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I built my first aquaponics system in Palm Harbor, FL several years ago.  I did about six months worth of research and design before I started my build.  The effort paid off.  I mainly use solid grow media. Most of which is clay pellets. Some of which is a combination of clay pellets, shell, and river pebbles.  I've added red worms into my designs in order to keep my system clean and provide worm castings tea.  I ordered my red worms online and had them delivered to my home. I've never had to buy more worms since they have multiplied to the extent that I have them in abundance for new grow bed builds.  I've read numerous posts, articles, and books in which the authors have stated that they build their systems w/out adding in red worms.  They've stated that the grow beds will populate themselves with red worms.  My question is how do these red worms work their way into their systems w/out being added?  I imagine most systems like mine are up on stands and most tanks do not appear that they would provide much of a surface for a worm to climb.  This has always been a mystery to me.  Any input would be greatly appreciated.



Dan Jerome - Palm harbor, Florida

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Hi Dan,

I can confirm, through personal experience and plenty of supporting anecdotal evidence, that composting worms will populate growbeds (and the media in biological filters) of their own accord.  I have also reported on this phenomenon over the years.

Composting worms will migrate.  Indeed, this is such a concern to growers that, in somce commercial facilities, night lights will be used to discourage the practice.  On rainy nights (virtually 100% humidity), I have seen thousands of worms massed on the vertical surfaces of my worm beds.   Worms have no problem climbing anything once it's damp.



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