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varnon last won the day on January 4

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About varnon

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  1. Hmm, the synchronized movement is interesting, but I do like my bugs to be a bit more active. Your wife should be happy the females get a chance to wait. So many females of various species never get a male-free moment. Waiting and longing is romantic! I imagine the poor lonely roaches singing Disney-style songs while waiting for their knight in chitin armor. And then she finally meets the one!
  2. Wait, is this species parthenogenetic too? I might have to get some.
  3. Very cool. I'm sure it is not coincidence. I wonder what is the minimum number of individuals it takes to get that response. Will they do it in pairs? I'm assuming it is somehow a defensive behavior. I wonder what causes it. You can almost see waves of movement a few times. It has to be a single roach that starts the wave, but the few bold individuals that are moving more do not seem to be triggering the group response.
  4. I think it depends on the species, but it seems reasonable to assume different causes for dead and live cannibalism. Perhaps the later should be called predation. I have noticed my orange heads will occasionally eat a live individual that is freshly molted (still white). It is a little disturbing to see a half-eaten, still living roach that just started adulthood. I believe this happens more as a result of male/male aggression than actual nutritional need, as the orange heads do not wait until until the exoskeleton of an adult is hardened before mating or being aggressive. But overcrowding is likely an impact on both nutritional and territorial drives. My hissers on the other hand, almost never engage in any form of cannibalism. It is interesting you find yours go for different body regions. I'm sure there is some thing to that.
  5. varnon

    Panchlora sp. "White"!

    Hope he is okay and not focused on bugs because he is focused on other fun things.
  6. That is an interesting observation. My guess would be that they are just doing what male hissers do: feeding, fighting and, mating (the three Fs of animal behavior). They may not have a suitable target for their reproductive behavior, but they still have the drive. I would only talk about sexual orientation in the case that courting both males and females was an option. Here, we cannot say they are homosexual because a lack of females means we can't observe a preference for mating with males vs females. In Xenoblatta's colonies however, it would be interesting to record the mating preferences of roaches. Maybe there are some that have no preference (bisexual) or prefer other male roaches (homosexual). On the other hand, maybe they would exclusively prefer female roaches if there was no competition. Also, I'm sure you have all observed that the females are often not in the mood. Very interesting topic. Maybe there is a research project here on sexual preferences in cockroaches.
  7. varnon

    Bees and roaches

    I have bumble bees now. They are very messy. I would love to have some roaches clean up after them, but I don't have a setup that will allow that. I do have a hive that is on its last few weeks (bumble bee hives only last a season). I think I will give it to my orange heads when the last bees expire. They can clean it out for me.
  8. I love it. I'll have to show this to some of my students. I'm dying to get into computer vision with roaches, but I still haven't had the chance.
  9. varnon

    roach racks

    I don't have anything published with the roaches yet, but I will be happy to share stuff when I have some papers out. I have a handful of other papers linked on my website: http://cavarnon.com/publications/ I'm working on an orange head cockroach learning project right now. I think they are my favorite bug. The bumble bees are being difficult and end up being so much more work than the cockroaches. They are also much messier too. I am still finishing up the shelf unit. I added top vents without any anti-fruit fly netting. It was just much easier to drill in the lids than the side. I measured and drilled pilot holes for one bin, then used that as a guide for all the other bins. Everything came out perfectly. I highly recommend it. Surprisingly it is the bumble bee hive (the waste) that attracts fruit flies. It is very hard to clean up after them (they don't like it when you mess with their stuff). I haven't installed any heating for the roach rack yet. The room temperature in the lab was routinely in the high 70s without any heat source from me, so I have been hesitant to add more heat. I think some of the buildings temperature regulation is resolved now, but I'll still wait to see how warm it gets when I have the turtle lights on. The hissers and orange heads still breed fine at room temperature. I have actually lost a few orange heads from over heating, so I think they are fine. The hissers just grow very slowly without heat.
  10. varnon

    American cockroaches as predators?

    I fed banana roaches to my orange heads once. It was very interesting. The attack does seem to be very predatory in nature. They do actually pounce and chase a little. Any banana roaches escape the initial attack seem to be "safe." I think after a point they smell like other orange head roaches.
  11. I saw this on another site. I am pretty skeptical about what the AI actually does. For example, I wouldn't call turning the temperature down when it gets hot AI. I would call that a thermostat. I really can't think of what an AI would do in this context. It seems like very simple programs could handle everything.
  12. varnon

    Roach Etymology - Help Please!

    I don't have any suggestions, sorry. But I wanted to say, can we keep this thread going? It is very interesting!
  13. varnon


    I wasn't able to find a good link for you, but honey bee queens are frequently marked in this manner. You can purchase numbered stickers to glue to them, or you can mark them with a tiny dab of paint. It is relatively easy to do, and does not seem to be harmful in anyway. I would look into something like this. As for limiting fighting, good luck. They are territorial, so if you have enough space, they each might eventually settle on their own territory. With only a few individuals, this should be possible. You will have to experiment with adding hides, rocks, and branches until they each have a territory they hang out in, but don't mess with the others. They also may be less aggressive if there are no females to fight over.
  14. varnon


    Thats awesome! I got a copy for my personal library. Its a nice reference.
  15. Yeah, I really like them. I love having a rack of consistent bins! Do you have hissers or orange heads in these bins? Actually, CodeWilster, I think I saw you sell these species, do you keep them in the gasket bins too? Any recommendations for how many vents for these species? They are both pretty low maintenance, but now that I'm setting everything up, I have this odd desire for everything to be perfect. I'm sure that doesn't happen to anyone else. (sarcasm) Looking at other setups, and ptanner's suggestions, I think I will go with the top mounted vents. Seems much easier to install too.