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Harvestmen spiders


vfox
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I've been thinking about keeping local native harvestmen (Opiliones), not the cellar spiders but the single bodied thread legged forest dwellers. I have been noticing recently that they are rather varied around my area, I know of at least four different looking (and I assume different species) versions wandering around in the damp underbrush. So far I've collected three different ones from my front porch alone , two long legged and one short(comparatively) legged species. I placed them in my Parcoblatta enclosure...except one that I placed in my emperor scorpion container.

I thought the scorpion killed it because it was "gone" for several days. Last night I fed my emp a male dubia and about an hour later the harvestmen spider was standing on the scorpion sharing the meal, lol. That kinda sold me on them, they are amusing to watch and completely venomless, they eat just like my old Damon variegatus...except more as a scavenger...and omnivorous...lol.

So do any of you guys keep them? What's your experience with them? Do you know what species, local or exotic? I'll try and get some pics up at some point.

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Here in the south I have only seen ornamental harvestman "Vonones ornata". They are very cool and parts of their body glow under blacklight.

I was in NY once and saw a bunch under a leaf, they were amazing like a living ball of thread with little red marbles for a body.

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Yeah I've seen them for sale before, they are pretty cool. I just collected four different species worth (7 total) from a friends house this evening. I'll be setting up a container for them shortly. I also got a bright green stink bug, some earwigs, and some cricket...things...I actually think they are related to katydids though. Yay for local critter tank.

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It seems the other insects I'm finding are shield backed katydids. http://www.whatsthatbug.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/katydid_florida_theresa.jpg

This is an image of one from whatsthatbug. I've also found a few large black field crickets.

The handsome trig is interesting, I'll keep my eyes peeled.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Okay so my local harvestmen are a bit more difficult to keep than I had anticipated. I had collected 4 different species in a total of 14 individuals and currently only two remain alive. I assumed they would be a bit easier to care for because I see them EVERYWHERE around here...but alas...no. Does anyone have any husbandry tips for these guys? At the moment I'm a bit stumped.

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