May 21, 2023 - 09:06 PM
You have found the larvae of a cleaner crew called "Buffalo Beetles" (Alphitobius diaperinus).
We are chemical-free and use them as a biological method of keeping our bins free of detritus, decaying vegetation, and dead insects. They keep our colonies thriving by preventing bacterial or fungal contamination that might otherwise occur.
They are also widely used in the reptile industry as many people who breed insects for their use buy from us in the thousands to help keep colonies free of dead insects.
We are incredibly proud not to use chemicals to raise our feeders (many people choose to eat them!). So we have two employees whose sole job is to manually remove these beetles and larvae from our bins sorted for shipment using a wet/dry vacuum with a tiny hose attached. Because we are chemical-free, we get the occasional order with some larvae or beetles.
They are entirely harmless; many animals will enjoy eating the beetle's larvae just as much as they enjoy the feeder insects. If you are concerned, they are easy to identify and pick out. They are considered harmless and, interestingly enough, are used in museums and taxidermists across the country to clean skeletons.
If you or your animals oppose them, you can let us know when you order to double-check that all Buffalo larvae are handpicked before packaging, and we will be pleased to oblige.
Thank you so much; sorry for the little stowaways!
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