mealworms dying

tipuana38

In the Brooder
May 24, 2016
12
0
25
Hi,
Has anyone had mealworms that curl up at times and roll onto their backs? They eventually become smaller and die.
I can't see any obvious disease, although in the past have battled mould mite.
Thru sheer desperation, I have painted the very tops of some trays with surface spray to kill mould mite entering or leaving but am careful not to touch these surfaces when working on the worms. (nothing else worked)
TIA for any help Jacqui
 

Weehopper

Songster
Feb 26, 2015
773
102
134
Have no clue about mealworms problems. Never thought they had any. I only know how we raised them whin I was a kid. We kept lots of lizards back then. We had a 5 gallon, metal barrel that was about one third full of sawdust. My dad put the mealworms in this, along with slices and halves of raw potatoes (face down in the sawdust). Then he put screen to cover the open end of the barrel. The mealworms would eat away at the potatoes, turn themselves into their larval stage, and hatch out as beatles. The Beatles could fly. Hence the screen on top. They would lay eggs in there, and upon hatching, the cycle would start again. Never had to buy mealworms again. Never saw any sort of disease.
 

Weehopper

Songster
Feb 26, 2015
773
102
134
All we ever gave them was raw potatoes..cur in half, laying face down ion the sawdust. They probably got their moisture from that. We were in Southern California, so it was plenty dry there.
 

BruceAZ

Songster
May 18, 2016
883
64
116
Valley of the Sun :)
All we ever gave them was raw potatoes..cur in half, laying face down ion the sawdust. They probably got their moisture from that. We were in Southern California, so it was plenty dry there.


saw dust? not wheat gran ?

i have a 5 gallon fish tank.. do i have to cover the surface of the wheat bran with some vegetables or fruits?
 

Weehopper

Songster
Feb 26, 2015
773
102
134
I was very young, but I am pretty sure it was sawdust. BUT, I would stick with whatever you were instructed to do. You might try adding some sliced potatoes, though. If for no other reason than moisture.
 

tipuana38

In the Brooder
May 24, 2016
12
0
25
Wheat bran is best for the nutrition they get. My worms never went for potato, so I used carrot.
I once read that more is not better, but that being said, it is winter here in au.
I have been giving over the past few weeks the wheat bran as the substrate and chicken starter/mash?, for moisture (not much moisture in it), as this makes the mould mite disappear.
Summer may be a different kettle of fish and I may need to add a little moisture which is eaten quickly.
Good luck with your mealies.
 

BruceAZ

Songster
May 18, 2016
883
64
116
Valley of the Sun :)
i didn't notice until today..

i guess the reason why some of the beetles are dead because of the direct sun! i didn't notice that the morning sun can still reach all the way inside at an angle..

let's hope the remaining ones will survive..

how long it will take these 20-30-ish remaining mealworms to build up a colony that is enough to feed 5 hens?

maybe i need to buy more...
 

MANNA-PRO

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