Questions about raising Meal Worms

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by chuckzoo, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. chuckzoo

    chuckzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    I am trying to raise meal worms and currently have them in wheat bran. I have a good many beetles but they appear to be dead. What is the life cycle and time for each phase? I understand the beetles lay the eggs, but how long to they live?

    My meal worms are not getting very big either. How often to I need to sieve out the frass and won't I be throwing eggs away if I do?

    I need as much info as you can provide please.

    Thanks

    Jenny
     
  2. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    New Jersey
    Are you providing apple and/or carrot as moisture/water source?

    Look up posts by sillybirds here on BYC. A wealth of information.

    JJ
     
  3. chuckzoo

    chuckzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    No, when I did provide baby carrots the wheat germ went mouldy so I just added fresh wheat germ periodically. Since apparently they are normally found in dry foods it didn't seem necessary. Perhaps that's why they aren't growing. They are, however increasing in number.

    Thanks I'll look for the post you mentioned.
     
  4. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    I provide fresh carrots and/or apple at least every other day. They go crazy for it. You do have to watch out for mold but it was my understanding they need a source of moisture.
    JJ
     
  5. Pet Duck Boy

    Pet Duck Boy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 12, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    Quote:Moisture is essential to a mealworm colony, infact, the veggies/fruit you provide will make up 40% of their diet if you do it often. It will also make them healthier to eat.

    With constant feedings, good heat, and other things, mine go from egg to beetle in 2 1/2 months. The beetles often live up to 1 1/2 to 2 months after that.
     
  6. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:You have to provide moisture, and large carrots are best; potatoes cut in half are a close second. Like you, they die if they don't get moisture, and carrots and/or potatoes are their source.
     
  7. chuckzoo

    chuckzoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    Thanks for the responses. I have added some apple for them to enjoy. Surprisingly they have survived and multiplied without any supplemental moisture for about 2 months so they must be quite hardy little buggers! I took the carrots away before I left on an overseas trip.



    Do they really eat the eggs when they are laid? Someone mentioned that they (not sure if it is the beetles) should be seperated when they are larger or they will each the eggs and young worms.
     
  8. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:Probably the reason your babies lived for those two months is that they were getting their moisture from dead beatles.
     
  9. ChickieBooBoo

    ChickieBooBoo Cold Canadian Chick

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    Dec 2, 2009
    Canada
    Quote:Probably the reason your babies lived for those two months is that they were getting their moisture from dead beatles.

    eew [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. Tdub4chiks

    Tdub4chiks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 8, 2010
    Constantia, NY
    yes, they need potatoes or carrots for moisture, but make sure they have plenty of ventilation so the wheat bran doesn't get moldy. I cut out a large opening in the top of the bins and tape or glue screen on top.

    They also like a small piece of newspaper on top of the wheat bran (do not cover the whole top area) which you can moisten with a spray bottle, but don't soak.

    I add dry milk powder, baby rice cereal and wheat germ to my wheat bran to help them grow larger.
     

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