What you may be asking yourself right now probably is ‘’
what are mealworms’’ you might actually be surprised when you realize that
mealworms aren’t worms. Mealworms are just larvae of the darkling beetle.
Just like the way a caterpillar turns into a butterfly
during its life stages, darkling beetles also changes into mealworms after
which it changes into pupa and finally into darkling mealworm larvae. Dried
mealworms are just but mealworms that have been dried through various means
like heating or freeze-drying.
Mealworms are normally used as food for a wide variety of animals including birds, poultry, hedgehogs and fish. And so many other pet animals. Most people now days use mealworms to attract birds.
The good thing with mealworms is that they are the best food to feed any bird or pet at your home. But why are mealworms loved by many people that some have even opted to make garden worms in their homes?
Mealworms are 100% natural
The basic diet of mealworms is normally vegetables, cereals
and grain. Though the composition of each batch of mealworm can vary. Most of
them are 100% natural. What makes the natural composition of mealworms to vary
is normally the age at which the mealworms were dried, the type of drying
process that was used and also the size of the mealworm.
Usually, a typical mealworm contains 5% moisture, 6% fiber, 28 % fat and 53% protein. The primary diet of mealworm being vegetable, cereals, and grain, it is, therefore, natural and good for animals and that is the reason why it is loved by so many people.
They are easily available in bulk
The packaging of mealworms available varies from 11 billion
bags to multiple pallet loads. Dried mealworms packages normally vary from 11
bags and above. Whether you are buying mealworms for birds, fish or turtles,
the dried ones will be the best one for you.
Listings information for mealworm packages are normally
available online. Normally, it is 11lb, 22lb, 33lb, 44lb and even up to 66lbs.
Packaging is normally done in multiples of 11. You can even get more packages
than the ones above and take advantage of bulk discounts when buying mealworms.
They are easy to dry
If you decide to produce mealworms in your home, you may find that you produce more than you can use. In this case, you may be forced to preserve them for future use. Drying will help to reduce the storage space.
Dried mealworms can stay good without the need for refrigeration for up to one year. Its proteins are also better preserved when they bare dried. The best method to dry them normally is roasting though you can also use the freeze-dry method.
They are excellent with the poultry
Mealworms may look terrible to us but to chicken, they are
appealing at all. To the poultry, they are tasty as a home cooked meal cooked
by the one who loved you. To them, they have a sweet taste that they can even
drive your animals wild with the lust for more. Actually, mealworm is good for
the chicken because of the following reasons;
goes a long way. You do not have to use a lot of mealworms to make the entire
chicken meal. You just use a little, and there you have your chicken meal.
They give chicken proteins to improve their
They help chicken go through the molting season.
They ensure that chicken develops its feathers within the shortest time
Rich protein value of the mealworms makes the
chicken lay eggs rich in protein.
Mealworms reduce the stress of turning the
bedding as they will do it themselves.
It is just exciting to see how eggs scramble and
Your chicken will fall in love with you
It is easy to care for the mealworms
Caring for the mealworm
Caring for the mealworms is easy. First of all, mealworms
are not complicated in their choice of food. In fact, the food they eat is the
bedding that they lie on. You just put cereals or grain in their home.
You are not supposed to put water in their beddings to keep
them dehydrated. You only give them food with water to keep them
dehydrated. You give them food like
potatoes and carrots. You also need to change their vegetable after five to
When it comes to shelter, mealworms need to be housed in a container which is 8 cm deep. The material of the container should be smooth like plastic, metal or even glass. The reason for that is that mealworms can easily escape from the container and therefore, anything that can help them escape should be avoided.
You are also not supposed to put the lid on the container as they cannot fly. You can only use the lid to avoid spilling over of the mealworms. But when you do that, you need to make sure that you make holes for ventilation.
Caring for the life stages
When caring for the life stages, you need only to make sure that you don’t keep the stages close together. The reason for this is that as the metamorphosis progresses, the larvae and the mature beetle may end up eating the defenseless and the immobile pupa.
The pupa should, therefore, be stored in a different container which should be lined with a paper towel. Mealworms at this stage do not require any food. It is normally good to store mealworms at different stages at their ideal conditions, but that could be cumbersome.
To collect the poops from the mealworms which are normally in sandy form is easy. You just place a sieve, and the poop will fall through together with the eggs as they are very small.
You can decide to make a colony by storing the poop separately with food and vegetable up to the point when larvae are big enough to pick out.
When harvesting them, you just need to separate them from the beddings by sieving them. You can also allow them to climb a scree type material because they like that and then you can pick them out from there.