Inhabitants


Compost bin inhabitants


The vermi-compost is a specific ecosystem favorable for many detrivores, beside the worms. Some are necessary or beneficial to composting, such as Acarids and Mold. Others are harmful or just useless. All are annoying when proliferating.
Here are the appropriate response to each parasite :
Harm-fulness
Microorganism
Problem
Solution


Very low



Mold Filaments Overpopulation

Compost is too Wet
· add dry material
· stop or remove wet food
· remove mold

White or Brown Acarids Overpopulation

Low

Collembola Overpopulation

Woodlouse Overpopulation
Too many wood
· remove wood
· add dry food
Ants Presence
Compost too dry
Presence of bread
· pour water
· add wet food
· remove bread
Medium
Fruit Fly Presence
Compost wet
Presence of potatoes
· 4 weeks of dry material diet
· Remove fruit
· Fruit Fly “Traps”
Fungus Gnat Presence
Compost wet
Presence of potatoes
· 4 weeks of dry material diet
· Remove potatoes






Beneficial detrivores benefits:
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:mod_article499941_2.jpg

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:42765773.jpg
Mold. Molds are like bacteria, microorganisms that predigest waste. It is common to see them appear, especially at the start, mold form, in general, white filaments. They do not affect the correct functioning of the vermi-compost and disappear after a few days. Their appearance is often the source of a boost at the start of the vermi-compost.



White and brown Acarids. They measure less than 2mm. They are necessary but must not proliferate. They thrive when food is too abundant or very wet compost.


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:collembole1zv4.jpg
Harmless detrivores :


Collembola. Near visually white Acarid, can jump. Proliferate when the bin is too wet.

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ile:Meat eater ant feeding on honey02.jpg

Ants. Ants may come in the bin when the compost is too dry. They are also attracted by the bread or pasta.



http://www.bostongardener.net/Images/BadBugs/FungusGnat.jpg
http://www.bostongardener.net/Images/BadBugs/FungusGnat.jpg
Harmful detrivores:

Fungus Gnat. Tiny insects with wings that can be found in association with a rich and moist soil. Their larvae feed on decaying organic matter and fine roots of young plants they may damage. Their favorite food is potato peel.

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:common-fruit-fly1.jpg

Fruit Fly. It is distinguished by its brown body, one to two millimeters. They are attracted by fruits, where they lay their eggs and their larvae develop.


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:woodlouse.jpg
Woodlouse. Feeding on plants and dead wood. In humid environments, they may attack living plants when exceptionally fragile.

Avoid, get rid or simply reduce parasites population, several possible techniques:
1. Carbon and dryness cure: give only dry and rich in carbon material, e.g. cardboard, paper, etc., and maintain a low moist level, for at least 4 weeks.
2. Preventing infestation: you can freeze and defrost food before giving it to the worms, which kill larvae in fruits and vegetables. Keep tightly closed the bin can also restrict access to adult parasites.
3. Avoid food and conditions that attract parasites: Avoid the potato to fight against gnats, fruit against the fruit fly, humidity with Collombola, Acarids and Molds. Avoid bread and dry compost for ants.
4. Traps and tricks Controls: You can make traps for fruit flies, with vinegar or juice.
5. Physical Control: Eliminate physically parasites and infested food.
6. Biological control: Find the natural predators of pests and place it in the bin. For example, the nematode is an enemy of the Fungus Gnat larvae.
7. Random mix: Place in the bin of fresh soil and materials that can include natural predators of parasites.
8. Patience: The contents of the bin and the populations of different organisms may also self-balance themselves after a while.