Unboxing APBreed’s new Rotifer Culture System

By on Jun 24, 2013

APBreed's Compact Culture System for reliable small-scale rotifer production.

APBreed’s Compact Culture System for reliable small-scale rotifer production.

While Reed Mariculture helped make home rotifer culture a mainstream prospect, their new division, APBreed, has brought additional focus to the pitfalls of small scale rotifer culture.  Their latest introduction, the APBreed Compact Culture System™ (CCS) was introduced to bring stability, consistency, and high production, to the home and small institutional culturist. Too many people seem to crash their rotifers; the CCS, with proper usage, should change that for good.

At first glance, the complete CCS Starter Kit appears to be simply a 5 gallon bucket with a lid, but you couldn’t be more short-sighted with that observation.  First and foremost, everything about the CCS is FDA approved, food-grade, which means that rotifers produced with the CCS are viable feeds in foodfish aquaculture.  That small detail doesn’t necessarily come cheap, but it adds a level of comfort to the quality of what you’re culturing rotifers in. At the core of the CCS is a custom designed rotifer culture filter.  It’s absolutely not a sponge filter, but appears to be a combination of rotifer floss with upwelling flow.  The CSS filter (also sold without a the FDA approved bucket and lid if you want to use your own) comes with special mounting hardware to secure it centrally in the bucket.  This filtration system, when combined with a daily maintenance regiment, is said to create significantly higher rotifer culture densities than a typical hobbyist setup (a 5 gallon bucket with an airstone).

How it works - a cross section view of APBreeder's Compact Culture System.

How it works – a cross section view of APBreeder’s Compact Culture System.

To run the CCS, you’ll need an air pump and saltwater.  A heater may be necessary if you’re situating your culture in some unusually cool location.  You’ll of course need a starter culture for your rotifers, and you’ll need something to feed them.   While I personally use Reed Mariculture’s RotiGrow Plus for daily rotifer feeding, the APBreed line of products includes RGComplete, a refrigerated liquid form of phytoplankton which could perhaps be described as a further enhanced, further idiot-proofed, version of my trusted RotiGrow Plus.  The CCS was designed implicitly for use with RGComplete as part of a daily routine (hopefully fool-proof) culture methodology.

While we’re sure some DIY guys will look at the CCS and say “I can make that”, the big question is “what’s your time and effort worth?” Arguably, when it’s all said and done, the convenience of having the CSS shipped to your door and ready to go, probably outweighs the time, effort and headaches of trying to mimic it yourself.  And that’s really what it’s all about – an elegantly simple, well-designed system created and tested by APBreed. So what is the maintenance regime?  How is the CCS in practice?  We’re about to find out, so watch in a few weeks or months for the verdict!

Unboxing the APBreed CCS

What does the CCS look like upon arrival? Here’s a look at one of the first CCS shipped by APBreed.

The APBreed CCS Compact Rotifer Culture System, as it arrived on my doorstep.

The APBreed CCS Compact Rotifer Culture System, as it arrived on my doorstep.

Instructions and supportive literature as you open the CCS box.

Instructions and supportive literature as you open the CCS box.

Removing the literature reveals an unassembled CCS

Removing the literature reveals an unassembled CCS

The exterior graduations on the food safe 5 gallon bucket used in the CCS

The exterior graduations on the food safe 5 gallon bucket used in the CCS

Assembly of the unit is pretty straightforward.  Here, the air feed is pushed through the hole in the PVC, then fitted with a typical airstone.

Assembly of the unit is pretty straightforward. Here, the air feed is pushed through the hole in the PVC, then fitted with a typical airstone.

The filter is then attached to the unit.

The filter is then attached to the unit.

The now assembled filtration unit is then placed into the support clamps; now mounted and ready for operation.

The now assembled filtration unit is then placed into the support clamps; now mounted and ready for operation.

The CCS's food-safe transluscent lid is now in place...this is the final assembly of APBreed's CCS rotifer culture system.

The CCS’s food-safe transluscent lid is now in place…this is the final assembly of APBreed’s CCS rotifer culture system.

The final component to using the CCS is rotifers and food.  APBreed strongly recommends their RGComplete, which is the feed used when designing the protocols for the CCS.

The final component to using the CCS is rotifers and food. APBreed strongly recommends their RGComplete, which is the feed used when designing the protocols for the CCS.

FTC regulations require that we inform you that we were given this product for review, but our opinion of a product is never affected by how we acquire them.

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