What is also very interesting about the buffalo worm is that it has a shorter life cycle than Tenebrio molitor, the yellow mealworm. The buffalo worm can finish its life cycle in one month under optimal conditions while the yellow mealworm needs over two months to become an adult. Female beetles of the buffalo worm can lay between 200 to 400 eggs. In one source from the literature, it is written that the female beetles of the buffalo worm can lay up to 2000 eggs, it is an extremely large amount of eggs to lay for such a small beetle.
The optimum temperature for the yellow mealworm is between 25-27 °C. In another research paper, it states that the optimum temperature for growth is 31 °C for both species. Findings in the literature vary but it seems that the buffalo worm prefers the environment to be a little bit warmer. The optimum relative humidity is 70% for both species, but this value varies in scientific papers. Unlike the yellow mealworm, (T. molitor), larvae of the buffalo mealworm (A. diaperinus) are more susceptible when it comes to pupation. Either they need more substrate in vertical direction or some cardboard pieces which they can use for pupation. Depending on the amount of space given, only a certain amount will pupate.
In comparison to the yellow mealworm, (T. molitor), buffalo worm (A. diaperinus) has a softer skin (exoskeleton) and the taste of the yellow mealworm (T. molitor) is a bit spicy, while the buffalo worm (A. diaperinus) tastes a little bit nutty. Both species are used as food and feed, but the use of feed is more predominant.
Overall, the buffalo worm is slightly more susceptible in pupation and the breeding is more difficult than the yellow mealworm. Therefore, we and many people at home have chosen the yellow mealworm for rearing rather than the buffalo worm.
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