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 Caresheet: Flightless Fruitfly Culture

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Registration date : 2008-02-05

PostSubject: Caresheet: Flightless Fruitfly Culture   2/6/2008, 9:05 pm

well i finally made time for this. I have done a lot of research on fruitfly culture but now that I have never STARTED one myself. I was given an old fruitfly culture back in early summer and have managed to keep it alive since...untill refcently when I left it in my car and I killed all my culture. Lucky for me I saved about 30 or so FF and they have managed to breed. I will start this off with a little tip. FF from petco work fine for this BUT they seem to die off really easily in their container. You can purchase the fruitflies from petco (make sure they are alive) or purchase them online. Online you might get your self a culture that will last longer than the petco cultures but if your are low on money and don't want to hassle with shipping and ect. This is a goodway to do so. Remember this is like a cookbook make your own recipe.


What you need
1. Fruitflies: there are different species of FF out there and the're are different variants of FF as well. For example D.melanogaster comes in two variety. Flighless and wingless. They both don't fly but if you interbreed them (well same species) you will get some that will fly. So choose your flies carefully since they come in different sizes. WHERE DO YOU GET FFF? well You can order them online or at Petco.
2. Food: Larvae eat the media and the adults eat Yeast growing on the side of the container. You can purchase the media (will grow yeast by it self) online sometime requiring only adding water. There are different recipes for the media. Experiment and see what works for you.The basic components you need are: 1. Filler carbohydrate (potato flakes, cornmeal, etc.) These ingredients are cheap and make up the bulk of the media. It provides food for the larvae and yeast. 2. Sugar (powdered sugar, molasses, fruit) These more potent energy sources also provides food for the larvae and yeast. 3. Mold inhibitors or preservatives (methyl paraben, calcium propionate, vinegar, etc.) These keep molds from developing prematurely in your culture. 4. Vitamin/protein additives. (brewer’s yeast, spirulina). These add protein and a rich assortment of vitamins to the media. Vitamin/protein additives are not essential, but highly recommended.
3. Containers. You can choose whatever containers suit you but remember to have ventilahtion. In my experiance the Petco cultures die due to lack of ventilation. So I suggest bug cups(deli cups with airholes and a mesh screen to prevent escapes) you can get delicups anywhere. If you can't find bug cups (try asking the mom & pop petshops they usually just throw them away). Buy some delicups at Smart&Final and buy some coffey filters(you'll need these anyways). Drill the holes onto the delicups try to make them small and use cut up a coffey filter to fit the lid so that you don't get any escapes. Most FF cultures have a little sponge cork. You will get it when you purchase you FF culture from petco(SAVE IT). Drill a bigger hole in the middle of the container (smaller than the sponge and you now have a way to pour out the little flies without them escaping everywhere.





4.Excelsior: Basicly the little stringy thing that comes with your FF culture. All it is is shreded aspen.You can use the same one just transfer it into containers. If you can not get excelsior you can use coffey filters. But remember certain FF species prefer excelsior and will thrive better with it.



WHAT TO DO
Now that you have your materials add the media to the bug cup. Set up as many verical and horizontal set-ups with your coffey filter or Excelsior. Add the fruitflies(try not to get them everwhere). And put the lid on. Let them breed for at least a week before harvesting. And keep them under constant heat of about 85F. How long your FF culture last is complety dependent on your recipe for the media. So experiment. It should be able to at least last 6 weeks.
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