View Full Version : growing brine shrimp?

03-23-2011, 03:55 PM
is it really worth it to grow your own brine shrimp?

03-23-2011, 05:42 PM
Once you've got the set up for it it is pretty easy. I'd only recommend doing it if you have a finicky eater that needs live food or of you just like to give your tank a treat. They're not really the most nutritious food source, so I wouldn't use then as a major food source, however, you can can gut load-load them to make them more nutritious. I used them for a while with my mandarin until mg pod populations rebuilt after a move.

03-23-2011, 11:38 PM
What sort of setup do you need? I tried growing them in a 5gal with an airstone and heater, but I could never get them to adults...

03-24-2011, 12:29 AM
I just use 2L pop bottles upside down with the bottom cut off and an airstone. I keep another bottle of the same design next two it with an algae growing, normally nanochloropsis, but you can also feed with purred-pea baby food. I'd also add a few drops of Selcon. Basically I'd feed them whatever my fish liked the best.

03-24-2011, 01:25 AM
brine shrimp are the most nutritious when they are first hatched-about 24 -36 hours after you start them off.a lot of corals also eat brine shrimp(bubbles,brain maze,galaxy ,chilli etc.).i picked up some small hatchery s off ebay that are 2 1/2 x10 inch tubes fairly cheap(picked up 4 of them); and i feed brine shrimp daily-usually at dusk just before the lights go out.they are also good for rearing baby fish after using rotofers ,before they go onto adult food.but don't rear them to adult hood-you might as well get a sea monkey kit.also i buy my brine shrimp by the lb.-2 1 lb. tins cost under $100 delivered-compared to your lfs selling 4 oz. for over $30-and they will last for a long time

03-24-2011, 05:17 PM
First of all you really have to want to grow them if you want adults in any meaningful numbers. It can be labour intensive.
It is not worth it if you can buy them locally or online.
You might have many failed attempts until you get it right.
I began about 15 yrs ago when we could no longer get the live brine at our stores. Now, while some stores get them in, it's not too many that carry the artemia on a regular basis. (In Canada I'm speaking of)
In the US, one can get them easily from livebrineshrimp.com.
Second, ignore most postings about nutrition of brine shrimp as there is just too much misinformation out there.
From the Artemia Reference Centre at the University of Ghant, published in many articles, but the main source currently quoted is the MANUAL ON THE PRODUCTION AND USE OF LIVE FOODS FOR AQUACULTURE (http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/003/W3732E/w3732e00.htm)
where in section 4.0 artemia, you can find out almost any information FACTUALLY accurate on brine shrimp.
In truth, immediately upon hatchout, the nauplii have good levels of fatty acids (huffa) and decent levels of protein. As the egg sack is consumed, the fatty acid profile rapidly drops so that the protein content is the main nutrient in the artemia, to the point that the protein level of juveniles and adults for aretemia raised from GSL cysts will run 49.7 to 62.5% but the fatty acid levels are only 2.4 to 9.5%. ( Table 4.4.1 of section 4.4.1)
Now the great thing is that artemia nutrition can be readily changed relatively simple by enriching them with products before they get fed to the tank.
You can get medicines or specific nutrient profiles to your fish just by proper selection of the enrichment material.
As long as the particles can be micronized, or the liquids emulsified, all to appropriately sized particles, you can make the artemia higher in protein, or higher in fatty acids, or both, or you can target feed specific medicines to fish that don't eat medicated flake foods.
One of the biggest problems with reported nutrition is that some foods report in dry weight and others report in wet weight so it's hard to compare.
In the case of frozen brine shrimp, for instance, the nutrients are almost always reported in wet weight. To properly compare to other foods, you need to know just how they are reporting and then compare the same specifics.
Adult brine shrimp have more protein than most flake/pelleted foods in use for aquariums, but to compare, one would have to dry out the frozen brine, or to wet the dry foods, reweigh and recalculate the information.
For me specifically at this time, my major use of artemia is for seahorses, including fry.
Newly hatched brine are not as nutritious, even with the egg sack intact, as growing them out for a day until they develop the digestive tract and then enriching them for two twelve hour stages with new water and enrichment for each of the two stages, using appropriate enrichment material.
For me, the best is Dan's Food with/without Beta Glucan, from seahorsesource.com, (good for all marine fry) or I can tailor what I want the seahorse fry or adults to have by mixing various amounts of Algamac products like Protein Plus and 3050 (fatty acids).
I supply the same products to a lot of clownfish breeders around me so we benefit with larger orders to reduce cost.
If you are still really interested, you can view my page on artemia growing and tailor the method to your own scale of need.
RAISING BRINE SHRIMP TO ADULT (http://www.angelfire.com/ab/rayjay/brineshrimp.html)