Maggots in my compost, NOT black soldier fly.

Asked May 15, 2019, 3:06 PM EDT

I'm currently composing in my back yard in a 4x4 wooden bin with 3 sides. In my compost I've used Alfalfa, produce gathered from local farmers markets, produce scraps from our kitchen, some straw, donkey manure (mostly dry but some small bits of fresh waste) and finely shredded news print. Initially I noticed decent temps of about 140 degrees F within the first 48 hours. After that the weather turned and was cold and rainy. After the weather passed the compost cooled off and never reheated. I turned my bin and noticed lots of small white maggots. They're about a half inch to 3/4 of an inch long, fast moving. They are not like any soldier fly larvae I've seen online. I've also found small reddish brown pill like cocoons in large numbers as well. I intend on adding more carbon to my bin to try and dry it out, but I'm concerned that I might have created a perfect bed for life that I'm NOT trying to grow. What is the best way to identify these specimens? Regardless of what they are, would it be best for me to leave them to eat and reproduce and allow them to break down my compost further? Thank you so much! Sorry, I don't currently have any photos of the white maggots.

Carter County Oklahoma

1 Response

Thank you for your question. Although you have a few trillion microbes that you can’t see in your compost bin, I suspect you don’t have anything to worry about with these insects. But I recommend you contact your county Extension office directly for assistance. Here is their webpage: Good luck!