Bugs, Grubs and Maggots for feeding
The mention of maggots often conjures up ideas that they are dirty, smelly creatures to be avoided at all costs, usually because we have seen them on a piece of decaying meat or we have bought them from a fishing tackle shop where they have not been looked after properly, these ideas are a long way from the truth, maggots that are offered for sale have long given up feeding so have been away from meat for some time, if looked after properly they have been kept chilled in sawdust that is changed and riddled on a regular basis, kept like this they are clean and do not smell.
The maggots we offer as feeds are actually kept in bran, this keeps them soft and more digestible also a bit of bran stuck to them is better for your creatures than sawdust!
There are 3 different types giving 3 distinctly different sizes, using the fishing names that most people know they are natural maggots from the Bluebottle fly, Pinkies (although naturally white!) from the Greenbottle fly and Squats from the smaller Housefly.
Fly casters (pupae) for hatching into flies.
Casters that are supplied by fishing tackle shops have often been subject to different treatments in order to give them a long shelf life, this includes keeping in an airless bag, freezing, vacuum packing with or without a preservative, in almost all cases the number of live casters able to hatch into flies is either none existent or extremely low, the last thing anglers want is casters turning to flies!
Our casters start life as good, clean maggots kept in an extremely clean environment, they have been allowed to continue the process of pupating naturally, manually checked to ensure you receive only the highest quality, viable creatures, on dispatch they are fully turned, packed in fine, creature friendly bedding material, ready to continue to flies, they have not been treated in any way, kept in warm conditions on arrival this process will continue.
We often get enquiries about the length of time it takes for casters to hatch, this is very difficult to predict and depends on so many different factors.
The maggots are turned to casters in batches, we then supply them from these batches, the oldest (closer to hatching are sold first) if sales are busy we can get through these batches quite quickly which does mean that they may be recently turned, a good indication of how close they are to hatching is the colour, if they are very light brown to pale even it could be as much as 21 days to hatching and this is dependent on temperatures and humidity, if they are very dark, almost black it could be a day or so.
Putting casters into a fridge will slow down the hatching but if they are left for long periods of time some will die off, hot temperatures can also be damaging as well as drying the casters out making it difficult for the fly to emerge, an ideal storage and hatching temperature is around 20 - 25degC with good humidity but not wet.
Generally, if the casters have no or very little smell about them they are in good condition, if they start to smell bad then they will be no good and should be discarded.
Once hatched, the fly should have access to sugar water and given enough room to fly around, this developes the wings, if kept confined the ability to fly is severely reduced as the wings become damaged. The life of the fly in good conditions, water, food, ideal temperatures etc can be around 3 weeks, without these it may be a week.
As can be seen, the hatching and keeping of the flies is not as simple as it may seem, when placing an order it is on the basis of accepting the above.
In the past we have listed casters that are actually hatching to flies at the time of dispatch, this does not always work very well! we have therefor decided to ONLY list them when they are available so can be ordered on line, if they are NOT listed it does mean that we will not have them in stock, so please check online first before calling to order.
Premium Grade Mealworms
Mealworms are an excellent feed as they are high in protein. Mealworms are not suitable for all species or for some small or juvenile lizards. Our premium grade mealworms undertake a regime of constant cleaning and feeding before selling. They are fed a balanced and nutritional diet, including fruit and vegetables! This is beneficial to the mealworms, and ensures they are in the best of nutritional condition when they are used for amphibians and reptiles. We dispatch them in strong plastic containers - not bags, they will have enough food included to keep them for a week or more. The containers and lids being of good quality will have many other uses or can be easily recycled.
We guarantee they are the highest quality mealworms on the market.
To get the most from your purchase, see our advice sheet on how to keep your mealworms.
We do not supply dried mealworms. Read our advice sheet on why dried mealworms make a poor feed.
All orders include FREE standard delivery within the UK. Note, to ensure our live products reach you in the best condition, orders received after 12 noon on Thursdays will not be dispatched until the following Monday (or Tuesday if Bank Holiday). Please read our dispatch information before ordering.