Friday, September 12, 2014

The Meal Worm Project

We are starting up a meal worm colony or farm for the first time. I am so excited! I went down to buy the live meal worms at the pet store and I decided on 50 of them to start up with. Then I saw some white doves and had to get one of them because our white winged dove that we rescued  needed a friend and we hadn't found one until now. The price was right so I picked one up. I'll share pictures of him on our facebook page. Like us there so you can see our beautiful birds and see what we name them.

Back to our meal worms. We are going to try to raise meal worms as a another source of food for our chickens. They are also good for reptiles and other types of birds as well. There is not much to it and the cost is minimal.







Steps:

1. Find yourself a set of plastic drawers.

2. If they are not new clean them up.

3. The worms will need darkness so either tape the drawers up pain them or just get black ones like we have.

4.  Add about an inch of substrate. Here are the different substrates I have seen people using:

    rolled oats-oat meal- the old fashioned kind
    corn meal
    wheat bran
    (let me know if you are using something different)

5. Put in a water supply and keep it changes every few days to keep down mold. Some examples:

    carrot
    apple
    potato slices
    grape
    lettuce
    celery

6.  Wait until the worms become Darkling Beetles and then either sift them out or let them crawl up an egg carton or piece of cardboard and transfer them to the next drawer which you will have to prepare with substrate as well.

7. There they can lay their eggs and it works good to have some pieces of cotton t-shirt for them to lay their eggs onto.

8. When the eggs hatch then you will have more worms which you can allow to grow into beetles or you could feed them to your flock depending on how many you buy in the first place. I just bought 50 so I will have to take the time to build up the colony or buy more next week. We will see.


 For you squeamish folks the worms should not crawl out because of the straight sides on the drawers. This is a new experience for us so we will keep you posted. The kids are real excited! This seems a lot easier than red worms for fishing. A lot less messy and these worms and beetles are not supposed to bite either. If you try this let us know!




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