Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Worm Breeding and Production

I'm often ask "How long will it take for me to have enough worms to start selling?"  The following facts about earthworm reproduction tells you a lot about the time it takes to start making a profit with your worm farm.
  • Earthworms reach breeding maturity in 60-90 days.
  • These mature worms produce and egg capsule every 7-10 days.
  • Each egg capsule contains 2-20 eggs, with an average of 4.
  • These egg capsules hatch in 14-21 days
If food moisture and temperature conditions are optimum, we can calculate the conservative possibility for one mature breeder earthworm producing  1,200  to 1,500 offspring in the span of one year.   Astoundingly, it is possible for 2,000 mature breeding earthworms to produce more than one million earthworms in a year and one billion earthworms in 2 years.

Consider this scenario:  Take those one million earthworms to bait size (250-300 worms per pound), they would make around 3333-4000 pounds of worms.  If these worms are European nightcrawlers (the very best bait worm), you could market them at retail for around $25.00 per pound.  That would make $80,000 - $100,000 worth of worms from 2000 breeder worms.
Of course, you wouldn't want to sell off all your worms and you would encounter some losses along the way.  But you can see the possibilities from the amazing reproduction capabilities of the lowly earthworm.

When planning your future sales, take these things into consideration:  The longer you wait before starting to sell off your worms, the larger your breeding stock, the more worm production down the line.  Don't sell off too many worms at any one time, thereby depleting your worm population to the point limiting future  worm production.

Worm Farm Resources:

Find out more about worm farm planning in my Worm Farm Manual.


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  2. Great info thanks I'm in it as hobby but who knows I would love to see my lil guys grow to that big crew.