I'm looking at trying to breed earthworms, specifically Nightcrawlers (Lumbricus terrestris) also called dew worms. Part of the reason I'm specifically interested in keeping nightcrawlers as opposed to the smaller species of earthworms called red wrigglers (Eisenia fetida) is the red wrigglers produce a defensive slime that stinks and can make snakes sick.

I think it's easy enough to keep nightcrawlers in a container of organic soil in a cool place, as it's commonly done when keeping them for fishing bait. But I've seen on television the nightcrawler "farms" that collect them to sell for fishing bait just collect them from a big empty field. I'm not sure if that's a logistics issue of how many they need to collect, or if it's an issue with breeding them in captivity.

I was hoping to keep and breed them in a container kept in my basement. Like most live food they can get pretty expensive to continuously purchase from the store, and I don't really want to collect them from my backyard in case of exposure to pesticides.

Is it possible to breed nightcrawlers, or is there a reason it isn't something people do?

  • if you google breeding earthworms this is what i found:wikihow.com/Grow-Your-Own-Fishing-Worms – trond hansen May 9 '18 at 15:51
  • I marked it as a duplicate before reading the whole thing. I'm more interested in keeping earthworms, not the red wiggler kind typically used in composting. I know they can't be kept in coco-fiber like the answer in the other question suggests for red wigglers. – Spidercat May 9 '18 at 16:10
  • @Spidercat if you can, could you add the scientific name of the worm here? Nightcrawlers is the US name for it, so it seems. – Flummox - don't be evil SE May 14 '18 at 12:19
  • just for your information what you call nightcrawlers we call in norwegian duggmark(dew worms) and it is possible to breed them like this trails.com/how_31902_breed-nightcrawlers.html – trond hansen May 15 '18 at 5:13

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