Help Creating A Closed Aquatic Ecosystem??

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Hi, I have to do a biology project where I make a closed ecosystem out of soda bottles, but it has to include an aquatic chamber.
To get an A I have to make everything in it survive without any interference for 2 weeks, but I don't want to use any fish in it because that would be awful and they would probably die. I can't think of anything that could survive in that small a space without food, any suggestions??

I was thinking of maybe some kind of shrimp, but I think they might be too sensitive. I can't use snails

Please reply soon I have to set it up today
 

Platylover

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
8,497
Reaction score
4,937
Location
Fishlore
Experience
More than 10 years
Pond or bladder snails, they can survive about anything.
 

Zigi Zig

Well Known
Member
Messages
1,495
Reaction score
471
Location
Raleigh NC
Experience
More than 10 years
Hello
Best option to be use google and youtube I simply type Aquarium Ecosystem and there a lot of results come up..
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Platylover said:
Pond or bladder snails, they can survive about anything.
My teacher said she doesn't want us to use snails because she can't tell if they're alive or not :/
 

Platylover

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
8,497
Reaction score
4,937
Location
Fishlore
Experience
More than 10 years
LucyC said:
My teacher said she doesn't want us to use snails because she can't tell if they're alive or not :/
Lol, based on smell alone you can tell that. Seed shrimp or mosquito larvae may work as well.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Platylover said:
Lol, based on smell alone you can tell that. Seed shrimp or mosquito larvae may work as well.
Can you normally get those at a local store? Would Amano or ghost shrimp work or are they too sensitive? Thanks!

She really wants me to use fish but I don't want them to die :/
 

Platylover

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
8,497
Reaction score
4,937
Location
Fishlore
Experience
More than 10 years
No, you typically can not... mosquito larvae should be easy enough to find though, just go to anywhere that has stagnated water. You can likely find a few other insects that way too.

I don’t believe ghost or yamatos would necessarily be the best choice, but it depends on what all you are having in it. How exactly are you setting this up?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Platylover said:
No, you typically can not... mosquito larvae should be easy enough to find though, just go to anywhere that has stagnated water. You can likely find a few other insects that way too.

I don’t believe ghost or yamatos would necessarily be the best choice, but it depends on what all you are having in it. How exactly are you setting this up?
It's supposed to replicate a closed ecosystem, so I'm connecting three 2-liter bottles together to form an aquatic, terrestrial, and decomposition chamber. Then the whole thing gets sealed up and left for 2 weeks and at the end she checks if everything is still alive. In the aquatic chamber I have to have substrate, aquatic plants, and some sort of aquatic organism.

Do you think I could find some good critters just in a creek or pond?
 

Platylover

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
8,497
Reaction score
4,937
Location
Fishlore
Experience
More than 10 years
LucyC said:
It's supposed to replicate a closed ecosystem, so I'm connecting three 2-liter bottles together to form an aquatic, terrestrial, and decomposition chamber. Then the whole thing gets sealed up and left for 2 weeks and at the end she checks if everything is still alive. In the aquatic chamber I have to have substrate, aquatic plants, and some sort of aquatic organism.

Do you think I could find some good critters just in a creek or pond?
If I were doing this I would just go and get some larvae’s and stuff from the ponds/creeks. Also grab the water their in and if it’s legal some of the plants they live with. Most of those larvae’s and such can live in not the best conditions and still do well, so I think that would be a good way to go since you can’t go with snails.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Platylover said:
If I were doing this I would just go and get some larvae’s and stuff from the ponds/creeks. Also grab the water their in and if it’s legal some of the plants they live with. Most of those larvae’s and such can live in not the best conditions and still do well, so I think that would be a good way to go since you can’t go with snails.
Ok I'll try and do that, thanks!
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
One other thing, do you think gravel, sand or dirt would be best as the substrate? Or maybe a mixture?
 

Platylover

Fishlore VIP
Member
Messages
8,497
Reaction score
4,937
Location
Fishlore
Experience
More than 10 years
Again, if legal, I’d use the dirt from the pond/creek. If you can’t use those I’d do dirt with a gravel cap.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Ok thanks
 

Dinoknight

Active Member
Member
Messages
187
Reaction score
86
Experience
5 years
I would just tell your "Teacher" (Who clearly knows nothing about an ecosystem if she thinks that one can exist in a couple of soda bottles, and just as clearly has no respect for the rights of an animal to have a decent home, e.g., an actually maintained aquarium) that the experiment is unethical, and if she is going to have students possibly kill the animals, which they have taken under their protection, then she is going to be giving out a whole ton of "F"s. Rally your classmates, if no one does it, they might think about change, the classic piece of **** that the "closed ecosystem in a soda can" experiment is outdated, and unethical, and it needs to go. If you can't do that, then do snails, if she can't tell if they are dead, then she needs to get her olfactory senses and short term memory checked.

- Dino
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
Dinoknight said:
I would just tell your "Teacher" (Who clearly knows nothing about an ecosystem if she thinks that one can exist in a couple of soda bottles, and just as clearly has no respect for the rights of an animal to have a decent home, e.g., an actually maintained aquarium) that the experiment is unethical, and if she is going to have students possibly kill the animals, which they have taken under their protection, then she is going to be giving out a whole ton of "F"s. Rally your classmates, if no one does it, they might think about change, the classic piece of that the "closed ecosystem in a soda can" experiment is outdated, and unethical, and it needs to go. If you can't do that, then do snails, if she can't tell if they are dead, then she needs to get her olfactory senses and short term memory checked.

- Dino
I know, it's a really stupid experiment imo and really doesn't actually represent a natural ecosystem, she said it's just a "fun project". I was considering talking to her about how cruel and inaccurate it is but I don't want to get on the wrong side of her :/. In my lab report I'll definitely mention all that though
 

Suzanne2

Active Member
Member
Messages
332
Reaction score
258
Location
N.Y.
Experience
1 year
I really hope none of your classmates put any fish in theirs! That would be just wrong!

I would definitely recommend using pond water with some pond plants and dead leaves from the bottom of the pond too. That way the little critters such as larval insects will have a microscopic food and a source and algae for the microbes to munch on.
As for land animals springtails are one of the only things that would do well in a setup like you are planning.

I really am surprised your teacher and school are assigning this kind of project, it is not the kind of thing that can be done with just any kinds of animals, and the fact that she says she can't tell with snails if they are alive or not means that snails have died needlessly in the past for this "fun" projects!
I feed snails to my other animals but that is very different from just sticking them in a closed bottle knowing they will probably die. It is not a particularly scientific thing to do.
 

Skavatar

Well Known
Member
Messages
3,971
Reaction score
2,670
Location
Houston, TX
Experience
2 years
a hand full of dirt from local stream or pond, water from the stream/pond, and whatever aquatic plant is growing in the area. hornwort, duckweed, etc.

there's bacteria and other micro organisms in there.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #18
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
So I just went out and got a bunch of stuff from a pond, in case she won't let me use those, any ideas on if shrimp would be possible and if so what kind? Thanks!
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
OP
LucyC

LucyC

Active Member
Member
Messages
473
Reaction score
183
Location
OH
Experience
4 years
LucyC said:
So I just went out and got a bunch of stuff from a pond, in case she won't let me use those, any ideas on if shrimp would be possible and if so what kind? Thanks!
Please reply I need to set it up soon,
I have some fairy shrimp and some algae and plants from the stream, any ideas on how well those would survive? I read that cherry shrimp could be a possibility but not completely sure, suggestions?
 

Suzanne2

Active Member
Member
Messages
332
Reaction score
258
Location
N.Y.
Experience
1 year
LucyC said:
Please reply I need to set it up soon,
I have some fairy shrimp and some algae and plants from the stream, any ideas on how well those would survive? I read that cherry shrimp could be a possibility but not completely sure, suggestions?
Unfortunately I don't know much about fairy shrimp or cherry shrimp... Hopefully someone else will know. Try YouTube for fairy shrimp ecosphere or biosphere.
 

New Threads

Similar Threads

Follow FishLore!

FishLore on Social Media

Online statistics

Members online
244
Guests online
3,124
Total visitors
3,368

Aquarium Photo Contests

Aquarium Calculator

Top Bottom