Live Food Cultures for Fish

No longer offering live cultures.

 White Worm Culture image

White worms are very sensitive to heat and cannot handle sitting in a mailbox or outside in the sun on a warm day. Cultures are NOT guaranteed to arrive alive.

White worms (Enchytraeus albidusare) a great source of live food. They grow to about 1.5" inches in length. The food value is fantastic - approximately 70% protein and 15% fat - great makeup for fish. White worms are super easy to culture, but do not multiply as fast as microworms. It will usually take about 3-5 weeks for a culture to multiply to the point where you can harvest worms on a regular basis. Of course, this depends on how many fish you want to feed.

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How to set up a microworm culture - Prepare a food medium of oatmeal or cornmeal with enough water to make a mixture with the consistency of yogurt. Spread to no more than 1/2" thick in a plastic container that has a cover. Sprinkle about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of dry active yeast on top of the culture depending on the size of the container. Add the starter culture and cover. Put some air holes in the top of the cover so they can breath but flies cannot enter. We cut a hole in the lid of the container and fill it with 50 ppi Foam for the perfect air exchange.

Culture Box

After a week or so, the culture should be teaming with worms. They will start crawling up the sides where you can scrape them off with a small knife to feed to your fry. Start a new culture every week or two from the old one and that way you will always have a fresh one producing well. Throw out the old one when it starts smelling foul - usually in the 3-4 week range. Keep in mind that the worms are what your fish eat. You don't want them eating foul culture medium. Adding spirulina powder to the culture, greatly increases their nutritive value. They grow very rapidly in warm temperatures.

Be very skeptical of anyone selling Walter Worms or Banana Worms. The ones we've purchased have proven to be identical in all respects to Micro Worms (checked size and shape under a microscope and experimented with survival times when submersed in water). If they exist (we have our doubts), we wonder if anyone has kept pure cultures that will actually be any different in use from micro worms. Save your money unless the seller can prove that they actually have a different nematode. Most don't have a clue what they really have. The couple of sources we bought from, still have Banana Worms and Walter Worms for sale, even though we informed them that they are identical to their microworms. Hmm...

Culturing White Worms Choose culture containers appropriate for the amount of fish you expect to feed. Most use plastic shoe boxes or plastic sweater boxes, but aquariums and even large wooden boxes will work if you need a lot of worms. Give them a mixture of peat moss (Coco Peat is even better) and soil. It should be very moist, but not dripping wet. Give them a good food source. The better the food they eat, the more nutrition they pass on to your fish. Don't feed junk like white bread, or cornmeal. It's no better for them than it is for you. We feed them one of our high quality flake foods and spirulina powder. Make sure they eat all you give them within a day or two, or it will rot and cause problems.

White worms multiply fastest at temperatures between 50 F. and 65 F. In hot climates, it's best to put the culture container inside a styro with a frozen soda bottle to keep them cool.

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Learn more about culturing live foods in these articles.

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Well, I started with a small culture and now am overflowing. These are just so easy and the fish love them. I'm experimenting with gut loading now.
Jeremy West, Tue Jan 31, 2017
I can't believe how easy these white worms have been to breed and culture. Every three days I feed a whole grain piece of bread with some plain yogurt spread on it sprinkled with nutritional yeast and spirulina powder face down. I keep in a cooler and change the igloo gel pack daily
Jeremy West, Wed Nov 23, 2016
Received my micro worms and white worms today. All seemed in good condition. I selected the 2 day air shipping and ordered on a monday.
mark, Wed Apr 30, 2014
Good size starter culture.
Thriving well and multipiling rapidly.
Easy instructions from the website
Richard Tomaino, Wed Dec 04, 2013