Worms that gorge on trash a godsend

Worms that gorge on trash a godsend

The Gir breed of a bull was a major attraction at the fair.

The ongoing Krishi mela, organised by the University of Agricultural Sciences, is ready to unleash a whole new army to fight the mounting garbage menace in the city.

The mela, taking place at the Gandhi Krishi Vigyan Kendra (GKVK) campus on Ballari Road, has been attracting more crowds to witness the Black Soldier worms (Hermetia illucens) that feed on biowaste.

Bhadravathi-based farmer B H Shrikant, who is into organic composting using the Black Soldier worms, has been approached by BBMP officials, who are desperately looking for a solution to the solid waste issue. Shrikant told DH that the peptide present in the larvae destroys dreaded bacteria like Escherichia coli (E coli) and salmonella, besides converting organic biowaste into manure easily.

“If you just drop the eggs of these greyish-brown worms on a pile of biowaste, the just-hatched larvae feed on the waste,” explained Shrikant.

The rapidly multiplying worms turn into protein, gorging on the waste and leaving them as compost. They could be fed to chicken and pigs, while the smell-free compost could be manure.  

“The compost is also low in acidic content,” Shrikant said, claiming that the BBMP officials have asked him for a demo. The worms could feed on municipal waste, agro-industrial waste and other forms of biowaste.