EDIT: For a more current list of reference materials about black soldier flies and larvae please visit our forum topic – Knowledge base

Here are some random links on the subject of black soldier flies and larvae. I would appreciate it if you would contact me if you notice a nonfunctional link. Thanks.

BioSystems Design -Compiled Research On Best Cultivation Practices – Great statistical data

BioSystems Design LLC. is dedicated to the transformation of what was previously considered waste into valuable products. Our institutional knowledge and designs are based on nature, as nature is the premier designer of BioSystems that use waste as production inputs.

A Proposal for the Elimination of Landfill in Vietnam – by Dr. Paul Olivier

But more than half of the weight reporting to landfill in Vietnam consists of food waste, a waste that up until now offers no economic benefit to scavengers. But all of this is set to change with the development and manufacture in Vietnam of a process and apparatus that transforms food waste into high-value feed products.



Previously reported work has shown that black soldier flies (Hermetia illuscens) are effective in reducing the mass as well as the nutrient and moisture content of hen manure. Preliminary results from using the black soldier fly to digest swine manure solids suggested that the system could be even more effective for swine manure. A small scale system for digesting swine manure solids, harvested by a belt beneath a slatted floor holding pigs, was installed and tested. Manure mass was reduced 56% while the concentrations of most elements and nutrients were reduced 40 to 55 %. Nutrient analyses and feeding studies indicate that dried black soldier fly prepupae grown on swine manure solids have value as a feedstuff, particularly for aquaculture. In a pot study, plant growth was increased when the digested manure residue was added to either a clay soil or clean sand.

Fly larvae, earthworms and duckweed as feeds for frogs in an integrated farming system

Phounvisouk Latsamy and T R Preston

According to Akasay (1994), potential sources of “natural” feeds that could be cultivated as feed for frogs are fly larvae, earthworms, termites, duckweeds and snails. Earthworms are appropriate elements in systems of recycling live stock manure (Bay, 2002), as they are more suitable than biodigesters when the manure is derived from rabbits and goats (Preston and Rodríguez, No date). Earthworms are high in protein and would thus appear to be suitable components in a feeding system for frogs.

Fly larvae have been recommended as feed for frogs by Sheppard (No date), as they are rich in both fat and protein (Khan et al 1999).

The objectives of the study were to compare the growth of frogs fed with fly larvae or earth worms as part of an integrated farming system. The hypothesis was that frogs can grow at acceptable rates when their diet is composed primarily of earthworms or fly larvae.

Beneficials in the Garden – Candice Hawkinson

About 120,000 different species of flies annoy folks around the world. They are found everywhere including the Antarctica. Sometimes it is hard to remember that flies are an integral part of our ecosystems.

Flies can be beneficial and necessary, aiding in controlling other insect pests, acting as pollinators, recyclers and scavengers, and they are also a part of the food chain. Remember only bees (and a few wasps) pollinate more plants than flies.

The multi-beneficial black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) is probably the best-known member of the Stratiomyidae family in the Diptera order. Diptera is taken from the Greek “di,” which means two, and “ptera” meaning wings, as most flies only have two wings.



Tingle et al. (1975) described the black soldier fly mating behavior. Males were attracted to ”calling” females in the same ”resting” area and mating occurred on the ground with the male and female facing opposite directions. However, Copello (1926) noted that mating occurred during flight. We provide a description of the mating, which differs from that provided by Tingle et al. (1975), and lekking behaviors of the black soldier fly, which may be important to maintaining this natural waste management system.

Research Summary: Black Soldier Fly Prepupae – A Compelling Alternative to Fish Meal and Fish Oil

G.L. Newton, D.C. Sheppard, and G.J. Burtle, University of Georgia

Most experimental Hermetia prepupae production has been done with manure as a feedstock, but they have also been produced on grain based diets and other organic products such as waste food including meats and dairy products unacceptable for vermiculture. The addition of fish offal to manure has been shown to increase the omega-3 fatty acid content of prepupae to approximately 3% (St-Hilaire et al. 2007b).

Large-scale Feed Production from Animal Manures with a Non-Pest Native Fly

By D. C. Sheppard, Ph.D.

Little is known about adult biology. The only adults commonly seen are newly emerged adults and ovipositing females. Eggs are laid in batches of about 500 in dry cracks or crevices above the chosen larval media Other adults apparently live in a wild environment and their habits are largely unknown. They do not try to enter houses and are usually not a problem. In 15 years of investigating this insect, I can remember only one complaint about adults entering a residence.

Update: Since we now have a discussion forum we will be disabling comments here on the blog. Anyone can read the forum, but to join in on the conversation you will need to register. This is an easy and painless process, and it’s necessary to keep spammers from, well, spamming up the place. :)

The forum can be accessed here (forum) and you will see a link for registration in the upper left corner of the forum. The legal language on the registration form is very basic and is what came with the forum software. In short, we won’t share your information, and please don’t be vulgar or break the law. 😉

4 thoughts on “BSF reference page

  • August 24, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    Have you heard of a Chinese Earth Lamp? This lamp is supposed to be a cheap source of heat and light that the Chinese have designed to raise BSF in teh winter.

    • August 24, 2010 at 7:11 pm

      Hi Reece,

      No, I haven’t heard of that, in fact, I have never heard anything about BSF in China. I would love to learn about it though.

  • September 11, 2012 at 8:13 am

    hi Jerry

    I am very interested in the proposed design here. in particular i am interested in the implementation of the system in Vietnam. Would you please be able to get back to me via e-mail with any information regarding the breeding of the BSF in vietnam and any protocol you had to undergo in terms of permits required or if there were any laws that would prohibit you to breed or even import the flies to vietnam. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance

    • September 11, 2012 at 10:06 am

      Hi Mark,

      You may be thinking of Dr. Paul Olivier who developed the first BioPod. I haven’t stayed in touch with him but you should be able to find him easily enough on the internet. Good luck.

Comments are closed.