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Nanchantress

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Everything posted by Nanchantress

  1. Nanchantress

    50 nymphs in Hisser litter

    All nymphs are exactly 37 days old - check out the different growth rates! Sorry for the poor quality of picture because of the container. I will rehouse them in a clearer plastic container next time.
  2. Nanchantress

    What type of fly is this?

    I thought these were fruit flies or phorid flies, but when I compare them to pictures on google they don't look like either one. They are in with my E.javanicas and seem to be bothering them because the javanicas shake their legs when the flies get too close. Can anyone identify for me?
  3. Nanchantress

    50 nymphs in Hisser litter

    4 weeks old today on 4/19/12 Molted around 4/10/12. All the nymphs molted over about a 5-day period beginning on the 10th.
  4. Nanchantress

    Casting a Hisser in resin

    I do not have experience with pinning in a shadowbox, but I think it looks nice. One advantage to resin casting is that you can pass around the cast and people can hold it without the specimen breaking. A disadvantage to resin casting is that if you mess up, your specimen is ruined. Once I didn't use enough drops of catalyst and the cast was sticky after it cured. Couldn't be fixed so into the garbage it went. Sometimes it can be hard to remove the cast from the glass container, especially if you don't wait long enough for it to cure. Once I tried to pry it out and got a huge crack across the center. But I learned that if you wait for an extra day after you think it is cured, it pops out much easier. I would recommend practicing on objects that are not as dear to you as your roaches. Maybe find some dead bugs outside to practice on. And some roaches, like hissers, have a waxy coating that makes it look silvery in the resin cast. I haven't figured out how to prevent that yet. I may experiment by spraying it first with shellac - I will post the results if I try that. I also may try dipping the dead hisser in boiling water first to maybe melt it off? I have no idea if that will work though.
  5. Nanchantress

    Casting a Hisser in resin

    I got the resin at Hobby Lobby. Other supplies needed: paper dixie cups for mixing resin in, wood sticks for mixing, glass containers for molds, latex or vinyl gloves. Directions for mixing are on the can.
  6. Nanchantress

    What type of fly is this?

    I read that if I let my substrate dry out and then use a dish of water crystals for hydration instead I should have less of a problem with the gnats. Thanks everyone for your comments
  7. Nanchantress

    What type of fly is this?

    After looking at those pictures, I will agree they are fungus gnats, ADeczynski. Thank you! I sure like the sound of that more than parasitic wasps - yikes!
  8. Nanchantress

    Casting a Hisser in resin

    I have done some more casting and want to share what I've learned. I tried to cast a subadult Madagascar without scooping out the insides, and when the resin heated up as it was curing the hissers abdomen exploded *gross* My latest resin casting project came about after an unfortunate incident with the microwave I was trying to rid some substrate of flies (pics posted in another topic for identification) and I did not check the substrate thoroughly enough and accidently nuked two of my E.javanicas. I was absolutely mortified and still feel like a murderer (well, there was no premeditation and it was an accident so maybe it is manslaughter...). But then I figured I might as well try to learn something from the horrible situation . Since the abdomens were somewhat cooked, I thought that I could cast them in resin without danger of them exploding so I tried it. Here is the result:
  9. Nanchantress

    # of instars and preserving questions

    I will tell you my experience with preserving in resin. If you look at the thread I started in the photo gallery section entitled "Casting a Hisser in resin" it shows a picture of my attempt. It also has a link to a "how-to" thread written by a man who casts tarantulas. I used a recently deceased roach and slit it down the sides with a razor blade to scoop out the abdominal guts first. It was kind of stinky and also tricky to not break the fragile shell as I scooped. I have also tried casting a whole adult hisser and the abdomen exploded when the resin temperature started to heat up as it cured (really gross!). Since a nymph would not have as much bulk, maybe it would not explode - you may just have to experiment. In the photo you can see a silvery color over some of the hisser - I think this is caused by the waxy coating that they have and the resin didn't seem to coat it well. I cast a Peppered roach nymph once and it did not get the silvery coating. So maybe a nymph would look better. As far as killing them, I think the refrigerator/freezer method is the kindest option (in my opinion). I also would like to know how instars are counted and if a newborn roach is a zero instar or one instar. I'm sure someone will chime in.
  10. I just caught these on my back patio and I think they are Blatta lateralis. I live just north of Albuquerque, NM. I have 8 colonies of pet roaches in my house but for some reason these little suckers bother me! Too fast and small I think... Could I get confirmation of the ID?
  11. Nanchantress

    Hisser Baby Photos

    LOL - you're right! I forgot about that - and yes, I really like it !
  12. Nanchantress

    My (satchellwk's) Roaches

    I really like your naturalistic enclosures!
  13. Nanchantress

    Hisser Baby Photos

    Wodesorel, it looks like you have a very nice enclosure made with great care. Do you have a picture that shows the whole thing? Is it a 10-gallon? That is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the hobby for me - making enclosures I think the roaches will like.
  14. Nanchantress

    Help a noob

    As far as eating the tea leaves, you could do an experiment like I did and let us know Look under the food thread and see the "food preference experiment". I personally don't spread food all over the enclosure. If you put it in one place, they will find it when they are hungry. And if you put only one little slice of apple, for instance, then you will be able to see if there are any bite marks.
  15. Nanchantress

    Hi hi

    Welcome! Now that you have found this forum, I predict you will have more than 2 roaches in no time flat! There are so many neat species available in the hobby...
  16. Nanchantress

    Help a noob

    Here is a current picture of the Bug Barrel - I put in about 10 hissers, 3 six-spots, 1 E.javanica, and 1 Domino, and loaned it to my friend for a few weeks for her kids to observe. It was a cheese puff container that I bought at Sam's Club.
  17. Nanchantress

    Help a noob

    I've noticed that nymphs tend to hide a lot more than adults. You said yours are young...how young? Are they Madagascars or one of the other types of hissers? As they get larger they spend more time out in the open but still like to be touching cork bark or a piece of wood or something. A smaller enclosure would make it easier for you to narrow down where they might be hiding, but you don't need to spend money on anything special. Just find a clear plastic cheese puff or pretzel container at the grocery store, eat the contents, then cut out part of the lid and tape or hot glue screen in it, and presto!~ Here is a picture of something I made although I took most of the stuff out of it and just put some substrate in the bottom along with a piece of cork bark. In short, I'm sure your roaches are happy as can be. With only 2 hissers you will be surprised at how little they eat. And you will know if one dies because it will STINK.
  18. Nanchantress

    HUGE hisser, special appearance by A. tesselata

    He is awesome! Be sure to put a couple ladies in with him so he doesn't get lonely
  19. I have kept A.tesselata and G.portentosa together. The A.tesselata spent a lot of time burrowing in the substrate (normal behavior) but would come out in the evenings and mingle with the hissers.
  20. I found this guy in my tank of G.portentosa and (possibly) G.oblongonata roaches and I just don't know what to make of him. I don't know if he just hasn't completed hardening after a molt or what. Part of his "armor" looks chipped at the edges. Any thoughts?
  21. Nanchantress

    50 nymphs in Hisser litter

    Gromphadorhina portentosa (Madagascar Hissing Cockroach).
  22. Nanchantress

    Unusual pattern on Madagascar Hisser

    Update: Found him dead today. Darn.
  23. Nanchantress

    Hisser Baby Photos

    I think I accidently produced hybrids between oblongonatas and portentosas myself but I doubt I'll ever really know for sure. I feel terrible, but it's not like I'm breeding them to sell - they are just pets.
  24. Nanchantress

    Hisser Baby Photos

    Cute! What type of hisser is he?
  25. Nanchantress

    Concerned about stuck Ootheca

    I have a Canon G9 and I just use the preset macro setting.
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