Tenebrio degradable plastic mulch

On January 8, the reporter saw in the feeding room of Tenebrio molitor in the Nanfan Hospital of Sanya that Tenebrio molitor had been drilling into the white plastic foam, and the dense white foam was eaten so that many hollow holes appeared, and the ordinary plastic film on the side was also From a firm texture to a soft cotton batt.

“It only takes 24 hours for Tenebrio molitor to degrade plastic.” Yang Xiaofeng, a researcher at Sanya Nanfan Institute, explained that 500 Tenebrio molitors can eat 1.8 grams of plastic in 30 days. Half of the plastic eaten is converted into carbon dioxide, and the other half is converted into carbon dioxide. Biodegradable granules similar to rabbit feces are used as fertilizer. “Nearly 500 catties of fertilizer have been produced in the past 7 months of breeding Tenebrio molitor.”

Tenebrio molitor, also known as mealworm, likes yin and eats widely. ”The Tenebrio molitor can devour organic waste from industry and agriculture, convert it into organic fertilizer, and enhance the fertility of the land.” Yang Xiaofeng revealed that in May last year, the hospital introduced a batch of Tenebrio molitor and used its ability of trans-abdominal transformation to transform various Vegetable tail vegetables and melon and fruit waste are converted into insect protein, and their manure is used as organic fertilizer for hydroponic vegetable cultivation.

However, Yang Xiaofeng discovered another “function” in the process of raising the Tenebrio molitor, which was originally used to treat tail vegetables. “This kind of insect actually ate through the plastic breeding box!”

In Hainan’s agricultural production, plastic mulch has always been an important tool, and its non-naturally degradable properties have also led to the problem of land pollution. After discovering that Tenebrio molitor can eat plastic, Yang Xiaofeng immediately thought of applying it to the degradation of plastic mulch.

However, in practice, Yang Xiaofeng found that Tenebrio molitor could not survive in the sun, so the plan to directly use Tenebrio molitor to degrade the mulch film remaining in the land “aborted”.

“After research, we found that Tenebrio molitor can degrade polystyrene mainly because of Enterobacter aeruginosa and Bacillus in Tenebrio molitor’s gut.” Yang Xiaofeng said that in the future, he plans to extract these two fungi from Tenebrio molitor to apply to land mulch And the degradation of plastics in life, “but it still takes a long time to study, once the research is put into practice, the little mealworms will become ‘golden bumps’ in the farmland.”

Post time: Jun-13-2022