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    Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

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    dermy
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    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Slug Composting Experinces 2012

    Post  dermy on Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:50 pm

    I thought I would add some slug related information about Slug Composting Systems:

    1- Surface Area over Depth, the bin could be 4' deep and i wouldn't use it if i had a bin with 2' of Surface Area, this is because slugs only burrow down a few inches to lay eggs/hide. All that wasted space is not worth it either, i could still make more compost faster in the SA bin then i could ever make in the Depth bin. It works much the same as a worm bin, the more SA the more microbes will be on the finished food and that will break it down faster.

    2- Substrate- You do need some form of substrate if you don't want to mist the Slugs enclosure everyday, the substrate could be anything from food wastes to soil, eventually the slugs will turn the soil and mix it with their own compost. This makes it easy to start everything with soil. Eventually if you use soil you won't have the bad "false" items at the end while harvesting. At least then you'll get more compost and you won't have to sift it as much.

    3-Ammount- The ammount of slugs you should start with depends upon your food/yard waste and the size of your bin, if you use a system like mine you should be good with 10-30 slugs they will breed fast anyway, in two months my one slug made 50+ eggs 20+ slugs have hatched so far, maybe more in the substrate. My system should hold around 200-500+ baby slugs, once they become adults i will remove them and add them into my adult enclosure where they can breed and make more babies that will be removed and added into my baby [also known as a rearing enclosure]. So far i have three slug systems, one has isopods in it. In the summer time i plan to possibly have 5 slug systems, that way every month i can produce compost, that and every 5 months i can restart them all and work on spring compost, every month there-after i can harvest one bin a month. That will be a ton of compost, 5 times the ammount i have produced now!

    4- Eggs- Eggs are small [actually not too small] and are clear, they darken or turn white before the babies hatch, i will get a picture of some eggs after i am done skool. The thing with eggs is that when you have 1000+ slugs they produce a lot and they do cannobolize them, this means you need to rotate enclosures each month, wait till eggs in container one are done hatching put the hatchlings in the rearing enclosure, then add the adults back into that enclosure, repeat with as many enclosures that you want, large scale will need more then one rearing enclosure.


    My System Review[If you guys want you can add your own opinion]
    Pros
    -Good SA
    -Small enough to fit multiple enclosures into one small space
    -Large enough to produce a small-meadium ammount of compost
    -I like how humidity is a great secret weapon, the higher the humidity [not insanely high] the better the slugs will be and the less watering i will need to do.

    Cons
    -Gets full fast
    -Cant handle a lot of Food Waste
    -You also can't add a lot of slop to it or it will go stinky and this is called anerobic not a good smell either
    -Sucky ventatlation!

    So far im giving this system:

    7*/10*

    I like it and will use it as a rearing enclosure, i do like kritter keepers beter they have built in ventalation

    would also like to note that slug composting does take a little trial and error, you most likely won't get it the first tme, thats why its always great to start now at least then if you mess up you can get more slugs. I also love to have a normal slug system going on during winter, i use the babes for composting and the adults are the breeding stock, i will release a lot of the adults [most likely only keep the babies and a few adults] and re-start the breeding stock. I wont need Compost in the witner anyway and i will also have to stock up on food for them before winter as i can't just go out and pick clovers for them, j think i have a great plan setup and will continue to do this for a few years if at all possible.

    Day#50- June 14/2012- I can't belive its been 50 days since i started this slug colony in the kritter keeper. They haven't been as productive as the year past but thats because i am busy right now wth school and dermestids! If it was just slugs i would have hundreds! I have to check the egg[or incubater] today and see if we've got any new baby slugs i will be sure to post how many i found/have. I can't wait till after school it was just raining which means the slugs will be out[if it the sun doesn't shine they will be sliming everywhere to near territories.] I hope to have 100 by the next month and then double that every month but i don't think that will happen unless i cheat and go to my grandmas and get all the slugs that are there.

    I should also reflect on the last 50 days of this experiment with slugs, it has been a long road thats for sure. I have had my ups and downs with this colony, espeacilly the loss of the queen Cloey. Although now there will be a new queen selected by me to take her place, [I need a name here people running dry on names!] I can't wait to see what the queen lays and how many babies she makes in her lifetime!
    In this past few days i really have been trying to do some really big things as far as composting goes, i do belive my system is a little dry at the momment so when i get home at lunch i will water it down nicely, they deserve the best home I can provide, i may even be cleaning out the incubater and restarting the adult colony into it for a few weeks to get more eggs and then more babies. I looked it up and if the conditions are perfect they can hatch in 5-7 days or in the winter they can last 7-10 months! That gives me the option of hibernating the colony which if i run out of food half-way through the year i might have no choice but to do!

    I can't wait to see how many diffrent systems i can create for my slugs, i shall call them Slug-Ariums

    I guess im gonna need to water them everyday or else they won't breed as well when they are adults[i have no adults left!] so it will be either 2-4 weeks until i get a breeder or if i can i will get some at the lake this weekend! I will only be on at night and only if i can get on, i will take pictures of what i find and post them here later.

    Sorry about the long post!

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:56 pm

    I thought I would add some slug related information about Slug Composting Systems:

    1- Surface Area over Depth, the bin could be 4' deep and i wouldn't use it if i had a bin with 2' of Surface Area, this is because slugs only burrow down a few inches to lay eggs/hide. All that wasted space is not worth it either, i could still make more compost faster in the SA bin then i could ever make in the Depth bin. It works much the same as a worm bin, the more SA the more microbes will be on the finished food and that will break it down faster.

    2- Substrate- You do need some form of substrate if you don't want to mist the Slugs enclosure everyday, the substrate could be anything from food wastes to soil, eventually the slugs will turn the soil and mix it with their own compost. This makes it easy to start everything with soil. Eventually if you use soil you won't have the bad "false" items at the end while harvesting. At least then you'll get more compost and you won't have to sift it as much.

    3-Ammount- The ammount of slugs you should start with depends upon your food/yard waste and the size of your bin, if you use a system like mine you should be good with 10-30 slugs they will breed fast anyway, in two months my one slug made 50+ eggs 20+ slugs have hatched so far, maybe more in the substrate. My system should hold around 200-500+ baby slugs, once they become adults i will remove them and add them into my adult enclosure where they can breed and make more babies that will be removed and added into my baby [also known as a rearing enclosure]. So far i have three slug systems, one has isopods in it. In the summer time i plan to possibly have 5 slug systems, that way every month i can produce compost, that and every 5 months i can restart them all and work on spring compost, every month there-after i can harvest one bin a month. That will be a ton of compost, 5 times the ammount i have produced now!

    4- Eggs- Eggs are small [actually not too small] and are clear, they darken or turn white before the babies hatch, i will get a picture of some eggs after i am done skool. The thing with eggs is that when you have 1000+ slugs they produce a lot and they do cannobolize them, this means you need to rotate enclosures each month, wait till eggs in container one are done hatching put the hatchlings in the rearing enclosure, then add the adults back into that enclosure, repeat with as many enclosures that you want, large scale will need more then one rearing enclosure.


    My System Review[If you guys want you can add your own opinion]
    Pros
    -Good SA
    -Small enough to fit multiple enclosures into one small space
    -Large enough to produce a small-meadium ammount of compost
    -I like how humidity is a great secret weapon, the higher the humidity [not insanely high] the better the slugs will be and the less watering i will need to do.

    Cons
    -Gets full fast
    -Cant handle a lot of Food Waste
    -You also can't add a lot of slop to it or it will go stinky and this is called anerobic not a good smell either
    -Sucky ventatlation!

    So far im giving this system:

    7*/10*

    I like it and will use it as a rearing enclosure, i do like kritter keepers beter they have built in ventalation

    would also like to note that slug composting does take a little trial and error, you most likely won't get it the first tme, thats why its always great to start now at least then if you mess up you can get more slugs. I also love to have a normal slug system going on during winter, i use the babes for composting and the adults are the breeding stock, i will release a lot of the adults [most likely only keep the babies and a few adults] and re-start the breeding stock. I wont need Compost in the witner anyway and i will also have to stock up on food for them before winter as i can't just go out and pick clovers for them, j think i have a great plan setup and will continue to do this for a few years if at all possible.

    Day#50- June 14/2012- I can't belive its been 50 days since i started this slug colony in the kritter keeper. They haven't been as productive as the year past but thats because i am busy right now wth school and dermestids! If it was just slugs i would have hundreds! I have to check the egg[or incubater] today and see if we've got any new baby slugs i will be sure to post how many i found/have. I can't wait till after school it was just raining which means the slugs will be out[if it the sun doesn't shine they will be sliming everywhere to near territories.] I hope to have 100 by the next month and then double that every month but i don't think that will happen unless i cheat and go to my grandmas and get all the slugs that are there.

    I should also reflect on the last 50 days of this experiment with slugs, it has been a long road thats for sure. I have had my ups and downs with this colony, espeacilly the loss of the queen Cloey. Although now there will be a new queen selected by me to take her place, [I need a name here people running dry on names!] I can't wait to see what the queen lays and how many babies she makes in her lifetime!
    In this past few days i really have been trying to do some really big things as far as composting goes, i do belive my system is a little dry at the momment so when i get home at lunch i will water it down nicely, they deserve the best home I can provide, i may even be cleaning out the incubater and restarting the adult colony into it for a few weeks to get more eggs and then more babies. I looked it up and if the conditions are perfect they can hatch in 5-7 days or in the winter they can last 7-10 months! That gives me the option of hibernating the colony which if i run out of food half-way through the year i might have no choice but to do!

    I can't wait to see how many diffrent systems i can create for my slugs, i shall call them Slug-Ariums

    I guess im gonna need to water them everyday or else they won't breed as well when they are adults[i have no adults left!] so it will be either 2-4 weeks until i get a breeder or if i can i will get some at the lake this weekend! I will only be on at night and only if i can get on, i will take pictures of what i find and post them here later.

    Sorry about the long post!

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Why Slugs are Good For Composting

    Post  dermy on Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:56 pm

    http://oregonstate.edu/dept/nurspest/slugs.htm

    "Many slugs consume several times their own body weight each day."

    Worms however only eat half their body weight in "food they can digest" a day.

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Update June 17/2012- Day#53

    Post  dermy on Sun Jun 17, 2012 2:32 pm

    Laughing Im thinking that today is day 53 but still not too sure. Anyway, the slugs have been with me while i was camping. They got food there, fed them some leaves and a watermelon rind, which i will add to my isopod colony later on. I have to reclean their home today as well as check the incubation chamber for new slug babies.

    So, all in all i have some maintenance to do but that isn't a problem for me!

    Jeff H.
    Guest

    Compostguy101

    Post  Jeff H. on Sun Jun 17, 2012 5:59 pm

    Nice composting blog dermy! I will be reading it!

    dermy
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    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:32 pm

    Thank-you compostguy!

    diabloz
    Guest

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:23 am

    Nice blog, just one question why slug composting? There are many more diffrent more appropriate things that can be used for composting. There are composting worms for example, they will eat half their body weight in food everyday, thats around 3.5 pounds a week for 1 pound of worms. What are the composting speeds of slugs?

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:28 am

    diabloz wrote:Nice blog, just one question why slug composting? There are many more diffrent more appropriate things that can be used for composting. There are composting worms for example, they will eat half their body weight in food everyday, thats around 3.5 pounds a week for 1 pound of worms. What are the composting speeds of slugs?

    Hello Diabloz welcome to the forum/blog!

    As for why slug composting above the other ones, number one slugs are way eaiser to get then composting worms, secondly they reprodcue faster, one pair of worms will maybe make 10 worms if your lucky well two slugs will lay around 200 eggs and they hatch in a week! Worm cocoons take months to hatch. I could build up a huge colony of slugs, before you could build up a worm bin culture. I am by no way bashing worm composting, for many people it works wounders but for me its just not my thing.

    Slugs will eat around 3-4 times their body weight in food everyday, thats around 20 pounds a week for 1lb of slugs! If i had even more then 1lb i could compost so fast that i would have to harvest my castings every month at least.

    diabloz
    Guest

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:30 am

    Dermy, first off thanks for the information regarding slug composting. I prefer worms over slugs, how do you make the food waste slug friendly? When do you feed your slugs? How many slugs do you have right now? How large is your enclosure? How much compost have you made in the last month?

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:34 am

    diabloz wrote:Dermy, first off thanks for the information regarding slug composting. I prefer worms over slugs, how do you make the food waste slug friendly? When do you feed your slugs? How many slugs do you have right now? How large is your enclosure? How much compost have you made in the last month?

    Your Welcome Diabloz!

    The food is just added into the slugs fresh, if they don't eat it before it goes bad my small culture of isopods will eat it all up and prevent a huge mold infestation from accuring. I only currently have around 20+ slugs but they grow fast and breed even faster, i still have a ton of eggs that haven't been hatched yet. My enclosure is a standered size kritter keeper, i have no lid on it and it works well. I have made a small[or meadium] sized baggy of compost in the last month, i still kept some compost in the bottom of the bin so the microbes will help the isopods further down the road.

    dermy
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    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Update! Day#54- Over-Feeding Challenge!

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:36 am

    Composting O.F.C! yes its that time again time to go big or go home! I will not have a lid on the system anymore, it will make it go down faster! If it means anything to you i have both isopods and slugs making this the first ever slug-pod composter ofc ever! btw i found baby isopods!



    diabloz
    Guest

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:37 am

    Thanks again dermy, you've been a great help!

    dermy
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    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:41 am

    Anytime~!

    compostguy101
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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  compostguy101 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:43 am

    Nice system dermy! BTW i am a registered member now. I may post some blog posts if thats okay.

    dermy
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    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:45 am

    compostguy101 wrote:Nice system dermy! BTW i am a registered member now. I may post some blog posts if thats okay.
    Welcome to the forum Compostguy101!

    Thanks its a nice system to use for right now.


    For sure you can post blog posts! I will p.m you something.

    compostguy101
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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  compostguy101 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:47 am

    I will acsept your offer dermy!

    dermy
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    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:48 am

    Okay compostguy!

    diabloz13

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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    How To Get Started?

    Post  diabloz13 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:22 pm

    How do i get started in the world of slugs?

    diabloz13

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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz13 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:22 pm

    What about the systems?



    diabloz13

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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz13 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:22 pm

    Food?

    diabloz13

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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz13 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:23 pm

    Substrates?

    diabloz13

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    Join date : 2012-06-18

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  diabloz13 on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:23 pm

    Anything else?

    dermy
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    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:25 pm

    diabloz13 wrote:How do i get started in the world of slugs?

    There is a lot of unexplored territory in slug composting, thus there are many ways to keep them that even i have yet to explore!

    BTW glad to see you want to start slugging!

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:27 pm

    diabloz13 wrote:What about the systems?



    Systems are the baseline of everything with keeping slugs for composting! There are the kritter keepers which are great for newbies, then there are rubbermaid tubs great for more experinced users with a larger colony of slugs and that need more space to compost. The thing with systems is that you need to have a great deal of surface area aka SA. SA is better then depth as it allows more microbial activities.

    dermy
    Admin

    Posts : 40
    Join date : 2012-06-15

    Re: Composting Experinces 2012 [Guests]

    Post  dermy on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:28 pm

    diabloz13 wrote:Food?

    Good Food:
    Leaves
    Green veggies
    Other veggies
    Friuts
    Some forms of other food scraps

    Things to avoid:
    Citrus
    Slimey items
    Gross items
    Manures[unless you plan to have worms and such included in the bin]
    Meats
    Dairy
    Common sense just like anything else that deals with composting.

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