Where you can buy red worms in New York

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes



If you live in New York State and want to start composting with worms, you’re in luck! There are several different worm farmers across the state where you can buy your worms and start quickly. If you don’t want to read the rest of the article, and just want some worms, you can visit our friends over at Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm (clicking this link helps support the website, thanks in advance!).

Let’s jump into a few locations in the state of New York where you can find or buy worms for vermicomposting.

Where To Buy Worms In New York

Dig In The Dirt (The Free Method)

New York is a great state to use the free method. With wooded areas all around the state and even central parks in the city, you can find worms for free. Here a strategy to make it easy as possible.

First, wait for an all-day soaking rain. Worms breathe through their skin. A soaking rain makes it nearly impossible for them to breathe in the soil, so they must wiggle to the surface. You will find worms on the sidewalk, or in the leaf litter in your local outdoor area.

This is one of my favorite methods because

  1. You use native worms (releasable back in nature)
  2. Harms fewer worms in the process
  3. It’s free
  4. Fun and kid-friendly
  5. Includes beneficial bacteria to help your worms get established

A side benefit of this method is the small amounts of dirt you collect along with the worms. Soil from the outdoors contains beneficial bacteria and microbes. These additional soil decomposers help worms break down food faster and more efficiently.

buy compost worms in buffalo New york
New York has a wide variety of great lakes, mountains, forests, and streams

Contact Fishing And Tackle Stores

If you don’t want to dig in the dirt, but want to buy locally, check the bait and tackle fishing shop. Many people overlook these shops because they sell worms to feed fish. Little do they realize, they also sell different types of worms beyond nightcrawlers.

I would advise you to first call ahead to see what worms they have for sale. You are specifically looking for Eisenia fetida. The other names for this worm are red worms, red wigglers, compost worms, manure worms, or tiger worms. If they have none of these worms, but they do have blue worms- don’t fear. These worms are also great for composting.

More experienced vermicomposters may want to try to use earthworms. However, earthworms do not like to live near each other and live deep in the soil. Often it would be best if you had a unique setup to compost with earthworms correctly.

If you call ahead and confirm the worms they carry, just to show up to see blue and red worms mixed together, it’s okay. Both types of worms live together peacefully and are great at eating a lot of food for their body size. Both types of worms also enjoy living in colonies, which makes them perfect for indoor composting.

Check Farm And Garden Supply Businesses

Finally, if you don’t have a local bait shop and don’t want to get dirty; visit your local farm and garden store. More and more farm and garden stores are jumping on the bandwagon and sell worms now.

The last place you may find worms is at the local garden supply store. As people’s consciousness grows about climate change, more people look for ways to reduce food waste, paper waste, and use natural fertilizers that complement the environment.

Red worms are an excellent way for people to increase soil biodiversity. Some farmers release them directly into their soil; others use them to vermicompost and create castings for compost tea. It also helps that more people look for ways to reduce food waste, paper waste and use natural fertilizers that complement the environment.

Local Online Sellers

Social Media Marketplaces

If you don’t have any of these resources in or near your town, you could look online. First, let’s talk about social media marketplaces.

Social media platforms like Facebook have marketplaces and local digital yard sale and garage sale pages. You can either wait for someone to post that they are selling worms. You could also just post how many worms you’re looking to purchase, and how much you’re willing to pay.

I bet within an hour or two you will have a few messages from people who also vermicompost. They will help you out and make a little extra money from worm composting.



It was through a Facebook Marketplace that I started vermicomposting. I asked if anyone had some worms for sale or trade. Within an hour, I contacted a woman who said I could have a free bucket of worms as long as I supplied the bucket.

It was lovely to talk to her about composting and her indoor and outdoor composting journey.

Share the joy of composting and meet someone in your community—a win-win.

Buy Worms In NY On Craigslist, eBay, and Etsy Sellers

You can also check websites like Craigslist to get started. This is a great way to support a local seller. Here are some quick links to buy worms in New York on Craigslist.

Another online resource that can help you buy compost worms in New York is eBay or Etsy. You can filter the results by zip code. Start with the closest distance option. If there are no results, expand to the next closest option until you find a seller. Often people can find a seller within 25 miles of their home.

Composting worms Ebay
Add your zip code to find sellers near you

Click here to check eBay

Click here to check Etsy

Worm Stores In New York

Thankfully, if you want to purchase worms from a worm breeder in New York, you have some options. Below I’ve listed a few different places you can find worms. These also include some home and garden stores that sell worms as well. If you know a brick-and-mortar business where you can buy worms, please share their information below!

buy compost worms in the adirondacks or catskill mountains
New York is home to two different locations that currently sell compost worms.

Here are a few stores that you can check out.


Add a website

If you know of other websites to directly buy red worms in New York, please share them below. Our goal is to make it easier for vermicomposters to get started.