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Heating my entire room or just FF cultures ?
#1
I'm looking for a way to keep my fruit flies cultures warmer and possible my whole room. But running the house at 70 will KILL my bills....

Any thoughts? My Lab stays about 65 degrees in the winter, sometimes lower.
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#2
I put up a dividing wall in the basement a couple of years ago and heated that room only with a space heater. I also added a humidifier set at 50% RH.
Glenn
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#3
Doesnt a space heater eat up a lot of electricity?
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#4
Have you had any adverse effects so far in those temps? I've had my bug room at 64 average (sometime colder) for a bit now and the fliers slow way down . Production, while slowed has not gone down. I find it a plus all around.
I'm not a bug guy, so if there are any real bad effects to the mid-60's I'd like to hear them.
Side note. It's good to swing lows into the mid 60's for many of our dart species for good chunks out of the year.

Rich
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

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#5
So far the only major adverse effect I have seen is almost NO fruit fly production Sad My flies are not producing fast enough. My cultures have large ammounts of dead flies and loose pupae casings in them.

I talked to Preston over at SouthEasternFF's and he thinks that the temp is slowing my production and killing the flies off.

Also, my frogs are much less active these months, but I expected that from the temps.

Funny thing is, my Isos, Bean Beetles, and springs are all booming out of control regardless of the temps.


Whatacha think RichFrye? Am I missing something or do I need to up the temp?
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#6
I'm not positive if there's not a better way, but I definitely don't see lots of dead flies. Slow production does not bother me at all, as long as total output is the same, which it seems to be.
The main thing is the fliers and unwanted other bugs seem to be almost non -existent, big plus.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

My new email address is: rich.frye@icloud.com and new phone number is 773 577 3476
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#7
EntoCraig Wrote:Doesnt a space heater eat up a lot of electricity?

It's not a big room and is well insulated. That and I'm only raising the temps a few degrees. If your flies are not developing at 65F I would say the cultures are drying out. I doubt the temps are the issue. Lower temps should just slow them down, like Rich said. Before I had the wall up my production was slower, but I still had a humidifier going so they didn't dry out. I'm guessing Rich doesn't have a humidity problem. He has a gizillion tanks. :lol:
Glenn
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#8
Bear in mind dry winter conditions always hurt culture production. Summers are great...winters...not so much so.

You could try to place the FF cxs high in the room near the ceiling where it should be @ 5 degrees warmer.

Steady temperatures of @ 77F are optimal for FF production.

65F is probably partly to blame....then add winter dryness problems.
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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#9
Humidity seems the major issue. I always have to add more water to the cultures in the winter, which seems to keep them from drying out .
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

My new email address is: rich.frye@icloud.com and new phone number is 773 577 3476
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#10
Thanks folks, this is helping a lot. Do I just mist my cultures or should I add more water on startup? Currently I'm mixing 1/4 media with 1/2 cup of water.
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#11
Measurements are no good......FF media is made by "hand"..or..."eyeball".

Here's how I do mine:

1. HOT water...almost a boil.

2. Powdered media...the finer the powder, the better. I also use a small "silver bullet" blender to make sure it's fine. Larvae appreciate the fine-ness and it helps keep the culture more moist.

3. Keep adding hot water and stirring thoroughly until you have a moist applesauce consistency and then....add a little more water.

It's Mad Science sometimes....trial and error....everyone's recipe is different. Everyone's frog room / FF location and related temps and humd is....different too.

4. Let it set up and cool slightly and look at it again...is it too solid ? If so ..add a little more water.
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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#12
Oh...use excelsior...it has wicking properties and somehow works wonders with keeping some moisture in the center of the cup which is essential.

Use 32 oz plastic....not glass, culture containers.
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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#13
Sounds like we make our cultures just about the same. I'll keep playing with it and watching the cultures more carefully to see if I can see any patters in moisture loss, etc.

Thanks again for the help.
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#14
Philsuma Wrote:Measurements are no good......FF media is made by "hand"..or..."eyeball".

Maybe for you. Tongue

Me, if it isn't measured and documented it didn't exist. :wink: My work carries over into my hobby. It's much easier IMO to document everything, so you can go back and reference it later. That and only change one thing at a time or you won't know what helped or hindered what you were trying to accomplish.
Glenn
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#15
The recipe remains exactly the same (once you find your favorite mix) except for the water/vinegar mix which goes up or down with less or more humidity.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

My new email address is: rich.frye@icloud.com and new phone number is 773 577 3476
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#16
RichFrye Wrote:The recipe remains exactly the same (once you find your favorite mix) except for the water/vinegar mix which goes up or down with less or more humidity.

Agreed, It's getting there that needs to be tracked. What did I do last time will make it way to hard...
Glenn
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#17
I generally change the water amount as soon as my heat goes on for the season. At that time my ambient RH in my basement/frog rooms goes from about 60-70% to 30-40%. When that happens I make my pre-solidified soup from somewhat able to see texture/flakes to no texture/very smooth. I don't ever measure my water, I go by how it looks and moves before it sets in the cup. I'm sure there in an exact ratio that works best for me, it's just in my head as opposed to written down.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

My new email address is: rich.frye@icloud.com and new phone number is 773 577 3476
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#18
I was referring to dry ingredients and testing out new mixes.
Glenn
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#19
Gotcha.
Darts with parasites are analogous to mixed tanks, there are no known benefits to the frogs with either.


If tone is more important to you than content, you are at the wrong place.

My new email address is: rich.frye@icloud.com and new phone number is 773 577 3476
Reply
#20
Way back, I used to try to stick to dry and wet ingredient measurements...make everything the same. But that was long ago and when I was making @ 5-10 cxs/week or so. Before I dismantled my frog room and was ramped up to @30-40 cx's/every Sunday...I threw the "scientific ingredient measurement procedure" out da window and just did everything by hand / eyeball. To each their own though...we only can report on what works best for each of us.

It started to remind me of that Ben Stiller movie where he suddenly realizes that taking the throw pillows off the bed each night and replacing them in the morning costs him 3 days of his life every year...lol

Heck I used to throw some old green unused pasta and stale sugar cereal that my GF wouldn't eat into the blender rather than the trash...and then into the FF media storage tub it went !
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