An international network of/for intelligent organisms
I am a student researcher (who is new to slime molds) located on the U.S. East Coast. I have ordered two boxes of sclerotium from Carolina Biological. Does anybody have any advice regarding subculturing (beyond the set of instructions which they will send) and how to identify whether the sclerotium they do send is healthy or not?
Thank you very much!
Subculturing is easy, take a slimy oat and put it in a new container. As for the sclerotia get them wet, if they turn yellow you're good to go, if they turn grey they're dead. I wouldn't worry too much, also you can cut sclerotia up into small pieces and have those as subcultures.
Thank you very much for your reply! I have heard about contamination by fungal mold spores (especially when the environment isn't sterile like at home). Are there any things to be aware of that new researchers wouldn't know (ex: don't open the petri dish all the way up when placing a slime mold in it so that spores can't fall in). Should I try culturing in a fume hood?
Don't worry about sterile procedure. I've actually been working on starting up a mushroom business with my now Fiancée, and that will provide a perfect home for any kind of contaminants you could imagine, as will nearly any microbiology project. But with slime mold it's not something to worry about because they actually eat fungi and bacteria. I haven't had any problem with contamination being an issue at all, so I wouldn't worry if I was you.
A piece should wake up in 24 hours. I use oats straight out of the bag - not even organic - and water directly with tap water, no gloves and open air trays - you can raise square metres like that. Filter paper or kitchen towel is a lot more convenient than agar. Making more sclerotia is easy. The biggest mistake you can make is leaving them exposed to light - fine for a few hours but certain doom for days.
Interesting. Our school had a lot of trouble raising slime molds...I will document and post my progress (sclerotia gets here on Wednesday)
One more quick thing. I ordered from Carolina Biological but unfortunately, the shipping fee is just as much as the product itself... Are there any other places I can order from (though I hope that once I start a colony, I will not have to order more).
I'll PM you
Slime Molds Arrive Tomorrow! Thanks for all the information...I'll keep you all updated on how it goes.
Please join me in welcoming Pikachu and Pichu to their new home (assuming they survive)! I will keep updating y'all. The slices of sclerotia were smaller than I believed they would be. They are Physarum polycephalum.