Thursday, June 4, 2009

We've got (baby) worms!

I've been neglecting the worm bins lately, since it seems like all I find when I poke around in there are those annoying whiteflies or fruitflies (don't inhale when you open the lid!).

Everything I read about worm bins says overfeeding is more of a problem than underfeeding (I guess worms don't really eat that much), so other than making sure the bedding does not get too dry during the last heat wave, I'd given up on them for a while.

This past weekend I decided to check on them again. I opened the lower layer, where supposedly the "younger" worms hang out, and was able to see 2 or 3 right away without having to poke around. They are in the dark more, so the worms did not hide as quickly. Also, this is the layer that would have had the worm eggs when I got the Worm Factory a few months ago, so some must have hatched by now.

But what about the upper layer, where I had never seen more than 2 adult worms? Supposedly there were dozens in the original batch, but I never saw anywhere near that number. I poked around and saw some tiny pink baby worms, which made me happy. This means the adults had laid new eggs and they had hatched! Aaaaawwww! How cute!

Encouraged, I placed the defrosted, microwaved, shredded food bits in the top layer, and poked around some more. I found an eggshell from a feeding a month ago, and inside were dozens of tiny wiggly white worms. Discussion with a friend's 7-year old daughters confirmed these are also baby redworms. They start out white and get pinker, then red as they get bigger. Yippee--the worms are not totally dead. I may actually start feeding them again.

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