Wheeler Clayton recipe

Modified at the Stock Center from original Wheeler and Clayton recipe (DIS, v. 40, p. 98, 1965)

(Makes approximately 6 cases of wide diameter plastic vials)



Cooking instructions for a stove top:

  1. Mix the instant Drosophila medium with the 600 mL of boiled tap water in a small Ziploc bag. Allow closed Ziploc to sit and cool to a “touchable” temperature. Cut a corner out of the Ziploc bag and squeeze a small dab (about 1 mL) into the bottom of each vial.
  2. Take out the dry cereal mix (containing all of the cereals, blended to a powder. Dry mixes are prepared ahead of time and stored at -20°C in a Ziploc bag for up to 6 months).
  3. In a large pot, add together 3 L of tap water and agar. Bring to a boil. Stir the agar solution CONSTANTLY to prevent agar from burning to the bottom of the pot. Cook at a boil until agar is clear. This process can take up to 30 minutes.
  4. Blend the bananas, the dry cereal mixes, and 1.75 L in a large blender.
  5. Once the agar solution is clear, add in the blended wet mixture to the agar solution in to the pot. Add an additional 2 L of tap to the pot. (Use this additional 2 L to wash all of the cereal mix out of the blender and into the pot of agar solution.
  6. Lower the temperature slightly to prevent scalding.
  7. STIR CONSTANTLY; allow the mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Carefully add in the 95% ethanol plus the propionic acid; mix thoroughly.
  9. Continue simmering for 5 more minutes.
  10. Remove from heat and pour into vials. (You do not need to let the mixture cool; it can be poured immediately after removing from heat).

Pouring Dimensions:

We pour Wheeler-Clayton food into wide plastic vials. Once the food has cooled to room temperature, we put folded facial tissue in along one side of the vials and then moisten it with de-ionized water. The larvae use this tissue as added surface area for pupation. Be sure to use facial tissue that has no added fragrances or colorants. Also, it helps if it is not very soft tissue.