Lettuce Have Infusoria
by Deborah & Rodney Ralph
First published in Tank Talk, Canberra and District Aquarium Society, Australia
This is one way of getting infusoria easily, quickly, cheaply and without much fuss.
Bits and pieces of the information have come from books and ideas other people have had
and also our own, mixed together, which has given us good results.
Before you start you'll need 30-40 litres of aged tap water which will see you through
the early stages of keeping this culture.
Items needed are 1 large 24-36 litre plastic tub, the size maybe larger or smaller to
suit your particular needs. This should be washed out well with warm salty water then
Now we want the main ingredient, lettuce. We go down to a fruit and vege. shop and just
ask for the lettuce leaves they throw away and get a bag full costing nothing; you can't
get it any cheaper than that and they don't seem to mind.
Pick out the best whole leaves and give them a quick wash to get the dirt off, then
squeeze the excess water and scrunch and break the leaves up and place into a bucket. We
use 1 large lettuce leaf per litre of water. After you have the amount needed in your
bucket pour on enough boiling water to cover then place this outside and allow to cool.
The next day pour this into the tub and add enough aged tap water to fill the tub.
Place in a shady position that is sheltered. In about a week you should have green water
with some infusoria and in about 2 weeks it should be booming.
Each time after you have drawn the amount you want for the day's use, top it up with
aged water. Keep a bucket of aged water next to the tub for this. This helps to put oxygen
into the infusoria and keeps it going and fresh. Every now and then more lettuce should be
added also to keep it going.
If it is not used regularly it will probably go off. Throw it away, clean the tub
thoroughly with salty water, rinse, then start all over again.