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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just sharing a story of a newbie mistake in the hopes of keeping others from doing the same...

I bought two starter cultures of springtails. They came in very nice, airtight food storage containers. Per the advice I read on the board, I put some rice and a cucumber peel into each of the containers. I bought new larger containers and had intended to move the colonies to the new containers over the weekend. Well, I wasn't feeling very well and didn't get around to it. I didn't open the containers until Tuesday evening and found all the springtails in both containers dead. Why? I'm guessing that the bacteria that were breaking down the cucumber peel (it had a rotten smell) had used up all the available oxygen and as I had not opened the containers in several days, my colonies suffocated.
 

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Hey reefgal,
Yes, the decomposing organic matter in springtail cultures can use up the available oxygen, causing the springtails to suffocate. There needs to be some gas exchange for springtail cultures, either through a filter or small holes in the lid. Although the springtails seem motionless, give them a chance. Sometimes they'll "come back to life" if you leave the lid off for a while. Sometimes not.... Hope this helps and good luck!
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well.... since I already threw the cultures away... I doubt they'll get a chance to come back. :? I just figured I was going to have to order new ones.
 

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I only feed mine once a week and they seem to do fine. That is the only time that I open them and I don't have any air holes. However, I have had a culture all "die" on me before too. Well, a couple times. One that was dead had a ton of those white worms in it. So I thought that it was infested or something, but they were all alive in a few days. Then I just had one die off not too long ago. I just never knew what to do with them, so I would leave them their and they would come back to life. So could that be from over feeding at time then?

-Shelley
 
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