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FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now)

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Post  Katnapper Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:00 pm

I've got around 17-18 pounds each of pure, food-grade ground spirulina and also bee pollen powder. Was using them to make cricket and roach foods last year, but have stopped making those. I don't need this much now, would like to get rid of some; paid a lot of money for them, but could currently use some cash. I thought some might like either or both in making their own fish foods, or as supplements for human consumption. Price negotiable for club members who attend meetings, or $5.00 per half pound of either to anyone else. Great deal for some good quality stuff. I'm in Bloomington, IL and can ship if needed. Thank you for looking.

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Last edited by Katnapper on Sat Mar 16, 2013 7:59 pm; edited 6 times in total (Reason for editing : I like to edit)

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Post  Katnapper Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:57 pm

FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3165-1
FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3166
FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3155
FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3153-2
FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3154
FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) IMG_3161-1

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Post  AlexW. Fri Feb 08, 2013 9:07 pm

I personally wouldn't know where to start with this stuff. If you know a recipe for fish food that uses it maybe you could post it. Perhaps that would help you sell it.

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Post  AlexW. Fri Feb 08, 2013 9:21 pm

I found this.

Though I don't think it will be any cheaper than store bought food it would be an interesting exercise to see if better results are had by using this approach.



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FS: Ground Spirulina and Bee Pollen (pics now) Empty Some spirulina fish food recipes

Post  Katnapper Fri Feb 08, 2013 10:55 pm

Thanks for the good idea, Alex. Wink I've never personally made fish food with these... (yet) but here are just some of the recipes and info I found online (following). You can Google "spirulina fish food recipes" and get lots of results. Going to investigate bee pollen (if any fish food recipes) next.

By Carl Strohmeyer
Updated 7/25/12

WHAT IS SPIRULINA ALGAE (Spirulina Arthrospira)?
Spirulina Arthrospira is a planktonic blue-green algae (Cyanobacteria) found in warm water alkaline volcanic lakes and is rich in raw protein and seven major vitamins: A1, B1, B2, B6, B12 (one of the best natural sources for B12, although the bioavailability its B12 is in dispute by many researchers), C and E.
It naturally contains beta-carotene, color enhancing pigments, and whole range of minerals. In addition, Spirulina has a 62% amino acid content and contains all essential fatty acids and eight amino acids required for complete nutrition. Evidence as recent as 2007 shows even more proof as to the profound anti-oxidant properties of Spirulina.

The primary species of Spirulina are Arthrospira platensis and Arthrospira maxima.
Another species is Spirulina fusiformis; it is a freshwater algae as opposed to Marine/Saltwater species of the commonly harvested/aquacultured species noted earlier. It used to be classified as Spirulina platensis. Arthrospira fusiformis is capable of a great deal of polymorphism, it changes its shape, color and other charastistics in adapting to its environment. This freshwater species thrives in waters that are loaded with various minerals such as sodium, magnesium, carbonates, sulfates and chlorides. It does not usually thrive in water which is suitable for watering crops, drinking or raising fish.
Most commercial Spirulina used for human and fish food consumption primarily is grown in the USA, Thailand, India and China.

Spirulina is different from other algae and is similar to bacteria in many ways, occupying a niche between plants and bacteria. Spirulina is similar to cyanobacteria in structure, which can be toxic. Both have a spiral shape, unlike true plant plankton.
Spirulina Blue- Green algae are recognized by the "body" (fish in particular) as a bacterium, causing an increase in antibodies, which in turn increases disease resistance.

Spirulina is not Chlorella; Chlorella is a green micro-algae and does not have the same anti-viral, anti-cancer and immune stimulating properties of Spirulina. The Chlorella cell wall is made of indigestible cellulose, just like green grass, WHILE the cell wall of Spirulina is made of complexed proteins and sugars.

As noted, Spirulina has a soft cell wall made of complex sugars and protein, and is different from most other algae in that it is more easily digested.
This is just one of the reasons for high digestibility of Spirulina, and why for weak or older fish it is a MUST for their diet!!

Spirulina is also high in usable or digestible amino acids (the building blocks of proteins); proteins from cereal and soy are not as digestible by fish as the amino acids found in spirulina. Spirulina provides all the required amino acids, and in a form that is five times easier to digest than meat or soy protein.
An analogy used at a pet food seminar I attended was this: You can achieve the protein analysis on many pet foods with a used pair of leather shoes, but leather shoes contain little usable proteins.

Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae is a related algae found in Klamath Lake Oregon (see References). Like Spirulina, this Klamath Lake blue green algae has been shown to be very nutritionally dense, diverse and absolutely non-toxic. It is a unique single cell organism that has characteristics of plants, animals and bacteria. Like plants, it has chlorophyll and through photosynthesis produces oxygen. Like bacteria, it has a fragile cell wall. Like animals, there are times when it uses oxygen and produces carbon dioxide.
Minerals: Besides the above mentioned high protein content and digestibility, Spirulina come from waters with minerals deposited from ancient soils and mountains. No other plants can live in these areas due to the mineral content. Due to the fact that Spirulina thrives in such alkaline waters, it incorporates and synthesizes many minerals and derivative compounds into its cell structure.

Transformed into natural organic forms by Spirulina (Arthrospira), minerals become chelated with amino acids and are therefore more easily assimilated by the body. Fish can ingest high amounts of added inorganic minerals (most fish foods are low in natural calcium and need added calcium to meet requirements) without benefit to health because the fish body (or other aquatic organism such as shrimp) does not know what to do with these incompatible forms. In fact, evidence is accumulating that the inorganic minerals can block absorption of the organic forms, leading ultimately to mineral deficiency diseases.

Spirulina Algae’s most profound Benefit; It Improves Immune Function:
Spirulina provides phycocyanin, a source of biliverdin which is among the most potent of all intra-cellular antioxidants. Spirulina is a powerful tonic for the immune system. In scientific studies of mice, hamsters, chickens, turkeys, cats and fish, Spirulina consistently improves immune system function.

An animal (fish for our purposes) produces unconjugated biliverdin, a yellow colored breakdown product of normal heme catabolism, formed by failing red blood cells.
Heme (also called Haem in the UK) is composed of iron plus amino acids from globin of hemoglobin.
A circulating erythrocyte is little more than a container for hemoglobin; Erythrocytes which have a 120 day life span transport oxygen and carbon dioxide between the gills/lungs and all the tissues of the body are broken down utilizing these Heme via the tetrapyrrole; biliverdin, which is then converted to bilirubin and carried to the liver by the plasma protein.

Bilirubin is excreted in bile, and its levels are elevated in certain diseases and is then transported into the cytoplasm of every cell in the body of the animal (fish). As stated earlier, an enzyme called biliverdin reductase, converts the biliverdin to unconjugated bilirubin. The bilirubin quickly oxidizes back into biliverdin, and just as quickly biliverdin reductase recycles it back again into bilirubin.
This form of bilirubin, (similar to the bilin in hemoglobin or bile.), has been shown to be 10,000 times as powerful an antioxidant as is glutathione. The unconjugated bilirubin is also a powerful inhibitor of NADPH Oxidase (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate-oxidase).
This enzyme is a major source of Super Oxide in an animal’s body, and is involved in dozens of degenerative processes involved in disease resistance, aging and similar processes in fish and other animals (including humans)!
There is now strong evidence that Spirulina supplements the amount of unconjugated biliverdin which the fish or other animals are born with, providing profound protection from oxidative stress.
Scientists also find Spirulina not only stimulates the immune system through before described process, it actually enhances the animal’s body’s ability to generate new blood cells.

THIS REASON ALONE is why Spirulina should be part of EVERY fish’ aquatic diet, INCLUDING carnivores where it should be fed via gut loading of worms, feeder fish, or crickets (which I have done for my clients Arowanas diet).

As well, Spirulina fusiformis has been shown to provide Antioxidant/Hepatoprotective (Liver function)
In a study VIT University evaluated the hepatoprotective and antioxidant effects of Spirulina fusiformis against acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity in mice. For comparison purpose, results were compared with those for silymarin, a standard hepatoprotective drug. The study clearly demonstrated that Spirulina fusifomis shows hepatoprotective effect through its antioxidant activity on acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity.
See: http://www.iimsam.org/images/Hepatoprotective.pdf
Spirulina aids in building red blood cells and stem cells:

Spirulina is rich in a brilliant blue polypeptide called Phycocyanin. Studies show that Phycocyanin affects the stem cells found in bone marrow. Stem cells are "Grandmother" to both the white blood cells that make up the cellular immune system and red blood cells that oxygenate the body.
“Chinese scientists document Phycocyanin stimulating hematopoiesis, (the creation of blood), emulating the affect of the hormone erythropoetin, (EPO). EPO is produced by healthy kidneys and regulates bone marrow stem cell production of red blood cells. Chinese scientists claim Phycocyanin also regulates production of white blood cells, even when bone marrow stem cells are damaged by toxic chemicals or radiation”
The Effects of Polysaccharide and Phycocyanin from Spirulina platensis variety on Peripheral blood and Hematopoietic system of Bone Marrow in Mice.

Spirulina Anti-Viral and Anti-Cancer abilities:
Calcium-Spirulan is a polymerized sugar molecule unique to Spirulina containing both Sulfur and Calcium (another important element often missing from many aquariums). In studies hamsters treated with this water soluble extract had better recovery rates when infected with what would be a lethal Herpes virus. This works because Calcium-Spirulan does not allow the virus to penetrate the cell membrane to infect the cell. The virus is stuck, unable to replicate. It is eventually eliminated by the body's natural defenses.

Several studies show Spirulina or its extracts can prevent or inhibit cancers in humans, animals, and fish. Some forms of cancer are the result of damaged cell DNA “out of control”, causing uncontrolled cell growth. Cellular biologists have defined a system of special enzymes called Endonuclease which repair damaged DNA to keep cells alive and healthy. When these enzymes are deactivated by oxidation, radiation or toxins, errors in DNA go un-repaired and, cancer may develop. In vitro studies suggest the unique polysaccharides of Spirulina enhance cell nucleus enzyme activity and DNA repair synthesis. This may be why several scientific studies, observing experimental cancers in animals, report high levels of suppression of several important types of cancer.

A study published by the US National Library of Medicine has also demonstrated that Spirulina fusiformis has substantial potential to reverse the pre-cancerous lesions or wounds of the mouth known as leukoplakia.
See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8584455

Here is the general analysis of pure Spirulina Algae:

Protein: 55%- 70%
Carbohydrates: 15% - 25% (an excellent low ratio for fish)
Fats (lipids): 6% - 8%
Minerals: 6 -13%
Fiber: 8% - 10%

Natural Pigment Enhancers:

Phycocyanin (Blue): 14%
Chlorophyll (Green): 1%
Carotenoids (Orange/ Red): 47%

Important Trace Minerals (many of these are essential for proper electrolyte balance and osmotic function):

Calcium (1,315 mg/kg), Iron, Phosphorus (15,400 mg/kg), Iodine, Magnesium, Zinc, Selenium, Copper, Manganese, Chromium, Molybdenum, Sodium, Chloride, Potassium, Germanium, Boron.

Essential Amino Acids:

• ISOLEUCINE (4.130/o): Required for optimal growth, nitrogen equilibrium in the body Used to synthesize other non-essential amino acids.
• LEUCINE (5.8001o): increases muscular energy levels.
• LYSINE (4.000/o): Building block of blood antibodies, strengthens circulatory system and maintains normal growth of cells.
• METHIONINE (2.170/o): Vital lipotropic (fat and lipid metabolizing) amino acid that maintains liver health. An anti-stress factor.
• PHENYLALANINE (3.950/o): Stimulates metabolic rate.
• THREONINE (4.170/o): Improves intestinal competence and digestive assimilation.
• TRYPTOPHANE (1.1301o): Increases utilization of B vitamins, improves nerve health.
• VALINE (6.0001o): Stimulates muscle coordination.

It is possible to have a staple fish food that has its primary ingredient as spirulina algae and be an effective diet for most fish. Even carnivores can benefit by feeding spirulina based flakes to feeder fish before feeding as most carnivores in the wild obtain many nutrients from the intestinal tract of the fish they consume.
What is important to note is that most commercial fish foods that call themselves Spirulina Flakes (Spirulina 20 the exception) have spirulina quite far down on their lists of ingredients (Tetra in particular). You need a food that is 10-20% spirulina to obtain these benefits. Even some of the quality brands of fish food that are often recommended (such as Omega) do NOT have Spirulina as a primary ingredient, SO READ the label!

Along with adequate calcium and magnesium in the water (especially for marine organisms), Spirulina helps insure proper electrolyte function, calcium levels over calcium and other minerals that are added to fish food as an after thought to make up for poor quality ingredients.

SPIRULINA 20, the only balanced fish food flake with a full 20% spirulina
Spirulina 20 flakes contain a full 20% Spirulina and provide a complete high protein diet for freshwater, saltwater fish, goldfish, crustaceans, and invertebrates. Spirulina 20 is a particularly ideal food for the vegetative needs of African Cichlids, Livebearers, in addition to Saltwater Tangs and Angels.
Research has shown that fresh and saltwater fish exhibit superior growth, maturity, energetic behavior, and more elegant coloring when fed Spirulina. It is also well documented that Spirulina improves egg production and hatching rates, stimulates the reproductive processes, increases survival rates of younger fish, and arouses the appetite of fish.

The use of Spirulina as a major ingredient has been of interest to me since some of my earlier days in the Aquarium Trade.
In this case I have conducted my own side by side comparisons (with scientific control groups) over the years using Spirulina based foods. This research of mine is among my oldest dating back into the late 1970s. An aquatic supplier (Aquatronics) even nicknamed me the "Green Flake Man" (after the name food that was sold that had Spirulina Algae as its #1 ingredient). I was an early believer of this ingredient based on my tests.

Ingredients for Spirulina 20 Flake Food:
Spirulina, ground whole wheat, whole fish meal, defatted soy meal, wheat flour, torula dried yeast, vital wheat gluten, fish oil, biophos, soy oil, lecithin, natural colors.
Min. Crude Protein- 45%
Min. Crude Fat- 4%
Max Crude Fiber- 3%
Max Moisture- 8%

Another excellent source for Spirulina that uses Spirulina Algae as its primary ingredient are HBH Veggie Flake, HBH Algae Grazers, and Ocean Nutrition’s Frozen Spirulina Formula

Be aware of otherwise good fish foods that advertise Spirulina or “Veggie” There are many brands available in the aquarium trade, some that have good ingredients, some that do not. Unfortunately many of these that do have good ingredients have Spirulina a ways down on the ingredient list. This unfortunately does not make them a good source of one of the best fish food ingredients for your fish; Spirulina (and an expensive one which is why many of these companies do this). Also a problem with these foods is that they are too high in ingredients that are maybe good for some fish (such as Silver Dollars for instance), but not for many fish that need higher amounts of vegetable matter such as Mollies, Platties, Tangs (marine), and many more fish. Even fish such as the before mentioned Silver Dollar (or most all fish in the Charachin family which include Tetras) benefit from a food high in Spiulina due to its high digestibility even in more predatory carnivores (assuming of course they will eat it)

Here are two examples of Foods that imply high Spirulina content, but are not high in Spirulina:
Aqueon Spirulina Flake
Whole Fish Meal (Whole salmon, herring & other mixed fishes), Whole Wheat Flour , Soybean Meal, Spirulina, Whole Dried Krill, Wheat Gluten Meal, Wheat Germ, Corn Gluten Meal, Dried Yeast, Fish Oil, Kelp Meal, Spinach, Garlic, Choline Chloride, Calcium Propionate (a preservative), L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), Vitamin A Acetate, Cholecalciferol (source of vitamin D3), Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Niacin, Menadione Sodium Bisulphite Complex (source of vitamin K activity), Folic acid, Thiamine, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (B6), Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, DL-Alphatocopherol (E), Manganese sulfate, Cobalt sulfate, Ferrous sulfate, Copper sulfate

Omega Veggie Flake
Whole Salmon, Black Cod, Halibut, Whole Herring , Fresh Kelp, Spirulina,,Wheat Flour, Lecithin, Astaxanthin, L-Ascorbyl-2-Phosphate (Source of Vitamin C), Natural and Artificial Colors, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D3 Supplement,Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Riboflavin, Niacin, Pantothenic Acid, Folic Acid, Biotin, Inositol, Tocopherol (Preservative), Ethoxyquin (Preservative).


The tests on Spirulina based fish foods are my oldest, dating back to the late 70s where I used a Restaurant (the Bahooka Restaurant) with over 100 aquariums that I had full control maintenance contract to perform side by side comparisons of different fish foods including a Spirulina based food called “Green Flake Plus” by Aquatronics. I later earned the nickname, “Green Flake Man” due to the amount of this product I used and sold. My point in mentioning this is that I have received some rather nasty comments in forums (Yahoo Answers in particular) when I mention that I recommend this over TetraMin or others. The comments usually will state that “I have reared many fish over the years exclusively on TetraMin and they have done fine”. That is fine, so have I, HOWEVER scientifically controlled tests state that you can do MUCH better with your fish food flake. Of the results I noted (in BOTH saltwater and Freshwater) were: improved color, slightly better longevity, but most notably, an easily noted lesser incidence of disease.

Another comment that is very anecdotal and without real nutritional basis is “My fish love fish food xyz so much, this must mean this is a good food”. This is about as bad an argument as it gets for fish food quality. My children will take a piece of candy almost every time over a carrot, but that does not make the candy better. An even better comparison is I once read a study at a pet nutrition seminar that showed a dog will almost always prefer cat food over dog food, yet if you took this to heart and fed your dog nothing but cat food, you would have a very sick dog over time.
Spirulina based foods (and I mean Spirulina as one of the primary ingredients) have lower appetite appeal, however this is usually over come once fish adjust to the new Spirulina based flake.

The bottom line as to Spirulina, is that this is an area where I have seen noticeable differences in fish health (including carnivores fed gut loaded food with Spirulina Algae) and very new scientific research especially into biliverdin and its antioxidant properties further make the point that Spirulina based fish foods are a MUST for aquatic diets despite some of the misinformation I have read in many places such as Yahoo Answers.
This includes Goldfish, Livebearers, African Cichlids, Community freshwater fish, most marine fish (tangs and angels in particular), and gut loading/soaking of fish foods in a spirulina "slurry" for fish such as Bettas, Arowanas, Oscars, etc.!
This importance is amplified for weak or older fish.
Source: http://www.americanaquariumproducts.com/SpirulinaAlgae.html

Spirulina is a blue-green plant plankton rich in raw protein and seven major vitamins: A1, B1, B2, B6, B12, C and E.
Spirulina naturally contains beta-carotene color enhancing pigments (1500 mg/kg. Carotenoids; Orange/ Red pigment enhancers), and whole range of minerals. In addition, it contains all essential fatty acids and eight amino acids required for complete nutrition. Spirulina is different from other algae and is similar to bacteria in many ways, occupying a niche between plants and bacteria. Spirulina is similar to cyanobacteria in structure (spiral shape, unlike true plant plankton), which can be toxic. Spirulina Blue- Green algae are recognized by the body (fish in particular) as a bacterium, causing an increase in antibodies, which in turn increase disease resistance. Spirulina is also high in usable or digestible amino acids.

Spirulina is probably one of the best fish food ingredients available, INCLUDING for carnivores (usually fed via gut loading, more information later in the article). Any staple fish food diet for community fish is improved by the addition of Spirulina Algae, which is why Spirulina 20 which has Spirulina as its number one ingredient is superior to most other basic fish food flakes for everyday feeding of general/community aquarium fish.
For much more about Spirulina of which there is MUCH new evidence as to the health benefits there in:
Spirulina Algae; The aquatic health benefits for Tropical, Marine and Goldfish. THIS IS A MUST READ ARTICLE!

You can make your own supplement for general fish feeding that is high in DL-methionine; Start with whole salmon which is an excellent source of carotene for color (frozen or even canned works), frozen peas, hard boiled egg, frozen or FD brine shrimp, duck weed or spiulina powder, and fish oil (cod liver oil works fine). Blend this mixture then add corn starch to the paste to dehydrate. Spread this paste on small strips of foil (or even wax paper if your dehydrator does not get to hot). Make sure you leave room for air circulation.

*For a frozen food, substitute the corn starch with unflavored gelatin powder.

*For cichlids, goldfish and koi, add wheat germ powder.

*For more carnivorous fish increase the whole fish and decrease the spirulina powder or duckweed. Calamari (squid) can be added too for carnivorous fish, but make sure that all the ink is removed from whole squid.

* For better attraction (smell) as well as a parasite repellent (Ich), you can add garlic powder to each batch of frozen or dried fish food at a rate of less than 1% of the prepared batch, this comes to about ½ teaspoon (or less) per one cup batch of wet fish food (before drying/freezing)

Here are basic percentages, please note that you can change these percentages to suit your fish food requirements:

Whole Salmon 25% 20% 30%
Peas 25% 25% 15%
Egg 20% 15% 25%
Brine shrimp 15% 15% 15%
Spirulina Powder 10% 15% 5%
Wheat Germ 0% 5% 0%
Squid 0% 0% 5%
Fish Oil 2% 2% 2%
Corn Starch or Gelatin 3% 3% 3%
Source: http://www.americanaquariumproducts.com/quality_fish_food.html
Spirulina is an extremely nutritious blue-green algae that is gaining popularity in health food stores of late. In fact, Spirulina is the oldest cultivated blue-green algae in history, dating back to the Mayan and Aztec cultures. Coincidentally, Spirulina also grows naturally in Lake Malawi. Health enthusiasts use Spirulina supplements (1 TBSP 2 x daily) because of its high vitamin content, including Vitamins A, C, B-12, Iron, Calcium, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, and Zinc.

The European Shrimp Mix:

One such alternative is the highly acclaimed "European Shrimp Mix." This recipe is recommended by many European breeders and hobbyists, and even appears in Ad Konings' book Enjoying Cichlids. He recommends it for virtually all African Cichlids. This recipe is reputed to increase color, help give them size, and mature properly.

Some aquarists feed it almost exclusively to their fish, while others prefer to use it merely as a supplement to a good quality flake food. CAUTION: You should never suddenly change your Cichlids' feeding regimen or food. Instead, gradually introduce the new food, observing them carefully in the following days to make sure it sits well with them. Because of the high nutritional value of the shrimp mix, you should not feed it more than once a day.

● 2 lbs. Whole Shrimp You want to get regular whole shrimps, heads and all. The cheaper ones are preferable, they just need to be full-sized.
● 2 lbs. Green Peas These should be frozen green peas.
2 tsp. Spirulina Powder You can find Spirulina powder at Health Food Stores. Just make sure you get the pure powder with no added herbs or other products.
● 100 gms. Gelatin Powder You can find this at health food stores as well. It's best if you use the vegetable form rather than meat as it's more easily digestible.
● 10 drops Liquid Multi-vitamins These can be any good quality freshwater aquarium concentrate. If you are unable to find liquid multitamins for fish, you could alternatively try the liquid vitamins that are marketed for birds and other pets.

Thaw the shrimps and peas, leaving them slightly frozen.

Place them in a blender or mincer and grind them to a fine paste.

Place the mixture in a bowl and add the Spirulina powder and liquid multi-vitamins and stir well.

Dissolve the gelatin, following the directions on the box, making sure there are no lumps in it. It must be an easily flowing, sticky mass without any lumps. Lumps of gelatin can be dangerous for juveniles.

Slowly add the shrimp-pea mix to the warm gelatin. Be sure to mix it completely before it cools. The best way to do this is to mix the food scoop by scoop with the hot gelatin, preventing it from cooling too quickly by keeping the gelatin still on low heat.

When ready, the mixture is poured onto a baking tray or into small ice cube containers and placed in the refrigerator to cool for several hours.

The hardened mix is then cut into pieces of convenient size, and frozen in plastic zip-lock bags. After the mix has been frozen, it cannot be cut easily.

This recipe should last the average Cichlid hobbyist many months. By freezing it in several Zip-lock bags, you can keep the food fresh until it is completely consumed.

Spirulina Flake Food

This recipe is somewhat of a derivation of the European Shrimp Mix, but is really good for fry. This recipe is made with Spirulina powder and Agar. Mix the dry Spirulina powder and dry agar together then add boiling water while stirring until you have a smooth thick consistency. You can experiment with different combinations of Spirulina and agar, but a 3 part Spirulina to 1 part agar ratio is about right. You have to be attentive when mixing, as the agar will turn lumpy very quickly. Place the blend into small zip-lock freezer bags before it sets. The finished product can then be stored in the freezer. Do not use gelatin as the resulting product will be like rubber, and the fry have difficulty digesting it. The agar-based product is also softer and easier for them to eat. When it's time to feed the fish, cut the blend into small squares and place in the aquarium.

You can also experiment with this recipe by adding different vegetables. I have found that a really good additional ingredient is zucchini. You will need to peel it first, then grate with a cheese grater, and boil it before adding it to the Spirulina-Agar mixture. You might also try this with spinach.
Source: http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/food_recipes.php

David Ivancic's Beefheart Recipe
[The following was contributed in July, 1995. Since this contribution, David has come to the conclusion that the "beef heart" portion should be eliminated and replaced with chicken heart, turkey heart, or more beef liver. -dr]
6 parts double ground beafheart(fat & sinew removed)
2 parts blended liver(beef or veal)
1 part blended shrimp
1 part Plankton from Gamma Foods (about 5 packages)
spinach or powdered chitin (lobster)
Vitamin B12
Epson salts 1/4 tsp.
powdered spirulina (health food store)
Kent Marine Zoe vitamins
Garlic 1 tsp. (from small bottle of crushed garlic)

Mix double dose of gelatin in required water and bring to boil. Add liver.. to coagulate blood, once small clumps appear then add the rest of ingredients.. cook over medium until mixture reaches around 45 degrees centigrade. Final mix should be a very thick poridge. Put in medium freezer bags and make the mix about 1/8 inch thick in the bags so it will be easy to break off once frozen. Make enough for three months to ensure freshness. Garlic is to prevent worms and plankton brings out the red colors in discus.

David Ivancic
Northwestern University
Transplant Research Laboratory
Source: http://freshaquarium.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ/Ya&zTi=1&sdn=freshaquarium&cdn=homegarden&tm=16&gps=89_8_1022_435&f=11&tt=14&bt=1&bts=1&zu=http%3A//www.ee.pdx.edu/%7Edavidr/discus/diet.html

Spirulina Powder - A freshwater alga that is consumed naturally by African cichlids. It is very high in plant proteins and is very valuable for continued cichlid health.

African Cichlids - These cichlids normally do not consume near as many animal proteins as the American varieties. In fact, some African cichlids are herbivores and altogether do not consume animal proteins (Mbuna cichlids). Spirulina, other algae and aquatic plants constitute for the majority of the diet of an African cichlid, with invertebrates and insects as a secondary consumption.Cichlid Food Recipes -

American Cichlids -
•1 Pound Whole Prawns
•1/2 Pound Catfish Fillets
•1/2 Pound Frozen Shelled Peas
•4.5oz (50sheets) Nori Seaweed
•Juice & Pulp of Medium Orange
•1 Clove Garlic
•2 Teaspoons Spirulina Powder
•1/2oz Food Grade Agar Agar

African Cichlids -
•1 Pound Whole Prawns (Omit for herbivores)
•1/2 Pound Spinach
•1/2 Pound Shelled Peas
•9oz (100Sheets) Nori Seaweed
•Juice & Pulp of Large Orange
•1 Clove Garlic
•2 Teaspoons Spirulina Powder
•1/2oz Food Grade Agar Agar

Directions -

Both of the recipes above will follow the same process.
1.Add all ingredients minus the agar agar to a blender. Pulse and incorporate well. You want a smooth "paste-like" consistency.
2.Bring four cups of water to a simmer in a large pot. Dissolve agar agar completely.
3.In small spoonfuls, add the blended mixture to simmering agar agar. (Add too much at a time and the agar will set too fast!)
4.Stir well until all the mixture has been added. You may need to add more water if the agar is setting up too fast. I always start will smaller amounts of water to help keep the finished food more concentrated.
5.Once the mixture has been completely added and there are no visible chunks of set agar agar, pour the liquid food onto shallow baking trays.
6.Allow to cool in the refrigerator for a couple of hours.
7.Slice the set food into dime sized pieces and place in a large freezer bag.
8.Store in Freezer.

Homemade Cichlid Food Thawing for Feeding.
To Use -

1.Take out as many cubes as your fish will be able to completely eat in 1-2 minutes time.
2.Place in cup and add room temperature water. Allow the food to thaw for 1 hour before adding to the tank.
3.Clean any uneaten food from the tank after 2 minutes.
4.Due to the high nutritional value, feed only once a day four times weekly.

Supplement African cichlids with fresh lettuce, spinach or zucchini for the two other days and allow them to fast for one day. American cichlids can be fed frozen blood worms or daphina the other two days of the week and should be fasted for one day as well. Not feeding (fasting) for one day a week will allow the cichlid's digestive track some time to process and purge.

Proof is in the Pudding -

Well, in this case the proof is in the agar agar. After moving your fish to a homemade diet, you'll see the results almost instantaneously. The cichlids are generally not as aggressive because they get the proper amount of nutrients. Colors are enhanced greatly! Fresh food contributes to higher pigment levels ingested by your fish. More pigments = More color. A more complete diet helps aid in a happier and healthier life for your fish. Still don't take my word for it? Have a look at the benefits to each ingredient below: (cont. on website)
Source: http://joemacho.hubpages.com/hub/Recipe-for-Homemade-Cichlid-Food

...recipe that my friends and I have been using for years to make food for our African Cichlids.

So, I just wanted to post it, hoping that I might contribute something. This recipe has been very economical, and the fish LOVE it. They will not stop breeding and growing like weeds!

This is a recipe that can be expanded or downsized at will, but I suggest that you try it vs. buying commercial foods.

1. Combine 0.5 pounds (about 250 grams) of whole uncooked shrimp (or equivalent), including head/shell/tail, with the same weight of frozen peas (slightly defrosted). Grind into a very fine paste.
2. Stir in about 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 mL) of Spirulina (algae) powder. If you wish (and I never have), also stir in about 3-mL of liquid vitamins. I add FAR more Spirulina powder than is recommended in this recipe.
3. Set mix aside.
4. Sprinkle 4 tablespoons (15 mL?) of Agar Agar flakes over 2.5 cups water. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Please stir frequently until competely dissolved.
5. Pour dissolved Agar solution into bowl of shrimp/pea mixture and blend thoroughly.
6. We always skip this step, but it is in the recipe: Pour into covered casserole dish and refrigerate overnight.
7. Place the contents into baggies, layering them flatly. Put in freezer.
8. When almost ready to use, place in refrigerator to thaw. (Another alteration: I simply break off a piece from the frozen food in the baggie and thaw in tank water in a coffee cup before mashing it and serving to my fish.)

Agar Agar can be purchased in health-food type stores in the USA, but one can use regular gelatin. In the USA, however, gelatin is made from ground cow hooves, etc, so we use the algae-based agar agar to be safer.
Source: http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=6634

Last edited by Katnapper on Fri Feb 08, 2013 11:06 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : More info, correct a link)

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Post  egbar guppies Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:58 pm

hi, after readint this thread yesterday i did a few searches under things like spirulina fish food and bee pollen fish food. I found among many other articles a series of discussions on a guppy site which says it is highly recommended for fry food. Many south american guppy breeders evidently use
especially the bee pollen for fry almost to the exclusion of everything else. I am thinking i'd like a pound of each... that should keep me in fry food for a very long time to come! thanks! deb

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Post  AlexW. Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:07 pm

The spirulina is apparently very good for mbuna cichlids. I'll take a pound of each too. Can you bring it to the next fish club


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Post  Katnapper Sun Feb 10, 2013 12:14 am

Deb and Alex, PM's sent. Wink

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Post  egbar guppies Sun Feb 10, 2013 4:54 pm

and maybe posts too. Becky, i sent you 2 PMs but they must not have gone through. I want to pick up the spirulina and the pollen at the next
meeting, or i'll call you to set something up before that. Thanks! deb

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Post  Katnapper Sun Feb 10, 2013 4:57 pm

Hmmm... still haven't gotten any new PM's. Sounds good, Deb, thanks for letting me know. I do plan to come to the next meeting in March. Feel free to call me if you'd like them before then.

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Post  twocat Sun Feb 10, 2013 5:11 pm

I will take a lb of each. Send me a PM with a ph # and I will make arrangments to pick it up.




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Post  Katnapper Sun Feb 10, 2013 6:07 pm

PM sent, Mark... Hope you get it. Thanks.


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Post  twocat Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:51 am

I have made up a mixture of this along with crush flakes, I am feeding this to my guppies , bettas and a few other types. It seems to be a very economical food source.


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Post  Katnapper Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:05 am

Sounds great, Mark. I'm really glad it's working out for you!

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