Buying worms gives me the jitters. I really try, but it's something deep-rooted in me. My hands start shaking and I feel a little pukish. Apprehensively, I reached into the cooler at the store and was able to pick up the styrofoam cups. They felt oddly heavy as I carried them to the front of the store. I held them out in front of me, terrified the lids would pop off and a giant nightcrawler would emerge. I asked the store clerk to please open them and make sure they were alive. It became an intense moment, with the people behind me in line looking on as if we were going to witness a great spectacle. The clerk slowly lifted the lid off and everyone moved forward to see. A nightcrawler wriggled to the surface as if making his debut, and the clerk quickly replaced the lid, saying, "It moved, It's alive!" She did the same with the other and I was very thankful to have that part over and done with.

At home, I had a bin all prepared with dirt and layers of chicken feed. The soil was moist, but not too wet, though I'm sure the bottom layers were probably pretty wet from recent rains.

I dug two shallow holes and dumped the nightcrawlers in, covering them lightly with soil. When I checked back later, they had moved on to deeper layers, hopefully laying eggs as they went.

Internet searches on how to grow worms give two warnings: #1, they have a voracious appetite, and #2, they reproduce prolifically.

If you have animals that eat worms, I don't think you'll have a problem with having too many worms. For example, poultry goes crazy over wriggling worms.

Feeding nightcrawlers is pretty simple. I used chicken feed, but most people just put leaves, grass, decomposing yard waste, and compost. This is where some people say it's bad because they can be hogs when it comes to eating all that leaf litter. Other animals like and use those fall leaves, too. So, just to be on the safe side, keep your nightcrawlers in a bin and that way you can have a place to dig them up next time you go fishing.

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