Mealworm Raising Questions

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by WildflowerJLH, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. WildflowerJLH

    WildflowerJLH Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks to the pages that people here posted, I am going to start farming mealworms! I want to keep my $ spent on this project to a minimum, until I can show my husband that it works. I have 2 shoebox sized (6 qt) plastic containers that I am not using, so I am gonna drill some air holes in those. Here are my questions:

    #1: how deep should the wheat germ be? I have 5 pounds coming on Monday with my groceries. My plan is to just split that between these 2 containers. If that winds up to be 2-3 inches deep, will that be OK?

    #2: how many worms can I put in each container? Some of the google links that I found warned against having too many in too little space.

    #3: I can get tubs of 500 mealworms for $7 at my local pet store, no shipping needed. I have seen that some BYC members sell them. Is it more cost effective to buy them from the pet store, a BYC member, or somewhere else?

    Thanks, in advance for all of your help.
    [​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]:[​IMG]: (my 12 chicks excited for mealworms!)
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  2. sillybirds

    sillybirds Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 5, 2008
    About 2 inches of wheat bran should be fine in the 6 quart shoebox size containers. Just make sure they have plenty of ventilation to prevent mold. 5 pounds should be just about right divided between the two boxes.

    When I start a box (6 quart shoebox size), I put around 50-60 beetles in. They will mate and lay eggs to yield 1000-2000 mealworms. At which point you have too many worms for that size container and need to move them out and/or feed them off.

    500 worms for $7 is pretty good, if they're good quality worms. That's about as cheap as I sell them.
  3. WildflowerJLH

    WildflowerJLH Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sillybirds, where in CA are you? I am in Tehachapi. If you don't know where that is, We are about 2 hours north of Los Angeles and an hour east of Bakersfield.

    Based on your answer, 500 mealworms would be too many to start out with, right? Better to split 100 between those 2 boxes?
  4. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

    May 6, 2010
    My Coop
    Quote:Depends on how many you want to feed and how fast you want your colony to start up. Splitting the 500 would be fine with your smaller boxes and would get you off to a good start and you could use some to feed sooner. I think overcrowding problems creep in when they don't have enough resources (keep adequate bran and vegetables available) or the conditions degrade. I also agree with sillybirds about ventilation. I would worry that having holes in the lid might not be enough ventilation, keep a close eye on that. Good luck!
  5. WildflowerJLH

    WildflowerJLH Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am actually planning to drill holes all over the lid AND around the top of the actual box 1" from the top. Does that sound like enough?

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