Bioreactor rearing applies minilarvae (newly hatched larvae cultivated for 2 to 5 days, average weight 7 mg) as starting material. One cubic meter of reactor space requires about two million larvae. During the development of the bioreactor we soon realized that very efficient systems were needed also for breeding, egg production, pre-cultivation of neonates and storage of larval material. We have developed several methods and tools that make mass production of BSF larvae very easy, affordable and efficient.
The art of breeding: how to maximize fertility, egg production and viability
These is a lot of confusing and controversial information available about the egg-laying ability of female BSF. Values vary between 200 and 1000 eggs, nowadays 500 eggs per female is most commonly presented. Some earlier publications claim that adult flies don’t drink or eat. This is not true. Many specialists have realized that if nutrients (liquid feed) are provided, females can maintain their egg-laying capacity for a long time (more than week), allowing them to produce roughly 150 eggs per day, or up to 1000 eggs during in their lifetime. Entoprot has developed its own “feed nectar”, which contains all the required nutrients. High egg production is not enough in itself, because the amount of non-fertile eggs can be high if the biological prerequisites for successful reproduction (mating) are not known. Additionally suboptimal storage and transport conditions can kill the eggs. Damp conditions can suffocate eggs and promote the growth of spoilage microbes that kill the eggs. Companies which sell BSF eggs are aware of these challenges and usually ship twice the quantity ordered. Losses up to 50% are not uncommon. Entoprot offers solutions to these challenges.
A typical system for egg production is a simple cage in which prepupae (pupae ready to eclose) are placed and allowed to develop to adult flies, males and females. These are allowed to mate, after which the gravid females will lay the eggs. This sounds very simple and straightforward, but is far from it. Flies do not take orders from company staff and are sometimes reluctant to mate or lay eggs. When they lay eggs they may choose to do so in the wrong places.
Entoprot has taken these problems to account and developed several products that can make your work more efficient.