This page last edited on

01 August, 2008

Turtles

 

  Worms Galore!

  The worm box has been an economical and convenient Godsend! I used to buy worms at Walmart but it was getting expensive and a pain to keep running out to get more. I go through a lot of worms because I have ten pond turtles, two box turtles and two Central American wood turtles that like to eat worms.  Now I buy red wriggler worms on Ebay and put them in the worm box. The informaton on this page will pertain to red wriggler worms only as they are the only type of worm that I have raised. I know that nightcrawlers require cold temperatures and here in south Florida we don't have that! Red wrigglers are easy to raise and will live in pretty much any environment if you keep their box in a cool place and keep the worms moist.

  The worms do not need to be fed top quality food. They do well on grass clippings and leaves from plants. You can also put in hay, which I do, as well as scraps of lettuce, carrots and other veggies. I usually put the end pieces of lettuce stalks, celery stalks and carrots in the box. The worms don't eat the food, they live on the bacteria that is on the food so it doesn't matter what you give them as long as its not slimy, moldy and already rotting. Surprisingly the food does not get nasty in the worm box. In fact, I've had plants even grow in the box if you can believe that!

  I've made mistakes in the past on how to house them and what to feed them so here are my tips for raising your own worms for your reptiles. These tips are how I do it now after learning for the past two years! Once you know what you are doing its very easy, not too messy and not too smelly!

DIANES ZOO TIPS FOR RAISING WORMS

  1. You can find red wriggler worms on Ebay. It is the cheapest way of getting them I have found.

  2. Put them in a plastic bin as shown above. They are readily available for a few dollars at Walmart, Kmart and Target.

  3. When your worms arrive put them in the box with all the peat moss or material they were packed in.

  4. Drill small holes in the container top as well as two rows of holes on the side of the bin. Do not drill holes on the bottom unless you want a mess! The brown liquid from the bin drains out and will stain your floor. The worms will also crawl out because the worms always migrate to the bottom of the bin. You need to drill holes so there is air flow and to keep the container from overheating. Make sure to use a drill bit that will make a hole too small for them to crawl out. Red wrigglers are not very thick worms so be careful.

  5. Mix strips of newspaper with peat moss with the worms. Be sure to add a substantial amount of both.

  6. I don't add regular dirt anymore because I found out that it attracted ants and it also made it difficult to pick out worms because it was to muddy and thick.

  7. Add grass clippings, leaves, flowers, scrap lettuce and veggies. Be certain to WASH all outdoor vegetation before adding to the bin to ensure no ants or other insects get in the bin. If you don't you will have more ants than worms in no time! In south Florida this is a big problem because there are a million ants all over the leaves and flowers of plants.

  8. Add enough water so that everything is moist but not soaking. The peat moss is great for absorbing and retaining moisture, much better material than dirt which turns to mud. Mix everything up.

  9. Place your bin in the house or garage in a cool spot that does not get direct sunlight. Be careful about garages as they are more prone to have ants than the house.

  10. If you live in a place like south Florida where there are a billion ants for every person, DO NOT PUT THE BOX OUTSIDE!!! Believe me, I learned my lesson on this one! I had to dismantle the contents in the bin shown above because the fire ants got into it and then made a trail going underneath my patio door frame and into the house. It took a lot of work and time to finally get rid of them. Even without the fire ants, I had to battle other ants in the box.

  11. Don't add much fruit, if any. Again, fruit attracts ants far more than veggies and vegetation and also produces the dreaded fruit fly! I have opened my bin before to a swarm of fruit flies. I don't add fruit anymore!

  12. You can add coffee grounds. I've heard and read this many times. I don't know why its supposed to be good to add them but apparently it is. You can also put the wet filter in right with the grounds.

  13. Check your box everyday and make sure it is ANT FREE, moist enough, has enough vegetable matter, and that the worms are alive and healthy. You will be surprised as to how fast the vegetation breaks down!

  14. When you are ready to feed your worms to your reptiles you can use your bare fingers to dig through and collect them. This is what I do. Because I use peat moss only and not dirt it is not too "dirty."  Put the worms in a container deep enough they won't crawl out of too fast while you are still collecting more worms.

  15. I cut my worms up in pieces with a scissors for the box and wood turtles so that they have an easier time eating them and also so that they won't crawl out of the shallow water dishes I put them in.

  16. If you feed them to pond turtles you should wash off the worms well and get rid of the peat moss and other materials before throwing the whole worms into the pond or tank/aquarium. The last thing you want to do is get your pond or tank full of dirty material.

  17. Add plant matter as you need it. NEVER ADD ANIMAL MATTER!

  18. Enjoy your virtually free food source for your reptiles! You should start getting baby worms but if you ever run low on worms just get more like I do. Its still the most economical and easy way to raise food for your worm eating friends!

  There are three great movies in the player below of the pond turtles eating the worms. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

Click on Playlist to view the  four movies of the worm box and the turtles eating the worms.

 

Turtles Page | Turtle Housing | Turtle Feeding | Turtle Care | Central American Woods

Florida Boxes | Malayan Box | Red Ear Sliders | Yellow Belly Sliders | Worms

Back to top

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Website created by

Web Design by Diane

 


DISCLAIMER:  This website was set up to SHARE my OWN experience with my reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens and local wildlife and to post pictures and video of them. It was NOT SET UP to offer my opinion or expertise on ANY QUESTION that I am asked and what I post on this website should not be taken as "EXPERT ADVISE" or how to take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens or local wildlife. I AM NOT A REPTILE RESCUE GROUP, GUINEA PIG RESCUE GROUP, VETERINARIAN, REPTILE EXPERT, GUINEA PIG EXPERT, PONDS/FISH EXPERT, GARDEN EXPERT OR WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR! I have limited experience with reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens, therefore, I am NOT QUALIFIED to give out advise or answer questions and you, as a visitor to this website, should not take anything on this website as expert advise or accurate information.  I present this website for fun and fun only - NOT as a reference website to instruct anyone on how to properly take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish or gardens.  I share how I DO THINGS for my reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens and this is not intended for others to take as expert advise or to mimic. Furthermore, my political views are my own and not intended to offend, annoy, hurt or demean any person, entity or organization. I express my views as an American who has the right to free speech under the Constitution of the United States of America. Please feel free to set up your own website and express your views, post your pictures and video and share with the rest of us in cyberspace what your little corner of the world is like. Thank you very much for your kind understanding in appreciating the value and contents of this website.

 

Home | Welcome | Feedback | Zookeeper | Hurricanes | Habitat | Vegetable Gardens | Puzzles | Sounds | Quizzes | Scrapbooks | Ralph Nader 

Web Design | The Dog | The Turtles | The Ponds & Fish | The Guinea Pigs | The Locals | Jajjuzza's Tribute | The Tortoises

Do you have comments on this website or questions for the Wild Zookeeper? Contact The Wild Zookeeper          

Website Copyright dianeszoo.com