Effect of inoculation weights on the growth of black soldier fly larvae (Hermatia Illucens)
Kabuye, Andrew Benjamin
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A number of factors affect the growth and development of Black Soldier Fly Larvae and among the abandoned factors is the larvae density. The larvae density is pre-determined by the eggs and larvae inoculated in the given substrates. This study therefore aimed at determining the appropriate egg and six day old larvae (DOL) hatchings inoculation level that gives an optimal BSFL productivity with different substrates that included brewery waste, poultry manure and Irish potato waste. Two experiments were carried out where in the first experiment 2.5g and 5g egg inoculation levels were used and 31.2g of 6DOL inoculated in substrates. The second experiment involved inoculating 2.5g of eggs while 20.80g, 26.00g and 31.20g of 6DOL inoculation was used. A Completely Randomized Design (CRD) was used with three replicates per treatment. Data was collected on the metamorphic parameters of length, girth and weight and BSFL yield, Compost yield and the Waste Reduction Index (WRI) and Bio-Conversion Rate (%R) calculated. Egg inoculation level significantly (P<0.05) affected growth of larvae in brewery waste but not in Irish potato waste and poultry waste. The 2.5g inoculation level promoted significantly (P<0.05) faster growth in terms of higher length and girth as compared to 5g inoculation level in brewery waste. Both egg inoculation and 6DOL inoculation level affected the yield of BSF at the period of harvest. The egg inoculation level of 2.5g having significantly (P<0.05) higher BSF yield compared to 5g. For the 6DOL inoculation level, 31.2g inoculation level had significantly (P<0.05) higher BSF yield in brewery waste and Irish potato waste substrates as compared to 20.8g and 26.0g inoculation levels. Compost yield was significantly (P<0.05) higher in only poultry waste at 20.8g 6DOL inoculation and not in other substrates. The waste reduction index and bio-conversion rate did not differ with inoculation level among the different substrates. Therefore from the study it is recommended that 2.5g egg inoculum and 31.20g of 6DOL be used during the production process of BSF larvae.