As much as I love making compost and it happened that am composting in a bin, last time I noticed some weird White worms in my composting bin, I thought my compost just went wrong and it isn’t working but after taking the time to learn about them I discovered that they are just Maggots and they are not that bad so here’s an article to take you throughout my discoveries.
What you should know about Maggots in your compost ?
Maggots in compost are actually beneficial in most times they eat your scrapes to create compost for you but, if it happens that you are already putting red worms (red wigglers) to do the job, in this case you’re not providing the right environment for them to perform, it’s also a sign for you that your compost has achieved a high level of moisture and you need to put more browns (carbon materials) to make a good ratio and you’ll notice them disappear gradually
If you want to know more about them here’s a video to explain everything you need to know then we’ll go deeper in the article below :
Where does maggots originate from :
Maggots are fly larvae, usually of the common housefly and also the bluebottle. Flies are attracted to food and other rubbish to lay their eggs, later with the right worm temperature and environment the eggs transform into maggots and get nourished from the food waste they happen to be in. so you are only going to have them if flies can get to your waste land for that you should limit the flies accessibility to your compost but it isn’t something obvious since you are doing compost outdoor most likely in a pile or a bin and so other than protected bins , you are going to get flies on your wastes and if you’ve ever gone crazy trying to swat flies in your kitchen, then you already know exactly what causes these maggots to show up in your compost.
you could prevent the eggs from hatching into maggots if you keep the ratio of the greens to browns at about 1 third (approximately 70% brown and 30% green) and not too much moisture this way you’re not providing them with the right environment to be in and they likely won’t come.
also if you are keeping your compost still and isn’t aerating it frequently you are much likely to have those maggots in it, they support living in a low oxygen environment more often
Are maggots going to cause any problem for my compost or my plants :
Like I said earlier maggots are not going to cause any problem for the compost itself except for some odor that they are going to create and it may cause a problem for people doing their compost near the house or even inside.
the maggots appear in an early phase of composting in the begging of the process and if you decide to keep them, they are going to transform into flies in the end of their development case to leave your compost, when the compost is ready you won’t find any sort of maggots in it because it isn’t the right environment for them to live in so your plants won’t even have to face them.
How to get rid of them
the good news is you can get rid of them easily , you have to put more carbon materials to your compost until you reduce the moisture of it , because it is one of the most definitive factors for them to appear.
to speed up the process you’ll also need to put some lime combined with eggshells in your compost pile to hight up the acidity but be careful of PH because it could go really high which might be a problem for your plants, from my experience I just put some pieces of used lime scraps because we use a lot of it and it did work, I heard that some people use 1 cup of lime per 25 cu ft. of compost and it also works perfectly.
Aerate your compost frequently buy turning your compost bin if you’re using one that has the turning functionality, move it and mix it with a Pitchfork or a Scoop Shovel or you can just move it from one location to another as a way to aerate, also you can be using an aerator that works perfectly as a way to achieve deep levels of the pile without moving it.
You can give them as food for your chickens and they will adore them it isn’t a way to totally finish them if you intend to do so but it’s a way to make the best use of them, some gardeners even produce them to feed their birds fishes and some other pets like lizards or sell them to pet stores as food.
how to avoid maggots from the beginning
You can avoid getting maggots but making sure that you are making your compost the right way using the right ratio to keep it clean and achieve the most satisfying results for that I advice you to take a look at my Composting Guide an all included article the takes you through all the necessary steps for a great result click here.