asphyxiating cultures.

The well traveled Joe Bulterman has put a different spin on that by taking 4 heaping teaspoons of brewer's yeast and running it in a blender with 4 cups of water. He refrigerates it in 2 liter pop bottles and feeds (for some precision) with a 3 ml plastic lab dropper to just lace the surface of the water. He feels that the size of the particle is important.

You know this, but start at least three cultures. They WILL crash from time to time.

Others have used 
a bit of the strained sweet potatoes sold as baby food,
probably other baby foods
powdered pea soup mixes,  
culturing algae from algae disks (read the Plankton Culture Manual published by Aquaculture Supply), 
algae pastes mixed up,
old mosquito water (in moderation), that may include mossie egg rafts because the Daphnia can consume newly hatched mosquitoes (but have a dense population to consume all the larvae),
the anemone food won at that club raffle,
assorted manures (composted) fed in large spaces,
APR (though there is an expense here)
spirulina powder

One might also consider:
a variety of flours, 
teas from various hays,
various manure teas, 
grass and garden pullings tea (also a great mosquito attractor)
soy bean meal,
cotton seed meal,
lab cultures of one cell algae,
plain old aquarium water,
bran and liver infusions,
Boston lettuce,
dry buttermilk,
alfalfa meal,
small animal entrails,
bacteria generated from all of these
 and even fish oils put on the surface of outdoor ponds to killpredatory insects. Needham, et al's Culture Methods For Invertebrate Animals is a very useful resource for yet more and evenhas an article including the hamster which died in the lab. (Not quite Bill Vannerson's cat in a pond.)

The wind outdoors will probably aerate them well if they aren't in the direct sun (which also attracts predators). Indoors use a piece of hard airline tubing or the sponge filter fixture which is missing the sponge. Bubbles should not be too small or numerous.

See also the search at http://fins.actwin.com/

Starting a culture from your region makes a lot of sense in that presumably it is well adapted to your climate. Do watch for initial hitchhikers such as Hydra.

Pick a couple from the above. If they are handy and work, there you are!

All the best!

Sandy1238 at aol_com wrote: Hi,
I am trying to keep some daphnia alive I recently collected here in So.  Cal. 
Can you list the three best foods to feed them?
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