October 2, 2007

Save the Babies!

You may remember this photo from my last post:Get ready for some shock and awe involving this image.

As a novice worm grower and worm mover and worm binner and worm re-settler, I dumped the bin out and put the contents into a big heap. The worms moved away from the light and I took the first layer of castings and put them in another pile. I did this a few times and then picked out some doodads that weren't castings- i.e. eggshells, paper bits- to come up with the five bags shown above.

Eventually, I got a little freaked by the sheer volume of worms (I'm new at this!) and felt a little bad (stress! stress! stress!) and I quickly placed them in their new bins with the rest of the castings.

I kept the little plastic bags of harvested castings open to try to air them out and make sure they dried out before I closed them. A few days later, I checked the bottom of the bags to see if they were dried out and....here comes the shock and awe......

There were teeney, tiny, barely there BABY WORMS in the bottoms of all the bags where a little moisture was left- and, THANK GOD!- they were still alive! I switched in to worm-saving overdrive mode and picked those little babies out with my bare hands and threw them back in with their families!

I am so sorry, baby worms! No one told me this might happen! No where in the worm literature did I read about baby worm sacrificing during casting harvesting! NO WHERE! Who would have guessed???

The only question is....what happens next time? What is the proper procedure to save the baby worms?