Question reg. mealworm farming

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Pokka, Jan 10, 2019.

  1. Pokka

    Pokka In the Brooder

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    About 2 years ago I started growing my own mealworms, after noticing how much my hens like these. It's only on a small-scale; I use a system with 3 drawers (1 with beetles, 2 with worms) and I keep the puppae separated from the other stages. The drawer with the beetles in it has a mesh-bottom, that allows the eggs to fall into the drawer under it.

    Overall it works fine, every month I can harvest enough worms to keep my girls happy. However, in the drawers with mealworms the mealworm poop has accumulated over time. I wonder how to get rid of it, without throwing out the eggs too.... Does anyone have a good suggestion for this?
     
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  2. Chick-N-Daddy

    Chick-N-Daddy Songster

    Let it sit for a few weeks. to let the worms grow. After they are larvae, but before they are beetlses, sift, toss it straight into your garden, or into compost pile.
     
  3. Chick-N-Daddy

    Chick-N-Daddy Songster

    FWIW, I got bored one day, worked out some pricing models which included profitability when reselling vs. farming, registered a business and associated trademarks, and came up with this (prototypes shown, thought the final product packaging doesn't drift far:


    $5 bag includes:
    100 mealworms (or 50 superworms)
    a moderately re-usable self-contained, yet accessible, water source
    2 random charms in a small packet.

    20181119_135127.jpg

    We are also dying the bags different ways to denote various other product options (sizes and type of bug - meal/super/silk/etc)

    I'd need to work out specifics for shipping and larger purchase options on my end, but I would be willing to sell ready-to-fill branded packaging to interested and trustworthy parties.

    Edit, I'm also looking at a hostile takover of the generic earthworm market locally. All earthworms sold on Mars or in orbit will be branded... BWAHAHAHAH!
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
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  4. Pokka

    Pokka In the Brooder

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    Thanks for your reaction! That would make sense, as long as I see to it that I on a regular basis remove/exchange the drawer that catches the eggs. That way I could let the mealworms grow up in batches. Perhaps I should get more drawers...
    With just the 2 drawers with mealworms that I have, I have a mix of ages in each drawer; froms eggs to full-grown mealworms all mixed. That makes sifting a bit difficult, too many eggs would get lost.
     
  5. Chick-N-Daddy

    Chick-N-Daddy Songster

    I buy in quantities of 10,000 and just dump em in a plastic bin with grower/finisher crumbles, then in a few weeks (months if it is cold) pick out any beetles and toss into breeder drawer, sift out some worms for packaging or treats, check water supply. pick out some pupae to spread around some other grow out tanks to mix up the genetics a bit. The beetles won't breed if they are too closely related so bringing in fresh stock is a good thing.

    Really pretty hands-off once ya get it going.
     
  6. Pokka

    Pokka In the Brooder

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    Obviously I need to upscale!
    What do you use as a water source (and how do you prevent fungus)? I've sofar used pieces of apple, but fungus is a problem here.
     
  7. Chick-N-Daddy

    Chick-N-Daddy Songster

    For the shippable product / packaging I use proprietary solutions which are working for me (so far, but still early). For the bulk, I use thinly sliced potato or apple, carrot. Just have to check it bore often. Also if very humid, maybe looks into cans of desiccant or a good/cheap electric de-humidifier (hooked to a drain) in the grow out room.
     
  8. MissChick@dee

    [email protected] ~ Dreaming Of Springtime ~

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    Caliente Nevada
    I just started with my mealworms about a week ago. I’m keeping the tote in the living room because it’s just too cold in the garage...you should see my husband roll his eyes :smackLOL
     
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  9. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    You're supposed to keep them under the kitchen table.:lau
     
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  10. Chick-N-Daddy

    Chick-N-Daddy Songster

    Glad I'm not the only one. You don't sift on the stovetop anymore do ya? yeah, me either. One mealworm in the gravy at thanksgiving and ya NEVER hear the end of it. Was good gravy tho. Even wife admitted it .
     
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