Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
EricSJCA

Outdoor Composting Pets?

Recommended Posts

Which isopods and roaches would fare okay outdoors in shady, slightly sheltered area in San Jose, CA, where it only barely freezes at night or reaches 100° a few days of the year.
I'm guessing at least A. vulgare, and P. dilatatus, and oriental roaches (Blatta orientalis) since they can be collected outdoors here almost year round, but what about the rest?
Porcellio ornatus?
Porcellionides pruinosus?
Porcellio dilatatus?
Porcellio laevis?
Roaches?
Etc.
 
I was thinking of starting some compost pet colonies outside. If only I could find a sturdy mesh floor that would let isopod droppings pass through, but keep most of the isopods in, that won't rot or rust. A mesh floor could drip out excess water, keep it from growing nasty anaerobics at the bottom, and I was hoping to come up with a more trouble-free enclosure that could almost self-clean detritivore waste and self-harvest compost. What do you think?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It sounds like a great idea in theory. However, while most of the isopod species you suggest are already established within the U.S, many other kinds of isopods and most roach species are not (not counting Blatta sp.). If some were to get out of the composting enclosure (you probably won't be able to find a mesh that let droppings pass through without taking babies with it), it could wreak havoc on your local species and food chain. That is worst case scenario of course, but it COULD happen. Also, if the substrate is not deep enough, a freeze or heatwave could wipe out the whole project. 

I would rather suggest you do an indoor bin of some sort. I have a bin with 30+ Limax flavus and 10 Eublaberus posticus that I put my food waste into (fruits and vegetables only), and usually a whole apple/pear core can be gone in a couple of days. Plus, it does not smell or grow mold. I hardly do any maintenance on it, and the roaches burrow into the substrate (preventing anaerobic conditions from developing) while the slugs hide in a little pot I put in for them. I would like to add some Porcellio scaber to eat whatever is left over, but that is pretty much it. Completely self-cleaning and self-harvesting like you said.

And thats my two cents! Hope it helps!

Thanks,

Arthroverts

IMG_4417.JPG

IMG_4413.JPG

IMG_4378.JPG

IMG_4369.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×