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Shon2 last won the day on January 25

Shon2 had the most liked content!

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About Shon2

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  • Birthday 12/02/1998

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  • Gender
  • Location
    The Taco Bell on cherry ave
  • Interests
    Art - drawing, crocheting, folding origami, pixel art, some digital sculpting and modeling

    Animal interests - invertebrates, fish, reptiles, I used to volunteer regularly at the Aquarium of the Pacific, but now I just visit when I have time

    Reading - I used to read a lot of books, but now I mostly stick to current events/ articles, and comics

    Other hobbies - furry, anime/ manga, character design, Godzilla

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  1. Shon2

    Thank you for accepting me into the forum.

    Can't wait to see what you post! Your work sounds very interesting and I'm happy to see another person who cares deeply about the environment. Although, that's not really hard to find here!
  2. Shon2

    Cockroach live drawings

    Thank you so so much for this! I really appreciate it πŸ˜† I would love to do some actual scientific illustrations, whenever I can get the time to sit down and draw for something outside of class, I'd love to do studies based off your work/ with similar intentions. Can you share your work here? I'd love to see it, but no big deal if you can't upload em.
  3. Shon2

    Cockroach live drawings

    I love these! Your work is great, it looks very accurate to the cuties in the photos
  4. Shon2

    Cockroach live drawings

    What is it about the legs that gives you trouble? :0 And what medium do you work in? I'm sure your art still looks pretty roachy, even if you see details that aren't completely accurate. The legs on my sketches aren't perfect either! :'D
  5. Got the opportunity to draw some of my roaches for a school assignment These are just sketches, but I would love to do some nicely rendered art of them soon. I would love to see more art of bugs while I'm here! If any of y'all wanna share your art here, please do
  6. Shon2

    cheap wood/cork?

    Looking for leftovers from fish stores might work! The driftwood sold there is comparable to cork, and typically doesn't mold as easily. It's not cheap, but it lasts longer and may be worth your time. I'd rather spend $10 on something that'll last a year than $5 on something that'll only last a month.
  7. Adorable profile picture! :D

    Do you remember who the artist is?Β 

  8. Shon2

    AAA's Roachy Horde

    Absolutely beautiful collection you've got! How was your one poor roach shipped by usps? :'D I would hope they respect the "live animal" labels plastered across crates and such, but I know how some facilities can be >:[
  9. Shon2

    Bantua sp. "Namibia"

    I guess my phrasing did push out a bit more anthropomorphism that I meant it to! πŸ˜‚ At any rate, your collection is amazing. Also, sorry if I'm asking a lot of beginner questions (here or elsewhere), you just seem so knowledgeable and I'd rather ask than wonder.
  10. Shon2

    Bantua sp. "Namibia"

    Haha, I meant exactly what I said! Some of the roaches I've helped care for at the Aquarium / the ones I keep myself seem to have little personalities... They come up for food and greet your hands when you lower them into the enclosure. Some will even groom your or eat from your hand instead of just grabbing the food and running. That being said... I don't have much experience with roaches as a whole and I wasn't sure if there were other species that acted like this, or if ours were just oddballs that are too used to people's interactions! πŸ˜‚ Whatever the case, your new species is lovely and maybe they'll learn to calm down for you / any other visitors that might come take a peek.
  11. Just curious / wanted to ask Not sure if the poll feature is working for me, I will edit this post or delete the thread if it's not working / taking up space for you guys.
  12. Shon2

    Bantua sp. "Namibia"

    Very, VERY beautiful, I love that unique, waxy look they have. Are they friendly? I can't wait to see how they grow and develop over time.
  13. Shon2

    Preserving dead specimens?

    I realize that this is a really old topic, but I'd like to offer some help if you're still interested! Larger bugs like hissers have to be approached a little differently, and there isn't an end all be all perfect way to make them soft for good, but you can occasionally resoften an animal that has stiffened up over time. When I pin invertebrates, I tend to use a mix of vaseline and 90% pure rubbing alcohol to soften the animal. Soak some paper towels in the rubbing alcohol, squeeze out most of the liquid, and wrap it around the roach for a few days to let the alcohol seep into its body. I store my "soaking" bugs in a styrofoam container, just to keep as much of the alcohol smell from stinking up my room. To gut the roach, smear some vaseline underneath the legs on the upper part of the abdomen to weaken the area. You only have to wait around 10 minutes before you can start. You can then use a syringe to pierce between the platelets and inject a small amount of rubbing alcohol or vinegar into the abdomen (personally I recommend vinegar, but I've seen either being used). Wait a few minutes to let the innards break down, and using the syringe, begin to suck them out of the body. Repeat this step a few times until you're sure there's nothing inside. This takes some practice, and isnt always recommended, as it can be hard to get it right the first time. If you don't want to use a syringe to "suck" the guts out, you can use a scalpel (for dentistry or taxidermy, they're pretty similar) to cut out the section of the abdomen that has vaseline smeared on it. Make sure to cut only the sides and bottom portion of the area, leaving the top connected, like a door or hatch. Using tweezers or forceps, peel back the "flap" you just made and use the scalpel to outline the abdomen from the inside. This will disconnect any tissue that may still be connected to the exoskeleton you are trying to preserve. Then, use the tweezers to carefully pull the insides out. Be careful though, if anything is still connected, it might pull a hole in the exoskeleton. Once the body is cleaned out, you can fill it up with jeweler's glue or jewelry resin. This is not the same as taxidermy or molding resin, which is much more difficult to use. You can also use this to glue the "flap" shut once you're finished. You can always leave the body empty if you're just interested in using it as a display piece, but I think that'd be too fragile if you're going to be using it as a prop or reference for studies. Another option would be to coat the inside of the body with the resin and using tweezers, stuff it with cotton. This might make it easier to soften and pose the body once you're done. If you used the syringe method, inject the body with some rubbing alcohol and then with just enough resin to coat the inside of the body. This can be time consuming, but it's probably your best bet, because stuffing it with cotton is out of the question. Whichever method you try, let the resin cure in a dry area for at least 8 days. For plastics and metal the resin dries a lot faster, but in my experience, it takes a lot longer on things that were once living. πŸ˜… Avoid direct sunlight and avoid wetting the body again. I like to put my "drying" specimens back in their styrofoam cup while I wait. Once they're dry, you can soften the body again just like you did to start off! Use only high content rubbing alcohol (70% pure or more), and wrap the roach in dampened paper towels for a few days. Then you can use pins to pose, or move the body by hand for your photography. There is a limited number of times you can resoften a taxidermied bug, usually it starts to get weak and may even fall apart after being messed with too much. Just be careful when handling and make sure to thoroughly dry it out before you handle it again. Store your roach in an airtight container, or a shadowbox with salt/ silica gel crystals sprinkled inside. DO NOT store it in the fridge or freezer! This can permanently damage your specimens and make them fall apart as soon as they warm back up to room temperature. I've only done this a few times, and there are limited resources online, but I really hope this helps! With bigger bugs, when you're in doubt, look up taxidermy for fish and sea creatures and do your best based off that. I've found it works a lot better than the general taxidermy advice for smaller invertebrates that are not so juicy! πŸ˜‚ Again, sorry if I've revived a dead thread... But I really hope you can learn from this and I can't wait to see the results of your work! EDIT: Just found out the jewelry resin I use is no longer being made, but the Judikins brand Diamond Glaze is pretty much the same! I'm sure it would work fine, same as E6500 or other fast acting jewelry glaze/ resin.
  14. Shon2

    New user, long time bug fan

    Thank you so much! It's nice to be welcomed by someone so prevalent in the community. I've been looking around here and there for a few days and you seem to help out just about everywhere! I can't wait to get to know everyone a little better. And thank you for the warm wishes! I try to avoid getting political when I don't know how people will react, but yeah, this president sucks. The last thing we need right now is someone with such little recognition for the benefits of science and the protection of our environment! :'D Maybe one day they'll listen to us, haha
  15. Shon2

    New user, long time bug fan

    Thank you! Both photos were of dubias, the younger of the two had some coco fiber stuck to her head/ legs from digging around earlier, nothing is wrong haha :'D