By Marlene Bezuidenhout

Mealworms are a good source of protein and they contain twelve of the sixteen elements found in living tissue. They are rich in vitamin A which is essential for growth and rich in vitamin B which is necessary for maintaining the nervous system. The better you feed your mealworms the higher quality food you produce for your monkeys.

Raising a mealworm colony:

This is very simple to do in a plastic bucket or a large container. Punch holes in the lid or use the top part of silk stalking to cover the container and keep moths and flies out.

Medium to breed them in: bran, oatmeal, corn meal, Pronutro, add a bit of Epol Meal for dogs to boost the protein levels.  The medium must not be dense and heavy.  Use enough bran.

Add: Biovita, Bee Vee, Barley Green, Calsuba

Food for your mealworms: Pieces of pumpkin, carrots, apple and potato on top

For moisture: potato and orange skins
Mealworms love to climb under gem squash shells and the beetles often lay their eggs there.
The medium will gradually take on a flourlike consistency due to the mealworms working through it.

Never throw anything away!– you will probably throw away eggs and babies.  Simply add more food.   Six to eight weeks after the beetles laid eggs you will have some baby worms which are barely visible.  In a couple of weeks they will be feeding size.  Keep two containers and rotate them so that you do not exhaust your supply.  Never add water.

Feed the worms to your monkeys out of your hand or a mealworm dispenser can be used.

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