Why you should eat Kalangala Island’s worm like Palm tree beetles

Regarding uniqueness, lifestyle, resources and beauty, Kalangala owes its basic impetus to the vast reservoir and repertoire of its rich cultural heritage and traditions.

With the islander’s sense of pride you may need to taste the palm tree worms, edible beetles. The worms are equally called Sago worms in Nigeria and “amasiinya”, gotten from stems of decaying palm trees.

In Kalangala for instance, people who eat the particular worm have different ways of preparing it. It can be roasted, fried, boiled and even be eaten raw.

Before you begin to act like you want to puke on your phone, those who have tasted it before say it is awesome and there’s no way you will not want to plead for more. Robert Lugambiso, one of the people who sell them say without doubts, Palm tree worms or edible beetles taste better than fish and meat when they carefully prepared.

“It is our delicacy. For we guard it safely and work excessively hard to ensure that it’s eco system is not destroyed,” He says. To get the worm, people search old palm oil stems at a shoreline of the lake. They later cut them down, wait for a month or two for the stems to decompose, possess the worms and later, are picked.

Here is why Palm Tree worms (Beetles) are healthy and safe to eat.

The palm tree worms are gotten from decaying coconut trees and palm trees. They are rich in protein.

Before you begin to give people eating the beetles a disgusting look, palm tree worms are according to research, so nutritious. They are also said to be rich in nutrients. The edible beetles are already generating good income for people who are selling.

Kalangala beetles

Palm trees, the fact that they contain amino acids, ash, oil and energy. It has also been proven through research that eating the worms on regularly can sustain the capacity to increase the magnesium, iron, lipid, dietary fiber, zinc and carbohydrates.

What are they?

Kalangala Authorities say Masiinya were many in Bwendero and Mugoye forest reserves on Bugala Island but their reduced size thanks to deforestation has affected and threatens its extinct, said Lule.

The grubs are also a source of cooking oil, which is got from their fat. On the islands, each grub goes for Shs500. However, a plateful is $20 (Shs69,460 at current exchange rate) at one of the hotels in Kalangala.

On the international market, the beetles are bought at $8 (Shs27,784) each, according to Mwesige.

“The potential we have is that we are able to get the yields within a short period of time. This is an incentive we expect to exploit so as all those who can rear can earn good prices for their products,” he said.

The Huhu beetle, Prionoplus reticularis, is a member of the longhorn beetle family Cerambycidae. A common name for the beetle is haircutter because of the long legs and antenna covered with sharp hooks.

The beetles are most active at night and are attracted by the lights of the dwelling and only live for about two weeks. They do not feed. The whitish larvae are up to 70 mm long.

The beetle larvae are commonly known as huhu grubs. They hatch from eggs deposited under bark or in crevices in rotten wood. For two to three years, they live in cavities they have eaten into the wood, then begin a pupal stage that lasts 25 days.

They emerge as flying adult beetles. For the little grubs to thrive, the moisture content of the wood has to be at least 25 per cent.


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