Dusting tips needed - How to 'tap' and not lose a fly!

Culturing Fruit Flies, other Insects. Supplements and Dusting.
OutsidetheBox

Dusting tips needed - How to 'tap' and not lose a fly!

Postby OutsidetheBox » Tue Apr 11, 2006 8:46 pm

So, I've had the culturing of the fruit flies down for a while, but if someone could give me some dusting tips I would appreciate it. The end results of me trying to dust are usually not pretty. My hand usually ends up covered in white powder and flies, who also migrate to my desk, surrounding cages (they really annoy my turtle) and burrowing into the carpet. Stupid flies. And everyone goes on about crickets.... you know, I think I prefer them.

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Cindy Dicken
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Postby Cindy Dicken » Tue Apr 11, 2006 9:25 pm

Hi.
you can put the fruit flies in the fridge for a few minutes to slow them down. This should give you enough time to get them dusted and in the tank.
We usually use a large baggie, add our vitamin/calcium powder, then add the flies, close the baggie, stick it in the fridge for a few minutes, remove from fridge and feed to frogs.
Last edited by Cindy Dicken on Mon Sep 04, 2006 7:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

OutsidetheBox

Postby OutsidetheBox » Wed Apr 12, 2006 9:50 am

Thank you so much! You have no idea how much that helps.

Bev

Postby Bev » Wed Apr 12, 2006 1:52 pm

When fruit flies have dust on their feet, they can't climb.

So what I do is put a pinch of dust in a plastic cup, swirl it around to coat the bottom, and pour in some flies. I don't have to worry about them getting out while I close up the culture. Swirl the flies around the bottom of the cup so they're coated with dust. To feed out, tilt the cup on it's side and tap it to make the flies tumble out gently. Left over dust stays in the cup.

Having only a few frogs to feed, this works well for me, but it might not be effecient for larger operations.

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Postby RichFrye » Wed Apr 12, 2006 2:46 pm

Hi,

"When fruit flies have dust on their feet, they can't climb. "

I have heard there are a couple type of FFs that cannot climb at all. I would have to guess that they do not boom like others for the simple reason that I do not hear songs of praise for them through the hobby. Go slow and bug-proof your vivs well.

Crickets (depending on how and who is raising them, and how old they are, or will get) can be very nasty and potentially dangerous to your Darts.

Live bugs = Welcome to the Dart frog hobby.

Rich
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For what it's worth...

Postby Corey » Wed Apr 12, 2006 4:17 pm

I cut the bottom off of a 2 liter bottle. I then tap some fruit flies into the bottle ( which is now upside down ). I tap in a little powder, then take the 2 liter and tap the flies into my tank. Works great...neat clean....

kiddcell

dust build up

Postby kiddcell » Mon May 22, 2006 3:17 am

I've tried dusting... I have a cup left over from a previous culture and use it to dust the flies... I have dust in there first, then tap the flies in (in the tub) and shake the cup up to cover the flies. The tub keeps the flies from crawling all over the floor, carpet, desk and anywhere else they manage to. - Now they're all covered in dust, I can't seem to tap them all into the tank. Some go but because of all the dust, they all can't climb out. Maybe I shouldn't worry about it. The few remaining aren't going to make or break me. I have tried dumping the flies and the dust but with the humidity, a clay lump is left behind.

Is there a special trick to getting all the flies out? Should I save the powder for future dustings? Do I need to worry about the dead flies that didn't make it out the previous time if I do reuse what's left? Does it matter if the calcium and vitamin dust collects on the substrate floor? It's not eye appealing. I could remove it or turn it over if it's helpful to the springtails and plants. What do you do?

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Postby mack » Mon May 22, 2006 3:41 am

I use a pretty small amount of dust, it doesn't take much, and if I use too much the flies get covered up and 'lost' in the powder. I then tilt the cup down at about a 45* angle and tap the cup to bounce the flies out.

There are some differing opinions, but to be on the safe side you want to get new rep-cal and herptivite every six months. it breaks down, and much more quickly when exposed to air. with this in mind, I never re-use powder, because I throw a ton away anyway. I also use rep-cal one day, then herptivite the next. This eliminates the need to measure exact amounts of the powders to avoid improper vitamin ratios.

I also wouldn't dump the powder in the viv beyond what is unavoidable as it will kill moss quickly, and will harm many plants if it accumulates over time.

OutsidetheBox

Postby OutsidetheBox » Mon May 29, 2006 5:39 pm

I usually pour the flies on top of a magnolia leaf that I can replace after it gets too coated with the deposits. It generally works pretty well, but sometimes there are some reluctant springtails that cling to the bottom, or flies that SOMEHOW manage to land somewhere other than the leaf. You can but the leaves in a big box from places like JoshsFrogs if you don't live in an area that has them naturally( Hard to find magnolia leaves in Colorado... ;) )

justinc55

Postby justinc55 » Mon Sep 04, 2006 7:31 pm

I know this was posted a long time ago, but figured I would mention what I do.

I take a empty plastic cup with a large mouth that is about 10oz with the vitamins and calcium. I place it inside the tank. I than pour the FFs into the cup. This way if I spill or any get out they are in the cage. I usually can do it quick enough so none escape the cup. I than pick the cup up and swirl it around dusting the flies. Tilt it sideways and tap the side the get the flies out being careful not to spill the dust.

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Philsuma » Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:41 pm

Remember the word "Tap"

Take the Fruit fly culture and tap the side of it...pretty vigorously.This will knock down the flies from the sides and lid of the culture cup.

Take a clean empty 32oz cup - same size as a culture cup...and shake a little superfine dust / supplement into it. This will be your "dusting cup".

open the lid of the FF culture and keep tapping and tilt....and tap....and literally "pour" the flies into the dusting cup - tapping all the while to keep the flies down and off balance.

SWIRL the FF that are now inside the dusting cup - vigorously. They can take it. Powder will coat them and they cannot climb up the dusting cup. You have plenty of time now.

NOW, open the viv and TILT the dusting cup with the dusted flies inside. Tilt to again, "pour" and tap the flat bottom of the cup while tilting, while "pouring"......KEEP tapping hard like you are spanking the flat bottom of the dusting cup and tilting.

NOTICE how the sharp tapping causes the FF to SEPERATE from any excess powder. In fact, excess powder is Ok - it will stay in the bottom of the tilted dusting cup and the FF will actually RISE to the lip of the tilted cup and will be VERY easy to pour out.

Tap..Tap....swirl....tap some more...tilt..tap..pour..tap...tilt....tap.

Some day I'll try to make a youtube viddy on this - it would be easier seen than described, I'm thinking. heh

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Venutus1 » Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:24 am

I have been doing a "shake-n-bake" in a plastic fish bag... and spooning out the flies with a long handled iced tea spoon and (quickly) putting them into the tank.
It is easy to put the mouth of the bag over the culture cup, turn at a 45 degree angle and tap tap tap

But I am gonna try some of the ideas above!!
I think I will do the swirl method for tonites feeding.

Todd
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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Philsuma » Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:49 am

It comes down to repetition, confidence.....the more you do it, the easier it will become.

I can take a dusting cup full of hundreds of dusted flies and tap one....just one, FF (not a Turkish glider!) from a height of 1.5 feet and have it land directly in front of the nose of a frog, while not "spilling" a single other fly. Just takes time...

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Cindy Dicken » Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:05 am

Philsuma wrote:I can take a dusting cup full of hundreds of dusted flies and tap one....just one, FF (not a Turkish glider!) from a height of 1.5 feet and have it land directly in front of the nose of a frog, while not "spilling" a single other fly. Just takes time...




Hey that would be a good competition for the show 'Minute To Win It'! :shock:

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Dusting tips needed

Postby JuBJuB » Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:19 pm

Philsuma wrote:
I can take a dusting cup full of hundreds of dusted flies and tap one....just one, FF (not a Turkish glider!) from a height of 1.5 feet and have it land directly in front of the nose of a frog, while not "spilling" a single other fly. Just takes time...


Bragger ;)
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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Philsuma » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:58 pm

Just sayin' it CAN be done.....

all it takes is practice. As long as the fly is decently coated with powder, "swirled" pretty hard and is disoriented / stunned somewhat, it's pretty easy to do.

I call that "hand feeding" frogs. I'll sometimes keep tapping one at a time right in front of one of the smaller froglets in a grow-out just to make sure he gets a few more flies. Useful for a sick frog as well.

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Lady Bullseye » Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:50 am

Philsuma wrote:Remember the word "Tap"



NOTICE how the sharp tapping causes the FF to SEPERATE from any excess powder. In fact, excess powder is Ok - it will stay in the bottom of the tilted dusting cup and the FF will actually RISE to the lip of the tilted cup and will be VERY easy to pour out.

Tap..Tap....swirl....tap some more...tilt..tap..pour..tap...tilt....tap.

Some day I'll try to make a youtube viddy on this - it would be easier seen than described, I'm thinking. heh


Did you ever make this video Phil?
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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Philsuma » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:05 am

Nope..not yet.

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby Philsuma » Mon May 21, 2012 11:38 am

Swirling the flies in the superfine powder will not only coat them, but it will disorient them and stun them, allowing for easier feeding and handling.

Heck, even without powder, all you need to do is forcefully tap the FF culture cup and the flies become stunned and drop and are easily tipped and tapped out.

With a few months practice, there is NEVER a need for refrigeration, or funnels, or any other method.

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Re: Dusting tips needed

Postby fishguyturnedfrog » Mon May 21, 2012 4:43 pm

I'm still a freezer then take them outside to transfer them to another cup guy. Weather it's to a dusting cup or to make a new culture, if I can't simply crack open the top slightly to knock them into my tank, then it's all done outside. The wife likes the frogs but hates the bugs.
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