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Black Soldier Fly (BSF) Forums |People & Places

Andei, Chico, CA

In early August we visited a farm in Chico (California).  Here we found an enthusiastic 7 year old boy (Andrei) looking forward to recycling food waste into feed for his father's chickens.  The pictures Andrei took were taken with a Cannon camera borrowed from a friend.  His Black Soldier Fly (BSF) nursery and incubators are now up and running processing about 10 lb of food waste each day and he is producing up to 1-2 lb BSF larvae per day.  Andrei now keeps 20 chickens very, very happy. 
  1. adult bsf ready to mate while resting on a wall showing off its characteristic white leg markings, large head and extended antennae
  2. image of hundreds of cream-colored bsf eggs piled together atop one another forming a characteristic egg clutch
  3. image of the outer dark brown-black segmented puparium of a bsfl having entered into its final pupa stage soon to emerge as an adult bsf
  4. 7 year old boy standing inside the bsf propagation unit he built out of mosquito netting and pvc pipe
Fetheya, Tigard, OR

Fetheya combined composting with BSF larvae to process food waste in her backyard.  Fetheya set out to test as a school project the practicality of using different types of backyard composting. One of these processes was based on BSF larvae using a composting bin purchased from Home Depot.

Larvae munched away on the food waste she added to the composting bin and turned the kitchen scraps she added to the bin into a dark mash. To stop prepupae exiting the bin from crawling around in plain sight, she and her Dad cleared the area around the bin and dug a small trench 2-3 inches deep by 6 inches wide and installed a wooden edge about 1 inch thick sticking up out above the ground 2-3 inches. She filled the enclosed trench with bark chips.

She observed that most of the prepupae burrowed down into the wood chips and remained there quite content as they turned into pupae. Very few larvae escaped into the yard, and those that did were fast preyed upon by birds, spiders, wasps, and nearby frogs. Fetheya also noticed wasps feeding on dead flies near the bin and in the yard. Clearly Nature recycles many times over given the chance!

Adult BSF hid in the trees and bushes and were calm and docile, apparently knowing full well not to make themselves present for other predators to snack on.  Fetheya won second place in her category (Plant Sciences) on submitting her science project to the Intel NW Science Exp ( nwse.org )! 
  1. exterior view of commercial food scrap composting bin adapted for processing food scrap with bsf
  2. Image of two bsfl crawling on the inside rim of a composting bin containing food scrap undergoing degradation by bsfl
  3. Image of decaying food scrap processed by BSFL in a composting bin. Upper layer - fresh scrap. Lower layer - humic mash
  4. Image of female bsf crawling on rocks at the base of a food scrap composting bin looking for a place to lay her eggs