Most productive food for springtails

Culturing Fruit Flies, other Insects. Supplements and Dusting.
ems1016
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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby ems1016 » Thu Feb 02, 2012 12:50 am

I just switched over to SE FFs to try their FF media. I don't know how its different from the Black Jungle stuff I'd been using, but FF production has at least doubled per container, flies look and act healthier (hydei seem larger and more active). I tried media from another well known retailer as well, and the cultures were absolutely infested with mites. This was months ago and I'm still working hard to rid my cultures of them. Retailer said it was normal and to be expected.

I have several containers of springtails going since I started in the hobby a couple of years ago. Temperate seem more inclined to wait for the mold over stage, but the others are on the mushrooms within a day or so. I have successfully fed them, with excellent results, pumpkins, mushrooms, cucumbers is a biggy, all kinds of rotted fruits and vegetables (they love Kiwis and grapes), and every now and again I'll toss in a little fish flake food or baby food. I keep all of them on large charcoal chunks with an inch or two of water. They also love live oak leaves.

Every two weeks, I drain off the old water and add new water. The water change, IMO, seems to make a very noticeable difference. No tads yet, but as Phil said, the Pums love the springs and so does my Patricia.

I've also experimented with just oak leaves, misting and coir. Same kinds of food mentioned, and there are literally hundreds of springs in this relatively tiny container. When they are feeding, you cannot even see the coir or the food.

Ed

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby fieldsmith » Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:14 am

Stu&Shaz wrote: Hey buddy seems along time no speak,thanks for the help,a question how long on the mushrooms in the microwave and wattage of said gizmo please? i appreciate the comment about maybe not enough yeast,i think a very good point to raise,
much thanks mate
Stu


Hey Stu, it has been too long, think since the holidays. I searched every nook and cranny of the microwave looking for a wattage label...no luck. It says 60 Hz, maybe that helps? I'm a total dunce with electronics. I wrap them in wet paper towels (think yall call them kitchen paper) for 30 seconds. They get nice and gummy...the springs love em. And about 3-4 days after I feed I see a huge boom. I just got a new type of spring, a really small white one, hoping they take off as well as my big white ones.
-Field Smith
Some frogs...

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RanaVenenosa
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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby RanaVenenosa » Thu Feb 02, 2012 7:08 am

Stu&Shaz wrote:
RanaVenenosa wrote:My springtail staples are carrots, mushrooms, or whatever veggie/fruit needs to be tossed from the fridge.

very similar to what i do Scott,mine predominantly home grown,are you happy with the results you get mate?
thanks
Stu



Hey Stu
Got my coaching from Cindy @ Vivarium Concepts. I have never deviated from her method, so hard to say if I could improve or degrade the success. My new cultures seem to do well and maintain good production regularly as long as I dont "over" harvest.

chao
Scott
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Stu&Shaz
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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Thu Feb 02, 2012 4:32 pm

Philsuma wrote:Stu,

Any grain-based foodstuff is gonna be a magnet for mites. Baby cereal, potato flakes like those in FF media. That's why some people go to great lengths to just use bakers yeast ect, to keep the mites from enjoying the food.


Hey Phil,yeah i get the grain tie in,i wanted that bit spelt out( others will read this) the potato flakes hadn't occurred,to me though,ie do they have grain in them?
My original Q was relative i guess,as to which actual food gives that max production,the real world scenario is governed by mites....just maybe,not the most productive food persay.does that make sense,
Stu

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Philsuma
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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Philsuma » Thu Feb 02, 2012 4:35 pm

Potato flakes, while not grain, are eaten readily by mites. Fish flakes too.

Juicy raw veg and mushrooms produce well and mites may not like them, but I've gotten infestations of thin white worms when things are on the wet side.

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Thu Feb 02, 2012 5:40 pm

Philsuma wrote:Potato flakes, while not grain, are eaten readily by mites. Fish flakes too.

Juicy raw veg and mushrooms produce well and mites may not like them, but I've gotten infestations of thin white worms when things are on the wet side.

Thankyou Phil,here's another little Q have you ever seen the small white worms on a charcoal only subs culture?
To everyone else,I'll catch up soon with thanks deserving of the imput(some great posts),I've taken a battering today forgive me taking time out
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Philsuma » Thu Feb 02, 2012 5:45 pm

Yep...white worms were in ALL my springtail cx's, def charcoal when things were really wet and lots of extra food was present.

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby ems1016 » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:06 pm

I'm finding the tiny elongated white worms on the cardboard I place in for the isopods even after having boiled the cardboard. They are obviously already in the soil. Ed

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Philsuma » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:15 pm

Mites and white worms....most likely inevitable at some point. Tends to scare and worry new hobbyists, but it's all part of the hobby IMO. We just have to "work" the cultures and not overfeed or otherwise neglect them.

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:12 pm

cbreon wrote:In lieu of this conversation and my own recent mite problems I have been rethinking my whole springtail strategy. My experience is that you cant beat the production from the powdered baby food and fish flake, but if you use those two foods frequently its difficult to avoid the mites. So, my solution is to keep two separate groups of of springs. One only fed yeast and kept in the separate area on mite paper, these will serve as my master cultures. I will then keep my other spring cultures in another area, also on mite paper, but I will feed them the foods I have found to be more productive but prone to mites. Then I will cycle the cultures, once the flake-fed cultures start to slow down b/c of mites or whatever, I will cycle in new ones from my master cultures and build additional master cultures. For those of you wondering, I currently have about 12 shoebox cultures at various stages in this process.

Fascinating thoughts Craig,i wish you luck with this please tell us how it all works out,we are running a 2 main diverse culturing methods charcoal fed veggie bits and much smaller faster moving cultures of cocofibre,fed readybreak,which attract mites after a period of time,these then get fed to the slightly older froglets, I've got to try the yeast method somewhere else aswell i think.I'm still in a state of flux with springtails,trying to find the best for us,
thanks
regards
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:17 pm

ems1016 wrote:I just switched over to SE FFs to try their FF media. I don't know how its different from the Black Jungle stuff I'd been using, but FF production has at least doubled per container, flies look and act healthier (hydei seem larger and more active). I tried media from another well known retailer as well, and the cultures were absolutely infested with mites. This was months ago and I'm still working hard to rid my cultures of them. Retailer said it was normal and to be expected.

I have several containers of springtails going since I started in the hobby a couple of years ago. Temperate seem more inclined to wait for the mold over stage, but the others are on the mushrooms within a day or so. I have successfully fed them, with excellent results, pumpkins, mushrooms, cucumbers is a biggy, all kinds of rotted fruits and vegetables (they love Kiwis and grapes), and every now and again I'll toss in a little fish flake food or baby food. I keep all of them on large charcoal chunks with an inch or two of water. They also love live oak leaves.

Every two weeks, I drain off the old water and add new water. The water change, IMO, seems to make a very noticeable difference. No tads yet, but as Phil said, the Pums love the springs and so does my Patricia.

I've also experimented with just oak leaves, misting and coir. Same kinds of food mentioned, and there are literally hundreds of springs in this relatively tiny container. When they are feeding, you cannot even see the coir or the food.

Ed


thanks Ed some great observations there!! the latter mentioned density is what I'm questing for,we have also noticed a tie in with oak leaves.Your couple of week water change is also of note,thanks for the help
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:27 pm

fieldsmith wrote:
Stu&Shaz wrote: Hey buddy seems along time no speak,thanks for the help,a question how long on the mushrooms in the microwave and wattage of said gizmo please? i appreciate the comment about maybe not enough yeast,i think a very good point to raise,
much thanks mate
Stu


Hey Stu, it has been too long, think since the holidays. I searched every nook and cranny of the microwave looking for a wattage label...no luck. It says 60 Hz, maybe that helps? I'm a total dunce with electronics. I wrap them in wet paper towels (think yall call them kitchen paper) for 30 seconds. They get nice and gummy...the springs love em. And about 3-4 days after I feed I see a huge boom. I just got a new type of spring, a really small white one, hoping they take off as well as my big white ones.

No worries mate but appreciate you looking,thanks also for the 'shroom detail.I'm fighting to isolate a little spring that arrived here by accident,in an iso culture,which also had mites,all 3 live together but i'm falling short on splitting them,i've tried several times now,i think our small white wont be as productive as the larger but the fact that they are always there with little effort will make me keep trying to get that elusive "pure stater culture,always will be too much to learn with these frogs and the surrounding disciplines Field,thats what so cool about this hobby
thanks buddy
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:10 pm

RanaVenenosa wrote:
Stu&Shaz wrote:
RanaVenenosa wrote:My springtail staples are carrots, mushrooms, or whatever veggie/fruit needs to be tossed from the fridge.

very similar to what i do Scott,mine predominantly home grown,are you happy with the results you get mate?
thanks
Stu



Hey Stu
Got my coaching from Cindy @ Vivarium Concepts. I have never deviated from her method, so hard to say if I could improve or degrade the success. My new cultures seem to do well and maintain good production regularly as long as I dont "over" harvest.

chao
Scott

thanks again Scott
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:15 pm

Philsuma wrote:Yep...white worms were in ALL my springtail cx's, def charcoal when things were really wet and lots of extra food was present.

Thanks we have never seen them on charcoal,only coco fibre cultures i think its an overfeeding thing Phil,we haven't seen them now for ages in any cultures,only when we first started culturing springs
cheers
Stu

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Philsuma » Sun May 20, 2012 10:19 pm

The white worms needed really wet conditons and really wet / sloppy soft foods like decaying cucumber slices and rotting mushrooms really provided breeding factories for them.

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:21 am

Philsuma wrote:The white worms needed really wet conditons and really wet / sloppy soft foods like decaying cucumber slices and rotting mushrooms really provided breeding factories for them.



this is quite ironic Phil i came back to this thread looking for an answer to this question....does anyone microwave their yeast before feeding?
I also now have,some white worms in one culture,i think from a member of the curbit family i fed way back,seems that little tadpoles love them,so inadvertantly i have found a new live food source for our tads, that i wasn't aware of. I'm going to set up a separate culture of them i think
any help with the above question guys would be much appreciated,
thanks
Stu

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RanaVenenosa
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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby RanaVenenosa » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:06 am

If I have not already stated elsewhere, I since got a culture from Brad (IDPM) which is only coco fiber w some charcoal blocks and it does real good and has yet to show any signs of mites. I toss shrooms, carrots and a few yeast sprinkles. So far it has held up better than my trad Charcoal and water style.
Scott - North Dallas

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby BcsTx » Sun Jun 03, 2012 11:08 am

I have been using watermellon rinds occaisionally, they really get the springs blooming faster than anything else.
I alternate with mushrooms and nutritional yeast.
-Beth

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby frogfreak » Sun Jun 03, 2012 12:15 pm

I started feeding them Reapashy superfly a while back (cause it's handy) and they do well on that too. I think they'll eat just about anything...
Glenn

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Re: Most productive food for springtails

Postby Stu&Shaz » Sun Jun 03, 2012 12:36 pm

RanaVenenosa wrote:If I have not already stated elsewhere, I since got a culture from Brad (IDPM) which is only coco fiber w some charcoal blocks and it does real good and has yet to show any signs of mites. I toss shrooms, carrots and a few yeast sprinkles. So far it has held up better than my trad Charcoal and water style.


I'm not overly settled with the coco fibre cultures, Scot, my always seem shortlived,i can get good numbers but i have to split or it will invariably crash,i seem to be able to sustain our charcoal cultures,with the change of water method for much longer...i would guess species of springtail is all important here
thanks for the imput.
Stu


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