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The Mantis Menagerie

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About The Mantis Menagerie

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    Lepidoptera, Mantodea, Coleoptera (particularly Dynastinae and Lucanidae), Blattodea, Orthoptera, Amblypygi, Solifugae, Uropygi, Diplopoda, and Chilopoda

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  1. I looked at the picture and assumed they were Zoosphaerium! I had to take a closer look to realize they were roaches.
  2. The Mantis Menagerie

    Does anyone keep blattella germanica "auburn black"?

    I need to remember to get regular B. germanica, which is easy because they are a pest in my house. I would caution you on special breeds of pest species in your house because, unless you obtained them in-state, they are regulated by the USDA. It could cause a problem if they escaped and proliferated.
  3. The Mantis Menagerie

    Hisser death, turned white almost like mold?

    I used my G. portentosa as feeders last summer to the point that I had no juveniles left. My mantids loved them! I occasionally had issues with procrastinating on changing moldy food in my roach tank, so my mantids were eating mold-filled roaches. I did not notice any maladies affecting my mantids because of the roaches.
  4. The Mantis Menagerie

    I Need Help/Advice, Dying Halloween Hissers

    I have had a similar issue with my Gromphadorhina portentosa recently. I have figured out the cause of the decline, though: mites. There has been a massive mite explosion in my breeding tank, and my adults are covered in them. I have read that too many mites can clog spiracles and kill roaches. I think the mite explosion was caused by high humidity. I recently moved my adults into a new tank separate from the juveniles in order to enlarge my colony, and the new substrate was much wetter than the substrate they had been living in in the original tank. I have been trying to dry out the tank as I acquired 44 new adults, and I do not want them to succumb to mites. It is looking like there is not enough ventilation to dry it out in time. I have some drier substrate, so I will probably have to take the wet substrate out of the tank, freeze it, and replace it with the dry substrate. This should fix the humidity issue. Does it look like your roaches have excessive numbers of mites on them?
  5. The Mantis Menagerie

    Roaches vs Biocontrols

    I am not sure if I qualify as a mycophile, but I would personally be wary of any insect-killing fungi. Entomophagous fungi can decimate insect colonies. I know some types of fungi are host-specific while others are polyphagous and opportunistic. If nothing else is working, and the fungi is host-specific, then it might be worth the risk. I did a quick search for the Beauveria fungus you mentioned, and I was it was used to kill termites. Since termites are close relatives of cockroaches, the fungus probably kills cockroaches as well.
  6. The Mantis Menagerie

    Need advice, contemplating Blaberus giganteus enclosure

    I have kept B. giganteus before, and the timing of this post is interesting. I submitted a PPQ-526 commercial biological supply permit application for this species, and it was just denied. To answer your questions, I never had them in a decorative cage as I got rid of my colony before it was ready to be displayed. When I kept them, I just had them in a bin with a couple inches of coconut coir substrate. I wonder, though, if you could make a background out of spray foam and then imbed sand or pebbles in it, so the roaches could not eat the foam.
  7. The Mantis Menagerie

    Suggest me a species!

    B. lateralis is is also tolerant of low humidity, which is the bigger problem.
  8. The Mantis Menagerie

    Suggest me a species!

    Mine bred with only about a square foot of space. Their colonies take a while to become massive, so you could build a colony in preparation for the ideal setup.
  9. The Mantis Menagerie

    Suggest me a species!

    I see that you have B. cranifer, but I would suggest looking into B. giganteus. They are one of my personal favorites. Just be careful as some strains seem to not live up to their species name: giganteus.