About Lucas

Lucas has been a member since February 14th 2012, and has created 71 posts from scratch.

Lucas's Bio

Putting a name with a face I'm Lucas Smatana. Like you I'm passionate about betta fish and hope to share my enthusiasm. The idea here is to make sure you get helpful info and useful ideas on betta fish care that really work. To insure your betta keeping experience is a good one both for you and your fish. So that you and your pet enjoy a long, happy and healthy relationship.

Lucas's Websites

This Author's Website is http://www.better-bettas.com

Lucas's Recent Articles

Deadly Betta Fish Life Span Shorteners

No doubt. Despite your best efforts, turns out there are lots of ways to kill your betta fish. In fact you can turn things every which way but inside out and still end up killing that prized showy male of yours. Which can all work out to make for one remarkably short life span for your betta, and typically bettas in general, unfortunately.

So while it’s not out of the question for a betta to last as long as three or four years with proper care, too many find themselves moving onto the great fishbowl in the sky well before that. Victims of unfortunate betta fish care mistakes and blunders.

Even worse, some in betta-dom pull this off with such ease it’s shocking. And with great regularity too. Meaning they either repeat the same mistakes with each new occupant of their betta tank or come up with new ones each time. I’m not trying to be mean or anything, but you can run through a lot of fish coming down the learning curve that way, let me tell you. Not exactly a way to distinguish yourself as someone knowledgeable in the ways of fighting fish.

Which might be why so many want to know the expected betta fish lifespan. Perhaps so they have something longer than a few months to shoot for, I don’t know.

Yet given the predisposition of betta keepers for the epic fail it might be good to at least cover the 17 top ways to kill your betta fish, the Cliff Notes edition. So you know what not to do more or less.

These are troublesome things I’ve been asked or have seen asked on various online forums and chat groups. Such questions form the fodder for this collection of dumb moves made all to often. Making this a list you might want to refer to, and often, if you are trying to keep a pet store veiltail alive in your home.

With no time to waste and bettas to save, let’s get started.

Seven Dumb Water Moves

Take ammonia spikes for instance. They aren’t good for any fish much less bettas – who like their water quality to be on the pristine side. Besides nothing signals your fish is in for the fight of its life like constantly changing water parameters. Yet all too often there is not a water test kit in sight. And I mean real test kit like the ones API offers, not some chintzy test strips which are about as reliable as a used car bought at a Buy Here Pay Here lot.

Along the same lines are the keepers who aren’t into water changes. For crying out loud, if you aren’t going to test the water the least you could do is change it regularly to provide a glimmer of hope to your halfmoon, no matter how slim, that you care.

Further along the same lines still are the “bettas do fine in a bowl, vase or jelly jar” crowd. That luckless bagged betta, catching sight of it cramped quarters, knows his ticket to the afterlife has been punched. It not a question of if, it’s more like when he’s going to check out, after at best a short and miserable life. Tiny barracks means that ammonia can spike at a moment’s notice. Not to mention it’s nearly impossible to heat them to temps needed for a long life.

Then too, nothing says short life span better than cold water. Hello? Bettas are tropical fish. Just because big box stores find it convenient to house them in unheated ice cube tray sized bowls, doesn’t mean bettas do well without some heat. Plus have you ever stopped to look closely at those hapless saps with fins clamped and hovering as if in suspended animation? Does that say “healthy betta” to you? Yet despite the fact that a decent submersible aquarium heater won’t break the bank, it’s apparently more than some are willing to spring for. Leaving them to wonder when their pet comes down with something what they should do next to forestall the inevitable. Dumb.

Using water straight from the tap is a big no no. It’s got enough chlorine in it to kill even the hardiest of bettas. Which makes water conditioner a must have, not optional, item in your fish keeping tool kit. Because nothing will kill a multicolored crown-tailed male betta faster than water fresh from the tap.

Let’s not forget those buyers of sad Siamese fighting fish who feel acclimating their charges to their new water parameters is for sissies. This is especially bad if the store just takes the tiny bowl housing their bettas and pours it, fish, water, and all (and I think you know what I mean by “all”) into a bag. Then when they get home instead of floating the bag to give the temperature time to equalize, or spooning in tank water for 30 to 60 minutes to give the fish a chance to adjust to the pH and nitrates etc, the betta keeping novice just dumps their new finny friend, questionable water and all, into their new bowl, jar or hopefully tank. The stress on the fish is obvious as it pales on sight. The shock can cause their immune system to wilt at the best. Or result in premature death found floating in the morning at worst.

Then to be sure tank cycling and the nitrogen cycle might be the more advanced class. Yet most have no clue what that is. Nor do they understand why it’s important. Bet your betta does though. As he desperately tries to adjust to too much ammonia, then too much nitrites in the water. Only to start the cycle all over again just when things start to get good when a 100% water change is made in the name of better fish health. Geesh.

So the first clue your shimmering betta’s time is going to be on the short side is signaled by the water quality. Or lack thereof. Easily overlooked. Yet essential if you are looking to maximize the life span of that flowing delta tail male beta of yours. Fish like this need room to roam and they need to roam in water that’s better than simply good enough, warmer than room temp with some stability to it, and that’s not constantly subjecting them to various toxins over and over again. Questionable water like that can after all be quite stressful.

Okay but don’t tune out just yet. There are plenty of other shorteners of life expectancy yet to cover that you won’t want to miss.

Six Dumb Feeding Moves

For example over feeding is another rookie mistake. This is a killer in oh so many ways. If you’re guilty no need to hang your head. It’s a common problem many are guilty of doing. Encouraged in part by overzealous food manufacturers who want you to feed as much as you can so you buy more food for your studly betta fighting fish. Not only does over feeding not pile on the life expectancy years for your lil buddy, uneaten food can foul tank water something fierce. Making for a lethal witches brew so toxic even a bionic fish would have trouble living in it. But it sure is an easy environment to die in.

While on the topic of feeding, also high on this list is feeding the wrong things. Like putting an emphasis on flakes which can expand in their belly like cheese in a can does upon release. Such swelling can derail their swim bladder and cause unbridled betta unhappiness.

Take two would be feeding a diet that is heavy on protein rich things like frozen blood worms or frozen adult brine shrimp and little else. Sure hotdogs may be tasty. But morning, noon and night? Not so much. Of course your bettas will continue to gorge themselves – to death. Or at least to a nasty case of constipation. Because they have a hard time saying no to savory blood worms or yummy brine shrimp.

Now if you are going to insist on putting these kinds of food on the menu would it kill you to add a blanched pea day to the calendar every week? Or maybe a fasting day. Sure that means you’ll have to man up and deny your beggar with fins what he thinks he needs? But giving his digestive tract a day to catch up might be the best thing you can do for him. Yet how often does the nice lady working at Walmart offer this bit of advice to wide eyed newbies?

Then there are betta fish fry that can have an incredibly short life. Spanning only days for an unlucky few. From what I’ve seen far too often amateur breeders fail to plan ahead and don’t have micro sized live food at the ready. Suddenly it dawns on them and in a panic they try to find a microworm culture at Walmart. While heading to a bait store would truly be an act of desperation.

Or they mistakenly think they can use some kind of microscopic flakes to feed their fry. And when their eyes with tails don’t take the bait, the wannabe Aquabid stars are lost in space without a clue as to what to do next.

Either way the results are the same. Fry that go missing for no apparent reason. Truth be told they likely withered up and died from starvation. Scarfed up by the cories kept in their tank to keep things tidy. Good job.

Look. Understanding what to feed bettas when isn’t rocket science. Besides your options have never been greater. Culturing live foods has never been easier. While the quality of pellets from New Life or Attisons has never been higher. Meaning that finny, red-hot hunk of flaring betta-ness should be looking forward to a longer, rather than shorter, life based on the caliber of grub they can eat. Ahhh, if only that were true.

Dumb Sick Betta Moves

Certainly Siamese fighting fish are a hardy lot. Loaded to the gills with survival genes. Yet that doesn’t mean they won’t fall prey to sickness and disease from time to time. Most often due to the ignorance or neglect by their owner. Not to mention that not knowing what to do when disaster strikes can be a serious threat to maximizing the life span of any flashy betta fish. Giving them a shorter life expectancy than some Broadway shows.

Plus it’s painful to sit there and watch your fish all puffed up with its scales sticking out hoping for the best. Trust me all too often the best ain’t a gonna happen.

Or to imagine those are ich tattoos and not the real thing your gutsy pet is struggling with is another misguided hope. Which will all too often lead to an untimely end to something that looked like it had gotten off to a pretty good start.

I know no one wants to see their pet suffer. Should you be called on to play Betta Doctor MD at a moment’s notice, do you have the know-how and a properly stocked first aid kit? Most don’t. Most don’t know what it should even include. And failing to understand even the basics of how to treat a sick betta is another way to grease the skids to the afterlife for your scaly friend.

Three Little Dumb Moves That Don’t Help Much Either

Having covered the major lifespan shorteners of halfmoons, veil, double and crowntails, let me mention three lesser ideas that might affect how long these guys might live in your care.

Something as simple as a lid on his tank can keep your little skydiver with fins in his element instead of all dried up on the carpet. Nothing like a leap into the great unknown to add some spice to life before death. Just don’t expect your Evel Knievel wannabe to pull the rip cord in time so he can make tomorrow’s show.

Plastic plants can tear up delicate fins like there’s no tomorrow exposing them to fin rot. Silk versions or the real thing would be preferable. Besides some tired bettas just like to lounge on broader leaves like you do in your recliner. Take the risk out of the reward by smart plantings.

Not understanding soap being deadly is the final point we’ll cover. Sure you want things sparkling clean and all. But soap isn’t the answer. You will do your fish a big favor to use white vinegar and water or diluted bleach solution to clean your aquatic gear. Then rinse well. Soap residue can leave your fish with a queasy feeling no matter how well you rinse. Which is why Mr. Clean isn’t your betta’s best bud.

The perverse thing about this is you don’t have to perfect all 17 to bring your betta’s life to an abrupt and untimely end. Any one of them has the potential to dramatically shorten the life span of your betta fish. Or you can pick and choose which one you want to go for this time. A bit of tongue in cheek here naturally. But it seems like some do this stuff subconsciously or something. Much to the chagrin of their game little fighting fish.

So if any of this sounds even remotely familiar, that may be the fat lady in the background doing vocal warm ups. Because while it ain’t over ’til it’s over, if you are doing any of the things on this list, it may well be over for your betta sooner than you might imagine.

Wannabe Betta Breeders Beware

There are many small white crosses lining the road leading to betta breeding success. Which commemorate the fry failures of enthusiastic wannabe breeders who see a video or two and think they are ready to have a go at it. Only to find out three things.

  1. It’s harder than it looks.
  2. Enthusiasm only takes you so far.
  3. The odds are basically stacked against them from the outset.

Yes, producing fry isn’t all that tough for some. But the ease with which that happens belies how hard it is to raise them successfully as dramatic fry losses can happen seemingly overnight to unsuspecting owners.

Be that as it may, those looking to participate in Betta Breeding, the Rest of the Story would do well to understand the role conditioning plays. From this video you can gather there is not a lot of mystery to betta fish conditioning for breeding.

The big idea is to gorge your mating pair with a steady diet rich in frozen or live foods for going on two weeks at least. You’re looking at feeding heaping helpings of things like blood worms, mosquito larvae, daphnia, and brine shrimp. The idea is to get the pair in peak form for what lies ahead. To help them get there you want to ring the dinner bell two or three times a day.

All this nutritional conditioning is done for a reason. Being in peak form puts the male in position to go three or four days (or more) without eating while tending the nest, eggs and then the fry. That after completing his lead role in the mating ritual. While taking in all this nutrition is designed to bring the female to maximum health to encourage the production of a robust number of eggs.

Conditioned for Betta Breeding Success

Here’s one way to do that.

Check out these video takeaways

  1. Uses frozen bloodworms, not freeze dried. Easily defrosted before serving.
  2. Every morning and evening for 10 minutes let the pair see each other. You want to see them flaring at each other.
  3. The male, if primed for breeding, should be building a bubble nest.
  4. With this set up he does 100% water changes using aged water. Plus he’s got almond leaves in the jars.

Then here’s a slightly different take on the basic foods to use for conditioning.

This video places daphnia high on the list of conditioning foods. Offering them spirulina gives the a protein and packs an amino acid wallop. Usually daphnia are raised from a starter culture in jars with cabbage or lettuce leaves or some other bit of decomposing organic material. The takeaway daphnia culturing tip from this is to have three jars cycling all the time. A new one, a mature one, and one that is getting past its prime.

As the previous video, frozen blood worms also rank high as primo conditioning food. Which your fighting fish will gladly gobble up endlessly. You want to start to include this in their diet two weeks before you are looking to spawn them. This frozen conditioning gold is readily available at your local pet shop or even the “Pet-something” pet stores. You can see what to look for when you go shopping.

Beef heart should also make your list of beta conditioning foods. Another good source of protein and complex B vitamins. As you can see you can even puree this up yourself and freeze it.

Then when it comes to fry food, the always popular microworms are mentioned. But BBS (baby brine shrimp) is the staple diet once they are big enough to eat them until they are about five weeks old or so. Freshly hatched BBS are a good way to get protein, minerals and calcium into your fry.

So to condition your mating pair be sure to feed them the very best foods you can get. Good results are almost always obtained with things like frozen blood worms and live foods used in combination. The bettas literally go nuts for them! Often the male will commence bubble nesting superfast in response. Make sure to at least do this for 2 weeks before you start the actual breeding process to assure they are both in peak condition and ready to go at it.

Anyway seems those who hear the call of betta breeding find it a hard calling to ignore. Even though it turns out for many that divine intervention is apparently required to subsequently raise a spawn to breeder size – they still press on. There is just something about all this that is hard to resist. But at least now you know a bit more about conditioning and role it play in breeding success.

They Finally Arrived! The Great Unboxing

If you are ever lucky enough to get your hands on some exceptional betta fish from a first rate breeder the day the box arrived with them inside will stick in your mind forever. It will be like Christmas in, well, you fill in the month. Your expectations will be high as you open the box to see firsthand what’s inside. It can be a heady moment.

The event can also be anxiety filled. As you can’t wait to make sure your fish isn’t DOA. (If it isn’t you want to get it acclimated ASAP.) The odds of which are minimized provided you ship Express Overnight. Pretty much a MUST do if all situations.

Then too there may be a bit of doubt the fish won’t be as presented. You know the ole bait and switcheroo?

In the Northern US the winter months can be slow for betta shipping. Some domestic breeders know it’s an iffy time to be shipping fish when it’s cold out. Not to mention what bad weather can do to airline flight schedules. Or what the Christmas package rush can do at the Post Office. Much better to hold off until April when all those concerns have been put aside for another year.

Anyway here’s the Great Unboxing for one lucky buyer of bettas online.

See how well this was packed? Something to keep in mind should you be a seller of bettas someday.

And note how the excitement level increased at the sight of an extra fish. Think this will help cement the relationship with the buyer? And what’s it cost? Likely not much. The bonus fish was likely not quite good enough to be sold. Yet it’s still better than anything you might find locally. Way better. So rather than feed it to Mouth the Oscar, this breeder did a smart thing. Threw it in as an unexpected bonus. Much to the delight of the buyer.

Here’s another one. Pretty much the same reaction, if more subdued, from adults. People just love opening their bettas. Why else would they video them and post them online?

Here again there’s a point to notice. Note the ratio of oxygen to water in the bag here. As long as when the bag is on its side the fish is still mostly covered this is a good way to ship. This is a thermal insulated box with a heat pack. Again done to keep the fish reasonably warm during their trip.

Demystifying Buying Betta’s From Overseas

If you’ve ever ooh’d and ahhh’d over some pure white platinum crowntail betta online it likely has it’s genetic origins overseas.

Thailand and Malaysia are breeding hotbeds. Some of the best fish come from Thailand. Singapore too turns out stunning dragon HMPK, halfmoons and other awesome bettas left and right.

Which is why it may be tempting to take a stroll down the betta auctions on Aquabid to see what you might find. Be forewarned. There are plenty of GORGEOUS fish that will tempt you. Fish anyone would love to get their hands on. Fish that will turn your betta keeping friends green with envy.

Before you succumb to the siren call of a pretty tail that turned your head, it might pay to do a bit of research first however.

Getting fish bred outside the country can be a bit of a crap shoot. There are players involved besides the seller. You’ll be required to use a trans shipper. Plus you’re dealing with governmental agencies (USPS) who probably don’t care so much if your fish arrives dead or alive.

Here’s how it works in a nutshell.

  • You buy your betta often through Aquabid.com.
  • You tell the seller who your trans-shipper is.
  • The seller sends them your fish and you pay them to send it to you.

Seems simple enough. Let’s dig deeper into the details.

  • The price you pay for the fish is just the start. You’ll have to pay the cost of shipping from the seller to your trans shipper. That’s seller dependent and usually less than $10.
  • Fish are shipped out in bunches to a given trans-shipper. Often from different sellers. The shipment is made maybe once a month or bi monthly. You should be told when the next shipping date is. If you aren’t told be sure you try to find out.
  • You may also be alerted by the seller when your fish has shipped. That’s usually how it works but it’s not an always thing.
  • Your trans-shipper will pick the fish up at the airport, unpack them, check them over, provide them a place for the night, pack your fish in your box, take it to the post office and get it off and usually let you know it’s coming.
  • You will be paying the trans shipper a fee for import ($1.20), handling ($2.00) and the cost of overnight shipping ($25 on up) to you. You’ll also have to cover the cost of the box, heat pack, etc. You cover this upfront and it’s certainly not cheap.

The trans shipper is pretty much the under-appreciated middle man. They are licensed to accept the fish into this country from overseas. They deal with all the paperwork. Some are more reliable than others. Some communicate better. Most care about the fish. Most importantly all fish come through them.

How to Get the Most Bang For Your Buck

  • Communication is the key. You want to work with sellers/trans-shippers who are responsive to email or text questions.
  • It’s smart to touch base with your trans shipper ASAP to let them know what you’ve bought and who you’ve bought it from.
  • It can’t hurt to let the shipper know what your weather is like. That way he or she can use a heat pack or a cool pack as needed.
  • It’s also smart to order all your fish at once. Cheaper.
  • Even though bettas are tough the trip can still be hard on them. Expect them to be a tad stressed out when you unpack them. Most will bounce back and be fine.
  • Some will tell you that imported fish don’t adjust well and won’t live as long as a domestic fish. Maybe. Still you will find most will arrive well packed and in great condition – considering.
  • The biggest problem is if your fish is DOA.
  • If it’s dead when the trans shipper gets it they will send both you and the seller photographic evidence. You will then need to work with the seller to get the fish replaced.

    If it’s dead when you get it you want to follow up immediately to see what you need to do. Most of the time you’ll need photos of the unopened bag with the fish floating inside. Just realized the fish may be replaced gratis but you’ll cover the shipping charges, fees etc all over again. Which as you may have noticed is the biggest expense involved here.

Some forums offer the opportunity for members to share their buying experiences with this sort of thing. Like anything of this sort, keep in mind the ones with bad experiences will tend to post more than those for whom everything went smooth. And for every bad post you will just as often as not find an offsetting good post. Which is to say such reviews may not be all that enlightening.

Finally if you’d like to see the business from the side of the trans-shipper you might check out www.luvmybetta.com. Unfortunately it’s a site built in such a way that individual pages are not easily identified. But I hope this link gets you to the page about trans-shipping. If not you can browse the site yourself. It is eye opening.

You can get a feel what a day in the life of a trans shipper is like.

Clearly being one isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

Nor is it a way to retire early either.

All things to keep in mind should you fall under the spell of a betta fish you see for sale online from outside the country.

Got Grindal Worms?

Some betta keepers believe variety is the spice of life when it comes to the food they feed. So you will find they serve up various things on the dinner plate. Often presented in the rotation will be their favorite pellets, frozen bloodworms, adult brine shrimp, mosquito larvae in season and grindal worms. Some include a bit of frozen pea in the routine as well just to keep things regular.

Grindal worms are relatively easy to culture since they thrive at room temp.

And I have to confess. Whenever I hear the term “Grindal worms” I think of some character from the Hobbit. Just sounds like a name that should be from that movie, don’t ask me why.

Anyway Grindal worms make great betta grub. They are easy to grow, very nutritious, and don’t harbor any pests. Size-wise they weigh in at about half the size of white worms. Just beware that feeding them might unleash a feeding frenzy in your fry or sorority tank some bettas get so excited over them.

To help with that here are three videos which will show you two ways to cultivate them. There is no one best way to do this. Using a method that works and produces lots of worms is what counts.

This first video covers how to set up your Grindal (or white worm) cultures. The process for raising both is about the same. To make this happen you need

  • a hand drill with 1/16″ bit
  • a couple of those small disposable plastic storage containers,
  • media to grow them in,
  • bottled water,
  • scraper of some sorts,
  • starter culture.

The home for your Grindals are those Ziploc disposable plastic tubs readily available at the grocery store. (White worms would require something about twice as big.) You want to drill air holes into those along the sides.

Then add some potting soil. (Others use peat moss, or coconut fiber or reptile bedding made from coir (ground coconut husks which holds moisture well and has a neutral pH.) or pot scrubbies if you care to go soil less. (More on soil less in a bit.) You want something that doesn’t tend to dry out on you. (Peat moss does do that.) When using potting mix put in maybe an inch’s worth into your container. Close counts. With the soil be sure to break up any lumps.

To this add enough water to make it wet. Not sopping but wet. Just don’t overdo it because you can always add more water. Mix well.

Then add your starter culture. In this case white worms. For more on Grindals you have to go to video #2.

There’s a few good points to take away from this one.

To start off don’t miss the no charge fry feeding tip. That would be when betta fry have outgrown baby brine shrimp, it’s Grindal worm time!

Then you get an eyeful of a thriving culture. Worms galore. Crawling up the sides and everything.

You pretty much do the same to start the new Grindal worm culture as with the white worms. Gouge a square of worms out of the existing culture, stick it in the new culture and that’s it. Note there is no spreading them around or anything.

IMPORTANT: The choice of Grindal grub used is a salmon and potato based dog food. Spritz the kibble with a bit of water to soften it up. This choice of food is a great idea. It loads them up with all sorts of good nutrients. While I don’t know for sure which brand of dog food was used, here’s some choices. Following this suggestion will fatten your Grindals up and top them off with vitamins and Omega 3.

Please don’t overlook the choice of food here. Some suggest cat kibble or line of a powdered baby food among other things. Whatever you use you want to feed your worms well. Because whatever you’ll be gut loading them with is what your fish in turn will get when they ingest the worms.

Harvesting Grindals Made Easy

Now the trick of course is to harvest your worms cleanly. These videos didn’t get into that. So here’s the trick to pull that off. You’ll need:

  • small piece of plastic
  • spray bottle with dechlorinated water
  • collection container like a plastic shoe box

Lay a piece of plexi glass on top of the culture. Or the top of a CD case. The worms will naturally crawl on it and congregate.

Come harvest time just pick up the plastic, grab your spray bottle, and spray it while holding it over the plastic shoe box. (BTW, a quick search on Google will show you what these look like if you don’t know. Anything similar will do. Should be $5-$7. Doesn’t even have to be that big. But being bigger gives more landing pad for your worms.)

The water will run off the plexi-glass into your container of choice as you spray away. It may take a bit of practice but it works pretty slick once you get the hang of it. Then just put the now cleaned off the plastic whatever back on top of your culture and you’re good to go for next time.

Now you can either suck the harvest up with a baster directly, or if the water is a bit dirty, dump everything into a good sized clear plastic cup, and fill it up with water. In less than a minute the worms will settle to the bottom so you can pour off most of the water to get rid of the suspended dirt but leave the worms behind. A second rinse will usually be enough to clean up your worms good enough for feeding. Any dirt won’t hurt anything really. So don’t obsess over it.

Bath time over you simply need to turkey baster the worms up and squirt them into your tanks into the waiting mouths of your betta fish.

And if this approach to harvesting isn’t to your liking here’s another.

Soil-free Grindals

Just for those who prefer growing soil less here’s a quick vid on how you might do that.

Here’s the highlights of this one:

  • The approach used for letting the air in here involves putting decent sized holes in the lid and filling each with polyfiber. I’ve also seen say a half inch by three inch hole cut in the top and that covered with either a scubbie like these or a coffee filter is taped over it. That way you let the air in and keep the worms in, while keeping any potential pests out too.
  • The grow media is several stacked pot scrubbies. Get the cheapest ones you can find. As suggested earlier the worms are covered with a bit of plastic for ease of harvesting.
  • You want to see a bit of water in the bottom. That tells you things are moist enough. Just dump that water out and spritz the scrubbies to replace it at least once a week.
  • If you need a piece of plastic a good source would be a milk or bottled water jug, or say a juice bottle.
  • Room temp 70-75F 21-25C is good. If your house is colder you might put them on top of the refrig or someplace else that’s a bit warmer. Just keep it darker. Direct sunlight is out as the worms don’t like it.

I’d say this approach can be ramped up way more than what is shown in the video. You might also want to cut the harvesting plastic to be just a tad smaller than the scubbie. That way you cover the entire grow area making harvest easier.

Four Parting Tips

  • It’s always a good idea to have a couple of cultures going at the same time in case one for whatever reason goes bad on your unexpectedly.
  • Once established you should expect a culture to keep going strong for as long as six months. All you need to do is keep replenishing their food and they’ll be happy campers. Just don’t over feed. If food lingers too long mold will take hold. Not a disaster. Just pick it off. But if you can avoid it, do.
  • Spritz as needed to keep the culture moist. If you over do it the worms will climb and cling to the sides. Just leave the lid off to dry things out some.
  • If you go soil less you’ll want to use three to five scrub pads.

So there you go. Whether you go with the first method or prefer going soil-less, you are now ready to join the ranks of Grindal worm wranglers!

And if you’ve never seen fish inhaling Grindals well here you go. This is a pretty nifty feeder actually. Just not sure what it is. But it allows the Grindals to slowly “escape” into the water a few at a time. Which of course will be the last time they escape anywhere but then that’s what you are raising them for.

Copyright 2012