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Packarat

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Everything posted by Packarat

  1. When I got my hissers they were housed on something that seemed to be wood-based cat litter and oats, which looked mold-prone, so I also bought a bag of reptile moist/semi moist substrate, but when I read the ingredients list I noticed it was a mix of coconut fiber, peat and quartz sand. I thought that was a silica. Since I read somewhere that silica can hurt insects, I bought some pressed coconut fiber discs instead (the ones you soak in water). Was I right to be worried, or is the quartz sand substrate safe for hissers? I still have the bag and I don't know if I should get rid of it or not.
  2. Packarat

    Figs

    Just wanted to mention my hissers ignored both fresh and dehydrated figs.. but I only have two (hissers, not figs) and I think they're just full most of the time and it makes them picky.
  3. I think she was at least trying to give proper birth rather than abort, since there were some almost-hatched nymphs in there.. then again, it was an oddly unevenly developed ooth, so idk. I feed them plenty and keep the food varied and fresh, and try not to bother them too much, the temp is perhaps a little low, in the high room-temperature levels I guess. Anyways, she seems fine a few days later so I'll see if she has any babies in the future.. I'm still not really into keeping a colony but I could keep a couple and give the rest away. Que sera, sera here's some more pics, they seem to really like the coconut huts.
  4. Turns out she was pregnant, but had pregnancy difficulties. Well, I was going to take some pics since I got a better camera this weekend, but two days ago the female started doing something that looked like contractions and attempts to push an ootheca out... she seemed to be struggling a lot though, opening and closing the end of her abdomen without anything coming out. It continued until yesterday night when I saw a bit of ootheca sticking out but not moving either way. I went to bed worried that I'd find her dead in the morning - stuck unable to give birth properly, or simply dead from exhaustion. This morning I found the ootheca out and in a few pieces. Some of the eggs looked untouched, while some had dead half-hatched nymphs. Like I said before I didn't really want any babies, but it was still a sad sight. I have no idea if it was her first batch or not, or what went wrong, at least she seems fine for now.
  5. I think a serious study would require a lot of time and commitment, but a lot of interesting facts could probably be discovered with casual systematic observation as well. I know I stare at my roaches pretty regularly, even if they are mostly motionless, haha. I have read some rather interesting articles myself, like one which proved some hissers could be 'tamed' to an extent.. Actually, I'll try to attach it here, though maybe you guys know it already. Though trying to recreate the results of that study isn't proving very successful with my roaches for the time being.. Habituation of hissing by Madagascar hissing cockroaches.pdf
  6. I wish my roaches would get excited about something. I tried to offer them some honey yesterday and they seemed intrigued at first but then turned away. I've only ever seen them munching on apple and fish flakes, actually, even though I present them with various delicacies.. Banana? No reaction. Orange? Don't care. Baby carrots? Meh. Expensive human-grade spirulina? Ignore. I also gave them some water with honey stirred in, but didn't witness them drinking or noticed any interest on their part. Don't know whether it means they don't like it or if they're just spoiled or overfed.
  7. I'll have to try to trick or nudge mine onto my hand, but they really like to go flat rather then walk away when I poke them.. For bug control outside of specified areas in my house I have my cat, even if I'm not afraid of insects anymore I'd rather not foster random centipedes and spiders either
  8. So these are my two madagascar hissing cockroaches. I didn't ask for or expect any particular species, I just asked the owner of a small local pet store to get me two hissers, and this is what I got: Sorry for the poor picture quality, all I've got right now is my crappy phone cam.. but hopefully you can see the boy (above and right) is really small compared to the female. Also, his horns are really tiny and flat. I almost suspected he was a nymph, but despite his meager masculine attributes his very, well, horny... meaning any time the girl starts moving about he gets all hissy and tries to mate. She wants none of it. So here are some questions that I'd like to ask the knowledgeable people of the forum: 1. Is it possible he's a 'dwarf' hisser? Is there even such a thing? I believe I've read about them somewhere, but not sure if credible source.. Or is he just a wimp? I think he's barely two inches long, she's about three. 2. Does the female not want to mate because he's small? Or does she just not feel like it? Is she possibly already pregnant (she's quite fat) and would that affect her desire to mate? I don't really want them to mate, I have no use for a colony of hissers, but I'm curious what's going on between them. He's somewhat more adventurous then her but I guess that's normal - she doesn't wander around much, but lately they like to sit close together, touching antennae... awwww. If anyone can shed some light on hisser sizes and dating habits I'll be grateful!
  9. Hello, all I'm a shy girl who probably won't post much, but I wanted to register because I acquired a pair of hissers not two weeks ago, and I have some questions which I'll post in some hopefully appropriate section soon. As for myself, the most interesting thing is, I guess, the fact that I used to be pretty severely entomophobic all my life.. like, 'hide in the bathroom and cry until someone gets that june bug out of my room' level entomophobic. So I'm also living proof that phobias can be overcome, and I'm proud to say I did it myself with no help - just subjected myself to some auto-exposure therapy by reading about insects, watching youtube vids and eventually getting my roaches. Now not only am I not repulsed by bugs, I actively want them to crawl over me - too bad my guys are shy and hold on to their root for dear life when I try to pick them up, and I don't want to pull too hard and hurt them. Any advice on how to gently pick up a stubborn hisser? Anyway, I'm glad to be among fellow bug-lovers and hope to learn many interesting new insect facts on the forum.
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