Very Weird Mishap with Hornworms

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Very Weird Mishap with Hornworms

Postby RexysRaptor » Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:21 am

Hey there, y’all. I’m hoping someone here can help me out with, or has similarly experienced, a peculiar problem with a batch of hornworms. So, I got a 25-pack from Josh’s Frogs, which actually had 30, and they arrived in perfect condition with my other feeders. I seriously couldn’t ask for better. My Beardie and Leo loved them. They did finish all their chow but even before, I started adding some veggies to their food that my Beardie ate to gutload (Triss easily gets spoiled on bugs), and they ate fervently. Some even had favorites. But all of a sudden one evening, I opened The box and two worms were stiff as a taut muscle, thrashing, and vomiting green; and a couple others might as well have been full of water from how squishy they got and had loose white/green stools. I quarantined them, gave them fresh food, drops of water, but nothing worked. I kept the rest afterward, and a few were as fat and healthy as could be, but many others started showing the same symptoms. A family member thought it could be one got sick and spread it to others, but I don’t know how? The only things I could think of were the place I kept them wasn’t very sunny, which I read could get them stuck mid-growth (don’t know if that’s unhealthy), and a foreign bug had somehow wriggled its way into their box and my house had been sprayed almost a week before, but they seemed very averted to it, and I even changed the food. I just got a replacement and I’m going to keep them in a higher place with a little sun and some more chow. But do any of you know what this could be?
Thanks!
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Re: Very Weird Mishap with Hornworms

Postby Claudiusx » Fri Aug 07, 2020 11:29 am

Hi there,

The cups they come in, typically you turn them upside down so their poo drops to the bottom. Did you make sure to prop the cup so that there was also ventilation to the lid (that's on the bottom now)? If they have no ventilation they will get rancid like that.

Also, hornworms have a very strict diet. The chow they eat is the best gutload you can give them, and they likely will get sick and die eating another type of food.
Based on what you described, they most likely went bad because you fed them a different food, or they didn't have proper ventilation.

I never keep mine in the sun. They stay in a room temp closet with their cup propped up to allow airflow.

-Brandon
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Re: Very Weird Mishap with Hornworms

Postby RexysRaptor » Fri Aug 07, 2020 11:58 am

Claudiusx wrote:Hi there,

The cups they come in, typically you turn them upside down so their poo drops to the bottom. Did you make sure to prop the cup so that there was also ventilation to the lid (that's on the bottom now)? If they have no ventilation they will get rancid like that.

Also, hornworms have a very strict diet. The chow they eat is the best gutload you can give them, and they likely will get sick and die eating another type of food.
Based on what you described, they most likely went bad because you fed them a different food, or they didn't have proper ventilation.

I never keep mine in the sun. They stay in a room temp closet with their cup propped up to allow airflow.

-Brandon


Hey there.

Yep, I made sure to actually clean their container routinely. I even put their container open in an even bigger one and cleaned it once a day. I also separated them depending on which I would feed off first and which were being most aggressive to smaller worms ‘cause they’re known cannibals and I wanted to avoid that. But like you said, their ventilation might not have been adequate because I didn’t keep them very high up at all and they didn’t have much airflow down where they were. The ones I kept previously were up on a shelf and probably had more efficient ventilation, with more chow, and grew real fast without deaths. And you’re right, it could have also been some of the plants I fed them. Not all of them would eat the same thing either, so I don’t doubt it. For example the ones that mostly ate potato did best, but the ones that ate the most greens seemed to be the ones to go bad.
Thank you so much for pointing that out, I’m glad my new batch has triple the food, and I’ll make sure to give them better ventilation.
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