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I'm planing to build a nightcrawler bed to keep and raise my own crawlers. Before getting started I thought I poll the good folks of the BOC in hopes that some would share some lessons learned...or even plans for a rig that worked well for them.

Size wise: I'm not looking to go commercial or anything, just want to keep crawlers for my own personal use and perhaps share with friends. I figure on going through 500-1000 per year.

Worms: I'll be stocking with domestic wild caught Missouri nightcrawlers...some as large as 12" long.

Location: These will probably be kept in my garage so size and odor are considerations.

So speak up if you have any experience with this. I plan to document the decision and building process in this thread with posts and pictures so others can learn along with me.
 

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I have mine out side. I just pile all the leaves and grass I mulch through out the year in a big pile in the corner of my yard under a big tree. I have all I can use. Just keep it moist.

Don't use city water, use rain water or water from where you fish to keep it moist.

I have tried all size containers and they just don't work good for me.
 

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I'm planing to build a nightcrawler bed to keep and raise my own Nightcrawler IN

IF SOMEONE HAS plans TO BUILD ONE PLEASE LET US KNOW.

just want to keep Nightcrawlers for my own personal use

I caught ABOUT 200 Missouri nightcrawlers
2 DAYS AGO
I WENT TO CABELAS
&
BOUGHT A WORM RANCH { TO USE TILL I GET A BOX BUILT }
IT CAME WITH 4 & 1/2 LBS OF BEDINS
&
12 oz OF WORM FOOD
&
CAME WITH A FLOP TOP BOX
FOR $20.00

THE WORMS HAVE BEEN IN IT FOR 2 DAYS
&
LOOK REAL GOOD

I HAVE THEM IN MY FRIGED
KEEPING THEM COOL

IT IS SOMETHING TO START WITH

TILL I GET SOMETHING BETTER

IF ANYONE CAN HELP

I WOULD LIKE TO BUILD A BETTER SYS

THANKS
GEORGE
 

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I remember as a kid the neighbor had an old steel tub full of worms. I guess he had a wire screen to cover the drain at the bottom. He kept it in the shade and had a piece of carpet flipped upside down on top of the dirt. All he had to do is keep it moist. To feed them roll the carpet back and shake cornmeal on top of the dirt then cover.
 

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gfp, as long as you have them in that Worm Ranch, keep the dead worms/crawlers out of there, and I mean get them out of there pronto when you find the dead ones. If you do add 'worm food', us it sparingly. Too much 'food' that doesn't get eaten will start to decompose, and then will contaminate the bedding. Dead worms will decompose,also contaminating the bedding. I lost three dozen crawlers a couple of years ago, because of these two mistakes. Lesson learned the hard way, by me.
 

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correct me if im wrong,,but you dont find worms in your house,,you find them outside under rocks and stuff..so why wouldnt you make that same habitat to keep them in..just at a smaller scale. heck, i would think you could keep the container in the shade somewhere with stuff on the top and just keep it moist
 

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The worms you are raising will dictate what type of worm bed you are going to put them in. Like Canadian Night crawlers Need to be in your fridge with dirt and like to be fed greens and stale bread and don't like their food rotting they are kinda finicky but once you now the rules fairly easy to raise. Red wigglers are a composting worms that can live in garden and their bedding can be made up of newspaper egg cartons cardboard all wetted down of course and their food you put under the top layer and let them eat no need to remove food from these guys.In any case as you can see the type of worm makes all the decisions for you.
 

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If you can get your hands on a old chest style deep freezer, or a small dorm room size fridge you can convert it into you box. The insulation and the seal works well on keeping ants out if you keep it outside. also provides for a cool enviroment during the summer if you keep it out of the sun. If these are too big, just grab you an old beer cooler and use it. Also, becareful if you use horse manure! If the horses have been de-wormed real recent, the drug used for de-worming can wreck havoc on your worm bedding! I learned that one the hard way years ago.
 

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when i was back home upstat new york we used a old bathtub went to a spring got the damp moss mixed it with worm bedding then went to the golf course to pick up worms they would stay great all summer we just change out the moss when it started getting dry and would throw some coffee grindsinto the tub bobs bait
 

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Thinking about a 20 gal feed bucket in the ground, got a place in the Yard that doesn't get Summer Sun. I see on the Net most recommend 2/3 Peat Moss and 1/3 processed Cow Manure. Ghunk Dog food seems the Cheaspest to feed
I will probaly order some Louisana Crawlers as they take the Summer Heat a lot better than Canadians.
I used to get them by thumping and keeping them in the Root Celler growing up in East TN.
Here's a link to give some thought
- European nightcrawler worms by the pound.
 

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I took a plastic drum and took some mulched up grass clippings and leaves and mixed them with some topsoil. Went to wally world and got 3-4 cups of canadian nightcrawlers and dumped them in. I keep the drum in the basement where it stays cool. Only have one exposed wall. From what I have read the canadian worms get bigger, but harder to raise. I think I messed up putting grass and leaves, maybe decomp. could cause problems. I pour some bottled water in and put coffee grounds and shredded paper on top.
 

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I took a plastic drum and took some mulched up grass clippings and leaves and mixed them with some topsoil. Went to wally world and got 3-4 cups of canadian nightcrawlers and dumped them in. I keep the drum in the basement where it stays cool. Only have one exposed wall. From what I have read the canadian worms get bigger, but harder to raise. I think I messed up putting grass and leaves, maybe decomp. could cause problems. I pour some bottled water in and put coffee grounds and shredded paper on top.
You'll know pretty quick Kevin,
Still trying to get mine started!

Welcom to the USCA!

Mic
 

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I have noticed in my gardening, that nightcrawlers get very large and healthy in a mixture of loose top soil and about 1/3 peat moss. I just made a huge flower bed like this, it is about 1 foot deep. I went to a lot of work and expense to make a good flower bed for my wife.

So I want to get about 500 wild Nightcrawlers so my 11 year old son and I will always have a fresh supply to go fishing with.

I live in Overland Park, Kansas and I would love to know where to pick up some nightcrawlers. Do you have a favorite spot that you can share with me? Call me on my cell phone, 816-401-5593 I just want the wild, native ones. Thanks. - Steve
 
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