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Thread: Plankton Without Green Water?

  1. #1
    herring_fish's Avatar
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    Plankton Without Green Water?

    I know that there are several areas that would get me in trouble so I would like you to think about this with a fresh eye and then give me the brutal truth about what would and would not work in your opinion.

    I am looking for a simpler way to grow cultures that wouldnít require green water which is fairly high maintenance, particularly because of the frequent crashes. I am also looking for a way that others could find more reasonable to pursue, if they want to spend a little extra money

    I am getting some top flight technical support in an effort to find formula that could do as good or better than using green water. I can't talk about it because my help would be inundated with inquiries. Therefore let's make the dubious assumption that I will have something worked out soon and let's move past that point for now.

    There is one fly in the ointment however. Knowing some of what I will use, I have a concerned about water quality issues which might creep in and make it even harder to grow cultures.

    So....How can we get around this potential drawback in a simple way? How about the old algae scrubber in a simpler form?

    Off the top of my head, my first design ideas starts with a small to medium tank. I would add a removable black plastic plate about 2 or 3 inches from and parallel to the glass at the end of the tank.

    It would go from front to back but would not reach the bottom and not go all the way to the water level. A bubble bar, place between the plate and the glass would forms a wall of bubbles that should cause a gentle role of the water in the tank and should agitate the algae strands to break down the boundary layers. Hopefully this would increase the efficiency of the algal growth and nutrient uptake.

    An inexpensive but strong light, like a curly compact florescent, shines through the glass and the bubbles to illuminate a plate that would grow algae. This would help to keep the water quality high. The black plastic would help shield the rest of the tank from the light. The plate would be pulled out, scraped cleaned and replaced about once every week. If it is scored enough, a screen would not be required. Alternately, the plate could be fixed and a screen could be used in front of the plate.

    Another option would be to put sand on the bottom of the tank. This could simply build a bed for pathogens but I donít want to rule it out without thinking it through.

    At first, this seems like just a food trap but a deep sand bed could provide further support for water quality. Several years ago, when I was using a powdered product to grow brine shrimp, they would swim down to feed right off of the bottom. Do you think that rotifers would do the same thing? I donít think so either.

    The sand could be stirred up periodically to release bacteria. Perhaps this could be done just before harvest time and at the same time as adding final vitamin enrichment. Of course bacteria could be a two edged sword which could causes the culture to crash.

    Along with the positive bacteria, my formula and the rotifers there would be quite a wide spectrum of critters in that soup.

    This is frowned on but it would be nice to cycle main tank water through this system. I would like to draw off 1/2 to 2/3 of the culture tank and pour it straight into the main tank. That same amount would be drawn from the main tank to refill the culture tank for the next cycle. I have heard that starting with clean tap or RO salt water makes for less pathogens but perhaps the scrubber would help the overall water quality enough to allow this.

    Please give this some thought and feed back.
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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    I can only comment on the scrubber. I don't think the bubbles will work; just use a regular scrubber above it, draining into it.

  3. #3
    herring_fish's Avatar
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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    I am trying not to use a pump which might cut down on the survival rate. "They" always say to use a tube without an air stone. Gentle bubbles are normally suppose to cause a gentle role of the water volume, but I haven't used an air pump in about 18 years and haven't raised rotifers.

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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    Just screen out the rotifers.

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    herring_fish's Avatar
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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    How?

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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    Just use a regular pump, with a screen on the intake.

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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    Hi all,

    I used to manage a university aquaculture research lab. we raised marine rotifers (plicatilis) in a 20 gallon tank with heavy aeration and only algae growing in a thick layer on the sides of the tank as a means of filtration (an in the tank algae scrubber). It works great for low density culture. I fed the rotifers once perday with a mixture of baking yeast (live) and spirulina powder disoled in about 4oz. of fresh water. Let the solution set a few minutes to activate the yeast.

    Best fishes,

    Paul
    Aquaculture consultant

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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    So that worked? Hmmmm Very simple. I think that I could do that.
    Thankyou

    Oh ...Did the culture crash periodically because of other contaminants building up? Did you have to do periodic maintenance to prevent this?

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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    I did not have any crashes that I recall. The algae layer coating the inside of the tank kept the water clean.
    The most important thing is not to over feed the tank with yeast.
    If you need to just do a partial water change. I used Instant ocean.
    Start with small feedings of yeast/spirulina and slowly increase as the rotifer population grows.
    Best fishes,
    Paul

  10. #10
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    Re: Plankton Without Green Water?

    What is Green Water?

    Otherwise, I think your plan would work fine if you instead cover that plate with multiple layered rough screen.

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