Not as many worms as expected

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paynes1
Junior Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2019 7:42 am

Not as many worms as expected

Post by paynes1 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 7:52 am

My wormery is just coming up to a year old. The first tray has composted well so the worms have been doing their thing, and I have just started the second tray. When I transferred some compost to the new tray I found although there were many worms, including small 'babies', there were not as many as I expected. Nowhere near as many as put in originally, whereas I was expecting the numbers to increase.
Part of the reason I was bought the wormery was to have some worms for fishing, but I think if I take some out there will not be any left.
The wormery seems OK but perhaps lacking a few worms. Any thoughts or suggestions please?

Lilwriggler
Member
Posts: 69
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2018 12:08 pm

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by Lilwriggler » Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:29 pm

Maybe they know their fate and are making a run for it before they reach bait size? Do you see many escapees around the wormery?

WillyWorm
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Posts: 426
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2015 9:10 am

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by WillyWorm » Wed Nov 13, 2019 3:20 pm

Hi, most worm bins are capable of accommodating approximately 2,000 worms. The Wormcity bin is one of the larger bins on the market and can hold 2,500 worms so should easily meet your fishing needs.
There are a few reasons why some bins fail to reach this level of occupancy. Worms will self regulate their population to a lower level if 1) if there is insufficient food available. For this reason I use the “four corner feeding system” it enables me monitor that there is the right amount of food available and that I’m not over or under feeding my herd. 2) if they consider that there is a lack of space in the available area they are occupying. A worm bin can accommodate 1000 worms for every square foot/square 30cm of surface area of the bin. 3) other environmental factors can limit the breeding of worms, temperature too hot or too cold, moisture levels too wet or too dry, ph levels too high or too low. None of these are critical but together will influence birth rates.
You mentioned that you had just introduced a second tray after a year of setting up your wormery, maybe the worms felt the space in one tray was comfortable for a smaller group or that the casting had been eaten and passed through their bodies so often it was no longer palatable (casting can become toxic to worms after passing through them six times). Most systems will process a tray of usable castings every three to four months.
Having introduced another tray you may find the population may rise but any increase in numbers will be slow at this time of year.

Willy

paynes1
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Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2019 7:42 am

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by paynes1 » Wed Nov 13, 2019 4:48 pm

Lilwriggler wrote:
Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:29 pm
Maybe they know their fate and are making a run for it before they reach bait size? Do you see many escapees around the wormery?
:)

Lilwriggler
Thanks for answering
I must admit that is something I always check, it is on a slab/gravel. I also always check the sump regularly although not many escapees are found there either.

Willy
From your other reply, there are certainly not 1000 ish worms, and the remaining ones seem healthy enough and there are small juvenile worms. As you say, eating will be starting to slow down for winter so I will perhaps get some more worms in Spring and possibly change the feeding regime.

Steve P

WillyWorm
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Posts: 426
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2015 9:10 am

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by WillyWorm » Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:51 pm

Hi Steve, you maybe Surprised how quickly worms can grow their population. I regularly take a handful of worms from my bin to start new projects on the allotments, within a week or two the numbers seem to have returned to normal.
Good luck please keep us updated
Willy

GabyG
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Joined: Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:21 am

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by GabyG » Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:26 am

Thanks for inviting me here. I know that your forum always offers something interesting to read. I wish you good luck. Please keep it good posting, I am sure you have many other cool discussions.

WillyWorm
Senior Member
Posts: 426
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2015 9:10 am

Re: Not as many worms as expected

Post by WillyWorm » Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:21 pm

Welcome to the forum GabyG good to have you here.

Willy

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