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Blatta lateralis (PEST species) marketed as feeder.


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I've been hearing more stories lately about people who had infestation troubles with this species. I'm not sure if calling them (Shelfordella tartara) made them sound like they weren't a very close relative of one of the worste pests, Blatta orientalis. I was surprised at how popular these became as feeders (I'm not sure if somebody thought it would be funny to market this pest as a feeder though I know the first people selling these had to have made a bundle). Anyone here try keeping this species and have it set up residence in the home?

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I traded with Matt for a starter colony of these guys, and at first, I had a few escapees, but they were all nymphs.

Then I came up with a good strategy for keeping them in their tank: 1. Glue your microscreen about an inch and a half from the bottom, and keep your egg crates in the middle of the enclosure, so they have no way of reaching the exit in the first place. 2. As a fail-safe, put duct tape around the screening on the outside, so that any escapees get trapped and can either be carefully captured or die of starvation/exhaustion.

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I traded with Matt for a starter colony of these guys, and at first, I had a few escapees, but they were all nymphs.

Then I came up with a good strategy for keeping them in their tank: 1. Glue your microscreen about an inch and a half from the bottom, and keep your egg crates in the middle of the enclosure, so they have no way of reaching the exit in the first place. 2. As a fail-safe, put duct tape around the screening on the outside, so that any escapees get trapped and can either be carefully captured or die of starvation/exhaustion.

I can see where they could easily become a pest species, but I have not had that issue. Escapees always wind up in either another species colony or on the glue paper traps I have on the floor because of the tiny bits of food I put in the middle of the trap ;):lol:

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I can see where they could easily become a pest species, but I have not had that issue. Escapees always wind up in either another species colony or on the glue paper traps I have on the floor because of the tiny bits of food I put in the middle of the trap ;):lol:

Oh well, I've only had one hisser get into a different colony, no problems with turks or lobsters yet. :P

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I've been hearing more stories lately about people who had infestation troubles with this species. I'm not sure if calling them (Shelfordella tartara) made them sound like they weren't a very close relative of one of the worste pests, Blatta orientalis. I was surprised at how popular these became as feeders (I'm not sure if somebody thought it would be funny to market this pest as a feeder though I know the first people selling these had to have made a bundle). Anyone here try keeping this species and have it set up residence in the home?

Hello Orin,

I guess I am one of the unlucky few. I had this specie a few years ago and it did become established in my house (bathroom, water heater, refrigerator). Luckily it didn't take much to get rid of the colony that became established in the house. A little boric acid & sugar and the colony was quickly eliminated. If I remember correctly, Virginia did declare this specie a nuisance pest, so it does have the potential to infest.

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you are reffering to Blatta lateralis, I think they can't infest your house, cose I have many escapees and noone survieved more then a week I think, cose I always find them lieing on their backs, dead or on their way to be dead, a bit odd is that they can survieve long in kritter keepers or in some boxes, even without food and water for a days, even molt there and drop ootecha. I would like to know what is weather like in your house when they infested? Humidity?

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On the other hand...if B. lateralis can infest...it'd be pretty surprising that you didn't have an infestation of roaches already. With us constantly bringing things into our home sooner or later a roach will come along for a ride. Whether or not they set up housekeeping is a different matter.

So instead of B lateralis, is their an alternative species of thissize that is a nonpest species? I've heard lobsters can infest sometimes, though they are easy to eliminate. I bet that any species with the ability to breed in a home like that could evolve into a real pest roach given time however...

On the other side of the spectrum I've heard of people(not necessarily in cold places) knocking over bins of B. lateralis and not getting an infestation.

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  • 3 weeks later...

How do you have escapees with a non-climbing/non-flying species?

I currently have a colony of lobster roaches and I dont even have a lid on the plastic bin and have had no escapees. My colony is quickly depleting though as my bearded dragon is tearing through roaches daily so I'm trying to decide if I want to get turkistans or just get more lobsters. I found a website where I can get 1000 turkistans for $17.50 plus shipping.

I also know that at http://www.aaronpauling.com I can get 1000 lobster roaches for $29.

This is my first post on this site and I am very intrigued with this new source for cheap turkistans I found

http://www.thebugpros.com/1-3kprices.htm

I dont know whether those guys are legit or not but if they are... maybe I'd even think of getting 2k turkistans.

again, how do they escape if they can't climb or fly?

also, do they require as much/more/or less heat than the lobsters?

can lobster roaches and turkistan roaches be kept together??

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I keep mine in a tupperware container so they can't climb out. Unfortunately they are able to sneak out of my exo terra tanks somehow. I've closed the holes on top but some still get out. I've stopped using them as feeders because they are able to slip through cracks in my tanks so easily. I have a small colony left that I'll be getting rid of soon probably. I had about 10 escape and I found them dead under the bath mat in the bathroom. They don't seem to live very long after escaping.

Lobster roaches however do seem to survive a while. I found one in my room about 3 months after I got rid of my colony. It kind of freaked me out but I never found any more.

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I'm debating on switching from Lobster roaches to Turkistans to feed my Bearded Dragon. She has a voracious appetite and I have managed to deplete what was once a lobster roach colony over 1000 strong. Now there are a few hundred adults and some nymphs that are too small for her to eat. So she's been going to town on the adults which obviously does not bode well for the growth of the colony.

Keep the lobsters or switch to turks?

money is a key factor in my decision. from www.thebugpros.com I can get 1k turks for $17.50 and from www.aaronpauling.com I can get 1k lobsters for $29

edit: just now noticed I had already posted on this thread. sorry for the redundancy. regardless though... suggestions on keeping lobsters or switching to turks?

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How do you have escapees with a non-climbing/non-flying species?

... so I'm trying to decide if I want to get turkistans or just get more lobsters.

again, how do they escape if they can't climb or fly?

also, do they require as much/more/or less heat than the lobsters?

can lobster roaches and turkistan roaches be kept together??

I have seen that if you have a well established colony, they are practically crawling all over each other. The ootheca are laid with a sticky substance from the female, and sometimes other individuals walk over this 'glue' before it dries out. This gives them temporary sticky feet so they can walk up the side of a container that they may not have been able to before. Normally thier feet do not have the structure requireds to walk up smooth surfaces.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, I bought 1000 very smalls from The Bug Pros. They arrived today in excellent condition. Hard to tell if they over or undercounted especially at this size though. I will say that the roaches were incredibly uniform in size and were I to order again I think I might opt for one size larger. At this size they'd be perfect for any tiny slings etc. I don't think I plan on culturing this species though due to the possibility of infestation. I am down to one adult female as the rest I have fed off. I will say this, that they are probably the most palatable of the roaches offered and the closest to a replacement of feeder crickets(which were once common pests themselves).

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