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Phorid Fly: A vector for small nematodes?


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Hi everyone

I recently heard that it's not the phorid flies who kill the roaches but that they're just a vector for small parasitic nematodes.

Is this information true?

This would explain why mainly fresh molted adults are infected; The flies don't dig into the earth where the nymphs are and can only transmit the nematodes to newly molted species because the worms can only penetrate soft exoskeletons.

Is there a way to selectively get rid of this small bastards? I could try a vermicide but I'm not sure whether that could harm insects (it shouldn't but...). Biological things like selective toxins or parasites for this parasites would be more safe (and more expensive I guess). Any ideas?

Grüessli

Andreas

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Recently Matt K released some parasitic wasps that did the trick, however, if you don't have access to them, you can do an overhaul of your roach cultures and put them on a 1-2-3 ratio mix of potting/topsoil, cypress mulch and large coconut fiber chunks/coir; it also helps to make sure your substrate is "biologically active" so that small nymphs will decompose if they perish and won't contribute to the fly problem. Removing dead roaches and keeping the amount of fruits/veggies to a minimum is also CRITICAL to controlling the problem.

As far as the nematode stuff; It's possible. It would explain why my P. surinamensis caught some sort of nematode when the phorid fly population climbed.

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Hi Zephyr

Well... I know that and handle it already like this but the phorid flies are nevertheless a problem at the moment :rolleyes: . Thanks anyway!

I just wondered why it's always the newly molted adults who die and this nematode-story could explain why.

I know Matts post but I thought I could fight the nematodes (!) in addition to the phorid flies and wonder how I could do that.

Grüessli

Andreas

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:D SIR, YES, SIR :D

I know... humidity is low and substrate is new (and there are still roaches dying and flies present until there is no overpopulation anymore, stupid me :blink: ).

I really appreciate your swift & solid help but it's not about saving lifes this time (well, it is, but not in this post). It is about the question whether the flies itself or some nematodes kill my roaches and if there is a possibility to get rid of the nematodes without affecting insects, e.g. roaches (and unfortunately the flies too).

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Nematodes are small, sometimes incredibly so, but they're not microscopic. Have you actually seen any in your dead, newly molted, roaches? Your question about killing the nematodes is moot if there aren't any. The species that die shortly after molting to adult do so within a few hours so nematodes seem a very unrealistic explanation.

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Hi

@Orin

OK, if they should be visible (I didn't see anything with my naked eye). I thought there might be some really small parasitic ones because there are soil dwelling nemathodes really only visible with a microscope; I'm only familiar with nemathodes as human parasites. My 'informant' (or story-teller?) said that they are extremely tiny, therefore...

I forgot to consider time, your absolutely right about that! Ergo: No nemathodes :) ! Thanks!

@Kay

I keep my Archimandrita dry now and I have to remove the dead daily; no saprophyte I keep could eat this huge insects faster than the phorids do. On the other hand it's impossible to keep woodlice with this roaches because they eat them all :o ! But with the other roaches I have so far no or only negligible trubles (the Blaberus craniifer have a few flies but only rare losses) and the isopods do fine.

Grüessli

Andreas

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Hi!

I did not realize you have the phorid flies in your Archimandrita culture. I didnt think about how big Archimandrita are. Even a adult Blaberus craniifer is too big for beeing eaten by the isopods in one day. The isopods could only do some prevention, but no wonders. Alphitobius diaperinus can do the same in dry setups but a huge body like Archimandrita tesselata wouldnt be cleaned out in one day.

I am sorry for your troubles!

Regards

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