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KitKatie329

How have cockroaches changed your life?

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I just wanted to make a little appreciation post for out little insect friends. I am a college graduate who became permanently disabled shortly after I got my degree. I was crushed.I had an amazing job lined up in my field and had to let it go. I had always been into insects from a small age. How many 4-year-olds will tell you they want to be an entomologist? A year and a half ago I decided to set up a small G. portentosa tank after I saw one at the Audubon Insectarium in New Orleans. A year and a half later I have breeding programs going on, 16 species with many more on my list, and I have decided to make this my job. I can still be sick and take care of all my roach bins, and they provide me endless entertainment in their display tanks when I am stuck in bed. Because of this hobby, I now have new goals that I am working toward and the motivation to carry them out. How has this hobby improved your life?

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I can agree with you as a kid I always wanted to be a zoologist as I got older i grew farther apart for my love for animal well i got injured on the job and my wife got me this little bearded dragon and i fell in love with this guy and then i bought some B.dubia roaches and started breeding them and then I found myself always watching these guys as much as I watched my beardie . I know currently have 3 different species of blaberus and plan on acquiring more

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I have always loved all kinds of creatures, but my daughter is the one who really opened me up to invertebrates as pets.

Maybe it was partly because I was never allowed to keep the pets that I wanted as a child,(mostly snakes)that I decided to research keeping them.

Pycnoscelus surinamensis were our first roaches, because they would occasionally come up on the porch along with the millipedes and beetles and were found under the same debris. I made a little community enclosure that they could all live in together.

I actually fell in love with them when one adult roach came running out of the substrate and leapt on to a banana that I was eating and ready to share, before I broke a piece off for the community enclosure. She was so hungry!:lol: I held on to that banana, with her on it, until she was finished. I called the rest of the family to come and watch the roach eat, but my daughter was the only one who really appreciated it as much as I did. :rolleyes:

I still spend alot of time watching my roaches eat and drink. I think it is the cutest thing and it always makes me smile. ^_^

My invertebrate pets make me happy and I don't think I will ever go without having roaches as pets.

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This is honestly hard for me to answer in just one way. I've always been a bug nerd, ever since my wandering around the family farm as a young child. Cockroaches specifically have always been considered a loathsome disgusting monster that we should never have anything to do with. My family never had roaches, I never even saw one until I purchased my first colony...after that first colony however, I was absolutely in love with those nasty little beasts. I loved that their reputation was completely misrepresented and that I could do something about it. I also loved that they are self sustaining pets that live up to a year or more depending on the species. And I love that what made me buy that first colony is an undying hatred for crickets. :)

My wife can attest to me spending a good chunk of my afternoon watching them in the basement of my inlaws. Now that my wife and I have our own house the roaches live in the sitting/livingroom area for all to see. They've become so much a part of my daily routine that people refer to me as "that roach guy" around town and is said with more interest than disgust. They have changed how I view insects and arachnids, helped my family get other their unwarranted cockroach fears, and gave me a endlessly enjoyable hobby I hope to maintain for the rest of my days.

I've been lucky, roaches became part of my life through good fortune. It's interesting that roaches became part of some of our lives after injuries and other traumas. I love that something as reviled as the cockroach can end up being a stress relieving, therapeutic hobby. :D

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I am really touched by all your stories and can really relate. Like most of the other posters my love of arthropods started when I was very young. I remember chasing lightning bugs, catching butterflies, and playing with harvestmen years before I could even tie my shoes. Over time some traumatic events from my childhood began to overshadow my love for nature and insects. Today I struggle with stress and depression but thanks to rediscovering my first love I have found relief in all of my buggy little pets.

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I am also most touched by these stories, which is why I joined this forum, to be honest.

Roaches, have changed my life as well. I live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin... a very 'invert-unfriendly' city, it is literally a 2 hour bus ride to get crickets. (I have currently 56 tarantulas, and 2 colonies of hissers, I have had Domino roaches as well) After suffering a nearly deadly blood clot, I needed to pay 'friends' to get rides for crickets. Someone I know on a tarantula forum had been using hissers as feeders for some time, and sent me 3 male and 5 female adults... I have maybe a 100 or more adults now, nymphs... too many to count...

Now, understand I LOVE tropical roaches, I don't get a 'charge ' out of feeding them off, but it's a necessary evil, so to speak. my biggest males and females, are frankly just 'pets'... A gal named my Dominant male, 'Ben Franklin' !! So, I don't dare feed him off...

Basically.. I can now GROW my T's food... and to get fruit and veggies for the hissers, THAT store is only 2 blocks away. In Wisconsin, our temps. can drop to -30 on occasions, that is the temp, NOT windchill, peeps! so, avoiding that horrid bus ride is great for me...

Also, well, they have become my pets as well, I have had kids over when friends were visiting, that just adored holding a BIG hisser... my tennants had a big family bar-B-que last summer, I was 'renting out' my 2 biggest hissers to the kids!! Nah, I didn't charge, LOL!

I miss my Domino colony badly... I was quite sick when I had them.. and I prolly neglected them as a result....

So, SO, funny too.. when I first unpacked those 5 hissers, I nearly jumped... was not quite prepared for their size, LOL!

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Haha, I did the same thing! I was completely freaked out by my first Hisser shipment, they were HUGE and making lots of noise. Thinking back on it my reaction was hilarious. I couldn't even hold one for a month because I was too freaked out! Looking back on that is hilarious now, thinking of how I just sort right through my roaches without a second thought!

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I'm with you guys. I've been keeping roaches for just about a year now. I got my first (lobsters) as feeders for my mantises and scorpions but I found that watching the little guys interact was actually really enjoyable. Then I bumped into some adult hissers on eBay (6 for $8) and so I figured...what the heck. Ill give them a shot. Since then I added discoids to my collection. I reacted the same way you guys did when I opened my hissers and fot a long time after that I would jump when they hissed at me! LOL Im so thankful for all my buggy little friends. Over the last year I've had a lot of troubla with my health and family and they provide a wonderful distraction.

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Strange how stories can be so similar...

In my late teens I was aspiring to be a professional violinist, and ended up sustaining significant injury to my left shoulder, leaving me unable to play for the last 20 years. I ended up getting a degree that I didn't really enjoy, getting laid off after a few years in my field, and then working odd jobs to make ends meet. Eventually I ended up moving in with the woman that would later be my wife, and as she was allergic to cats and dogs I decided to get a reptile. I ended up finding an Australian Water Dragon that I absolutely fell in love with (despite her being an absolute grouch of a reptile, I don't dare touch her hehe!) I quickly became obsessed with her care - additionally my wife wanted a Central Bearded Dragon, and I bought a couple slings. This discovery of my love of animals led me to start breeding my own feeders - besides crickets and superworms, dubias were a natural choice. Little did I know that I would find cockroaches fascinating. I now regularly tout the virtues of cockroaches to the uninitiated, and have lost any understanding of society's "fear"/loathing of such noble creatures. Unfortunately my wife is far less enamored with cockroaches - but I look forward to breeding several exotic species of roach if I can. :)

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In my early teens back in the 90s hissing cockroaches really became popular, but most stores wanted $12 per roach! One of my cousins my age was really into reptiles and lived by an exotic reptile shop, the owner bred and sold hisser's in the shop. My cousin picked me up a full grown male I named Monty, but I think he was sick or dying he never hissed and he couldn't climb glass, I kept him in a small kritter keeper which probably wasn't good but that's what I was told, he died soon. Sad my pet died, I searched yahoo at the time trying to find anything I could find. I realized how to improve diet, to add paper towel rolls to hide in, and to mist the cage to aid in shedding. So I got a new kritter keeper, about the size of a 5 gallon aquarium. I put repti bark in for them to hide in, added a shallow water dish and 2 empty paper towel rolls, got a spray bottle, and fed them better. I got 2 nymphs, I was shocked how they climbed as my first Hisser ever just sat on the ground all day. Well, one Hisser baby escaped a few days after I left the cage open. The other shed twice but then I picked him up while he was shedding because I had never seen it before in person, he ended up dying from bad molt. After that I gave up on roaches for a few years until I bought a few fusca and they all did great and lived long lives. Now I got myself a few hisser's again but this time I know what I'm

Doing and they are thriving and I'm going to breed some. :)

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The horror most people feel towards "roachy" roaches is always amusing me to...especially because I have so many species of the Periplaneta genus. A friend of mine, who loves critters, and even let other roaches eat food out of her hand, will still to this day stay far away from the Periplaneta bins. It's all in their mind if you ask me. I educate people as best I can on them and love to spout tails of every bin having at least one escaped Australian nymph living in them, haha. I have zero fear of infestation with them and even though the teeny tiny Australian nymphs can escape over any barrier...I've never seen one outside of another species bin. they are one of my favorites, so telling people that is always fun. ;) They are certainly, if anything, a fantastic conversation starter...or killer. Haha.

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The fear may come from past experiences. I was way too little to remember, but the apartment we lived in when I was a year old had a serious roach infestation. My mother gets the creeps now from my roaches and I don't push the issue with her. I can only imagine what she had to deal with (she's a clean freak by nature) and I think they remind her of bad times. My husband actually had a roach stuck in his ear when he was in college down in Florida, so it took me four years into talking him into letting me have roaches in the house. He's absolutely fine with the big guys, but anything that looks like a classic "roach" gives him the heeby-jeebies, and I can't really blame him for what he went though!

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I'll admit it, I was one of those people that thought roaches were dirty and shouldn't be in a house or near food, blah blah blah. Though I would still catch them and toss them outside if I saw one before someone else did. I was at a reptile show in SoCal talking to Donna of Ron's Reptiles about different feeder insects and she said Dubias are great for feeders! My reaction was "what's a Dubia?" and when she said its a roach I couldn't believe it. then she explained that they are much better than crickets, especially since they don't smell! That was what turned me on to roaches, the fact that they didn't smell NEARLY as bad as crickets. Once we bought out first colony I sat there and watched them for hours! Now I have some as pets and some as feeders and have many more species, including Fuscas, dominos, "Ivories" and something else.... We've had hissers before, but we (my fiancee and I) didn't have the room for a proper setup, so they got overrun with mites :( There are so many species that I wish I could get my hands on (most of which are Australian species), sadly they haven't been introduced to the US yet (to my knowledge). There are others that I'd love to have, but cannot get until I move and can properly take care of them. I'd love to create a living vivarium for them!

Anyway, thanks to Donna, my fiancee and I are roach lovers!

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Little history from Italy...

I've always been fond of monsters. I was a child, monsters were my passion.

I grew up ... and enrolled in natural sciences.

and there I discovered the very monsters that exist on earth!

arthropods.

my thesis:

"Exhibitions of living insects and arachnids for educational purposes"

ogjd03.jpg

I now breed spiders and cockroaches.

I had several copies ... the most beautiful:

Princisia vanwaerebecki BIG; Blaberus giganteus, G.portentosa, Polyphaga obscura....

I pass on my passion also to my friends ... and even to kids.

and children are also fascinated by cockroaches ... is a new world ... but full of wonder and novelty. :D

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I just wanted to make a little appreciation post for out little insect friends. I am a college graduate who became permanently disabled shortly after I got my degree. I was crushed.I had an amazing job lined up in my field and had to let it go. I had always been into insects from a small age. How many 4-year-olds will tell you they want to be an entomologist? A year and a half ago I decided to set up a small G. portentosa tank after I saw one at the Audubon Insectarium in New Orleans. A year and a half later I have breeding programs going on, 16 species with many more on my list, and I have decided to make this my job. I can still be sick and take care of all my roach bins, and they provide me endless entertainment in their display tanks when I am stuck in bed. Because of this hobby, I now have new goals that I am working toward and the motivation to carry them out. How has this hobby improved your life?

I'm sorry about your accident and the loss it brought. Like you, I was fascinated with bugs from about age 7, watching those cute green bug characters get blown up constantly in the Raid commercials. Then when I was 23, I finally got to live with roaches for real. It was an exciting but heartbreaking experience. For I had to watch them be fumigated several times (I rented) on their backs all wiggling afterward. Also stuck in traps and couldn't rescue them. Now several years later, a friend let me rescue some German from his house. It tickles me pink that I'm protecting them from all their enemies around me and I spend much of my days feeding, watching, and recapturing them. I thank the Lord constantly I can finally help them effectively.

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I have always loved all kinds of creatures, but my daughter is the one who really opened me up to invertebrates as pets.

Maybe it was partly because I was never allowed to keep the pets that I wanted as a child,(mostly snakes)that I decided to research keeping them.

Pycnoscelus surinamensis were our first roaches, because they would occasionally come up on the porch along with the millipedes and beetles and were found under the same debris. I made a little community enclosure that they could all live in together.

I actually fell in love with them when one adult roach came running out of the substrate and leapt on to a banana that I was eating and ready to share, before I broke a piece off for the community enclosure. She was so hungry!laugh.gif I held on to that banana, with her on it, until she was finished. I called the rest of the family to come and watch the roach eat, but my daughter was the only one who really appreciated it as much as I did. :rolleyes:

I still spend alot of time watching my roaches eat and drink. I think it is the cutest thing and it always makes me smile. happy.gif

My invertebrate pets make me happy and I don't think I will ever go without having roaches as pets.

Awwwe! I'm impressed that you would react that way to a roach on your food! We both know how most people would react (kill em dead). Your and your daughter's love for bugs sounds about equal to mine. I gave a brief outline of my bug life story to Kit Katie above.

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This is honestly hard for me to answer in just one way. I've always been a bug nerd, ever since my wandering around the family farm as a young child. Cockroaches specifically have always been considered a loathsome disgusting monster that we should never have anything to do with. My family never had roaches, I never even saw one until I purchased my first colony...after that first colony however, I was absolutely in love with those nasty little beasts. I loved that their reputation was completely misrepresented and that I could do something about it. I also loved that they are self sustaining pets that live up to a year or more depending on the species. And I love that what made me buy that first colony is an undying hatred for crickets. smile.gif

My wife can attest to me spending a good chunk of my afternoon watching them in the basement of my inlaws. Now that my wife and I have our own house the roaches live in the sitting/livingroom area for all to see. They've become so much a part of my daily routine that people refer to me as "that roach guy" around town and is said with more interest than disgust. They have changed how I view insects and arachnids, helped my family get other their unwarranted cockroach fears, and gave me a endlessly enjoyable hobby I hope to maintain for the rest of my days.

I've been lucky, roaches became part of my life through good fortune. It's interesting that roaches became part of some of our lives after injuries and other traumas. I love that something as reviled as the cockroach can end up being a stress relieving, therapeutic hobby. biggrin.gif

We also never had roaches when I grew up and I never even saw one until I was 23. But I heard so much about them on tv and also developed a big heart for them due to their bad reputation. So when I finally got to live with them, it was an exciting new experience. Their light brown and other colors and long wavy antennae makes them so pretty. I don't understand at all how people can say they're repulsive to look at. Plus calling them monsters is so unfair since they are so so gentle. I love them immensely, all kinds. Spiders on the other hand I hate since they are not gentle. Spiders bite and can even be deadly. Plus they kill roaches and other bugs I love. Best of luck advocating for them with your peers. I have some literature that might help.

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i got mine as i had a tank lyong around and needed something i could (hopefully, one day) sneak into uni lol i also had to get rid of some more needy pets due to lack of time. only thing is i want more!

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i got mine as i had a tank lyong around and needed something i could (hopefully, one day) sneak into uni lol i also had to get rid of some more needy pets due to lack of time. only thing is i want more!

That's why I got mine! I wanted a quiet, smell-free, non-demanding pet that I could secretly keep at uni and hissers turned out to be absolutely ideal!

I'm also a big, soppy crazy and my roaches have names, 'Matilda' was my original female, and then she was joined by 'Shanty' and 'Smaug the Magnificent'.

Hey, if you're going to name roaches... name them properly! xD

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just realised my post doesnt really answer the question. I find them interesting to watch and they dont take much to keep. their also a secret from my parents which feels surprisingly good as I don't normally keep secrets from them lol.

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I have always loved reptiles growing up have tons of experience with many different species to start

we were breeding ball pythons tons of fun and very rewarding but we wanted to try something else so we traded a few snakes and got a few pairs

of bearded dragons.we instantly fell in love with these little dog like reptiles lol.from there we went up to about 20 adult dragons doing all the research we found that

the roaches were the best food for them and spending all that money on crickets and worms was getting a little much.

so we got out 1st colony of B.Dubia about 100 females and they produced well but not even close to enough so we invested alot more

to expand the colony to be able to feed all the dragons and the babies.

this is how things changed for me. Rich my business partner and cousin took care of all the reptiles and left me to keep then insects

the problem was Im allergic to adult Dubia but really like taking care of them and just playing around with them

from there we got G.proentensa and Eublaberus Posticus.

I very much enjoyed watching these colonies grow and as they grew so did my fascination (seems like obsession lol)

I started buying more species I picked up B.Laterlis,B.Craniifer,and A.tesselata.

still wanting more over the next few months spent countless hours researching,learning,and looking for new species

I made some big purchases adding E.SP Ivory,L.subcincta,e.floriana,N.Rhombifolia,E.decipiens,T.Olegrandjeani,B.giganteus,B.discoidlis

and Keith gave us 2 female G.Oblongonota

we now have 15 species of roaches,4 species of mantis,3 worms,and stick bugs and im happier then ever

if we had not moved into Roaches by now we would of been done breeding reptiles the amount of work and money it cost to raise them was just insane

it also changed our view with the business we decided to make prices reasonable for people to buy feeders and experience the roaches as pets

granted all of our prices are not low its generally based off of how much we paid and how large our stock is most of our feeder prices are much lower then other places and once the colonies of the pet roaches grow out more we will lower the prices the best we can.

sorry for the long story lol just one I actually love telling even when most people are like you breed roaches ewwwww

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Got found out ;( told my mum they were from college, taking them there monday then either finding them a new home or a roach sitter. thank god I think Wolfie might help. Thanks, Wolfie and I hope to return the favour sumtime.

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Got found out ;( told my mum they were from college, taking them there monday then either finding them a new home or a roach sitter. thank god I think Wolfie might help. Thanks, Wolfie and I hope to return the favour sumtime.

Trying my best as we speak! I've got a few people I can speak to about it who might be able to take them for the summer and then deliver them to me in September when I move, so I can watch them until you can get them back.

But there you go, there's something else roaches have done, helped us find a bunch of friends here to help us out when we're in a spot of bother, whether it's a nymph with a bad shed, or a new home needed :)

Hooray! Relevant to the post! :D

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Surprised that this thread kinda died.

Roaches give me down time, another hobby in which I can invest my efforts and time, and hopefully a career in the future; they've opened up the door to entomology for me and I couldn't be more excited for the future now that I have an idea of what I want to be when I grow up.

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just realised my post doesnt really answer the question. I find them interesting to watch and they dont take much to keep. their also a secret from my parents which feels surprisingly good as I don't normally keep secrets from them lol.

someone i finally can relate to! haha. well my story is that when i was 11 i got really bored because all we had was a dog that was way to energetic for me. so i went on craigslist (which i now know wasnt right since my parents didnt know about it) and bought some dubias. i didnt want many but the guy that i got them from gave me 12. i only wanted 8. i was so scared because they were the biggest things id ever seen and i was afraid to touch them! eventually they all died off because i forgot about them. when i got my pacman frog the crickets that i fed him kept escaping. my mom and dad got sick of it so i thought about it and gave them an offer of dubias. i didnt call them roaches because they would have said no right away. so i called them beetles. we went to a reptile store that sold different species(twin cities reptiles for you guys in Minnesota!) and asked for a ratio of 1 male to 5 females.. they gave me 7 males and 5 females.. i was P.Oed but we went to a reptile show and i asked around and found a vendor. i asked how much i could get for $20. he said i could take as many as i wanted because it was the last day of the show. before i could even think about it he grabbed a XXL deli cup you use for selling large geckos or something like that, and he filled it as much as he could! i was sooo grateful for that guy! he gave me 5 males, 40 females, and 125 nymphs all randomly. i now have dubia, Madagascar hissers, and turkistan roaches. next week i am getting more hissers, lobster roaches, and blaberus craniifer all for FREE!!!! im so excited! im also grateful because i get to get to get out of school so i can educate elementary school students about the roach stigma and how its not all true!

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