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Thread: Caddisfly Larvae
03-29-2011, 01:44 PM #11
Okay, but why is there just a blank box with nothing showing in it, and why doesn't anything come up when I right-click on the red x in the little corner box? Shouldn't there be some kind of graphic or picture in that blank box? I'm just wondering why right clicking on it doesn't do anything? Left clicking just brings up the log-in page for fishy eggs.
-- mermaid20 gal. high: planted; 3 white cloud minnows, several RCS, 2 blue shrimp, 5 Amano shrimp, several snails; AC50, Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 7 rosy barbs, 2 glofish,, 1 zebra danio, 1 rosy red (fathead) minnow, 2 dojo loaches, several snails; AC110 x 2.
04-30-2011, 07:55 AM #12Junior Member Guppy
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
- Chiang Mai, Thailand
Hi all, I am a new face in this community, from Chiang Mai, Thailand. I am interested to rear those caddisfly larvae in my lab too. I could carry these insect from the mountain by earthenware or clay-vessel to keep temperature cold. But I am looking to constract the cold-system flow aquarium for them. If some of you has any suggestion, please do so. Thank you!
05-12-2011, 07:10 AM #13
Mermaid--whoops, I missed your post. I don't know what to suggest about the image...sorry about that!
Chitcol--Welcome! With the caddisflies I have been raising, I have had a few experiences that may be useful to you. First of all, you should know that according to my research (which has held true for the caddisflies I've raised), about 1/3 will die in captivity, despite any efforts on your part. I've lose 2 out of my original 3, but I believe that at least one of them did not have adequate food resources. One of them is still alive--I had made the mistake of entirely removing the caddisfly from his casing, which I since learned was inappropriate. However, he has been alive since mid to late March and has grown an additional half of his original body length!
The water would ideally be kept cold, as you've mentioned--I do not have the set-up for that, but I've accommodated the additional heat by running more oxygen into the water. I have a caddisfly from the Family Limnephiledae, and he has been unable to re-build a new casing. I suspect this is either due to damage to his caudal hooks from case-removal originally, or due to a lack of current. Some members of Limnephiledae need substantial current to be able to rebuild their cases. He has not built, regardless of the size of substrate added.
I currently have an air pump running water through an air stone, creating a large amount of fine bubbles. My container is approximately 2-3 gallons large, which would be about 7.5 to 11 liters (litres). I also have a circulation pump that is marketed for terrariums for snakes, turtles, etc. This is what has kept my current caddisfly alive! It's very important. He has latched onto the water intake vent, where current/oxygenation are at their greatest, and this is also the place where leaf litter and plant debris has accumulated and been trapped, providing easy access to food. As you know, caddisflies are shredders and will consume large amounts of leaf material/plant material. I have been providing leaves that I allow to sit in dechlorinated water in a window for several days or weeks. This allows the tannic acids, humic acids, dissolved organic nitrogen, dissolved organic phosphorus, and fulvic acids to leach out into the water from the leaves (known as leachate, collectively). This also allows hyphomycetes fungi and bacteria to collect on the leaves and add to their nutritional value. I then suction the leaves out and inject them into the tank for the caddisfly.
I have also occasionally added algae pellets to the tank, as these have been consumed (although I think it is more the fact that they grow fungi in about a day to two days and this is what is the primary attractor).
From my work in the limnology laboratories, I have worked with several simulated streams. These are typically constructed from PVC pipes cut in half, and they use circulation pumps and tubing to uptake water from one end of the piping and transfer it to the other end. Leaf packs are constructed from leaves in onion bags (plastic mesh bags) and allowed to leach their dissolved organic matter into dechlorinated tubs before being added to the caddisfly tank. These provide the food source.
I have been changing the water in my tank occasionally, due to its small size. However, the small amount of waste produced by a single caddisfly has made this less necessary recently. As you know, caddisflies are water quality indicator species and are very sensitive to pollution of any kind.
I have found that my caddisflies undulate their bodies (wiggle from side to side) more when there is insufficient current, as they are oxygenating their gills through this motion. The undulations are less frequent when the caddisflies are closer to the circulation pump or airstone.
You will have the best luck finding caddisflies in the headwaters (low order streams), as they need large amounts of leaves in order to shred and feed. As stream order increases, the size of the leaf particles decrease as they are processed, and eventually there is not enough for caddisflies to feed on.
You should be aware that caddisflies will consume large amounts of leaves! More than you might expect, and I've had some of mine die due to lack of food. I did have the one survive because he was able to feed off the algae and fungi that accumulated on his case, which was placed in the tank with him after it was removed. It is a tree bark case, so he may have eaten some of the bark as well.
Also, I have found that a few resources have been very helpful for me. The books "Larvae of the North American Caddisfly Larvae" by Glenn B. Wiggins and "How to Know the Aquatic Insects" by Dennis M. Lehmkuhl have been helpful. There is a book called "Caddisflies: the Underwater Architects" also by Glenn B. Wiggins that I've been meaning to read, as well.
I will post pictures of my tank below when I get my camera working. Good luck! I will let you know how long my caddisfly larva survives...hopefully to pupation!
Last edited by lotus flower; 05-12-2011 at 07:23 AM.
07-04-2014, 12:22 PM #14Junior Member Guppy
- Join Date
- Jul 2014
Sorry to revive an old thread but I am looking to keep caddisfly larvae as part of a University Project and was hoping you guys might have some insight,
Firstly what should I feed them? I have read that diatoms are their main diet though I see that leaves were suggested in this thread,
Secondly is it a complete no go to take them out of their cases? I am doing a study that includes them self marking using different coloured substrates, would it be best for me to just leave their old case and let them add to it rather than trying to remove them completely from their case and getting them to start anew?