Early this month we travelled 130 kilometers around the Gympie Region checking on our little bio-control bugs and beetles. Even though the cold weather is here, we found all life cycles of our Tingid bugs, jewel beetles and madeira beetles – from eggs to larvae to even adults!
Nina, Nathan, Anne, Corinne, and I were armed with our usual insect monitoring equipment – our GPS unit, soil testing kit, notebook computer and our weather monitor just to name a few. After all data was collected, Nathan happily cleaned up sites where rubbish was left behind.
Back at the Landcare facility we are always trying to find insecticide and pesticide free options. After another outbreak of mealybugs, we decided to test the edible plant Okra. The mealybugs found Okra more appealing then our cats claw creeper keeping our plants healthy for our insects.
Our composting worms arrived and have now been placed in their new homes. When checking the internal temperature of the worm farm, we discovered some worms were trying to escape! We have since discovered that this is usually what happens when you over-water the worm farm. A moist worm farm is important, but over-watering will kill the worms. Over-feeding can also cause worm loss, so it is best to feed in small portions and only feed again after the worms have finished their last meal.
We are hoping that our worms will be available for sale to the public around September of this year.
Yvonne Hennell – Bio-control Manager