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wodesorel

Humane way of killing feeders?

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I was hoping to be able to sell of some of my dubia to fund the freeze-dried insects that I normally feed to my hermit crabs, but for how much the hermits eat and for how expensive the freeze dried stuff is I don't think it's going to be the best choice financially. I was wondering if there was a way to quickly and humanely kill B. dubia so that I was able to offer them to the hermits instead. They would make an ideal protein source, and I would also know that they are being raised in the best conditions. I just want to make sure I'm not torturing the poor roaches before they die. Is freezing a viable option? (I know that freezing is not recommended for animals like fish and snails, so I'm not sure it would okay for roaches.)

(And if anyone was wondering - Hermit crabs will eat just about anything as long as it's already dead, and insects are apparently a huge part of their diet if my colonies are any indication of what they eat. They go nuts for live mealworms and silkworms, but aren't able to hunt down larger and faster prey. They LOVE dead crickets, and I use the crabs as a clean-up crew for any that die while waiting to be fed to my scorpions. My hermits could go through an entire jar of dried crickets, mealworms, and shrimp in about a week if I let them, so finding a way to offer them more protein without paying through the teeth would be great!)

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I would use the freezer. I think people don't recommend it for larger animals (mice, etc) because it takes longer the bigger the animal is.

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I second the freezer. If you need to swiftly kill them for immediate feeding to your hermit crabs, if you crush the head and make two quick incisions on their ventral side (between the last two pairs of legs and in the middle off the abdomen) you will humanely euthanize the roach. The roach's nervous system runs ventrally and making those two incisions after crushing the head will insure that the body does not go through excessive pain, since it will still be (by many definitions) alive after the head has been dealt with.

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I kill crickets by crushing the heads and I'm only able to do it because I think they're beastly, and even then it bothers me a lot. (I find them eating each other regularly even though they have plenty of food choices including multiple protein sources, so they aren't my favorite creature in the world.) I don't think I could do it to one of my baby roaches, so freezer it is. Thank you! And also, thank you for describing how to properly euthanize a roach quickly. I would have never thought about needing to take care of the central nervous system. (I hope to never have to do it, but if something horrible happens I've now got the information to make sure they don't suffer.)

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The fastest dispatch is to chop them up according to Kyle's suggestion, or a trip to the food processor. I know that one sounds horrid, but it's fast and can be frozen in icecube trays for later feedings. (Just don't let anyone use them in their drink, lol) If you're in no rush, freeze them, it sends them into a hibernative state, and then kills them. Personally though, I have no qualms with tossing live roaches to my beardie and letting her munch them into goo. Inverts don't really have pain receptors or higher cognitive abilities...so pain is foreign to them. (see my website for the study). They reflex to stimuli more than anything. Think about a honey bee ripping it's own abdomen apart after a sting or a mantis still copulating after it's face has been chewed off...

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I think a natural death would be relatively quick and I have no qualms feeding them live to my scorpion, but there is no way the hermits would be able to catch even a baby dubia. (My Ecuadorian hermits have been living with a live cricket for a month - he sits in their food dish and serenades them as they eat his dead comrades. It's a rather trippy situation. :rolleyes: But they cannot catch the thing no matter how hard they try.) Also, the hermit crab tank in the living room is an old display case that opens from the back, so any live dubia would have no trouble slipping out and into the house, and if my hubby found it before I did that would be the end of having roaches! :)

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