Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


BlattaAnglicana last won the day on February 6

BlattaAnglicana had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

55 Excellent

About BlattaAnglicana

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Location
    London, UK

Recent Profile Visitors

748 profile views
  1. BlattaAnglicana

    Blue death-feigning beetles - max humidity?

    OK - quick update, with a small heat pad on the bottom of part of the enclosure and a small PC fan to circulate air the humidity seems to be coming down to a steady 40-50%, so I hope this will be low enough for them. I've read they don't need misting and they are getting "wet" food (banana, carrot, apple etc.) but that dries out really quickly - within a day - in this sort of dry atmosphere, so should I be giving them water crystals or a small water dish as well in case they need to drink?
  2. HI all, I just bought 4 blue death-feigning beetles (very rare to buy in the UK!) at an insect show last weekend, and was wondering what the maximum humidity is that these can tolerate. The UK is quite a damp country 😉 and my home is also quite humid in general (I have to run a dehumidifier to get it to "normal" values and even that can struggle to get the humidity below 60%) and I am a bit concerned that this might be too high for the beetles, seeing as they are desert creatures. Does anyone have any experience of these, and if that sort of humidity is too high do you have any tips on getting it down? I already have a small heat pad under part of their cage (a small faunarium with dry sand, dry moss and some dry shreds of cardboard which look quite "natural") but is there anything else I can do to get the humidity down if I need to? FWIW I am feeding them goldfish pellets (which are apparently mostly insect protein), oat flakes, and small pieces of carrot, apple and pear for moisture, and I have seen them all eating since I got them last Saturday. I have read that they don't need any other water at all than that. Any other tips would be welcome!
  3. BlattaAnglicana

    How often do you feed?

    I have 3 large roach colonies (one spread across 3 boxes), which I feed dry food (mostly porridge oats, sometimes dry cat food) every couple of days, and fruit/veg once a week. I used to feed them fruit and veg more often but with the number of insects I now have (stick insects as well as roaches) and working full time as well, I simply don't have the time to feed them all as often as I used to! 😁 I am actively trying to reduce the numbers of my roaches (giving them away/selling them in bulk to dealers) and when the numbers are a bit more reasonable I hope I won't feel so bad about only feeding them fruit and veg once a week!
  4. BlattaAnglicana

    Goodbye for now...

    Sorry to hear this, HIsserdude - you've been one of the most helpful and knowledgeable members of this forum and certainly helped me with a few problems I had with my colonies when I started keeping roaches. I hope all goes well and that with a new balance to your life, as Krissim Klaw said, you don't completely lose your obvious love for these little creatures. I can certainly sympathise with the time commitment - having started off with just three hissers about 18 months ago I now have thriving colonies of 6 stick insect species and 3 hisser species, all of which are reproducing like mad and eating me out of house and home as well as taking a lot of my time! All the best and hope to see you here back again some day with a new enthusiasm!
  5. Well they certainly seem to be breeding well for me at higher temps so I would suggest you try a heat mat to get the temperature up a bit. I am surprised they are dying off at those temps though - I would have thought they would survive but just not breed or grow very fast?
  6. It varies around the enclosure - probably about 26-28 Celsius near the heat mats (I have two smallish ones, one under about a third of the cage and one on the side in the same area) to about 18 Celsius on the other side away from the heat source, so they have a choice of warmer or cooler areas. Not sure what those are in Fahrenheit - maybe 65 on the cool side to 78-80 in the warm area? I do find they tend to congregate nearer the warm areas but not so obviously that i should increase the temps all through the cage. Both heat mats are on thermostats set at 26 and 30 Celsius so they are on most of the time in the winter but off most of the time in the summer. Hope this helps!
  7. LOL I’ve had the opposite experience with E. javanica - they breed like rabbits for me! I started off with 7 females and 11 males in May last year and now have so many tiny babies (literally hundreds) I don’t know what to do with them - and that’s after giving away probably over 100 mostly adults and large nymphs a couple of months ago! what are you feeding your javanica? Are you giving them any other fruit and veg in addition to the roach chow and carrots? It may be that you need to give them more varied fruit and veg to thrive - mine get lettuce (which they love), carrot, broccoli, banana, apple, orange and pear on a regular basis plus dry cat treats and porridge oats for protein; they are kept on a dry coir substrate with a heat mat under which gets sprayed three times a day for 10 seconds by an automatic misting system. They also have plenty of cork bark and artificial plants to hide in although there are so many now that they can’t fit in all the spaces - I am probably going to have to split the colony soon! However I have also found oblongonota to be slower going than javanica - my first experiences with them were not great and although I now have a thriving colony with lots of nymphs (kept exactly the same way as the javanica) I have found they breed slowly and the females seem to suffer a high rate of prolapse on giving birth which usually means the female dies (though not always), but it does lead to a lower birth rate as a result. I've also got a G. portentosa colony which started off as a group of 2 males and 2 females but is rapidly going the same way as the javanica! Again kept the same way. I would suggest trying a wider variety of fruit and veg and seeing if it helps?
  8. BlattaAnglicana

    Roach Etymology - Help Please!

    I’m not an expert in Ancient Greek by any means but I do know the ‘planeta’ part of Periplaneta comes from the Greek for ‘wamderer’ or ‘to wander’ as this is exactly what the ancient Greeks called the planets, because the ancient astronomers noticed that the planets ‘wandered around’ the sky in relation to the other stars which always had a fixed relationship to one another. So you’re correct in one sense because the word planet has the same derivation, but Periplaneta strictly means ‘wandering around’ - which is also very appropriate for the species as it is often seen wandering around everywhere!! i have a smattering of Latin from my school years so I can sometimes work out what some Latin derived names mean but other than the tale above Greek is, well, all Greek to me , so I can’t help you with any of the others I’m afraid!
  9. BlattaAnglicana

    Madagascan Hisser tried to lay an ootheca?

    Yes this is completely normal - female hissers often push the ootheca out and retract it again, I think both when first making it and also at least once (not sure how many times) during the incubation. I've seen several of my female hissers (of several species - G. oblongonota, G. portentosa and E. javanica) doing this and it's perfectly normal. If she has just made the ootheca it will probably be several months before she has the babies, but if it's one of those cases where they push out and retract the ootheca part way through incubation you may not have to wait so long.
  10. BlattaAnglicana

    Compsodes schwarzi (Schwarz's Hooded Cockroach)

    Are the ones in the most recent photos the same ones / same generation as the hatchlings from a few photos above? or are they a later generation?
  11. BlattaAnglicana

    Jet black Gromphadorhina portentosa?

    Here is one of my "black morph" portentosa - a female, I think adult but may be subadult. There is no trace of any other colour than black anywhere on her body. Isn't she stunning?
  12. Hmm, interesting - I recently increased the humidity in their cage so I wonder if this has had an effect? I am using an automatic misting system which was misting too much in the summer and causing mould, so I reduced the timings, but then it got a bit too dry, so I increased the timings again about a month ago and also sometimes spray by hand if I happened to be feeding them. I have definitely noticed it is more humid in there when I open the cage door, although the substrate is still completely dry. I wonder if this is what has induced all the females to give birth?
  13. LOL and this morning I woke up to find a whole load of tiny white newborn baby roaches in one corner of the tank as well - so they are definitely producing now!! Interestingly almost all the adults in my colony were born at about the same time as this last year. I wonder whether hissers have any sort of seasonal birth timing preference or whether it’s just a coincidence?
  14. Just wondering whether it was possible to get a "jet black" morph of Gromphadorhina portentosa as I have got a couple in my (growing) colony. They are completely black all over with no sign of any lighter colouring, stripes or patterning anywhere on the body. I have a colony of about 50 adults and subadults overall which all came from two litters from just two founder females, and the vast majority of them are the "normal" colouring for a G. portentosa i.e. tan/brick coloured abdomen with darker pronotum and thorax - some show a graduated darkening from abdomen to thorax, but others have some darker striping or patterning on the abdomen and thorax as well, but these completely black ones stand out quite a bit. They were sold to me as G. portentosa though there was no specific indication that they are "pure" stock, I am guessing they are hybrids of some sort but does anyone know whether there is genuinely a "black" pure G. portentosa colour morph, or are these ones more likely to be a throwback to some other species they were crossed with in the past?
  15. Just to follow up, there have been at least two more births in the last week so I now have loads of teeny little ones running around in the cage! The first batch have now moulted at least once (most of them twice) and are looking enormous in comparison. So it looks like they were just taking their own sweet time to give birth - and now they have started I'll probably be knee deep in tiny roaches before long