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large scale, talking millions, production for fish farm

looking for any guidance/help/local assistance for starting a HUGE bug farm in SE Wis 53140

I will have 100's of thousands of hungry fish this summer and will need millions of bugs to feed them

looking for a cheaper/better solution that feeding commercial pellets

any surplus can go to human markets in Chicago and Milwaukee

advice on growing/feeding/costs/environment would be greatly appreciated

if you live near the WI/IL border at I94, you will be within miles of my operation... wanna help, let me know... wanna visit, don't have anything to show

regards, geno


  • Hi genoc, - You probably have seen research on feeding insects to farmed fish. My read is they are not suitable as the only feed - for various reasons.

    What kind of fish are you trying to grow? Presumably you are looking to alter their nutrition during different growth stages.

    Also, will you have the capability or access to determine your very own reared insect's actual composition? What you feed any bug & what kind of bug it is will affect it's composition; then too, the bugs age &/or phase (ex: larval/pupal/adult).

    In Forum thread "Data Resources" there are assorted composition tables you may use as guidelines, but bear in mind that what you end up producing may not exactly match up. Have you identified a limiting amino acid for the type of fish involved during any range of it's development?

    Fat content in fish feed is another factor; then too you may have some specific "fats" (ex: carbon chain length). Do you have established ranges for acceptable fat content for your kind of fish at any growth stage?

    It sounds like your scale means you are not thinking of processing the bugs in a regular kitchen, nor just casually rearing them in a spare room. If you are to rely on continuos production then the bug's feed stock should have it's own depository & before brought into the insect habitant feed should be sanitized (avoids introducing pathogen to colony).

    Likewise, when cull insects have a dedicated repository where they are processed for end use by suitable equipment. My surmise is that you will eventually work them into a formulated feed & find that pelletizing specific blends is the most practical way of dealing with variables (ex: age/population/waste).

    You do not have to build to the specifications of a "clean room", but in strategic places you will do well to have ways of preventing cross contamination. Workers should preventatively at a minimum wear gloves during handling & depending on exposure sometimes a fabric face mask against particulates.

    If we consider protein as the most expensive ingredient if fish feed formulas then you need to feed bugs in a way that does not make the bug grown protein involve expensive ingredients. What adds expense to food is transportation, so unless your fish farm adjoins freight railroad tracks it makes sense to rear insects that thrive on local feedstock.

    So, what is grown in your parts (plant &/or animal)? Is there any discernible (consistantly same allows standardization of your bug's composition) food waste stream for the taking?

  • Hi Genoc,

    I'm also in WI (53223) and have contemplated cricket farming. Send me a message if you want to chat further. I'd be interested in hearing more about your plans and how far along they are.


  • Outstanding info Gringojay. Love all of your insights in multiple threads. WIBrewer, did you happen to get anything going with the cricket farming? Would love to hear from you.

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