YOUNG AGE SILKWORM (CHAWKI) REARING
Selection of leaves
- From brushing to the end of second age, the larvae are fed with tender leaves.
- The leaves are selected from the largest glossy leaf, 3rd or 4th from the top.
- The next 6 to 8 leaves are used to rear the young age worms upto II moult.
- The size of the chopped leaf is around 0.5 to 1.0 sq.cm. during 2nd age.
- Illustrate with the help of a figure, the selection of leaves from a fully grown branch.
- Silkworm grows best when fed with succulent leaves which are rich in nutrients and moisture.
- The leaves, if not preserved properly, dry up and become unsuitable for feeding.
- The harvested leaves must be preserved in fresh condition in a wet gunny cloth.
- If the climate is too hot and dry, the leaves are preserved in a leaf chamber which is lined with gunny cloth.
- The cloth is kept wet by spraying water at frequent intervals.
- It is the process of removing the silkworm excreta and left over leaves in the rearing bed
- In the first age, one cleaning is given just a day before the worms settle for moulting.
- In the second age, two cleanings are given, one after resuming feeding and the other before second moult.
- A net with mesh size of 0.5 x 0.5 cm is spread over the rearing bed and feeding is given.
- The worms crawl through the net and come to fresh leaves.
- The net along with the worms and leaves are transferred to another tray.
- The left over leaves and litter are discarded.
- At the time of moulting, care should be taken not to disturb the worms.
- Correct detection of moult and stopping or resuming feeds are very important for uniform growth of silkworms.
- During moult, the rearing bed should be kept thin and dry by applying lime @ 30 – 50 g/m2 and should have proper aeration.