DIY Mealworm Farm

| 11/27/2013 9:30:00 AM

mealwormsI had the hardest time titling this post and project. What would you call it? Mealworms don’t “grow” like a vegetable and you don’t really “raise” them either. Mostly, you throw them in a box and hope to god that they reproduce to the point that they become useful. In that sense, I suppose mealworms are some sort of creepy-crawly crop. Or at least they have the potential to save you a few bucks in chicken or quail treats.

That’s where I come in. Apparently, mealworms are quite easy to “grow” and make a great feast for chickens and other poultry and game birds. Mealworms are also high in protein. Your birds will thank you I’m sure. The best part is, however, that you can raise them in nothing more than a lidded box and some oatmeal.

Here’s what you’ll need to become a mealworm farmer:
• plastic box, tub, or drawer
• lid to the box you are using; it needs to fit tightly (we will be cutting this)
• fine mesh or screening (buy by the foot or use an old window screen)
• duct tape
• tall canister of oatmeal (opt for the cheap stuff)
• paper egg carton
• two carrots or a potato cut into large pieces
• 400 or more live mealworms (look at bait shops or pet shops as lizard food)mealworm farm

Make sure the box or drawer you choose has a well-fitting lid. It doesn’t need to seal or anything since the worms and beetles we will be raising will not crawl that high, but it is nice to know that if they do, the creepy bugs won’t get out. I’ll be honest, this whole project creeps the bejesus out of me.

First, cut a decent size hole from the box lid.

Cut your screen or fine wire mesh to fit over the hole, overlapping on all sides by about an inch or two. Many hardware stores sell window screening by the linear foot or if you have a random old window screen laying around, you could use that. Recycle folks!

12/6/2014 10:14:49 PM

Meal worms are also excellent food for tropical fish, especially large cichlids, large gold fish, coah, and some salt water fish. Probably could sell your excess to people who keep tropical fish. I think you could even ship them if they were cool or cold. In His Love, Clyde

12/6/2014 2:23:55 PM

Hello, Although this seems like a well-meaning author, there are many factual errors. Do not use this article as your only source before starting a mealworm colony or it will end in disaster! A quick google or YouTube search will render much more useful information.

12/15/2013 11:13:43 AM

Guess I only have to click the Submit button once. LOL!

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