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Old 09-10-2009, 08:38 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Temperature for keeping mealworms

Hello,
I was just wondering, what's the best way to keep mealworms? I bought a bag full at the Pet Shop, and I forgot to ask about the temperature. I keep them in the plastic bag I got them in - is room temperature fine, or should I keep them in the fridge / a container?

Thanks!

Katinka (and Polly)

PS: How many mealworms should I feed a day? They're very small, but I think Polly could probably empty the whole bag in a few days, if I let her. Which, of course, I won't.
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Temperature for keeping mealworms

I love the name Polly for your hedgie - so cute
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Temperature for keeping mealworms

If you want the mealies to be active and grow, you can keep them out. Otherwise you should have them in the fridge, so they hibernate. You can feed 2-4 a day, unless Polly runs it all off in which case you can feed a few more.



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Old 09-10-2009, 12:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Temperature for keeping mealworms

You might want to take them out of the bag though...They might suffocate.

A tall sided container with the lid off is great if you are leaving them out at room temp. As I sometimes find that even with a hole punched lid, it can get pretty humid in there.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Temperature for keeping mealworms

If you want to start a mealworm colony, put them in a plastic container and leave them at room temperature--I keep mine in the same room as the hedgie and they seem to multiply infinitely at that temperature. You'll never have to buy mealies again if you do that. Do a search for raising mealworms and you should find more specific how-tos. It's very easy to do.

If you don't want to worry about raising them and just want to buy them as needed, keep them in the fridge. Take a bowl with a lid (a cottage cheese container or something similar) and poke holes in the top of the lid, then put them in that. To keep them for long periods of time, take them out of the fridge every week or two for 24-48 hours and put a piece of potato or carrot in the container with them so they can get the moisture. Otherwise they'll die a lot sooner.

If she's never had mealworms before, start slow. 1-2 a night for a week or two, then up to 3-4. If she doesn't gain weight easily (typically runners) you can give her more, as LizardGirl said.
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