Nicholas Covey wrote:
I emailed the author of the site that Paul referenced. He said that what's best is to let the residue build up and then scoop it out and feed it to earthworms after all the larvae have left. From the looks of things you could put an immense amount of kitchen scraps/restaurant waste into one of these and they would break it down to next to nothing.
If you do this you will cause your worm bin to become a black soldier fly breeding ground unless you can keep the soldier flies out. It's not easy. I've got a worm bin and a soldier fly bin. Yes, the worms love the soldier fly residue but if you end up with soldier flies in your compost bin they will out compete your worms for the food and you won't end up with any worm compost worth a crap.
How big are the larvae? Can you sift them out from the compost before putting in the worm bins? Or are they too easy to miss? Maybe you can transfer the sifted compost to an empty BSF bucket with the entrance holes blocked (so new larvae don't enter) for a few days first, just to make sure they are all gone?
Making sure they're all gone is one thing. The thing I'm worried about is that the BSF residue/compost (it's not really compost) smells of black soldier fly pheromones and will attract new black soldier flies to invade and lay eggs in your worm bin.
tel jetson wrote:
if all the food for the soldier flies is gone, they'll still lay eggs in the stuff they leave behind?
I'm pretty sure they will. The smell of soldier flies attracts other soldier flies to lay their eggs there. They also don't lay their eggs in the 'compost'. They lay hundress of tiny eggs above the mess. As they hatch they fall/crawl down into the 'compost'.
tel jetson wrote:
will it matter if the eggs are there if there's nothing for them to eat? they won't grow without food, right? maybe they'll just end up as more food for the worms.
I think somebody should go ahead and try it. it's on my list of things to do. if nobody reports back here that it was a disaster before I get around to it, maybe I'll be the one to find out that it doesn't work.
What do your worms eat then?
tel jetson wrote:
I was under the impression that the worms would be interested in chewing through the larvae excrement. am I mistaken?
Frugal Que wrote:
We have an abundance of BSF also. Tons of them. During the spring, summer and part of the fall, I love to feed them everything because it disappears so fast. They are in our very large compost pile. I also started adding food scraps to our raised beds and the BSF found their way there also. I was so happy.
During the winter, we don't see them but they always come back in the spring. I think they go dormant. The worms come back first though - in abundance! The worms love the BSF poo.
now has anyone had sucess in maine with the buggies
i want these bad .. protein good for the chickens can freeze the mature larvae for winter feedings. or place in the basement next to your worm bin. and better unlike alot of maggots grubs worms the mature self harvesting larvae have no feeding mouth only a climbing and hooking mouth to pupate and the adults dont feed at all just breed lay eggs and die.
and they are kinda antibiotic qualities so really really not dirty.
and lastly as bad as it sounds they can be used for disposals .. ie chicken (or other) mysteriously dies .. well feed it to the BSF larvae since i wouldn't eat it..
Can the black soldier fly excrement be used for anything other than feeding to the worms? Even though the worms may take a little longer to digest, they seem to produce a higher yield of fertilizer/compost. Is this correct?
On the other hand BSF produce a yield of food for animals which is also beneficial. I could see myself using both of these