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I can't grow BSFL because we are a zone 4/5 - they just aren't native here - but I love the concept and they sound like both awesome composters and wonderful, productive fish food.  Since I just wrote a blog post about them, and am selling the BioPod, they little guys are on my mind.  Is anyone using BSFL to feed their fish?  Is anyone doing this in a zone 6 or below?  What are your thoughts?

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Cold-climate people who wish to cultivate black soldier flies will find all the info they need in these papers.  I haven't read it all yet but the information I'm looking for is how can we increase Omega 3 in homemade fish food, thereby increasing it in our fish?  Adding flax or fish to the food may be answer but I haven't thought it through yet.  I have access to plenty of mullet but menhaden are a bit more difficult to come by and considering the extent to which they are already being exploited, I won't try to use them.  

I think the study you are talking about, still reading it all myself, talks about feeding the BSFL specific things to increase their omega 3 content and it transfers to the fish who eat them ... if I recall ..

 

I am going to take my "sunny room" and turn it into a BSFL / cricket / meal worm raising room with much the space for the BSFL enclosure :D

Yes, no doubt that would be one way to go about it.  I've fed fresh water fish to my BSFL.  This year I'll work in some mullet from the ocean.  Mullet are abundant and easy to catch.  I'm also thinking along the lines of drying and grinding fish, then feeding them to small fish, such as minnows.  Then, feed the minnows to larger fish.  I'm still thinking of ways to produce a high-omega 3 pelleted food and I'd like to make it from things I can grow or catch.  I would think that dried beans would make a good ingredient, along with dried fish and dried BSFL. Thanks and good luck with your sunny room.

Burton Rosenberger said:

I think the study you are talking about, still reading it all myself, talks about feeding the BSFL specific things to increase their omega 3 content and it transfers to the fish who eat them ... if I recall ..

 

I am going to take my "sunny room" and turn it into a BSFL / cricket / meal worm raising room with much the space for the BSFL enclosure

I live in zone 5 and I am goin gto try this this summer in a grrenhouse and see if I can keep them going all year round. I will let you know how it turns out.

Flax is of course a good source of omega 3 but it also blocks some other vitamin and nutrients so extra research needs be done.  There are other plants that are good sources of omega 3 precursors so look up purslane (often thought of as a weed but a edible one that is supposed to be very good for you, you can get seeds for it from Johnny's.)

 

Many types of beans may need processing or cooking before they are useful as feed.

 

An algae pond might be a good way to raise lots of feed for smaller fish and other creatures that could then be fed to the bigger fish and this will be the better way to get the most natural wild diet but I don't know if anyone has managed it on a large scale yet.

TC could you provide me a link to show what flax "blocks?" Is this in fish / insects (BSFL) / humans?

 

First I have heard of this so I am curious

 

Things with omega 3's

flaxseed,
flax seed oil,
all hemp products (commercial hemp has no THC),
walnuts, butternuts, persian walnuts, pecans, hazel nuts ... (most all nuts actually),
seeds,
vegetable oils,
avocados,
Perilla (has a ton more than flax if comparing oils),
Chia seed (more than flax no need to crush),
lingonberry,
camelina,
purslane,
black raspberry

Lots of sources for omega 3's ... Oh yeah algae too!


here is one of the papers I read on the use of Flax seed as feed for chickens, it might explain a few things.  It isn't that it can't be used but the processing is important and if not processed right some supplemental vitamins might be needed.

 

I have not yet found any studies with flax and fish yet.

yeah, not too worried about chickens lol I dont eat them or their eggs but I looked up studies for flax and chickens (thought we were talking about BSFL >.<)

http://animalscience.ucdavis.edu/avian/pfs21.htm (since your link didn't come through)

 

It does mention not to feed chickens flax seed meal as their only source of protein, and to that I would say DUH ... seems 15% - 30% was ok in these studies.

 

I have studied a lot of nutrition (human nutrition I guess I should indicate that here) and no studies show flax blocking vitamin / mineral absorption. However, soy, if not fermented, does act as an antinutrient in the human body; hence why I only eat natto, tempeh, and miso but never soy milk, fake meals, or tofu :)

lets see if I can get the link through this time

http://animalscience.ucdavis.edu/avian/pfs21.htm

looks like the same one you found

jinx! you owe me an heirloom seed hehehe
I've found that my chickens are not all that interested in eating flax seed.  I wonder what the FSF larva would think of it.

Sylvia, I think you are wrong.  After reading long threads on the subject on the Backyard Chickens forum and the Bass Pond Forum, I believe BSFL can be cultivated just about anywhere in the lower 48.  You would need to protect your dormant colony from freezing during the winter but people are doing it.  They can be cultivated seasonally even though no native population is present.  In a heated greenhouse, year round cultivation may be possible, depending on whether or not you have 10-feet of headroom for mating flight (don't shoot the messenger if I got this wrong).  I fed BSFL for a couple of years and just now took the plunge and received a biopod plus through your online store - will set it in place tomorrow and seed it with my existing colony.  The biopod has advantages over anything I've constructed myself and I expect it to pay for itself many times.  It's a cool deal to feed BSFL your kitchen scraps and then harvest the larvae for fish and chicken food. 

peace

G

 

can't grow BSFL because we are a zone 4/5 - they just aren't native here - but I love the concept and they sound like both awesome composters and wonderful, productive fish food.

 

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