Posts

Showing posts with the label nanaimo

Clean Easy Way to Culture and Harvest Micro worms (Nematodes) for Tropical Fish Fry, Amphibian Larvae etc.

Image
Microworms are a harmless nematode that make a great food for tropical fish fry like guppies, bettas, and amphibian larvae (newts, salamanders and dwarf African aquatic frogs). They are very easy to culture and provide a good volume of live food once cultures are established.  Materials: starter culture of microworms plastic container like a yogurt or margarine container (I prefer the 500mL size as they take up less storage space) lid with small holes in it culture medium (oatmeal, flaked potatoes etc) paper towel cut to size of the container flat wooden stick like a popsicle stick or tongue depressor (or other small piece of food-safe wood) You may notice that yeast is not on the list! If you are starting with a liquid culture, you do not need active yeast. The yeast is just to start brand new cultures that don't have any food for the worms. Once you have a live culture, the tiny amount of media you have them in will start the bacteria, fungi and yeasts to grow in the oatmeal. Tha

Free Fish Food! An Easy Place to Find Free Live Food

Image
Learn how easy it is to attract and collect FREE fish food! Pot worms that can be found in your yard in the Pacific Northwest (BC, Washington & Oregon) make a great food for guppies, tetras, bettas and many other tropical and cold water fish! All you need is a few flat trays, some water, a turkey baster and small collection container. In the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest they are available from November to April. I don’t know the latin name of these yet, but am searching for it.  I believe they are a type of Annelid (segmented) worm. Will share it here when I find it. 

Snails in Your Tank- Ugh! or Yay!

Image
When you get new fish or plants, small mollusk hitchhikers may come in unnoticed. What is your first reaction? For many hobbyists, it's "Ugh! Get rid of those things!"  I hope this post teaches you to pause and rethink your initial reaction to snails (and other things) we have been taught to be worried about. What are the Concerns About Snails in Aquariums? Let's start with some history. I believe the main concern about snails originated from the commercial food fish industry which also translated into the tropical fish trade. Some types of snails can carry parasites that infect some species of fish. These parasites may reduce the growth and success of commercial food fish produced and in high enough numbers can even kill the fish. One example is the ram's horn snail ( Bolbophorus confusus)   that is eaten by and infects catfish that are then eaten by and live in the intestinal tract of White pelicans. The pelicans release parasite eggs back into the catfish ponds

Maternity Guppy Ward and Transferring Fry to Grow Out Tank

Image
  Today we are checking up on our guppy maternity tank.  As our young adult females continue to produce babies, it is time to move some of the the hybrid fry and young fish to another tank to grow up. This also gives more room in the maternity tank to reduce stress on the females and babies. Some of the young are starting to show color. They are moved from a 20 gal tank to a 15 gal tank that was a snail and scud (amphipod / side swimmer) tank.  Enjoy! Here'a 10 day update on the guppy fry! 

Mini Wreath made from Pine Cone Scales!

Image
Of all the things I have made so far, I think this is my favorite! Making mini-crafts are always cool! I love working with the scales. It is like putting a jigsaw puzzle together! I love the rich brown wood texture of the scales. And I find it oddly soothing to pull the scales apart from the pine cones! Kind of like popping little packing bubbles. Here we go!  Materials: sharp scissors glue gun and glue sticks acrylic paint (red, silver) (optional) paintbrush (optional) glitter glue (optional) rings about 7cm-8 cm (3 inches) in diameter (some examples are a canning lid, the rubber from a canning lid, a ring cut out of cardboard, an expired glow in the dark bracelet (from the dollar store) about 40 pine cones scales per mini wreath-scales with patterns on the inside work well if you plan to leave the wreaths natural color. Step 1 Collect and lay out your materials. Step 2 Lay out the scales around your ring. This gives you an idea of how many you need and how you might arrange them. I u

How to Prevent Guppies From Eating Their Babies

Image
If you are interested in raising guppies, there are a few things to know that can reduce or even eliminate them eating the babies in the first few weeks after they are born. This goes well beyond providing them with a breeders box, which is often a cramped space and may actually contribute to the mother's eating the young. If instead, you look at the basic needs of guppies in detail, that can help!  Guppies, like all other animals (mammals, birds, reptile, fish etc) need food, water, shelter and space in the right balance to survive and thrive. When these things are not balanced to the needs of the fish, they can be a significant cause of stress. Genetics can also play a role. Let's look at these factors in detail. Space: Make sure you have a tank that is large enough for the number and size of guppies that you have and will have in the future. If it is not large enough for future population, then have other tanks ready to transfer the growing or adult guppies to.  One thing I

Roly Poly Penguin Decorations made of Redwood and Acorn

Image
Penguins are a fun and easy critter to make with cones. While not a northern bird, most species enjoy a cold (southern) climate. Did you know that most penguin species have all black or mostly back faces? This is not what people tend to depict in their recreations of them. The white face is just so cute! In this project, we are going to try mixing colors of paint to make our own color for the feet! Can you use this chart of 18 penguins to figure out which species I made? Materials: scissors black or white felt pen ribbon for bow and to hang your penguin from the tree  glue gun and glue paintbrush paint pallet or plastic lid or plastic plate acrylic paint: white , black, red and yellow optional: oak acorn cap for hat 2 googly eyes 1 acorn (head) 1 round redwood cone (body) 1 long wide scale from a pine cone (for tail) 2 scales from a pine cone (for feet) 2 maple keys (for wings) Step 1 Collect your materials so they are all nearby. Step 2 Prepare the Redwood so the acorn will sit on it.

Moisture in Cones Can Cause Problems for Crafters: Important Tip for Working with Cones

Image
All materials are subject to the laws of nature. One of those laws is that the behavior of organic material changes depending on the moisture levels in the material and the environment it is in. Moisture levels in the air vary by geographic location, by season, by day and even if the cone is indoors or outdoors. In general, wet materials like wood tend to swell up as they absorb water. When they dry out, they shrink as they lose water. They may also warp. A cone is made of woody material and so is subject to these laws.  The Bottom Line: A cone that is subject to moist or wet conditions absorbs water and closes up over time. A cone that is in a warmer drier environment dries out and opens up. We all know this. One thing we don't all consider is that the moisture level in the air also varies depending on if the craft is made in one environment (indoors or outdoors) and displayed or stored in a different one or sent to a different climate.  How Does this Affect Crafting? When you m

Redwood Cone Reindeer Craft-Buck with antlers and fawn

Image
Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer was a big part of my Christmas growing up. This reindeer is one craft I will be making more of, maybe a team of 8 of them? I love the buck's exaggerated antlers and I thought I was being creative to use the spruce for the buck's chest mane! LOL! Materials:   glue gun and glue sticks sharp scissors one small and one larger redwood cone per deer 4 acorn caps a collection of sticks (for legs and fawn neck) one 2 inch soft spruce cone 3 large pine cone scales (for ears and tail) handful of hemlock cones plastic lid (yogurt or margarine container) red ribbon to make bows or reins for the deer (assuming you want to make a team of them) How to: Start at the head and work your way down the animal, adding the smaller bits at the end. This makes it easier for you to handle the body without breaking off pieces. Step 1 Place two pine cone scales in the cracks so they look like ears. You may need to test a couple of cracks to find the best location. Glue scales