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My Blaberus craniifer assortment


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Hi

I'd like to present my Blaberus craniifer strains (if I can manage the up-load :rolleyes: ):

I know that photos and illumination distort the coloration... Picture B is really as dark as it seems and all photos are taken with the same digicam in the same room and the same settings.

A: B. craniifer female of my 'Chocolate Brown' selective breeding approache. They looked like photo E and are now nearly as dark as the 'Black Wings' but with a brown colored undercoat.

B: B. craniifer common 'Black Wings'.

C: B. craniifer male of A, typically a lot lighter in coloration than the females. They show an increased black 'haze' on the wings compared to the 'original' stock looking similar to photo F.

D: B. craniifer couple from Germany, referred to be a 'pure' strain.

E: B. craniifer female of a common Swiss strain I got from a friend.

F: B. craniifer male of E, slightly overexposed but still with the typical distinct 'sexually dimorph coloration'.

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Hi Orin

- They often have the skull pattern, but usually only a few faint dots (the skull of the BW isn't fully visible because of a light reflection). This pattern seems quite common here around. They have this hairs on their wings which 'marks' them as B. craniifer (or spec.-hybrids if that exists) so I'm quite sure that they really are what they are supposed to be.

- The 'Black Wings' are from www.schaben-spinnen.de who is quite reliable but it might be that he got a strain-hybride (who knows?). Why do you think that it isn't a pure strain (How can they be distinguished on a picture -> I can't see anything except the depth in brown compared to those in THESE THREADS)? Could it also be a selectively bred one only available in Europe (Well, it shouldn't be named BW than...)?

I know that usually European B. craniifer look quite different than those you keep in the USA and that's the reason why I posted all those pictures!

Besides: You for sure know this publication by Roth CLICK and there many of 'his' B. craniifer don't show the skull neither and they for sure are true B. craniifer. ;)

Grüessli

Andreas

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Read over p. 227 (and others) in Roth's article. I spoke to him about it a while ago and he wasn't as sure as you are. If you track back the lineage on your black wings they came from the states but they were a cross to begin with. It's possible your specimen or photo are poor but there are a number of things wrong with its markings. It's probably a cross of FL B. craniifer and something from Mexico or Central America. The ones we have labeled as B. fusca may be the same B. trapezoideus stock with uncertain lineage that's been in culture in Europe.

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I have to agree with Orin. All those photos (as most European ones do) appear to be hybrids and/or something else entirely.

Not to be antagonistic, but I find it interesting that so many European roach-keepers are so stubbornly insistant that what they have in culture is 'true' or 'pure form' when they do not know anything about where the culture originated from save from the person they bought the roaches and lack facts related to this otherwise. As though no european wants to admit they may be wrong or have the wrong label to thier culture?

I would challenge any that if they think thier roach is of correct i.d. and strain to go on expedition with me to collect and i.d. wild caught Blaberus craniifer.

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Now I'm quite confused and thats not because it's long after midnight here...

@Orin

You mean that there are other Blaberus sp. with hairs on their wings?

I've been told by User Lucihormetica (the "roachgood" in Germany :D ) that this is not the case and due to the assumption that B. craniifer can't breed with other species I'm really quite sure that they are B. craniifer. OK, I should finally do the section of the male genitalia or at least try it (but if even Roth seems not that sure???).

Certainly I know nothing about the strain or their origin and therefore I wrote referred to be a 'pure' strain and common Swiss strain! I'd love to keep a really pure strain of known origin but that is as good as impossible here around! And that's the reason why I have no concerns to selectively breed my roaches.

Sorry, but I unfortunately don't really understand your last two sentenses...

What ist 'FL B. craniifer' und with which species (or do you mean strains) should/could they be crossed?

And what is that thing with B. fusca and B. trapezoideus? The BCG if I understood that right tells a different story: B. fusca is the synonym for B. atropos which shouldn't have hairs on the wings whilst B. trapezoideus is the synonym of B. craniifer...

Do you mean that we keep a lineage of lets say undefined taxonomy and in the worst case a hybride of another group (whose species might interbreed) or that we keep the syn. B. trapezoideus being a maybe pure strain of B. craniifer?

About the 'Black Wings': Well, OK than... so we Europeans all keep a hybride... that truly is a pitty!

@Matt

To begin with: It is important to distinguish between species and strain. Usually people talk about the species because even that can be tricky let alone strain or origin.

We over here are happy with the 'fact' (= assumption) that we get a Blaberus sp. of which we know (or believe to know) it has been kept in culture for at least 1-2 decades without the possibility to breed with another strain/species and that is what's called 'true' or 'pure' (usually meaning the species not the strain). After all we know that we don't know which strain it is or from where it originates... There still is the fear that they (B. craniifer) could/might breed with other species (NOT strains) and no one wants to have such hybrids, avoiding strain-hybrides (a word rarely known) would be a too big demand ;) .

I got a G. portentosa strain which came to me via two persons after it was imported from Madagascar by the zoo in Zurich and it is quite likely that at least this strain is 'pure' but the coloration... uhh.... And I have a A. marmorata (of better A. cf. marmorata or A. mark. marmorata) strain also from third hand being imported from Cuba by a biology teacher but they look like A. tesselata... at least I can track both species back and that is a very rare and lucky position compared to most roach keepers!

As you say: Find/catch it yourself and you can be sure to know from where they are. With a bit of luck one can i.d. the species too... but I think that there is less than a dozen people on earth more or less capable to i.d. a B. craniifer strain.

And finally: The guy from Schaben-Spinnen.de is a BCG member and therefore should have (I expect that from him and the BCG) only pure species (and theoretically pure strains). I guess I have to contact him and bombard him with questions...

Puzzled regards

Andreas

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Well Andreas you have a fair point and raise some good questions certainly.

From what I can gather, there are others species/strains that have the hairs, so I do not consider that with as much regard- more so just one of a number of characteristics outward and inward that would define B.craniifer. I am also a BCG member, and have been asked in the past to contribute to the live resources available through them. From my personal experiences, I highly doubt that any culture on Earth has been isolated for decade(s). While I have kept a species isolated for 10 years, eventually even I had cause to add other specimens to the culture- and I am particular to keep things seperated as often as possible. So what I am saying is that the BCG is an excellent resource and base, but would not consider it 100% accurate or pure cultures, just better than most any others out there as the cultures are not tightly noted from a collection site and then monitored ad infinitum to protect from contamination.

To touch on another off-topic that you posted, I also have A.tesselata, A.marmorata, and Archimandrita 'unknown' all of which have specimens that pretty much look identical to the other species / strains.... but that is another can of worms.... and the Gromphadorhina group.... yet a third can of worms.... one at a time please! ;)

Morphology is probably more of a precise indicator than taxonomy of a species or its synonyms and 'strains'.... taxonomy changes like the wind in many case and/or may not get changes made to it when there should be for years on end as it relies on one of too few persons to write up the work for that. :(

But that is my 2 Euro worth anyway...

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You mean that there are other Blaberus sp. with hairs on their wings?

Take a closer look at your B. giganteus.

If Ingo believes B. craniifer are not distinct because they can interbreed I'd like to hear his explanation of why "Princisia" readily interbreed with Gromphadorhina portentosa and yet aren't the same genus.

I'm also curious how exactly he renamed (?) Therea (Corydia) petiveriana last month.

What ist 'FL B. craniifer' und with which species (or do you mean strains) should/could they be crossed?

Sorry, Florida -Keys- (location) B. craniifer. I don't know what they were crossed with (nor did the people who did it accidentally).

Your specimen may not be a hybrid, the one Xsmacks posted and the one on the site look like the right pattern, the better hybrids look more like yours with the indistinct tegmin coloration. If the stock came from the states in the last few years it's probably untainted.

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Personally, I've kept my strain, originally acquired from Jame @ Blaberus, in complete isolation for the past 2 years (until recently) and I've noticed quite a few of them do have a bit of a break in the coloration that Xsmacks's individual shows.

Also, what exactly is this "Blaberus trapezoideus?"

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Hi all

@Matt

OK, good to know (the BCG stuff).

Separation isn't that difficult when keeping only one roach species and bying no others ^_^ as it should be the case for my German B. craniifer, Archimandrita, and Gromphadorhina (don't destroy my hopes now, pleeeeaaase!).

About the off-topic stuff: I think I'll make a separate tread sooner or later.

@Orin

Thanks for the graphic! Now I understand! I can't remember whether my 'black wings' have a sharp color transition at the indicated places or not... I'll check on that!

Are the Florida Key's B. craniifer the same like the 'black wings'?

You're right about B. giganteus... I excluded them without mentioning because they are easy to distinguish and can't interbreed with B. craniifer (due to size and genitalia differences and according to some interbreeding trials in Germany) and my brain just automatically erased them from my reasoning.

Ingo thinks (if I remember correctly) that G. portentosa and 'P. vanwaerebeki' interbreed because they are the same! The problem with them is, that they have no real morphological difference like male genitalia (except maybe coloration and size but this is highly variable and can be changed by selective breeding). Therefore there is no proof for them being two genera and no valide one for a common one as well -> only genotyping (or mDNA) would clear the mist!

The Therea stuff I missed. I thought they're name is Therea for more than a year at least :wacko: ! I only remember T. olegrandjeani's (re-)naming.

Grüessli

Andreas

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Are the Florida Key's B. craniifer the same like the 'black wings'?

They ARE the black wings, B. craniifer.

On the site you posted there was a name listing for a new Therea named after the owner of the website last month in Arthropoda that looked very much like T. petiveriana.

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Hi

Others I have look 'better' and some nearly completely black but I guess I have chosen the absolutly worst one :D . I'll do new photos!

P.S. This odd Therea was once named T. petiveriana on the page and is (if I am informed right) the one commonly traded/kept in Germany/Switzerland under the name T. petiveriana or 'domino roach'!!

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One thing i do notice about my B craniifer hybrids is that in all of the the males tend to be either pitch black or much lighter than the females, there is no real variation, just one extreme or another. Another thing i notice is that when they first molt, their distinctive "skull" marking is very visible (on nearly all of them) but once they start hardening up the markings become less visible on a lot of them. The first pair of adults i got from R. Willis looked like absolutely none of the ones i've ever seen or had since. The female was a dark brown color (i still have her in a jar in the freezer) and the male was dark but nothing like any of my other adults. Strange how it worked, i must post a picture once i dig one up.

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