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I have had two hissing cockroaches die within the last two days. I am brand new to hissing roaches and am not sure what I am doing wrong. These are a part of my classroom science curriculum but I am planning on keeping them as classroom pets. I have the males and females in separate aquariums. They have the proper dirt, and heat lamps, and enclosures. I feed them apples, carrots, bread, leafy greens, celery, etc. I also water them with cubes or gel. The two that passed away did not seem to have anything physically wrong with them that I would see. Any ideas??

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The only thing I can think of if there's no obvious physical cause of death is that there might have been residual pesticides on the food. Do you use organic fruit and veg to feed them? And if not do you wash and preferably peel the fruit and veg? I would certainly give that a try (I also peel and wash organic food as well just to be double sure!) if you aren't already doing so.

If you are already feeding them organic food the only other possibility is perhaps the heat lamp is too close and hot for them? I use a heat mat (with a thermostat to control temperature) on my roach enclosures rather than a lamp, as the heat they produce is very gentle and won't overheat the enclosure, as long as you use a mat that is appropriately sized for the tank.

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How large were they? I have found that no species of roach lives too long after they reach their final molt. Anywhere 3 months to maybe a year for some species. And males  lifespans are shorter than females. 

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Thank you both for the feedback! I do not use organic and hadn't even thought of that so I will definitely make sure I peel things at the very least from now on. I don't think it's the heat lamp as I have been using the same ones since Sept. They are night vision ones so the light is low and the enclosure always stay at about 80 so I think that is ok for now, but thanks for that suggestion as well. 

They all came to me as full size adults from my science curriculum company - so I have no idea how old they actually were other than "adult." For some reason I thought the life span was longer - good to know. I need them to last me about another month fro my class and then I have a friend that is going to take them and raise them so I'm hoping to not lose any more. 

Thank you both again! 

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Thank you both for the feedback! I do not use organic and hadn't even thought of that so I will definitely make sure I peel things at the very least from now on. I don't think it's the heat lamp as I have been using the same ones since Sept. They are night vision ones so the light is low and the enclosure always stay at about 80 so I think that is ok for now, but thanks for that suggestion as well. 

They all came to me as full size adults from my science curriculum company - so I have no idea how old they actually were other than "adult." For some reason I thought the life span was longer - good to know. I need them to last me about another month fro my class and then I have a friend that is going to take them and raise them so I'm hoping to not lose any more. 

Thank you both again! 

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Hisser adults can live for two to three years, but the longest lived ones are individuals that are not breeding and have plenty of space. Overcrowded, breeding adults are lucky to live half as long. 

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