I've activated the Camaldoli, Ischia and French yeasts now in intervals. The hooch layer I reported earlier has not been an issue; for whatever reason, it's been rather minor with all cultures ever since. It may not have even been hooch, as it seemed to be in the middle and did not bear an alcoholic smell, so that may have been a mistaken diagnosis on my part.
The Camaldoli activated rather quickly, but I was afraid I had refrigerated it too early. I took it out the following weekend, reduced its volume, and fed it, and it was up and perky in no time. In fact, I've had horrible luck baking bread, and just decided to use some of the liquid to try a quick loaf from the Ed Wood book. It leavened very nicely, even though I had to leave suddenly and decided to stick the dough in the fridge so that it wouldn't over-rise. IMO, the crumb was a bit dense, and I question the hydration level of that recipe. Next attempt I'll use Crust and Crumb. And similar to Kidder, I don't think I was zealous enough in slicing the dough, as my two baguettes rose astoundingly and opened large crevices on the sides. Took the advice of the pan of water, making sure mine was hot out of the tap. That worked very well.
The Ischia activated VERY quickly. Not sure what accounts for the difference in activation speeds, but this one was clearly fully active within about two days. In fact, as the jar sat on the seedling heating mat on my counter, I could hear Italian songs and what I think was some sort of carnival going on in there. I was very happy with the Ischia.
The French culture was a bit sleepy. I was about to say it was a bad batch when, on day 3, it started showing bubbles and then bloomed at an incredible rate. It was slower in the earlier stages and much more active in the later.
So now I have three jars in the fridge, and any time I take them out to feed them or just give them a sniff, my wife gives me a dirty look. You've been playing with your yeasts again, haven't you?
Yes, but to me, they smell like pure invention.
Can't wait to try making my first pizza dough using the starter.