How to build a giant maggot farm

Written by thomas ganio
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How to build a giant maggot farm
A collection of maggots within a small container. (Ablestock.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

The thought of farming or cultivating maggots may sounds disgusting. Most people would never envision such a farm as a possible moneymaking opportunity. Yet, the growing of maggots can make some farmers thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Maggots are used in forensic laboratories as well as in landscaping when it comes to compost and waste management. The main reason for farming maggots are for fishing bait -- panfish and trout are particularly susceptible to maggots. When it comes to building a large maggot farm, those new to the workings of a farm should know the basics in successfully raising maggots for profit.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 5,000 maggots
  • 4-by-4 foot long container
  • Rotted meat, fish, or poultry
  • Grain or wheat flour
  • Mashed dry potatoes
  • Shredded newspaper and a light coating of water
  • Mesh liner

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Purchase 5,000 maggots through online dealers, pet stores or fishing bait wholesalers. The maggots will develop, burrow, and scamper inside the container. Place decaying leaves and some small plants in the jar to provide food. This will suffice until the maggots metamorphose into flies. If raising maggots to sell to forensic laboratories or research facilities, purchase maggots of high quality from a reputable retailer. However, if your maggot farm is intended for bait fishing and compost and waste management, the species of maggot is not as important.

  2. 2

    Fill a 4-by-4 foot long container with rotted meat, fish, or poultry, along with grain or wheat flour, mashed dry potatoes, shredded newspaper and a light coating of water, which will provide moisture. You can substitute the water with milk that will ripen and reek in a few days, generating a foul smell that will bring in flies.

  3. 3

    Check the containers daily for maggots. Once you see the first maggot, assume that more exist. A female fly can lay approximately 300 eggs at one time or live birth just as many live maggots.

  4. 4

    Move the container inside an enclosed room and leave maggots undisturbed for several days.

  5. 5

    Cover the container on the first sightings of maggots. Keep a thin mesh liner over top of the plastic container at all times when not feeding the maggots. This will prevent maggots from escaping the container and will keep transforming flies within the netting.

  6. 6

    Examine the growth on a daily basis. Maggots can range from 1.25 to 2 inches long, and the creature has tan, yellowish skin. Feed your growing maggots a commercially prepared food. For a large maggot farm, 5,000 maggots or more, replenish food within the container every five days. Additionally, make sure to add small amounts of water or moisture.

  7. 7

    Collect the adult maggots that are larger than 1 inch. Remove all the food within the container. Carefully, scrape off any maggots clinging to the food or materials and place them within a dry bucket. On removing the mesh netting, some maggots that turn into flies will escape. Try to keep as many flies within the covering as possible, as the dead adult flies become additional feed for future offspring of maggots.

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