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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey Everyone,

Since dialing in the SuperFly with the help of all the feedback received here, I have put my efforts into some more products. Now I am back to one that I think has relevance back on these forums, so I thought I would open another thread like I did with the SuperFly to again reach out to the community here for feedback.

I have been working on this on and off for a couple years now and have finally sourced out the ingredients I have been looking for in good supply, and am ready to dial it in.

This will be my first entry into the aquatic market and the product will be an Algae Eater/ Tadpole diet. It is a no expense spared formula (meaning expensive) that uses Chlorella Algae as its first ingredient and Spirulina as number two.

I would love to label it as just a tadpole diet, but I don't know if there is really commercial viability in doing so...... It has much more potential being marketed towards African Rift Cichlids or Plecostomus, so might end up with one of those on the label for this reason :( We will see.

Unlike any other diets on the market, this one has a twist. It can be fed two ways..... as a fine powder, or as a gel.

For those of you familiar with my Bug Burger and Hydro-Load products, this will be the same kind of gel. Very simple to make. Just mix one part powder to two parts water.... microwave for two minutes, and it will cool at room temp to make a firm gel. This gel can be kept refrigerated for a few months once made, so one batch should get you through a full tadpole lifecycle.

The formation of a gel does several important things. First, it is very slow to break down in the water (24 hours) so it does a lot to prevent water fouling. Because of this, it provides a constant source of grazing material, not unlike the availability of naturally growing surface algae.

The gel also locks in the nutrients and prevents them from near instantly dissolving into the water the way water soluble vitamins do as soon as a flake foods hits the water.

I have extensively tested this with all kinds of freshwater tropical fish and tree frog tadpoles for growth, development, and overall health with great success. I have NOT tested it much with dendros, so I need some feedback from those willing to give it a go.

I would like feedback on all species of tadpoles, and fish you might be keeping.

Many tadpoles are general grazers, but some are specialized surface feeders..... so it will be interesting to see what species will eat the gel.... or require it in the powdered form..... or don't eat it at all.

As a powdered diet, it could be used in a similar way to Sera Micron and just sprinkled on the surface of the water.

Of course, development, growth, and morphing are all things I need to hear about when it comes to tads.

Right now, the formulated analysis is at 43% protein, 7% Fat. It of course contains ample amounts of SuperPig for carotenoids and uses SuperVite as the vitamin premix. And unlike nearly all commercial fish feed, it is Gluten Free!

Here is a preliminary list of ingredients in there order of occurrence.

Chlorella Algae, Spirulina Algae,Whole Krill Meal, Whole Sardine Meal, Alfalfa Leaf Meal, Whole Squid Meal, Germinated Brown Rice Protein Isolate, Pea Protein Isolate, Dried Brewers Yeast, Dried Whole Egg, Stabilized Rice Bran, Potato Granules, Dried Kelp, Carrageenan, Konjac, Carob Bean Gum, Calcium Carbonate, Dicalicium Phosphate, Potassium Citrate, Calcium Propionate, Phaffia rhodozyma yeast, Paprika Extract, Calendula Flower Powder, Marigold Flower Extract, Rose Hips Powder, Turmeric Root Powder, Malic Acid, Sodium Chloride, Canthaxanthin, Potassium Sorbate, Magnesium Gluconate, Lecithin, Rosemary Extract and Mixed Tocopherols (as preservatives), Vitamins (Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin D Supplement, Choline Chloride, Ascorbic Acid, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Beta Carotene, Pantothenic Acid, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B-12 Supplement).

I will be sending this out in unlabeled bags so that I can finalize labeling based on feedback.

I also need a good tadpole photo if anyone wants to send me something.

I will mix up a batch next week and get stuff out as soon as I can.

I would like now to get some preliminary feedback on how many people have tads in the water and would like to be part of this products development. Please do NOT ask for this if you are not breeding frogs now or raising tadpoles, or have a fish tank.

Also feel free to comment or ask questions on the ingredients or information I have posted here.

Please also let me know what you are raising and can test it on!

Thanks everyone!

Please reply to me in this thread so I can more easily respond vs. individual PM's. PM me if you have some specific questions.

I am going to do it a little differently than the Superfly offer. This will be an "almost free" four ounce sample.

I will requre a paypal payment of ONE DOLLAR.... just to avoid people who want free stuff LOL. This will also give me an easy way to collect shipping information, so make sure your paypal address is correct. I will post the paypal info next week when I get it mixed up and ready to go, so post or subscribe to this thread so you get the message.
Allen
 

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I am getting quite a few tadpoles and would like to experiment with your products.
 

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I have tads currently in the water, and am also cycling a 90G planted/FW tropical tank as I write this. I'd be up for giving it a try as well.
 

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Please put me down... I would love to take part in this! I missed out on all the excitement of the Superfly experiments. :(

Question: You say this can be fed in powder or gel form, yet your post expounds on the gel form only. Is this how you recommend it be fed to darts? If not and powder is okay, would it work to coat tad bites with?
 

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Mainly algae based? Not for dart frogs I think Allen. Other frogs perhaps.
Actually John, the 43% protein in this is considerably higher than most of the brands we feed tads with.... i.e.- tad bites (36%), New Life Spectrum pellets (34-36%), and Omega One pellets (also in the mid-30's, can't remember the exact number).
 

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Teddy, I like the sound of that but being an organic chemist, I don't judge the protein by the %, rather the type/source. Plant protein versus Animal protein. Given the conventional wisdom that dart frog tadpole diets should not be mainly algae based, I think we need to be more particular than just lumping everything under the "protein" label.
 

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Teddy, I like the sound of that but being an organic chemist, I don't judge the protein by the %, rather the type/source. Plant protein versus Animal protein. Given the conventional wisdom that dart frog tadpole diets should not be mainly algae based, I think we need to be more particular than just lumping everything under the "protein" label.
A valid point, I'll bow out to you on that one (though I guess it brings up another question- how much of the other foods are plant protein vs. animal protein?). At the same time, that conventional wisdom also states that tads should be fed a varied diet, and this still appears to be a solid addition to the rotation.

For the sake of experimentation, I'm willing to try this on a few tads as a stand-alone product, a few with my normal food rotation as a control, and a few with this stuff added into the current rotation. If any from group one don't look like they're doing well, I pull the plug.

edit - I'm most interested to see if adding it into my rotation will change anything, since that's how I would be using it.... always room to improve.
 

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I would love to try it out ....I have 8 varadero tads and 4 Orange lamasi tads in water now.....Sounds interesting.

Would also like clarification on the protein source in the product...

James
 

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I should add that I would be very interested in trying it, despite my inquiry about the nature of the proteins used. As I said before, the conventional wisdom for dart tads has always been to avoid predominantly algae-based diets, but I would love to prove that wrong.

Dart frogs aside, I think it would be great for other frogs and toads (I don't just keep darts), especially ranids and tree frogs because they rely heavily on algae.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Mainly algae based? Not for dart frogs I think Allen. Other frogs perhaps.
Hi John,

Not to fear, This is just one of ten gel based formulas I a have been working on for a wide variety of applications that range from 15%-45% protein.

The formula I mentioned here IS algae heavy, but algae represents about 25% of total protein in the formula.

I have another formula with similar protein levels that is more heavily based on fish, krill, squid, and egg (which is a lot cheaper due to the high cost of algae, though it still contains algae) that you might like, particularly since I recognize you as the Caudata guy and it is the formula Philippe de Vosjoli has been using on his Pleudordeles and Axolotls with great success :)

I have carnivore gels, Invertebrate gels (for shrimp, crabs, and crayfish) Hervibore and Omnivore gels...... I have already released the insect gel (bug burger).....but I am getting ahead of myself here.. LOL

Right now, my main concern is acceptance of the gel formula by various species. Adjusting the protein levels and it's sources is the easy part!

I have an awesome pallet of ingredients and truly enjoy the formulation process.

I think with my ingredients, the gel concept (allowing the exclusion of wheat gluten in my products, which are necessary to make flakes and pellets because is used as the binder, and the willingness to listen to keepers and breeders in formulating, will allow me to produce a revolutionary tropical fish food Line. A lot of people look to the New Life Spectrum products as cutting edge. In fact, I share quite a few opinions with the developer. I have researched that line and read the writings of the owner and think he has done some things very well, but has left much room for improvement in other places.

Anyways..... my main point is that this formula is just one on the list and you should find something you like on the list, and if you don't, we can work on that :)

Cheers, Allen

Anyone know what is up with that company, their website has been down for a while now.
 

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I wouldn't mind trying it with some tadpoles I raise communally, in particular reed frogs, Phyllobates sp., and potentially Atelopus tads.
 

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Teddy, I like the sound of that but being an organic chemist, I don't judge the protein by the %, rather the type/source. Plant protein versus Animal protein. Given the conventional wisdom that dart frog tadpole diets should not be mainly algae based, I think we need to be more particular than just lumping everything under the "protein" label.
Being a biologist, I am confused by this statement. As far as I know, animals break down proteins into amino acids and then absorb the amino acids. I think the only issue would be whether Chlorella and Spirulina have all the amino acids that the frogs need, and whether or not it is easily digestible. I could however, see the digestion of the food source being a potential problem -- if dart frog tadpoles can't digest through the cellulose in the algae's cell wall, then they won't be getting to the nutrients inside.
 

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I have had great success with primarily algae-based food in growing auratus and azureus.

Allen, I'd love to try it. I have about 50 auratus tads and several dozen variabilis currently in the water.
 
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