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Jimbobtom

Peppered roach and giant cave roach deaths

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Okay to start, they are in separate bins, but these are my latest roach species and the only ones that are having problems. I got 3 adult peppereds(all of which slowed down and died) and 5 mixed size giant cave roaches(just found 1 dead, but others running around seemingly fine) when I purchased. I keep all of my roaches in a heated, unfinished basement room(I live in PA, gets cold in the winter). There are lots of spiders and occasionally some get into the bins, but none of them are dangerous or large. Not sure if that could cause any of the problems. I also found some flies on the dead ones. Looked like large tan gnats that hopped around, I suspect could be phorid, but there were only like 2-3. The room is about 75 at the floor up to mid/high 80s at ceiling. I kept both my peppered and cave roach bins in the center, around 80 give or take. 

 

Everything I keep in the room with great success so far:

Regular hissers , Halloween hissers, dubia, orangehead, ivory, discoid, yellow porcelain, centurion, chrome, surinams, banana, giant banana

 

I kept the peppered and giant caves in similar bin set ups... few inches moist coco fiber/moss/leaf litter/bark substrate with cork bark on top. Lids with a few large holes. Springtails/isopod CuC. Might be some darkling beetles as well.

 

I'd like to try these again, but want to figure out what the deal was and make sure if I fix any problems. If there's anything I should change, or any info I left out, let me know! Thanks for reading

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No other roaches had problems and I use the same for all of them 90% carrots with about the other 10% being random organic food scraps and swiss chard from the garden. Nothing that isn't organic goes into the bins. I think all I've fed them is different leafy greens, carrots, and leaf litter with a little bit of seeds and other vegan protein sources.

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Do you have vertical bark for them to climb up on? Like a wall of cork. They need height. Not sure how tall the bins are.

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Did you get the peppered roaches as adults? Could it be that you were given old roaches and died of old age? It seems your set up is fine.

Where did you get your leaf litter? And what kind of bark did you use in your substrate?

And as mentioned above, they need vertical cork bark to climb on.

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8 hours ago, mk377 said:

Do you have vertical bark for them to climb up on? Like a wall of cork. They need height. Not sure how tall the bins are.

I'll have to go measure the bins. I did angle the cork vertically and have some overhangs for climbing. Maybe it'd help if I got a picture for you guys.

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13 minutes ago, Longhorn1234 said:

Did you get the peppered roaches as adults? Could it be that you were given old roaches and died of old age? It seems your set up is fine.

Where did you get your leaf litter? And what kind of bark did you use in your substrate?

And as mentioned above, they need vertical cork bark to climb on.

Yeah they were adults, I'm kind of wondering that, they never seemed that active from the start. The giant cave roaches were though and I even found one of those dead(and it was a larger nymph).

 

I used some orchid bark in the substrate and the leaf litter is just from a bag I ordered on Josh's frogs(live oak).

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That sucks. Hopefully the rest of your giant cave roaches stay healthy and reproduce. 

Do you use orchid bark with your other roaches? I always read that you should avoid soft woods but then I've seen some people use orchid bark in their enclosures with no problems (orchid bark is usually made with softwood, I believe). Hopefully someone more experienced will chime in.

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29 minutes ago, Longhorn1234 said:

That sucks. Hopefully the rest of your giant cave roaches stay healthy and reproduce. 

Do you use orchid bark with your other roaches? I always read that you should avoid soft woods but then I've seen some people use orchid bark in their enclosures with no problems (orchid bark is usually made with softwood, I believe). Hopefully someone more experienced will chime in.

Interesting, I never heard of that. What's bad about it? I just randomly add it to most of my substrate mixes. Never thought it could be problematic. 

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If I remember correctly, pine is toxic because of some natural chemicals in them. I am not sure on other softwoods such as fir. But then again, some people use cypress mulch with no problem. So I wonder if it's just pine or all softwoods that are toxic. It seems that to be safe people just say stay away from softwoods and use hardwoods instead. Again, I'm not saying that the orchid bark caused this. But I do wonder if that's a possibility, other than you just got old roaches.

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Man, I never even thought about that. I just added it in because I know people use it in some bio substrates for reptiles. I do know that pine is no bueno, but didn't cross my mind with orchid bark. I can say none of my other roaches seem to have problems with it. All my roaches have substrate other than my orangeheads and dubia, but I'm going to eventually change them over as well.

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I've never used orchid bark, I just use coconut husk chips and sphagnum moss to aerate the substrate (coco fiber). Hopefully someone who has more experience with orchid bark can chime in. But if your other roaches have no problems then it's most likely not the orchid bark.

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Got some pictures... bins are 2 feet long x 1 foot high, and a foot front to back. Have about 3ish-4inches substrate. The cork bark was actually on its sides more vertically, but I ripped it all apart when I was looking for any survivors so that's why a lot is laying down flat.

 

.... well now I cant upload. Apparently the size isn't right?

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