Smallest Worm Bin – Day 50!

Time flies when you are having fun. It’s been well over a month since my last World’s Smallest Worm Bin update!

I checked on the system the other day and also realized that today was going to be “Day 50” (Day 0 was Oct. 30 in case you are curious). So, I figured it would be a great day for a blog update.

The good news is that in spite of the system receiving very little attention, things are coming along nicely. There was no sign of food, and the worms have clearly been working away on the shredded cardboard.

I was only able to find one cocoon that looks like it might still be viable – two that were clearly empty. All told, I found 9 small Red Worms.

The next shot (even with terrible lighting) should give you an idea of how big the worms are. This was likely the biggest of the bunch.

I have a lot of leftover kale from a big harvest earlier in the fall, and I’ve been drying some of it out to use as a worm bin supplement. I sprinkled some in the middle zone, and another layer at the very top. I also watered everything thoroughly.

It will be really interesting to see how things develop over the next month or two. Red Worms can mature in about 6 weeks, and at least one of the worms is that age or older. My hunch is they will continue to look immature, but the appearance of new cocoons will be a clear indication that some worms have reached sexual maturity.

Stay tuned!

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    • Matt
    • December 20, 2020

    Not sure if you have the worlds smallest bin or not. I actually started a “bin” with a 16 oz yogurt container and a dozen or more cocoons two weeks ago. Yesterday I found 9 young worms, with many cocoons still to hatch.

    Ok, after looking at the first post in the series, you win for the smallest bin. High five!

    • Bentley
    • December 28, 2020

    Hahaha – what’s funny is that yogurt tubs were among the “big” bins during my “Tiny Tubs” project from a couple years back. Let me know how your experiment with the container goes, though!

    • Matt
    • December 28, 2020

    I started this bin Dec 6, or roughly 3 weeks ago, with just cocoons (or so I think?) Diggin in around there today, I found maybe a dozen eggs that I had not seen before. And several worms, at least one that’s maybe two inches long. Hard to believe all of those eggs are new, but I’m thinking the second generation is starting from the original hatchlings. I found the first worm in there on Dec 10, or just under 3 weeks ago. I’ll pop report back in another month or so. I took a short video of the disassembled bin.

    • Matt
    • January 30, 2021

    I came to realize shortly after my last comment that I had added some more cocoons to the tub :facepalm:.
    Anyway, Its been about 7 weeks since I saw my first hatchling, so it seemed to be a good time to try and find a cocoon. No dice. I dumped the contents in a frisbee and dug around for several minutes. No mature adults yet, hence no cocoons.

    It seems like a decently healthy population in here, they are just maturing slower. I was thinking its 42 days (6 weeks) to maturity, but certainly like anything in nature there’s lots of variation. The bin has been at room temp in my house the whole time. Maybe not enough food? I haven’t added a lot, not wanting to over feed. I did add a fair amount of aged manure a few weeks back, so I know they’re not lacking completely in the food dept. Today I added a kiwi skin with a bit of flesh on it, so we’ll see how this goes in the next couple of weeks or so.

    • Matt
    • January 30, 2021

    I will add this gives me a lot of perspective on my other newly created bins. In my mind I keep thinking they should have exploded with new worms by now (2 months), but the reality is this process takes time.

    • mjswider
    • February 7, 2021

    So I dug around a bit in my 1st yogurt container, the one I started Dec 6, and saw the first hatchling Dec 10. To my surprise, I found a tiny hatchling! Contrary to my Dec 28 post, there’s no way that there could have been “new cocoons” at that point. But I would have expected all the cocoons to have hatched before now, as my bin is in my home, definitely between 64 and 74F.

    Anyway, i also found the first new cocoon. It looks more aged than I would have thought, As when I looked a week ago I didn’t see any worms I thought look mature yet. To bad all these items don’t come with date labels . . . πŸ™‚

    • Bentley
    • February 8, 2021

    Hey Matt – cocoon hatching can be pretty variable due to a wide range of…variables! haha
    I’m sure there is even a sort of “strategy” in making sure some are delayed. Since freak weather etc events can wipe out worms quickly – so it helps if there are always some cocoons just in case.
    I agree it would be really cool if each cocoon had a little label telling us when it was dropped! lol

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