Earwigs in Worm Bin

by mitchil
(new zealand)

I have earwigs in my wormbin. Are they harmful?

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Feb 18, 2012
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Earwigs in the Worm Bin
by: Pauly

Hi Mitchl,

This is a puzzling one as I a really don't have an answer, but when in doubt, it is always best to ere on the side of caution.

In my research I have found that earwigs will eat almost anything from plants to insects to decaying animals. Now this might also mean that they will eat your dead worms too. This can be a plus but I would also be concerned about why they are dead. Hopefully not from an earwig.

The fact that they like to eat vegetation would incline me to put them into the category of foe, since you really don't want any competition inside your worm farm.

But not knowing if they are eating my worms would probably eat me and keep me up at night.

Since they are an insect you can probably use the Diatomaceous Earth to get rid of them. click on the Diatomaceous Earth link on the left panel of my website.

Hope that's helpful,
Pauly


May 18, 2016
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Earwigs and baby E. hortensis
by: Diane

Presently I am raising E. hortensis in indoor plastic bins. Just recently, about two months ago, I harvested a few hundred worm eggs from several bins and placed them together in their own separate bin.

I wanted to watch them grow from little ones to mature adults, separated from the larger mixed populations.

I mixed the eggs into the top inch of bedding and kept that topped with a moist paper towel. Right away they began hatching, every few days I would find some clinging to the underside of the paper towel.

After the first couple of weeks there was quite a population of tiny new worms. My plans were progressing as I’d hoped.

Then one day, I suddenly couldn’t find any of the "babies", and the number of unhatched eggs, that had been easy to spot, were also much rarer to find. In order to investigate the situation I dumped the entire contents, approximately a half-gallon, total, into a transparent plastic shoebox tray (without drainage holes) and carefully examined everything, bit by bit.

I located only about two dozen remaining unhatched eggs, and only two baby worms. There had been dozens, or more, that were growing. BUT, I did find a single, solitary, and very FAT earwig.

It was my only suspicious suspect to this mysterious disappearance. I dispatched it, then reassembled the bin, adding a new batch of eggs in an attempt to continue the original effort.

If the earwig was the culprit, hopefully other earwigs won’t repeat this travesty.

May 18, 2016
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Earwigs In the Worm Bin
by: Pauly

Thank you so much Diane for sharing your findings concerning the earwig.

I hope the rest of the study goes very well :)

~Pauly

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