Keith

Rotting leaves and wood

9 posts in this topic

I keep roaches as pets so I don't need to worry what they eat bothering something that would eat them.

A while back I gave my dubia and hissers pesticide free Rose leaves (not cleaned) and they devoured them! I noticed after a day or two they ignored the leaves remaining and vigorously ate their normal diet.

I heard of some roach keepers who fed dried leaves and bark, mainly from Oak and Birch Trees. The leaves and bark were baked for the safety of the reptiles that ate the roaches.

Being mine are pets, I collected the most rotten oak and birch leaves/bark I could find (still wet and soggy) from woods with no pesticides, and placed them right into my roach cage.

Both the hissers and dubia actually ran towards the leaves and started eating them in a frenzy and the dirt on the leaves, who thought they would rather eat leaves over yummy apples or oranges? They ate the bark too but leaves were favored.

My conclusion is in the wild they eat rotting bark and leaves, nothing in captivity can replace that, so that might be why roaches frequently die or are smaller than normal. If termites are related to roaches, and roach moms pass gut bacteria to babies, I'm assuming its to aid in wood and leaf digestion.

Afterwards the roaches seemed full of energy and days later ignored the leaves and wood and went back to eating normal food. I guess deprived of wood they don't digest human food well and become sluggish?

The hissers seemed to need the leaves and wood more, I even noticed the Hisser mites going near the wood and leaves! My hissers used to be thin and sluggish even after offering lots of food, but after eating the wood and leaves they perked up and readily ate food I offered and got fat quick.

We've been raising common pet roach species all wrong! Natural foods still are important.

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hi

I use rotting leaves and wod too, in most of my tanks. I'm quiet sure roaches develop better by eating this natural substract, so I mix pieces of leaves and wood, just like the substract for Scarabaeoidea larvae.

I always complete the feeding with apples and pond sticks, some species don't eat them at all, some others seem to prefer it to the leaves...

An other observation we made here, is that hissers - and probably other species - eat micro-fungi, mycellium and so on, contained in this substract. We dissacate some hissers to look at the genitalia and so on, every roaches has loads of fungi in his digestive tube!

Anyway, it seems to be what they look for... Fungi growing on dead leaves and rotting wood, on a wet substract... But since you use a wet place to breed them, never forget to get a good air circulation to avoid losses in the colony ;)

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hi

I use rotting leaves and wod too, in most of my tanks. I'm quiet sure roaches develop better by eating this natural substract, so I mix pieces of leaves and wood, just like the substract for Scarabaeoidea larvae.

I always complete the feeding with apples and pond sticks, some species don't eat them at all, some others seem to prefer it to the leaves...

An other observation we made here, is that hissers - and probably other species - eat micro-fungi, mycellium and so on, contained in this substract. We dissacate some hissers to look at the genitalia and so on, every roaches has loads of fungi in his digestive tube!

Anyway, it seems to be what they look for... Fungi growing on dead leaves and rotting wood, on a wet substract... But since you use a wet place to breed them, never forget to get a good air circulation to avoid losses in the colony ;)

It's not wet I just mist gently with water once a day or the substrate becomes bone dry if I don't.

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Meanwhile, I read that B.giganteus nymphs ABSOLUTELY NEED wood to eat, so I put some cypress mulch in there container...and nothing.

No interest whatsoever, and I haven't bothered with wood since and have had no troubles whatsoever.

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Meanwhile, I read that B.giganteus nymphs ABSOLUTELY NEED wood to eat, so I put some cypress mulch in there container...and nothing.

No interest whatsoever, and I haven't bothered with wood since and have had no troubles whatsoever.

Cypress isn't favored that's why, you need to try oak, birch, or maple. And your right about giganteus they do need it or die quickly as adults.

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my hissers only eat leaves :(

That tastes better, so even if they don't eat bark leaves are still very good for them.

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My environmental science class collected various branches from trees to look at the flowers that developed from the buds (they are always surprised at what constitutes a flower). After we kept the branches for 1+ weeks in water, I was getting ready to throw them out. Decided to give the maple branch and its small developing samara seeds to the hissers. Over the course of the day today, they have eating every samara and leaf bud, as well as peeling most of the bark off to eat.

So... go out and prune your maples and share a few twigs with your bugs!

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