Mealworm farming

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by hannakat, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. Klwright1122

    Klwright1122 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can make a sifter out of screen. I watched an awesome video on you tube with thy guy who does the "dirtiest jobs" show. It featured a woman and her son and their meal worm business. They have a shaker machine that the screen frames fit in, but it wouldn't be hard to shake your own frame to do a bin. You could use different size screen to make a couple different frames to sift
    The different size worms. It was very interesting--google it--you will find it.
    On YouTube it was dirty jobs season 7,
    Episode 16. Enjoy.
     
  2. Gypsi

    Gypsi Chillin' With My Peeps

    I fed a worm to 3 to each of my hens and pullets the other day. Can't imagine having enough to feed 50 per bird... Hmmmm Mealie math.
     
  3. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

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    How much time per day would it take? How many bins would I need to keep that many meal worms going strong? If I am right I put a 1-2" base of Wheat Bran and give them a few slices of veggies every 2-3 days? Am I missing anything else?

    Nate
     
  4. Gypsi

    Gypsi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Near as I can tell, warm humid room, couple of inches of wheat bran, put in a veggie at least once a week, but I'm up to twice a week now as the colony is growing. And it is growing!
     
  5. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

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    Quote:I have had very little pupae lately and the tub I am getting some in I stir almost every day looking for pupae and never notice them down in the substrate.

    Here is the last bin we moved the beetles to. We noticed when we took all the substrate out last weekend that there was too much to easily fit into another smaller container for eggs to hatch and mealies to start growing in so I cut way back on substrate since the tub is very deep. All we are doing each week is moving the beetles out, pouring the substrate into a smaller tub then putting new wheat bran back in and putting the beetles back into the big tub. it slides under the kitchen table and we forget them for another week. Old dead beetles stay in the egg substrate but sometimes I find "dead" ones walking around in teh egg substrate and have to move them over to the beetle bin.
    So far the darklings are doing fine on the black trash bag. No holes have been chewed that we have seen but as we have lowered the amount of wheat bran it may become an issue. I have put a bit of paper in for them to hide under and they are enjoying collards this week.

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  6. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

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    Quote:Before you order, why don't you check with WestKnollAmy, a seller on this board? Since we're learning here, why not help those who share so much information? That's just my perspective and a suggestion.

    Awwww! Thank you for the recommendation. [​IMG]
     
  7. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

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    Quote:Ha! Ha! I was trying to figure out which ones were the boys and which ones were the girls so I could feed out the boys to my birds and keep the girls for egg laying. Unfortunately I see nothing underneath them that shows the difference in gender! [​IMG] And I have tried to pick out beetles that try to be dominant but again, not always a sure fire way since when separated they still do the hokey pokey with each other. [​IMG]

    Oh, has anyone else separated out some deformed beetles and watched them? I meant to photograph mine. In a week their wings and bodies were normal. Fascinating but I am not sure if it proves they all become normal, only the ones I picked out and put in a small jar.
    I fancied it like having fireflies but without the blinking lights. I told DH I could run a strand of blinking mini Christmas lights around the jar and it would be like when we were kids. He said they may commit suicide from the crazy blinking! [​IMG]

    And I don't do mealie math. I scoop how many look like I can afford to feed and feed those to whom I feel need them the most. Usually my house chicks and then my barn chicks. Occasionally some breeder birds. My free rangers can find their own. The Christmas morning feast was plenty for everyone for a while but they sure look hopeful when they see me coming![​IMG]
     
  8. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

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    Quote:I swear they do hide!!!!! [​IMG]
     
  9. WestKnollAmy

    WestKnollAmy The Crazy Chicken Lady

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    Quote:Sounds about right. I often forgot back in the summer to feed mine fresh fruits and veggies and they did great. I believe the worms grow much better though when fed veggies more often so DH nags me about it and since we are selling so many I do try harder to keep up with them. It is getting now where I have them in the living room where the computer and now my TV is so I pull a bin into my lap and go through it looking for mealies and pupae, depending on which bin I am working with. I try to move the papers during the day when I can see a lot better and make sure I put fresh food in because that is where the pupae usually are. I am thinking because of more humidity.

    I also have a bin at the end of my big Sportsman incubator and it blows out a bit of moist air from the vent so that has helped that bin to pupate. I am finding most of my pupae in there now. And when I sit down at the computer in the mornings I always ask the mealie bin closest to me if they would like some nice steaming coffee. When I tell you they answer me, please send the men in the white uniforms to my house. [​IMG]
     
  10. Emily1220

    Emily1220 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Amy you crack me up!!!! I love following this thread. I bought 550 mealies today at my local petco. I have my wheat bran, oatmeal and a pinch of corn meal in the freezer for several days now just to be sure. So tomorrow I set up my farm!! I am so excited......wish me luck this works for me as well as it has for all of you!!!
     

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