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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So after many inquires and a lot of information flying around. I decided to finally build a large pod farm. I have raised pods successfully before and I want to use my knowledge to build a bigger, better, and more successful setup.

This can be used to help maintain a Mandarin, Seahorses, Or anything that requires any sort of pods.

Below is what I built and why I built it that way. I hope to help some of you guys out with this!
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
These are the materials.

1 - 10 gallon aquarium
2 - Sheets of 30"x30" corrugated plastic.
1 - Air pump
1 - Large air stone
1 - Air line


A 10 gallon aquarium is like $10. The sheets of corrugated plastic ran me $7.99 a piece. The air pump is less than $15. The air stone can run anywhere from $1 to $10 depending on the type. I got a large one that cost $6.99 (No reason for it, two regular air stones will do the same thing.) and air line is around $0.20 a foot.

All said and done this setup if you went to the store would cost about $50.. Most everyone has a spare tank and a spare air pump and air line. Personally, I put about $25 into this..


 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Cut each piece of corrugated panel across the corrugation. I chose 3 inch strips because this would give me 3 inch long "tunnels". Enough to house pods and amphipods in the security of their very own "apartments". Big enough for them to feel secure and reproduce, but not too big that these tunnels would be hard to clean if they got clogged.





 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Cut each strip into 5 inch sections, this allows them to fit into the tank and gives you enough of them to fill the tank lengthwise. Also chamfer the edges so they aren't so sharp.





 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Each 5" x 3" "Card" has about 21 tunnels. And there are about 125 cards per rack which squeezes in a 10 gallon tank nicely. They need to be a bit tight in the tank since the cards tend to float. You can easily remove a single card without loosening the rack. Thus, once populated you can take out a card full of pods and distribute them where they are needed. Whether that be a display tank or a refugium.

This rack has 2625 tunnels for pods to reproduce in. And more than one pod can occupy a tunnel. You could easily fit several dozen copepods in a tunnel. And/or several amphipods.





 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
There is no filter since a filter would just remove the pods food source, and kill the pods at the same time.

The air stone is simply for flow and a bit of gas exchange.

Benthic pods (The kind that Mandarins eat. Ex: tisbe biminiensis) will use all the surface area in this setup to reproduce and live in. I used to have completely bare tanks for cultivating my pods. This made it easy to maintain, but hard to get the pods out and move them where they are needed. Having "cards" should make it much easier to move the pods where you want, while also providing a safe place for them to live.

The cards do not go very high in the tank. This is to facilitates water changes. Most pods occupy the sides or bottom of the tank. Some do live in the water column (tangerine and tiger pods) but they are large and easily filtered out while changing the water. This setup leaves room at the top to dip a pitcher or something in and remove old water without disturbing the pod population.

Also the water is not very high in the tank due to the water stone. Having a water stone will cause a lot of salt creep, so the lower the water level, the better.

If you have any questions feel free to ask.
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I got the corrugated plastic from Lowes. It in the same area as lexan/plexiglas. In the industrial world it's used to made reusable corrugated boxes. Like he trays they use to sort mail, storage boxes, etc etc. Anything that can be made out of regular cardboard they can make out of this instead because it's more durable and waterproof. Its sold at home improvement stores to made panels for greenhouses, home projects, or whatever...

Its just good for pods because it has a ton of surface area for pods to live.

That tank would give me about 900 square inches of surface area.

The rack.... Just one rack of 125 cards gives me over 4000 square inches of usable surface area...
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Can you explain the low level of water in aquarium off to the right of your project?

Its a reptile paludarium. It houses a Chinese water dragon, A mountain horned dragon, and an emerald swift. There are a bunch of freshwater fish, crabs, and crayfish.

This picture if from early this year, it now has a third overhead light. A homemade rain system/auto top off. And a 24/7 data logging system.

I made it many years ago and I have yet to make a better setup than this.

That blue box and rectangular thing on the right of the picture is a flow through baby guppy tank. One of them had 18 babies and that's what they were raised in for a few months.
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well. The shipment of Copepods/Amphipods mix came in. Unfortunately Reefs2Go set me pretty much all Amphipods. If I were to be generous.. I would say that they sent me 800 Amphipods and 1 Copepod. I haven't seen the copepod yet... I was supposed to get 2000 Amphipods/Copepods mixed.. Supposed to....

Anyway.. The design works! They do seek out shelter within the cards. And you can take the cards out with the amphipods inside.

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This is where I put the tank. Its underneath my DT. And it fits nicely.




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Here are the Amphipods all snuggled up inside the cards. Also, if you notice I decided to float the cards. Its easier. I just put a leftover strip of corrugated plastic behind them to keep the cards from floating around.






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Here was what I got from removing a card. I couldn't take a picture of the amphipods next to the card because the just swam back in. So I put them in a dish.




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Here you can see they still haven't moved throughout the tank yet and there are a few hundred at the one end.

 

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Thx for sharing. And following up. I may play off this design. Have few experments going right now. One without heat just to see.
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thx for sharing. And following up. I may play off this design. Have few experments going right now. One without heat just to see.
Without heat can slow down reproduction if it's too low. I ran my Tisbe Pod culture at 72F and it worked just fine.

From now on, whether it's Copepod or Amphipod, i'm going to run them at 77F. And also about 1.011 - 1.012sg. Or 15 - 16ppt.
 

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Thanks for the tip, I'm removing all the sand in my system over this weekend and have already used this in my pod tank. I will need to reseed my tank ASAP for my mandarin so this method will far surpass my old way of switching rocks back and forth, thanks
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for the tip, I'm removing all the sand in my system over this weekend and have already used this in my pod tank. I will need to reseed my tank ASAP for my mandarin so this method will far surpass my old way of switching rocks back and forth, thanks

I'm excited to see just how many pods this will hold. I just put 2000 in there and it looks like its barely inhabited..
 

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Salt Viking
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well since no pods came with my Reefs2go order, I decided to buy some Tisbe pods again. Reefcleaners had a pack for $12.00..

Problem is tisbe pods are so small the amphipods can eat them. I'll either have to split this tank in half with a divider or do another tank.. Hmmmm..
 
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