Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Culturing

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What do you put in your Fruit Fly Cultures ?

Nothing
0
No votes
Excelsior
35
67%
Coffee Filter
11
21%
Other (Please post description in the thread)
6
12%
 
Total votes: 52

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Philsuma
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Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Culturing

Postby Philsuma » Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:52 pm

At Andy's recent meet, I got a chance to speak with Jeremy Huff about using coffee filters in Fruit Fly cultures, and I'm convinced to give it a try.

I went several years using Excelsior and then I stopped and went without anything in the Cultures for about a year, in order to see if there was a difference.

I think there was. While a little messy and some small addtional cost, I think excelsior increased my FF producton and made the overall process easier to deal with and even clean up.

Jeremy is using recycled brown Coffee Filters, which are easier and cheaper to obtain - Grocery Store as opposed to mail order. He reports that some flies even seem to ingest the filter, especially Drosophila buzzatii.

I'm going to take a look see....

frogface
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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby frogface » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:03 pm

I use coffee filters mainly because I don't have to fish out pieces falling into the ff cup and worry that I didn't get it all and my frogs are going to eat it and die. But that's just me :p

Someone (Shawn?) posted on DB that he's switched to cardboard. Did I read that right? I might try that.
Do you know where your frogs have been?

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby DKOOISTRA » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:08 pm

Dumb question, exactly what is the purpose of the excelsior/coffee filter? Its just always something I've always done because I was told to, but, I really dont think I've seen a post explaining what its function is? Sorry if the questions off topic...thought I'd throw it out there (3-4 years in this and I still dont know that one :roll: ). So for no other reason, I have to vote excelsior.
Derek
1.5 kids and a bunch of frogs

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:20 pm

Some form of "filler" in the center of the cup acts as added space that flies can occupy instead of just the side and underside of the lid. It increases surface area and living room.

It also increases space for the larvae to pupate on - increasing the hatch or yield.

It presents as a barrier to minimize some contact - Flies do actually fight !

It acts as a wick and allows some moisture to be held in the media or bottom part of the cup a little better.

It embeds itself in the media and when clean-up time comes, you can grip it like a plug and pull most of the media out by the excelsior.

It helps with shipping - adds stability to the cup / packing.

DKOOISTRA
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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby DKOOISTRA » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:25 pm

All good reasons and now I know, thanks Phil.
Dont forget "d3's" easter grass too, made 10 cultures again with it last night...:)
1.5 kids and a bunch of frogs

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby D3monic » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:47 pm

lol, yes the easter grass. To answer you previous question on the use of PINK grass and its effects on culture production I can only say that this last batch was the highest concentration I have ever produced. I am having trouble harvesting them quick enough.....that and I just ran out of FF cups. I ordered 100 and a 100 tadpole cups and got sent 200 tadpole cups, Doh! I might be looking at a crash soon since I can not make more....I better order some cups quick before its too late.

Image

this was like day one



I use the coffee filters too, I find that the easter grass gets weighed down easily from the moisture and the coffee filters will wick it instead.
"He that is slow to believe anything and everything is of great understanding, for belief in one false principle is the beginning of all unwisdom" LaVey

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby DKOOISTRA » Mon Mar 21, 2011 4:56 pm

Its a swarm, run for it...
1.5 kids and a bunch of frogs

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby dtfleming » Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:12 pm

LOL, thats funny, I have just been using excelsior, I may have to give coffee filters a try
Dendrobates, Phyllobates, Rantiomeya, Epipedobates
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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:18 pm

What else is in the Culture Cups along with that Easter Grass ? Looks like a Coffee filter as well.

Do the larvae ever pupate on the grass ?

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby JJuchems » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:30 pm

I use excelsior and coffee filters. Why not a both option Phil?
Later and Happy Frogging,
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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:45 pm

JJuchems wrote:I use excelsior and coffee filters. Why not a both option Phil?


Together in the same cup ?

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby D3monic » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:49 pm

yea its easter grass and coffee filters. They do pupate on the grass. Not so much the filters though. I still have bags from last easter when they went on sale the week after for $0.25 a bag.
"He that is slow to believe anything and everything is of great understanding, for belief in one false principle is the beginning of all unwisdom" LaVey

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby JJuchems » Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:51 pm

Yep, checkout page 67 in my book. Filters on the sides and excelsior in the center.
Later and Happy Frogging,
Jason Juchems

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:14 pm

Interesting stuff here...

Why the "double use" Jason ? What processes are you gunning for by using 2 items together ?

The excelsior is nice because it gets slightly tamped into the media and as long as you "groom" it slightly before adding - remove the little bits and the dust ect...then the Excelsior does not shake out into the Dusting Cup not matter how hard you tap or shake it.Well, some excelsior may get tapped into the dusting cup, but not too much IMO.

Coffee filters don't "Tamp" well...and often get dislodged and pop out when you go to tap out flies ect. Not nearly as well "behaved" as Excelsior.

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JJuchems
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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby JJuchems » Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:26 pm

I have had coffee filters collapse and kill cultures prematurely (my opinion). However I like how filter absorb extra moister while creating a nice moist place for maggots. The filters are a nice extra place for pupa. It hold the excelsior nicely.
Later and Happy Frogging,
Jason Juchems

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Jeremy Huff » Tue Mar 22, 2011 10:26 am

Hey Phil
Good seeing you Sunday, but you slipped out without a bye.

I switch back and forth. I like coffee filters for buzzatti because the larva eat all of it. Turkish gliders also seem to do better on it. Hydei eat it but they need something more stable IMO

I have tried screen bot aluminum and fiberglass. They work great as perches but the cultures dry out quicker. Shawn said he switched to cardboard and I am going to give that a shot today for buzzatti. I like the idea of two different types so will try with filters and cardboard.

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:36 pm

Good to See you too, Jeremy.

Yeah....my exits are sometimes like that. It's an issue, with me.

The packing material is often dependent on surrounding condtions such as temperature, humidity, altitude ect. One person may get great results with a certain type, like Excelsior and others not at all, so much so, that they eschew the use of any packing material whatsoever.

Different strokes for different folks. Overall, I'd still have to say, that Excelsior helps most people.

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby jig1 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 4:20 pm

I lean more towards excelsior but I have had some good booming cultures from coffee filter cultures. I voted for excelsior but after reading this thread it got me thinking of the coffee filter "booms" I had which was more then the recent excelsior cultures I am using. Maybe it was the warmer weather of summer. But this thread has me thinking of maybe doing excelsior and coffee filter cultures at the same time for a long period of time to see.

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby Philsuma » Sun Mar 27, 2011 10:04 am

Wow....nobody just uses the plain media and nothing else ?

I'm pretty sure Scott M (MD) makes @ 40 cultures a week and doesn't use anything. That would probably be for utilitarian reasons and expedition, I would think.

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Re: Poll - Excelsior, Coffee Filter ect for Fruit Fly Cultur

Postby edwardsatc » Sun Mar 27, 2011 11:37 am

Phil, I've tried just plain media a few times over the years. The problem I've always encountered is that a large percentage pupae end up in the media and don't hatch.

I've also tried cardboard, easter moss, raffia, plastic scrubbies, and just plain old coffee filters. In my experience, cardboard has always led to a high percentage of cultures with excess mold growth. Easter moss did poorly, probably because the maggots don't tend to pupate on it and it does nothing for regulating humidity. Same can be said for the scrubbies. Raffia provided more surface area for the pupae, but doesn't wick very much moisture. Coffee filters alone always seem to eventually collapse and "smother" the developing culture.

For me, the best production has been from a combination of excelsior and coffee filters. The excelsior provides additional surface area for pupation and a framework that doesn't collapse onto the media. The coffee filters wick excess moisture from the media and increase humidity near the top of the culture cup.

Just some observations from many, many years of trial and error.

Donn


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