How to Breed Silkworms: Life Cycle and Steps - Insectville (2023)

Silkworms are one of the best feeds for pets like reptiles. However, raising silkworms is not easy due to their delicacy. It's even harder when you're creating them for silk. The good news is that you can breed these worms at home and enjoy their benefits as detailed in the following paragraphs.

Silkworms have four life stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult. You reproduce them by buying the eggs from which silkworms hatch. Weaving silk, they form a chrysalis, after which they turn into adult moths. Moths mate with their tails joined, then the females lay eggs to start the cycle over.

How to Breed Silkworms: Life Cycle and Steps - Insectville (1)

How to breed silkworms

You need to understand each stage of silkworm development to know what to do to get the best results. Like other insects, they have 4 main life stages namely egg, larva, pupa and adult.

Unlike other insects where you start breeding with the older stages (larvae and adults), you can breed the silkworm with the eggs. You will need toilet paper rolls (for cocoons), petri dishes, mulberry leaves, silkworm feed (food), plastic containers and an incubator.

Breeding habitat of the silkworm

You need to provide suitable habitat for silkworms at different life stages to facilitate their growth. They are delicate insects that need constant moisture, but you have to be careful not to give too much lest their habitat develop mold and germs.

You should create a good habitat for silkworms as follows:

  • Place a roll of toilet paper in the plastic container for the worm cocoon.
  • Provide food in the habitat as silkworms are always feeding. This can be mulberry leaves or commercial silkworm feed.
  • keep thatSilk bug habitat between 78 and 88 degrees F.
  • Keep the container nearly airtight to prevent moisture from escaping. Leave enough room for air to circulate so the silkworms don't suffocate.

These conditions ensure that all stages of the worm have enough to eat and are not too cold or too hot. This allows them to grow into more adult stages, the most important of which is the worm.

Life cycle of the silkworm

Silkworms have 4 main life cycle stages namely egg, larva, pupa and adult. In these steps you can buy eggs or worms of your choice. You can also decide which type of silkworm to breed as different silkworms produce different types of silk in terms of color and other characteristics.

How to Breed Silkworms: Life Cycle and Steps - Insectville (2)

The life cycle of a silkworm is as follows:

Fase do bicho-da-sedaexpenditure of time
Ovo10-25 diam
Larva (silkworm)20-33 diam
Puppet10-14 diam
butterfly5-10 dia
whole life cycle6-8 weeks

1. Silkworm eggs

You can buy silkworm eggs at a pet store for your home. When laid, silkworm eggs are lemon yellow in color. Over time, they turn black, light brown, grey-purple or grey-green. Unfertilized eggs turn white after three days.

When the eggs change color (from lemon yellow), place them in a ziplock bag, place in the refrigerator at about 50°F (10°C) for 2 to 3 weeks, then remove. Put about 200 eggs in a petri dish where they wanthatch in 7 to 20 days.

Keep the eggs inTemperatures from 78-88°F, preferably in an incubator. Although eggs can hatch at room temperature, it takes longer at this temperature.

Keep the eggs moist by placing a damp paper towel near, but not on, the Petri dishes. When the eggs turn light blue/grey, you know they're about to hatch. Eggs turning blue could be a sign of mishandling. However, they can still hatch.

2. Silkworms (larva)

When the eggs are changing color and ready to hatch, put some silkworm food in the fridge to prepare for the young silkworms. As soon as you notice tiny worms in the petri dish, place the silkworm food in the dish to get the worms to start feeding. Do not touch untouched eggs.

Feed Bugs-da-Silk

To increase their survival rates, keep the silkworms in the incubator at a constant temperature of 24-30°C for 8-12 days, and then place them in a larger plastic container.

Feed the worms constantly in this new container. Feed the silkworms silkworm chow or mulberry leaves (soft for young and mature for older worms).

If you feed them mulberry leaves, clean them by holding them under the faucet and shaking them dry. A little moisture doesn't hurt either. You can also sanitize the sheets by adding 44 mL (3 tablespoons) of bleach and a small amount (one drop) of dish soap to a gallon (3.8 L) of water.

After soaking the leaves in the mixture for 3 minutes, rinse well, dry and give to the worms.

Give the silkworms enough food every day as they are always eating. A mulberry leaf a day is a good start. After a while, increase the feed as the worms mature.

You can mix mulberry leaves and silkworm feed. If you feed them to your pets, you can also charge them as needed. Adult silkworms are great tooFood for bearded dragonsand other pet reptiles.

Habitat do bicho-da-seda

In his house asmature silkworms, take care ofTemperatures from 20-27°C (68-81°F). They also love humid conditions, although you need to be careful not to create conditions for fungus to grow. Place damp paper towels in your habit to help moisturize.

If possible, give silkworms a few hours of indirect sunlight during the day. Too much sunlight will kill the worms, while 1 or 2 hours of indirect sunlight will help them grow stronger and healthier. Silkworms, given light during the day and darkness at night, feed more and grow faster. However, they can survive the darkness well.

Clean your living space every other dayfor removing old food, faeces and dander to prevent mold and other germs. Simplyscrub your living space with a soft brush without water or soapcan kill the worms. Molting occurs when silkworms hold their heads up and stand still for a day, followed by molting.

3. Silkworm cocoon (pupa)

After your silkworms haveChanged four times, they feed 6 to 7 days andThen start making a cocoon. If you notice their bodies becoming a little translucent, they have stopped eating and continue to raise their heads; They are ready to weave their silk cocoons.

Encourage them by adding toilet paper rolls to their living space. You can also use newspaper rolled into circles for best results. Don't worry about those who have already started weaving their silk cocoons, as you can harm them.

After the silk has been spun for 2 to 3 days, the worm will pupate for another 2 to 3 days.The silkworm pupa takes 8 to 14 days to develop into an adult moth.Don't disturb the pods during this time, as you could kill them.

4. Bug-da-silk (Erwachsener)

After 8 to 14 days of pupation, the pupa develops into an adult silkworm moth. Male moths are smaller than females and both genera of moths do not feed. They mate immediately with tail tips joined for about a day. Adult moths live 3 to 10 days and cannot fly. These moths are very similarwax butterflies.

Most silkworms reproduce once a year, with females laying around 200 to 500 eggs. However, if the ones you buy have a label like Bivoltine, Polyvoltine, or a number of 100 or higher, it means they can be bred for multiple generations per year. Silkworm breeding is not always perfect because, like other worms, it is highly affected by light and heatSuperverme.


University of Oregon.lady silkworm.

Academy.Evaluation of the introduced native and bivoltine silky bivoltine breeds along with the identification of promising heterotics and hybrids.

Academy.bicho da seda.

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