Mealworms

Mealworms

Why feed mealworms to the birds? Because so many birds eat insects naturally, feeding mealworms to the birds seems like a natural thing to do.

What are mealworms? Mealworms are the larvae of the Darkling Beetle. This larvae stage typically lasts for 10 weeks.

Birds such as chickadees, bluebirds, wrens, jays, cardinals and woodpeckers will eat mealworms if they are placed in a feeder accessible to the birds. Because mealworms can crawl, it is best to place them in a feeder where they cannot crawl out.

A bluebird feeder works well for feeding mealworms to smaller birds. Any feeder that has smooth sides and can be easily accessed by the birds can be used as a mealworm feeder. A simple tray or platform can also be used, but, it is possible that the worms will crawl out. Placing the worms in a shallow bowl in the middle of the tray may help. Birds typically look for food around the same time each day, so worms can be placed in a tray daily around that time.

Small mealworms can be purchased and kept for weeks at 40 – 50 degrees F. For longer storage they should be placed in flour, wheat bran or corn meal in a container with air holes. An over-ripe banana can be kept in the container for the worms to use as a food and water source.

To maintain the larvae in a state of dormancy, they must be refrigerated at 40 to 50 degrees F (usually, the fridge door is the best location).

You can get a lot of enjoyment from watching birds eat mealworms, and the mealworms are quite a treat for the birds!

One Responseto “Mealworms”

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