May 1, 2016 at 8:15 pm #1686Carol – Mid-Mo.Participant
Yes, oatmeal is also used as a bedding/food I believe. It is just a little harder to sift out when feeding them to the birds, but then again that probably is not necessary. I used to use both oatmeal & wheat bran mixed, and it was fine – like I say just harder to sift worms out with the oatmeal. I bought from Grubco for about 7 years & now I switched to Nature’s Way, also from Ohio. Seems like their shipping methods are much better to where I live, but their worms are about the same size, price, etc. as Grubco. Amazing that your worms stayed that long from last summer to March – did you not have any blues to feed during that period?May 3, 2016 at 5:14 am #1707Love my blues!Participant
Hi Carol & Evie-
I just bought live mealworms in bulk through the mail for the first time (got way too many). I, too, placed them in separate air-vented containers with bran & oats. My question is, “How many carrots/potatoes/apples do you put in per approx. 1,000 mealworms?” Thanks for the advise, Carol. I had also read that they needed to be fed, but didn’t know about proportions.
Evie, any more activity with what appears to be a new pair?
NicoleMay 3, 2016 at 8:35 am #1712Carol – Mid-Mo.Participant
Evie, on the carrots, apple or potato slices – I just slice VERY THIN slices of carrots & put on top of the bedding, depending on size of container – I just scatter them maybe 3/4″ apart over top – I know when they are really hungry/thirsty they will eat all this up and then I put in some more! You do need to be sure to take out any leftover vegies before you refrigerate again, or it will get gummy inside the box. When I buy 10,000 bulk worms, I package them in smaller, flat plastic containers (5 or 6) with very small holes drilled in top. According to some worm instructions or Sialis website the bedding & worms should not be over 1 1/2 deep in each container, but I believe others have gotten by with larger boxes of worms??? I would really be interested in this last statement, as I would prefer not to have but 1 or 2 containers in my refrig!!May 3, 2016 at 12:24 pm #1713evieParticipant
First things first. The same female is here all the time. A new male is
hanging about though he has not yet learned about the free handouts. The nest looks to be remodeled. It’s very neat. The side against the door is quite high, but I assume there’s no harm in that. I can’t see the old eggs. Do you think it would be okay to leave them? Don’t know what the chance of breakage would be. As of yesterday there were no eggs. The weather here is foul: rainy, chilly with much of the same predicted until Sunday. I assume this will slow down or stop the breeding. But send your thoughts along.
Interesting to learn how you feed your mealies. I put apple wedges at various levels in my one container. Right now I’m using a 4 lb sugar container. The worms seem okay. But it sounds like I’m not giving them optimum living quarters. Is it worth a change?May 3, 2016 at 4:31 pm #1714dogsandbirdsModerator
The height of the nest in relation to the entrance is pretty important. Assuming the box is on a baffled pole, the greatest danger is from an avian predator that would be able to snatch hatchlings through the hole. A 1.5″ hole would admit the head of starlings, crows, and woodpeckers all of whom prey on baby birds. What you need to look at is where the cup of the nest is in relation to the entrance. If it looks far enough away that no head can reach them then things should be fine.
Just so everybody knows, for years I have gone against the normal way of keeping mealworms. I easily keep 5000 in a plastic shoebox size container, holes drilled in the top and with NO bedding. None! Every week they get raw carrot slices and a 24 hour stay on the kitchen counter. Every once in a while over the course of a couple of months, a couple of them die but that’s it.
Atlanta, GAMay 3, 2016 at 8:21 pm #1717evieParticipant
Thanks Dogs and Birds. The cup of the nest is way down. As for the mealworms, during the years I was teaching we kept ours as well in a box with holes and no bedding. There was no place to refrigerate them either. The mealworms seemed to do just fine. But the I brought them home and refrigerated them once school year was over.May 7, 2016 at 3:46 am #1776Love my blues!Participant
Very good info, ladies. I wondered what would happen if they didn’t have the bedding, so that’s good to know, Gin. Do any of you change out your bedding regularly? If so, how often do you find it needs it? It certainly would be a lot easier to not use the bedding so I may try that.
NicoleMay 7, 2016 at 9:23 am #1786tamseaModerator
Carol, I think it is wise not to have the worms too deep. I probably have mine full a little more than 1 1/2 inches but I try not to put too many in a container because they start dying.
I just throw in some oatmeal or cornmeal. Their bedding is also their food, Nicole so you don’t change it at all. They will eat it all up if they aren’t in the fridge. Now, if you are growing mealworms you’ll have to change it because their frass will build up and there will be more frass than food source.
I try to keep my mealworms fed so they are more nutritious? I’m not sure if that’s how it works but that’s my thinking. I keep them all in the fridge because I buy them in quantities of 5000 and they start pupating on me if I don’t.
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