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BugmanPrice

The most challenging cockroach to culture

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I want to know is this: What is the hardest species of ‘roach to keep/breed that you’ve personally kept? What I mean by personally is I wouldn’t post “Macropanesthia rhinoceros” since I’ve never kept one myself. I’m interested to see what the hardest species to keep/breed is, but of course that could be different for everyone.

Also it’d be nice to know WHY it was difficult (if you know why, sometimes you just don’t). This is a thread I’ve thought about starting for awhile now. I think this would be a great way for people to share their experiences with some of the more fastidious species so others don’t make the same mistake. I’ll be polite and start off…

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The shortest lived culture I have had was of Ergaula capucina last year. I ordered a dozen and when they came I was surprised… I received two adult females and 11 tiny guys; they were a little larger then a pinhead cricket and were kind of translucent like one as well. Within twenty four hours all of the little ones disappeared, the next day one female was dead. By the third day since they had come, guess what, the other adult knocked off too. I was quite annoyed as you could imagine. :(

I think that it could have been a humidity issue. As I’ve mentioned before, it’s quite dry where I am and there was a lot of ventilation for the cage I had them in. I also didn’t have the breeding cabinet I do now which would have helped with that a bit. I misted them the day they came and I set them up with nice damp potting soil like I use for everything else… but I think these guys just need higher humidity than my set up was capable of maintaining.

One day I’ll give these another shot; but, before I get anymore cultures I want to get at least a generation from every species I have so far. Nice species though.

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2 years ago, I would've probably said Therea species.

Really, most roaches are really easy if you just stick to their requirements instead of cutting corners. :P

Personally, I've had some trouble with Gyna species, especially G. capucina.

It's been hit-and-miss with polyphagids for me; My first set of E. capucina died pretty quickly and the ooths never hatched, however my second set is doing very well so far. Arenivaga species as well.

(Also, as a suggestion to polyphagid keepers; VERMICULITE IS YOUR BEST FRIEND.)

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Although I've only kept a few, my most challenging would have to be Blaberus craniifer. Two females had bad molts despite all the available places, the healthy one waited 'till summer to give birth but didn't make it that long, so my current pair consists of a damaged gravid female (whose eggs look pretty strange as well) and a remarkable 19-month old male.

Ugh.

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Discoids have really been terrible for me to.... For some reason they rarely will give birth and just don't seem to do well. All my other 21 species of roach have had no problems...some to early to tell.

Kevin

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I just consulted Aaron Pauling and I realized that the success of my discoids and his seem to be linked to one thing; the frass.

I used to let my discoid's frass build up in their enclosure; when I started removing it they started to have trouble molting and surviving. There must be some connection here.

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I just consulted Aaron Pauling and I realized that the success of my discoids and his seem to be linked to one thing; the frass.

I used to let my discoid's frass build up in their enclosure; when I started removing it they started to have trouble molting and surviving. There must be some connection here.

Nuts.

I used to remove it, and used to not too, and made no difference so I stopped worrying abouit it....for me Blaberus anything reproduces like fleas only faster, more so with B.discoidalis.

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I used to remove it, and used to not too, and made no difference so I stopped worrying abouit it....for me Blaberus anything reproduces like fleas only faster, more so with B.discoidalis.

Was there any baseline substrate under the frass or was it bare when you cleaned up?

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I'm too new to be able to answer this yet, but my discoids are taking forever to have babies too. I got them as 1/2 inch nymphs in September. Saw my first adults just before Christmas. Still no babies. Almost the same story with my fusca. I had trouble with craniifer too, until I put them on substrate. I'm in that waiting stage with a dozen or so species. My lateralis are finally taking off and my hissers just won't stop.

I haven't had any colonies outright die off, but I have several that just seem to be stalled.

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Was there any baseline substrate under the frass or was it bare when you cleaned up?

There was always a good 1/4" left after cleanings.

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I'm too new to be able to answer this yet, but my discoids are taking forever to have babies too. I got them as 1/2 inch nymphs in September. Saw my first adults just before Christmas. Still no babies. Almost the same story with my fusca. I had trouble with craniifer too, until I put them on substrate. I'm in that waiting stage with a dozen or so species. My lateralis are finally taking off and my hissers just won't stop.

I haven't had any colonies outright die off, but I have several that just seem to be stalled.

This looks normal to me. They may initially take several weeks to produce thier first batch, and then less after that. It has to snowball at first- dont worry.

@Bugman Price- I use 2 inches of cypress mulch in everything, with few exceptions, and those are cypress mixed with coconut bark chips, oak leaves, spagnum, etc.

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@Bugman Price- I use 2 inches of cypress mulch in everything, with few exceptions, and those are cypress mixed with coconut bark chips, oak leaves, spagnum, etc.

Hmmm, Thanks!

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I definitely agree about the g. capucina. Mine all died suddenly and seemingly for no reason, they all molted like wildfire and ate healthily, then after reaching adulthood, only lasted maybe a month or two. No apparent reproducing at all. And though all my subcincta are doing well, they're taking FOREVER to reach adulthood and I've rarely seen them eat! Another weird thing about them; they all appeared to be dead one day, but not stiff at all, so I held them all (I only have about 6 so far) in my hand and they all just sort of popped back to life after about 10-15 minutes. Still not sure what was up with that...

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I definitely agree about the g. capucina. Mine all died suddenly and seemingly for no reason, they all molted like wildfire and ate healthily, then after reaching adulthood, only lasted maybe a month or two. No apparent reproducing at all. And though all my subcincta are doing well, they're taking FOREVER to reach adulthood and I've rarely seen them eat! Another weird thing about them; they all appeared to be dead one day, but not stiff at all, so I held them all (I only have about 6 so far) in my hand and they all just sort of popped back to life after about 10-15 minutes. Still not sure what was up with that...

If I had to guess, they may have been cold. Your body heat could have warmed them up so they were able to be active again. This species tends to also feign death for a little bit if disturbed but it usually doesn’t take them that long before they try to escape.

Patients is the key with these L. subcincta; they take a while to get going but they really do multiply quite well. Hold in there and you’ll have a nice colony in not too long.

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The worste one for me has been Pseudomops septentrionalis, I had them for six years or so through a few generations but the adults would mature so slowly and die so quickly they often didn't match up for breeding. One female was all you needed to get a ton of nymphs but then it would just prolong the pain of keeping this species.

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The worste one for me has been Pseudomops septentrionalis, I had them for six years or so through a few generations but the adults would mature so slowly and die so quickly they often didn't match up for breeding. One female was all you needed to get a ton of nymphs but then it would just prolong the pain of keeping this species.

I seemed to have a similar situation with my Bysotria Rothi. Adults were molting out few and far between and it seemed like I never had a male and a female at the same time. I'm down to 2 adult females of this species at the moment.

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I second the above notion. Tiny Ectobiids can be excessively difficult. The smallest roach I've had luck with currently is... Well, C. l. lutea. lol

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The worste one for me has been Pseudomops septentrionalis, I had them for six years or so through a few generations but the adults would mature so slowly and die so quickly they often didn't match up for breeding. One female was all you needed to get a ton of nymphs but then it would just prolong the pain of keeping this species.

I agree with Orin here, of all my roaches this one seems to be the hardest to keep. A few of my nymphs died for no reason, and like Orin said they take FOREVER to mature and I only have one that is an adult right now, so it will probably die before it mates successfully. I started with 9, I am down to only 4 now... chances are I won't be able to breed this species without getting more. :(

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I just have hissers (way easy) and banana roaches right now. The banana roach population booms and crashes, but mostly the crashes are due to negligence, and I don't really care because there gets to be so many of them. Interestingly darkling beetles help the clean up the colony, but I think they eat newly molted adults, but somehow not the nymphs.

I found a pale-bordered field roach outside last fall. I was super excited, I didn't know they lived in my area. I went to get a jar from the garage, and it got away and flew into the light fixture. So I guess that was the most challenging to culture.

I really want to get more species. But I don't really have a reason for it right now. But I still want them.

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