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Old 05-07-2008, 09:08 PM   #1
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Your choice of phyto

What do you prefer to use for phytoplankton? I was using DT's but when I was at an LFS a few days ago a few people talked me into trying Phyto2. They said that DT's was not very good. They said that DTs was mostly dead phytoplankton, promotes a lot of phosphate and creates a lot of algae on the glass.
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:02 PM   #2
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I use DT`s. Does a great job ion my tank. IME It`s a great product. I`ve also used DT`s oyster eggs. Great stuff.
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Old 05-08-2008, 03:14 PM   #3
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Ditto for me on both counts. I'm buying more of each product this weekend. My clam is large enough not to need the phto from DT's, but I still target feed it some. My pods love the stuff too.
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:23 PM   #4
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I think I will stick with the DTs after I finish the phyto2 I bought the other day. No complaints about the Phyto2 except it is more expensive. I get the DT's for $14.95 for the smaller size. Is that about what you are paying too?
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:26 PM   #5
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About the same
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Old 05-08-2008, 11:16 PM   #6
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DT's here. It seem to work great. DT'S PLANKTON FARM - Natural Reef Diet Oyster Eggs & Live Marine Phytoplankton
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Old 05-09-2008, 04:17 AM   #7
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I culture my own Phytoplankton, thus I KNOW its live. Culturing it is simplicity itself; a vessel, sterile saltwater, a sun-like light, Guillard's F/2 formulae and a starter culture.
Some time ago I wrote a six-part series on culturing various freshwater and marine organisms. I reproduce the section on Phytoplankton below.

PHYTOPLANKTON
Equipment
A clean container; glass is better.
Sterile freshwater or marine water
An air pump and airline.
A starter culture
Guillard's F/2 algae nutrient
A turkey baster or eye dropper, depending on the size of your culture
A bright light.

I use five-gallon glass carboys, but you can use any clear container, the size based on your need. Sterilize the culture water by boiling it in a clean pot, then pour it into the container. Mix the water with Guillard's F/2 formulae, the amount based on how much water is used. Use the air pump to put out large moderately slow bubbles out the end of the air line. Place the airline as low as you can get it in the culture vessel.
You'll need a starter culture from a biological supply house. I use lfscultures.com and aquaticeco.com as my sources for starter cultures.
The freshwater algae to look for are Selenastrum, Ankistrodesmus, Scenedesmus, Chlorella and Euglena.
The marine algae to be concerned with are Nanochloropsis, Isochrysis and Tetraselmis.
You can culture two species or more, with a variety better than a single kind.
The starter cultures can come in liquid form or (better) on a petri dish. For the latter, fill the dish with sterile, fertilized water and place it under a moderate light; a window with indirect sunlight is perfect. In about a day the dish should be deep green (or yellow-green, depending on the species). Take a clean cotton swab, rub some off, and dip and shake the end of the swab into your fertilized culture container. Do it until about the dish is empty.
Each species should have its own vessel. Mixing species is ill advised, as some species are better at processing nutrients than others, meaning you'll just have one species in the culture.
Turn on the bright light. I use metal halide pendants, but a T5 or VHO fixture suspended about six or eight inches above the culture will do. Bulbs should be 6700K to 10,000K for optimal growth.
You will see the water turning progressively more and more green. In a week to 10 days, it'll be deep, deep green and ready to harvest some.
I use a turkey baster. Any you remove replace with more sterile water. As long as the culture is kept bright and the removed water is replaced with fertilized culture water, the culture can be kept going indefinitely.
In a future installment you'll learn all you can do with that green water.


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Old 05-09-2008, 03:22 PM   #8
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Another great post Dave!

Wish I had the room and time to culture some.
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Old 05-09-2008, 03:30 PM   #9
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I use DTs also. I have cultured my own but ran out of space and wasn't using it as much so I stopped. I'm thinking about starting up again.
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Old 05-09-2008, 06:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmor1701d View Post
Another great post Dave!

Wish I had the room and time to culture some.
Thanks cmor, I appreciate the kind words. I could reproduce my whole culture manuel, but its pretty long, around 10,000 words. Covered green algae, phytoplankton, infusoria, rotifers, microworms, brine shrimp (to adults), white, Grindal, California black and small red worms, fruit flies, Daphnia and Mysis. Stayed away from the really challenging stuff, like tubifex, penaeid (aka white) shrimp, Hawaiian red shrimp, freshwater mysis, as I felt the brackish mysis species would be difficult enough for the average culturer.

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