Breeding Superworms

fluxlizard

Avid Member
Can anyone with a bit of experience help me out with figuring out how to breed superworms?
I've been trying with a couple hundred beetles the past month or so but I haven't found any baby supers.

My setup- beetles are put in a 20 gallon rubbermaid storage container directly on the ground up bran bedding which is about half full of bedding (well more than bran, but it's all dry and ground up) apple slices are supplying the only moisture. I've got a cardboard egg container for them to climb on and they congregate in this. 1x per week I move the beetles to a new container. These storage containers are directly on a concrete floor. The room reaches ~80 or sometimes a little more 6' off the ground. Haven't bothered measuring temp on the floor in the boxes but it is probably several degrees cooler down there. Maybe more because of the concrete floor beneath. Night temps drop probably 20 degrees, maybe more some nights.

Now my Questions- the idea of keeping the beetles directly on a substrate of food came from watching youtube videos. I have also read stuff that suggested damp wood shavings necessary and pieces of weathered cracked wood, peat moss, even leaves or mulch for egg laying. Should I be using one of these instead of the substrate of dry food? I went with the food after seeing the videos because it seemed simpler than sifting tiny worms out of mulch or sawdust. And another thing I read said rolled up currigated cardboard for egglaying? Are these necessary or can the beetles lay directly in the substrate. Should the substrate be slightly damp for success (which would mean no dry bran or food for egglaying?)

How important is temperature for successful hatching? Do I need to keep them warmer at night and get them up off the floor at all times? I know too cool is bad for supers, but not sure if 60s to low 70s just slows down everything or prevents successful reproduction?

Any simple but easy tips? I want decent production but I don't want to have to artificially provide extra heat on the tubs- maybe I should only breed these in the summer months when the building is warmer? My 3 species of roach are going great in these conditions (hissers, dubia, lobsters) although I tend to keep most of the roach tubs up off of the floor once they are loaded (I load them up and start new as I feed, sorting my adults into new tubs which are kept on the floor for a few weeks until they have plenty of adults- maybe I need to keep the super beetles and eggs off of the floor until they hatch? I keep my normal mealworm colonies on this floor and they do great as well, but maybe the temp is too low for supers?).

Thanks!
 
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Maurer3D

New Member
If nighttime temps drop that much they won't reproduce, they need to stay between 70 and 80 degrees at all times. You also don't need to move the adults around, I wait till the die-off then wait for the eggs to hatch which can take a while (1 to 2 months). Don't though out the bran eggs are laid directly in it and be sure the keep putting an potato slice in so that babies can get water when they hatch.

Also get them off the floor tiles and concrete act as heat sinks sucking the heat from the bins. And be sure to keep the humidity one the lower (40% is good) end to avoid mold and fungus from killing off the eggs and babies.
 

fluxlizard

Avid Member
Thanks for the tips-

The apples and don't throw out the bran I am doing so far, putting new slices in every few days as they dry out in the "empty" boxes where possibly the beetles have laid

Do you actually see the beetles breeding? I see beetles but no breeding, if I move the box up and temps are correct will I be able to confirm by actually seeing beetles breed or have to wait for eggs to hatch?

I have read contradictory things all around- some say beetles live as long as 5 months some say a few weeks. Some say eggs start hatching in a week and beetles will eat some of the babies if they aren't moved every week, some say takes longer to hatch. Some say wait 2 weeks before moving, and now you say don't move them, just let them die off (would take a few months for mine probably I set up several hundred to pupate over 5 weeks in December and first of January and not all decided to pupate at the same time so I will have more and more beetles to add for at least several more weeks.

So you are using the lay directly in the food method like I am trying?

How long do your beetles live and how many worms should I expect per beetle?

How long does it take your worms to get big? I have read 6 months to 1 year is that correct?
 

Maurer3D

New Member
I use Potatoes cause they don't spoil near as fast as apple slices.

Beetles for me usually live about 2 to 3 months and lay a couple hundred eggs

You can observe breeding but it doesn't last very long (the males have a quick trigger for lack of a less creepy way of saying it)

Full grown worms ready to pupate take a couple months 4 to 6 for me, temperature plays a big roll in the growth rate to cold and they will hibernate themselves a bit.
 
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