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Microfauna needs to Breathe !
#1
Just lost a few deli cups of dwarf white isopods due to sealing up the lids to prevent FF from coming in the holes.

All microfauna should have fabric ventilated tops IMO - just like for FF cx's. They need oxygen.
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#2
My springtails are kept in containers (not specifically airtight but without holes) that i open everyday and blow into to remove CO2. But I've had a large culture collapse for no reason though i assume its due to lack of oxygen.
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#3
Ive had a few larger white woodlice cultures suffocate.

All the bugs found dead on the surface looking like a nuclear disaster. Kept in sealed tupperware and media filling about 80% of the container.

I now have weed blocker covering a series of 1/8" holes on all my cultures and try and leave about 50% empty.
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#4
It's possible my cultures have not been setup for long enough, but I have a Orange and Giant Canyons culturing for about 5 months in sterilite shoeboxes with drilled 1" vent holes covered with filter paper hot glued to the lid. I saw this on a forum post somewhere (can't remember where) so I figured I would give it a go. Here's what they look like:
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The filter paper has held up well so I have not had to change it out yet. I open the lids about once a week. No observed escapees Smile

I used a similar concept for the tops to the storage bins I use for storing my FF cultures. I don't want the kids getting near the mite paper, so I keep the cultures buttoned up in an opaque storage bin with a vented top. This has worked out well too. No FF crashes, but I do open these bins daily.
Jim from Austin --- Lorenzo keepers PM me about a US breeding program
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#5
Nice. I always like to have that cloth (FF Cup) ventilation holes and otherwise tightly sealed. You do NOT want stray FF crawling inside and mite-ing up everything.
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#6
Fly cultures need good airflow or they will develop mold and production will suffer for lack of oxygen. Ventilation is a must. You can't seal up bugs in airtight boxes or enclosures.
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#7
On the other hand, if you leave a springtail culture cracked for air, when ants invade your house looking for water, they will be on the springs "like old people on a Las Vegas buffet," to quote my husband. Gotta love living in a drought.

RIP my year-old culture. Husband kept suggesting trying to salvage it but I have no idea what nasties those ants brought in so no.

Thankfully it's not like they're difficult to find or challenging to culture; I've already ordered replacement supplies. This time I think I'll drill some holes in the shoebox and glue some ant-proof mesh over them.
A girl named Joey.
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#8
I put mite paper under all insect cultures. I would hope ants would avoid mite paper, or die on it.
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#9
Also...tight lids with fabricote breaths (holes) = no way mites or especially ants are getting in!
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#10
Philsuma Wrote:I put mite paper under all insect cultures. I would hope ants would avoid mite paper, or die on it.

You have NO IDEA. These things are so plentiful and persistent even a moat wouldn't hold them off entirely. They came in through the bathroom yards and yards down the hall and paraded all the way down the carpet under my door and into the bathroom. We call these events "antpocalypses" and nothing short of spraying the hell out of everything takes care of them.

There's actually a scientific paper about ants preying on springtails that my husband found after all this, but I don't know the link and can't attach the PDF. He said there were waves of springtails in the culture just swirling around and around trying to avoid the ants.
A girl named Joey.
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#11
Phil, Joey, I asked a friend here for some help,he pretty clued up regarding science type products. I wanted an easy to fix vent for my springtail cultures,that was mite proof,it was inspired by something I read stateside. I am still using the simple charcoal/yeast method,but in ever bigger containers,I'm doing ok I suppose,others that see paint a different picture,the phase OMG is often uttered when I show them a seriously producing culture. But therein has been my problem,when I get those stupidly dense cultures ,feeding to keep up means I'm having to open at least every other day or they will suffocate,it's a given.

These little vents are used to grow orchids,tissue culture i guess,simply drill an 8mm hole,I guess 1/4" in the container. Remove all the burrs stick one on. I place this around 3/4 of the way down one side of the container figuring CO2 heavier than air and have not had one crash since,even the silly ones where I can barely see the charcoal for beasties don't crash,how ever hard I've tried to overfeed(obviously within reason) Now these vents won't even let fungal spores through,so providing the ants don't eat through,which I can't be sure on,joey these should help. Naturally they will also allow gas exchange so the sprigs will always have fresh air to breath. O ne vent per culture seems fine so far. I've been using for some months now,and would recomend then without question ,now knowing what they do for us. For iso again i'm unsure if the feeder might munch them but for springtails,brilliant.

i'm sure you'll be able to find something over there,I have a feeling Chuck linked something similar:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/251309139267? ... EBIDX%3AIT

seeya

Stu
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#12
Bump ...
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