I Just Adopted 500 Wriggling Pets

Eisenia fetida on compost bin

Photo Attribution | Toby Hudson | Compost worms (eisenia foetida) that have risen to the lid of a compost bin during a rainy spell.

I ordered composting worms today!

It seems like a pound of red wiggler worms, the amount recommended for two people by the book The Urban/Suburban Composter: The Complete Guide to Backyard, Balcony, and Apartment Composting by Mark Cullen and Lorraine Johnson, can normally be purchased through online stores for between $20 and $40 plus shipping. Eventually, however, I found cheaper prices on eBay and bought 500 worms (approximately a half pound) from new_organic_farmer. (I decided to go with 500 instead of 1000, which is approximately a pound, to save a little money; I estimate, from my reading, that it’ll take 2-3 months for their population to reach 1000, meaning we’ll likely have to compost a bit slower at first).

I had no idea how to tell how well the farmers took care of their worms except that “organic,” of course, means pesticide-free so I had a hard time taking this into consideration when I bought my (pet) worms. (I always take care to remember that all living organisms are not just a means to an end, they are an end and deserve respect.)

Worms Used For Composting

Two common types of worms used for composting include the Red Wiggler Worm (Eisenia fetida; aka red worm, manure worm, tiger worm, ) and the European Nightcrawler Worm (Eisenia hortensis). Both are surface dwelling worms, though the European Nightcrawlers are a bit larger (making them popular bait worms) and tend to live slightly deeper in the ground than the Red Wiggler. Both thrive living near rotting material such as decomposing fallen leaves; the Red Wiggler also lives in rotting manure. Both worms also tolerate living in highly worm-populated areas. Therefore, both live very happily in farmed compost bins!

You can view pictures of both worms side by side here

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Sweet blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo
    News. Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Cheers

    Reply

  2. […] What is The Whole L.I.F.E.? « I Just Adopted 500 Wriggling Pets […]

    Reply

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