Christina Doyle

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since Oct 21, 2017
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Recent posts by Christina Doyle

Emma Massick wrote:Hi!
An awesome co-worker shared this forum with me because I am starting to raise silkworms too! I ordered some as adults and have 17 total right now, about 13 of them seem to be in their 5th instar and the rest are in either 3 or 4, not sure. I have had them for about a week and it has been so fun and fascinating Looking forward to sharing and learning more here!



Go figure here is where I'd find other weird people also doing the weird things I do. 😆

Are you planning on breeding them?
10 months ago

Tereza Okava wrote:

r ranson wrote:I know not everyone is comfortable with eating bugs, so I created a thread about cooking and eating silkworms.  


lol! I didn't want to be the monster in the room saying "wow your new little sweeties are one of my favorite foods", but...... it's true.



At what stage do you eat them? Ive seen pupae and worm both being eaten. They're..very smooth and plump. Hakuna matata!!
10 months ago

r ranson wrote:  I understood it would be over three days, but we're on day four and there's a long way to go.  



I cant say it's not that, but it also could be the use of normal temps. It doesnt look like you've put them in a heated incubator. I put all mine in a constant 80 -81, night and day for 2 weeks, and I know temps affect their growth. There's very little variation when they are incubated. I think they like to be nice and warm throughout their growing time, so I've been working on a tall heated cabinet. I bought a premade pressboard cabinet, the kind with white vinyl covering the pressboard, but I cant get the wood smell out of it, so I'm redesigning right now.
10 months ago
Thank you for this!! Everyone. This knowledge is like gold.
I just shared it with someone on another website from Spain whose area is struggling with crop failures due to drought and heat. Hoping I didnt overwhelm them with links.

I brought the horse to water, now hopefully.... you know...lol

10 months ago

r ranson wrote: Not entirely understanding how I'm supposed to keep their home clean.



I just found this, it has some useful looking information. A little bit about the net method. The font and text was hard for me to read.

https://www.slideshare.net/mobile/nhomthatnice/silkworm-rearing-technology
10 months ago
I think i would just lump them together for now. Everything with them seems to happen in a rush of about 2-3 days, and the others are outliers. As far as I can tell, having slightly different sizes isnt too terrible and sometimes the small ones will suddenly catch up in growth with better food access. XD
Just have to try and avoid pile ons. They tend to crush each other to death. during stages of growth they rear up on their back legs only and look like they're praying. Curve up like a cobra. For some reason if they're not allowed to curve up and rest during these periods, because too many friends are crawling on them, they die.

I'm still so new I dont know a lot about the detailed parts of management. Maybe you should seperate the slow growers and feed them to another animal so only the most vigorous and eager for food breed?
10 months ago

r ranson wrote:Does anyone here know how much space I'm going to need if all 200 hatch?  I've been looking around to try to discover the square footage inchage per worm or per dozen worms.  




Congrats on your baby caterpillars!
I havent seen a given number yet! From my personal experience, a lot more space than you would think. They can get to be huge juicy chonks at their last stage and the less they walk on each other the better. Ive read that the little hooks in there feet are a bit rough on their delicate skin. Small tears in skin and injury can make them more susceptible to infection. I only did 200 my first batch and I needed a few plastic bin lids. The cleaner the better.

Ive also found that when they are tiny hairy babies like this, they're at one of their easier stages to move them by hand. The bigger worms cling to things with suprising strength when you try and pick them up, wiggle out of your hands, etc.
At this stage a soft round shaped eyeshadow or watercolor brush to gently sweep them up works nicely.

Be CAREFUL about what you put them on. I had set a few on a piece of paper, and they wandered off the edge onto the top of a plastic craft bin from Sterilite and it poisoned them. I can not 100% confirm it was the plastic and not something ON the plastic, but I havent spilled anything on it, especially recently. I dont dont work with a lot of toxic materials. But they vomited and convulsed for hours until I had to mercy kill them. The first few I thought were just shedding their skin, because that is a violent process and sometimes they look a little ill. Lol

But after a whole batch one by one started having convulsions and dying slowly for hours, I noticed and cleaned it all up. Not sure what happened with that.
10 months ago

r ranson wrote:I have moth envy!



I understand completely. 😁
This feels like a gateway has opened. Im already figuring how i can set up for robin moths.

They're still hatching as of this morning, and so far there is 24. I dont expect more, but I didnt expect these either! Lol
10 months ago
I'm learning how to raise silkworms in my apartment, and though it's not going very well, I have had a few hatch in many different colors of cocoons. <3
Im hoping that what I think is the problem, actually IS the problem (hygiene) and that I'll start getting truly awesome cocoon/moth hatches once I've figured out a cleaning system.
Im raising them all on chow currently, hoping to move them and my sericulture skills to a homestead in the next few years with plenty of mulberry trees.

Now the pictures! The colorful cocoon bowl looks so much better in the real world and light. The greens are a minty highlighter color,  there are light tan colored ones, saturated golden yellow ones. They're all beautiful.
10 months ago
This is pretty cool. Ive been learning things like sashiko, boro, and rag clothes as inspiration. Mending clothing needs to come back in a big way
There's a couple of Goodwill Outlets near me where they sell the clothes by the pound and I've found some great fabric to cut up.
10 months ago