How to Keep Your Bugs and Pinhead Crickets Alive Through Blazing Summers
Remember, we have red wiggler worms for sale. But, not all of us who raise crickets (like Ghanns crickets for Flukers crickets) or red wigglers have the perfect climate, and they can be quite sensitive to temperatures. Keeping things in the ideal range will ensure that your bugs are still breeding properly, stay healthy, and in extreme cases staying alive. We’re here to show you a few simple ways that you can maintain your hobby in even the most extreme climates.
How Hot is Too Hot?
The temperatures that your vermiculture and home cricket farm can function in is a little bit different, so let’s take a look at each of these useful critters on their own before we discuss solutions.
Crickets can stand a pretty wide variety of temperatures without dying. They can even go into a dormant state for a little while and survive if frozen after all. The ideal temperature range for crickets is about 70-75°F, although some recommend raising the temperature by about five degrees for breeding crickets.
Due to their nature, cricket’s life cycle will speed up when they’re warmer which is why it’s recommended to keep breeding crickets at a bit higher of a temperature. However, if things get too much above about 100°F they’ll start to die.
Red wigglers, on the other hand, tend to prefer lower temperatures. Keeping things in the range of 55-75°F is ideal. Anything above 84°F is harmful and potentially fatal for your fertilizer producing, wriggling friends. As every vermiculture enthusiast knows, worms tend to die exponentially once the process has begun.
If you live in a hot climate, there’s a number of ways you can keep things cool enough for your critters.
The Ideal Solution: Climate Control
Especially with worms, a lot of bug keepers tend to keep their units outside. You might want to consider pulling the enclosures inside during the hot summer months if you have air conditioning in your home. It really might be the only cost effective way to do things if you’re in an environment that regularly reaches over 90°F in the summers.
If you have a climate controlled garage, that’s probably an ideal location. There’s a misconception that cricket and red wiggler enclosures tend to smell, but if you’re regular on your maintenance and picky and about what you feed you can avoid that issue entirely.
Worms, in particular, have a reputation for smelling, but the smell should be mildly-earthy to nonexistent if you maintain proper humidity levels and aren’t feeding animal products to them. Overfeeding can cause issues as well since the worms won’t be able to eat all of the bacteria off the surface of the decaying vegetable matter before it begins to actively rot.
A properly maintained cricket enclosure should have no smell, but there’s a different problem with them. Some people can’t stand the noise, if this is the case you’ll definitely want to put them in a garage or somewhere out of the way. If you do enjoy their chirping, you’re in luck and can put them pretty much anywhere.
Less Ideal: Fans
If you only expect the temperature to climb to dangerous ranges for a few days a year and don’t have any sort of climate control you may want to consider a fan. By moving air over or through the enclosure, you can lessen the temperature by several degrees and help to keep things in the proper range.
This obviously isn’t going to work in 100°F+ weather, though, at least not for long but it can make a quick fix during a heat wave that can save you a lot of money. Box fans are generally the best type to use since you can easily focus the flow of air in a single direction and through the ventilation slits in a vermicomposting unit or directly over a cricket enclosure.
As you can see, it can be quite easy to maintain your bugs even through the hottest weather if you’re willing to make a little bit of room for them in your home. In more temperate climates, keeping a box fan on hand for heat waves is a cheaper solution, but it’s not going to work out all that well if you live in the middle of the desert. With proper care taken of your bugs they won’t smell, so why not make a place for them inside your home?