Hisserdude

Good plant based diet?

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So, I am vegan, have been my whole life, we have a cat, and since we already buy cat food for her, I used that as an excuse to buy more of it for my bugs. I really don't like it though, and want to switch my roaches to a plant based diet.

The fruits and veggies I got covered, I just need a "staple" diet to feed them now, something cheap to get in bulk, something that has enough protein for them. I know a lot of people use plant based diets for their roaches, so, anyone got any tips?

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If there are any feed stores/farm supply stores near you check em out. I'm not sure for veggie only but my first thought would be rabbit food. You could also check the ingredient lists for chicken, cow, sheep, and goat feed. You could also check pond fish food there but the fish food I use does have some animal protein. I think the chick feed runs between 16% - 20% protein. Usually you can get feed in 40 - 50 lbs bags at a fairly cheap price.

 

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I don't think rabbit food would work well, chick feed would though, have to check if it's got animal by-product meal in it or not... Thanks for the suggestions! :)

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If the chick feed has animal protein check the others along with horse feed. I have no clue on protein amounts on any of them but I wouldn't think there would be animal in the herbivore food, but you never know.

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2 hours ago, Randomjoe said:

If the chick feed has animal protein check the others along with horse feed. I have no clue on protein amounts on any of them but I wouldn't think there would be animal in the herbivore food, but you never know.

Will do! You'd be surprised by what they'll put into animal feed, even herbivore food...

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In my cheapest gut load I use field-ripened alfalfa, non-medicated chicken feed, and oats. I grind the mixture into fine powder, and leave some in 1/8-inch chunks. It is $5 per pound, you can purchase it on my website, fullthrottlefeeders.com. I also have a $10 per pound and 2 gut loads at $15 per pound. The ingredients are listed on all 4 gut loads.

 

CHEERS!

 

Nick

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I will just try and say this as respectfully as possible, since we are all friends here, but I personally feel it's improper to enforce your dietary preferences/ideology on animals of any type. That's my opinion on this topic and absolutely NO insult is intended.

That said you may want to try tofu, soy and various nuts for the protein aspect of their diet.(maybe chunky peanut butter as a treat?) But considering they do so well on normal dog or cat food, I see no reason to switch. (Though maybe you can switch to vegan roaches that naturally consume more plant matter in their diet)

But if your keeping Eublaberus prosticus please do not deny them their insect prey that they need to truly thrive.

(This is referenced in Orins for the love of roaches book AND preying mantis book, in which he mentions he uses his colony of orange heads to humanely euthanize mantids that molted or suffered a sever injury, as the large colony nearly instantly devours them.)

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I was interested to read Taffer's correspondence with Professor Kunkel, talking about oat protein and so on. This is a kneejerk reaction not backed up by personal experience, but I'd be tempted to go with oats as a staple.

Otherwise, I'd parrot Tleilaxu and ask if there's anything in the vegetarian/vegan repertoire that'd suit. Pulses? (Might be a lot of faff if you have to soak and boil dried beans every time) Nuts or seeds? A quick search suggests there aren't many that are actually higher in protein than oats. One's sunflower seeds with 21-24g per 100g, and I know you can buy the kernels ('hearts') in whatever quantities as wild bird food. I can only see pumpkin seeds with more protein than that at about 30g per 100g.

I have both lying around. I tried some pumpkin seeds with dubias, out of curiosity, and they seem to go down well. Disappeared quicker than oats or fruit, anyway. I'll try the sunflower seeds next.

Neither's cheap, whether compared to oats or not, but cut with the latter...?

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First off, just want to say that I found a plant based chick feed, and so far the roaches I've fed it too really like it. :) So I think that'll be my dry food for them here on out.

1 hour ago, Tleilaxu said:

I will just try and say this as respectfully as possible, since we are all friends here, but I personally feel it's improper to enforce your dietary preferences/ideology on animals of any type. That's my opinion on this topic and absolutely NO insult is intended.

That said you may want to try tofu, soy and various nuts for the protein aspect of their diet.(maybe chunky peanut butter as a treat?) But considering they do so well on normal dog or cat food, I see no reason to switch. (Though maybe you can switch to vegan roaches that naturally consume more plant matter in their diet)

But if your keeping Eublaberus prosticus please do not deny them their insect prey that they need to truly thrive.

(This is referenced in Orins for the love of roaches book AND preying mantis book, in which he mentions he uses his colony of orange heads to humanely euthanize mantids that molted or suffered a sever injury, as the large colony nearly instantly devours them.)

I partially agree, however I'm just not comfortable buying cat or dog food anymore for my bugs, when they can do just fine on plant based diets, it's just not something I can do anymore.

My cat, sad as I am to say it, seems to be getting old, so I'm pretty sure I won't have to buy cat food for her either for that much longer, so I'm trying to stop using it for my bugs as well so I can finally stop buying animal products all together.

I know lots of people use chick feed for their roaches already, not because they are vegan but because they use their roaches as feeders, and supposedly roaches fed dog or cat food can give lizards or other vertebrates gout. So that's what I'm using now and they seem to like it. :)

I don't have any Eublaberus, but I would like to point out that E.posticus, while bloodthirsty buggers that will devour soft bodied or wounded invertebrates when particularly hungry, thirsty or low on other sources of protein, don't actually require insect prey to survive and grow. They do just fine on cat or dog food, fruits and veggies and probably chick feed too. ;) They'll definitely swarm vulnerable invertebrates when they have a chance though.

While on the subject of insectivores though, I have no problems feeding my centipedes, spiders, and other insectivores other bugs. Mainly because I raise my feeders myself and know that they are in pretty good conditions and I strive to give them "good quality" lives, (unlike the cows, chickens and pigs in most of the food industry). Plus, it helps keep my colonies from overcrowding, which can actually do a lot of harm to my roaches' health, (like with my surinams, I don't have anything that will eat them right now, so they got overcrowded). 

Also, it's natural for centipedes, spiders, etc., to eat other, live insects, so I can justify it more, (though I admit it's still far from a "natural setting"). However, roaches normally don't eat other animals, unless they are in quite a state of decay, and even then they'd mostly scavenge invertebrates in the wild, not vertebrates, so feeding them dog/cat foods is not natural at all. A plant based diet is technically more like their wild diet, so since I can, I am switching them to one.

Hope none of that came off harsh at all, not trying to push my morals or beliefs on anybody here, just explaining what I'm doing and why I'm doing it. :)

16 minutes ago, WarrenB said:

I was interested to read Taffer's correspondence with Professor Kunkel, talking about oat protein and so on. This is a kneejerk reaction not backed up by personal experience, but I'd be tempted to go with oats as a staple.

Otherwise, I'd parrot Tleilaxu and ask if there's anything in the vegetarian/vegan repertoire that'd suit. Pulses? (Might be a lot of faff if you have to soak and boil dried beans every time) Nuts or seeds? A quick search suggests there aren't many that are actually higher in protein than oats. One's sunflower seeds with 21-24g per 100g, and I know you can buy the kernels ('hearts') in whatever quantities as wild bird food. I can only see pumpkin seeds with more protein than that at about 30g per 100g.

I have both lying around. I tried some pumpkin seeds with dubias, out of curiosity, and they seem to go down well. Disappeared quicker than oats or fruit, anyway. I'll try the sunflower seeds next.

Neither's cheap, whether compared to oats or not, but cut with the latter...?

Chick feed seems to work great for roaches, and there are some completely plant based brands, so that's what I'm using currently. It's corn based, like most dog foods, and has quite a bit of protein as well! :) Thanks for the suggestions though, appreciate it! 

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Glad to hear you found a chick feed that'll work for you. I've read and heard plenty of people that use chick feed not only for their roaches but also for their crickets. Economically chick feed also makes better since if you have a farm supply store near you because I can pick up 30 - 40 lbs of it for the price of 16 lbs of cat food. That being said I have E. prosticus so I use the pond fish food because of the higher protein, and give lots of fruits so I haven't noticed much wing biting.

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We also use a soybean based chicken feed for all of our roaches. By Dumor from the local tractor store. A 20 lb bag for $9; kinda lasts about 3 months. Non-medicated.

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1 hour ago, dcfarms said:

We also use a soybean based chicken feed for all of our roaches. By Dumor from the local tractor store. A 20 lb bag for $9; kinda lasts about 3 months. Non-medicated.

Might have to check if my local store sells that brand, sounds like more bang for your buck than what I'm buying now!

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First off, kudos for feeding your cat a proper diet. 

Second, if you already have insects being raised for feed, you can mix those in. Smush them and mix them into the food, your roaches should happily take them as protein. I'd also think of seeing if any of the neighbors have chickens, a bit of egg + eggshell now and then would be good. 

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3 hours ago, Betta132 said:

First off, kudos for feeding your cat a proper diet. 

Second, if you already have insects being raised for feed, you can mix those in. Smush them and mix them into the food, your roaches should happily take them as protein. I'd also think of seeing if any of the neighbors have chickens, a bit of egg + eggshell now and then would be good. 

Well just using chick feed alone is a lot easier than mixing crushed insects into it lol, and it's got a lot of protein, even though it's plant based. It's also got a decent amount of calcium in it, so I won't be needing egg shells either, (good thing too, since none of my neighbors have chickens lol!). :) Thanks for the suggestions though, I appreciate it! 

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3 hours ago, Hisserdude said:

Well just using chick feed alone is a lot easier than mixing crushed insects into it lol, and it's got a lot of protein, even though it's plant based. It's also got a decent amount of calcium in it, so I won't be needing egg shells either, (good thing too, since none of my neighbors have chickens lol!). :) Thanks for the suggestions though, I appreciate it! 

There are different growth stages of chicken feed. Go for the chick starter feed. It has a higher protein, fat, calcium, etc content for growing chicks. And its already in crushed granule form instead pellets or chicken scratch feed.

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11 hours ago, dcfarms said:

There are different growth stages of chicken feed. Go for the chick starter feed. It has a higher protein, fat, calcium, etc content for growing chicks. And its already in crushed granule form instead pellets or chicken scratch feed.

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I actually have been using something like that I'm pretty sure, I definitely don't use chicken scratch feed. Pretty sure what I get is Purina Flock Raiser, or something like that, I threw the bag away and put the feed in a Ziplock, so I'm not exactly sure lol!

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