How do I prepare wild mosquito larvae to feed fish? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-01-2019, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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How do I prepare wild mosquito larvae to feed fish?

So in my backyard we have some bins that were left out upright and have collected some rainwater - naturally, they're also harbouring a bunch of mosquito larvae. I've heard about people culturing mosquitoes to feed their fish and collecting them from their backyard but I've never tried feeding my fish wild live insects. I read that it's a good nutritious treat and am willing to give it a go!

I was thinking of doing the following steps to prepare the wild mosquito larvae for feeding:
1. Netting them out of the bin of water that they're currently in, either with an actual net or by straining them out.
2. Rinsing them off in tap water and picking out any non-mosquito particles.
3. Putting them in a bit of water in an ice tray or something and freezing them.
4. Taking a bit of the frozen larvae later and thawing it to feed the fish.

I want to make sure that feeding that kind of stuff won't harm the fish. We don't use pesticides in our (suburban) backyard so I'm not concerned about exposing the fish to harmful chemicals. My bigger concern is whatever sort of parasite or bacteria or whatever could be introduced to the tank, which is why I was going to freeze them before putting them in the tank. I understand that fish in the wild would eat this kind of stuff, it's just that my aquarium fish would not have been exposed to wild insects before, which is why I'm trying to make sure it's safe to do.

What do you guys think? Is this a good idea? Is there something I should do differently to make sure my fish aren't exposed to any strange pathogens or whatnot? I was going to feed them to my tank with swordtails, guppies, boesemani rainbows and corydoras first, as I'm sure they'd all enjoy such food, and then if that went OK for them (and if the stuff sinks, which would be good for my plecos), I would start feeding them to my tank with L134 plecos and lambchop rasboras.

Let me know your thoughts!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 03:49 PM
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I feed mosquito larvae as is, live, to my fish with no ill effects. When fed, fish that are shy suddenly are not, at least until the larvae are gone.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-06-2019, 08:36 PM
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Why do you want to freeze them? part of the fun in feeding live mosquito larvae is watching how excited the fish get over live food. Past few years I had a bin in my backyard I deliberately let catch rainwater and grow mosquito larvae for the fishes. My method was to individually catch the larvae out with a straw (hold finger over one end, creates a tiny siphon effect). Then I take the container in the house, fill a new small container with tank water, siphon out the individual larvae again into the tank water, twice. So instead of picking out the junk, I'm picking out the larvae. Ends up pretty clean but does take a bit of time, though.


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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2019, 02:24 PM
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I've fed mosquito larva from my yard before, no ill effects. Not really sure what kind of parasites they would carry...
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-10-2019, 03:51 PM
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Live is the only way! Wow do the fish love them. Even the shy fish come out of hiding and go into hunt mode.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 11:47 PM
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If you REALLY want to...

My preference is to rinse them so any gunk doesn't get into my tank, but I've done it both ways.

I have never ran into any problems from it, but someone else probably has! One comment on the video mentioned callamanus worms. yuck.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 02:02 AM
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Man. I can just imagine a bunch of these going down into my mess of plants and waiting it out until they're good and ready to surface. Then its mosquito raid on the humans!!

Freezing sounds more sensible to me.


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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ipkiss View Post
Man. I can just imagine a bunch of these going down into my mess of plants and waiting it out until they're good and ready to surface. Then its mosquito raid on the humans!!

Freezing sounds more sensible to me.
Don't think you'll have to worry. Larvae and Pupae have to surface, and they're not very graceful. And even then, new adults need to sit on the surface to dry out their wings. I'd be quite surprised if you had any flyers emerge.

I wonder if the surface tension from a heavily planted tank with little flow is enough to keep mosquito larvae from reaching air.

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Originally Posted by grizzly_a View Post
If you REALLY want to...
I have never ran into any problems from it, but someone else probably has! One comment on the video mentioned callamanus worms. yuck.
Man, you had to say "Camallanus worm". Now i'm worried about my fish, and if they're over fed or infected. I've done research since i read your comment, and i'm willing to bet my foolish additions of wild pond plants and critters has introduced this issue. One article said almost always found in wild daphnia. Shoot.


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Last edited by Darkblade48; 07-13-2019 at 06:08 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Loops117 View Post
Don't think you'll have to worry. Larvae and Pupae have to surface, and they're not very graceful. And even then, new adults need to sit on the surface to dry out their wings. I'd be quite surprised if you had any flyers emerge.

I wonder if the surface tension from a heavily planted tank with little flow is enough to keep mosquito larvae from reaching air.
would you dare to do this in your tank with all those floating "safe zones"?
great setup, btw.


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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 07:14 PM
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I do it all the time on multiple tanks. Never had any issues with parasites or worms. But I don't go down to the neighborhood slough, I grow my own on my property.

I harvest the bloodworms for my bottom dwellers and the mosquito larvae get eaten by any mid-level or top level fish.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 01:33 PM
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I collected a slew of wild dafnia, mosquito larve, random things, etc.

I fed to one of my tanks for about a month.... till something strange happened: Cyanobacteria and E-coli infection. I was devastated. I now culture IN the garage for my live food, I culture: vinegar eels, dafnia, microworms, grindal worms, brine shrimp.

Note: The city has since Shut down the lake due to the high levels of bacteria...... Most popular beach in the city and no one can swim in it.
Took a few doses of antibiotics to remove it. I lost a fish and a bunch of plants

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10 gallon midwest bluffs I 10 gallon freshwater coral I 15 gallon custom I 2.5 gallon female tank I Vases I 7 gallon fry I all these critters to feed critters
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 01:45 PM
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I fed my tank a ton of mosquito larvae the other day. My fish went nuts! And what i thought was too much, was all gone within the minute. I can't wait to do it again.
Which brings me to a question. The video posted here shows some water cleaners, health stuff, etc.

Is there a way to gut load these guys? Could i suspend them in a high nutrient liquid for an hour or so before feeding? I gut load our feeder insects before feeding them to anything i have, would this work with the larvae?


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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 04:59 PM
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Mosquito Larvae eat Algae and plankton. Honestly, I have no idea. Maybe transfer them to a spirulina green water mix for a day before feeding them, but that sure seems like a big hassle.

They are already highly nutritious. I would just put them in different water if you're collecting them from "wild" sources since you don't know what is in the water they are coming from.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loops117 View Post
I fed my tank a ton of mosquito larvae the other day. My fish went nuts! And what i thought was too much, was all gone within the minute. I can't wait to do it again.
Which brings me to a question. The video posted here shows some water cleaners, health stuff, etc.

Is there a way to gut load these guys? Could i suspend them in a high nutrient liquid for an hour or so before feeding? I gut load our feeder insects before feeding them to anything i have, would this work with the larvae?
You can feed them spirulina.... but heads up- they eat, and then grow up!

Giving back creates a virtuous cycle that makes everyone more successful (as long as they cycle!)
10 gallon midwest bluffs I 10 gallon freshwater coral I 15 gallon custom I 2.5 gallon female tank I Vases I 7 gallon fry I all these critters to feed critters
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