Red wigglers are the best all around worm for composting. They reproduce quickly and they can take a broad range of temperatures. Red wigglers are very hardy and can be handled a lot (so no worries if the grandkids get a hold of them). These guys love to eat and are not in the least bit picky of what they eat. In ideal conditions they can eat up to half of their body weight daily. For icing on the cake, they make excellent fishing worms for crappie and bream.
African Nightcrawlers are excellent composting worms due to the fact that they are larger than red wigglers and with a voracious appetite they can eat from one-and-a-half to two times their body weight a day in ideal conditions. These nightcrawlers are also prolific breeders. African nightcrawlers are however more temperamental to their living conditions than the red wigglers. They are more sensitive to PH and moisture levels and can be kept in a temperature range between 70 to 85 degrees fahrenheit. 78 to 82 degrees is the ideal temperature for maximum production. These guys also make great bait worms.
Eisenia Fetida- Easiest of all composting worms to care for. These guys will eat most anything organic. Vegetables,rice, pasta, fruits, they will also eat peat moss, paper, coffee grounds tea grounds, and cardboard. Try to stay away from citrus fruits, oranges, lemons, and the like. Try to stay away from onions, ginger, garlic as a rule of thumb, anything considered to be a spice is probably not a good food. This herd of yours does not have teeth so if you can put their food in a blender first they will compost it a lot faster. Shred the paper and cardboard too, then soak it. These guys can handle a broad range of temps, they enjoy the temps that we do 60 to 80 degrees make them happy. There bedding is pretty basic, peat moss works well, you can also mix shredded paper or cardboard in there too, up to a 50% mix is good. PH in the 6.0 to 6.5 will make them happy. Moisture should be in the 60 to 80% range, it is important not to get the bedding too dry or too wet. The herd will look for drier ground if you get my drift. It's no fun coming home to a thousand Houdini's in your garage. Invest in a moisture meter for 10 - 15 dollars.
Eudrillus Eugeniae- Now these guys are a little more work to keep. These guys will eat everything the red worms will eat, but way more. They can eat up to 2 times their weight in food a day, major league poopers, if your looking for castings it doesn't get any better.
They are more sensitive to protein in their diet be careful here. We like to feed our herd Purina worm chow, they have worked out the proper combination over the years. PH needs to be 6.5 to 7, and moisture needs to be no more than 60%. The temp needs to be in the74 to 84 degree range for maximum production of cocoons and castings. Below 70 will start stressing your herd out. Remember they are tropical keepthem warm!
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