the bug is easy--put 1.5 cups filtered, non-chlorinated water in a quart jar with a plastic lid. add equal parts refined sugar and ground ginger daily (i used 2 tbs. of each per day for the first week), stir with a non-reactive utensil, cover and leave at room temp. after seven days you can make ginger beer (non-alcoholic) with the liquid in the bug, pour out half the sediment, and save the rest of the sediment for the next bug. just add 1.5 cups water to the reserved sediment. from then on i only fed my bug 1tsp. each of sugar and ground ginger a day.
for a more natural, healthier ginger ale, don't use a bug. thinly slice 3/4 cups fresh, firm ginger root and place into a 2 quarts jar with plastic lid. add 1tsp unrefined sea salt, 1/4 cup whey, 1/4 c evaporated cane juice, 1/2 c fresh lime juice, and fill almost to the top with filtered, non-chlorinated water. give it a stir and put on the lid. let sit at room temp for three days, then move to cold storage. it can be strained into a cup for drinking, diluted 1 part ale to 1 part water, or to taste.