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Questions About Pycnoscelus surinamensis.


AlexS
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Hi,

I'm considering starting a colony of Surinam roaches to add to the other feeders I breed for my geckos and varanids, but I have a couple of concerns I want to address beforehand. My main fear is being over-run by them, I've heard many horror stories about just how quickly a colony will grow. Ordinarily I feed off large numbers of males if one colony starts to get out of control but obviously this wouldn't be possible with an all female species like P. surinamensis however I have read that males of the species do occur in countries outside of the US, and wondered if there are sexually reproductive populations of P. surinamensis to be found? One Australian website mentioned males being found occasionally, but still listed the species as reproducing asexually. I thought that parthenogenesis produced exact clones of the mother, so how come males can occur in all female populations? If there are sexually reproductive populations of the Surinam roach, are they in culture?

Secondly, I understand that there are both winged and wingless females to be found. Echoing my earlier comments about parthenogenesis producing exact replicas of the parent, how can we account for different morphological traits? Do wingless females produce only wingless offspring, or are there different strains of P. surinamensis in culture?

Sorry for the long-winded post. Thanks in advance for any information you are able to provide.

Kindest regards,

Alex

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hi

I don't know if there are males in natura, but it's totally possible. Just like phasmids, parthenogenesis production is used when there are not enough males for the females. There are propably some populations where those males still exist! Unfortunately, I've never heard anything about them in culture... But <i'm sure about the fact parthenogenetic production can't give birth to males. They're part of other populations.

I didn't knew there were wingless females for this specie... are you sure of it? There are other species of Pycnoscelus that are all non-winged, such as Pycnoscelus femapterus. I suppose they're as productive as surinam roaches, I have some at home, thats's quick to breed and they can't climb... If an invasion scares you, maybe this specie would be better to breed ;)

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Hi,

Thank you for taking the time to reply.

Winged and wingless females as well as males are mentioned on pestnet.com, a wingless female is also pictured here http://www.qm.qld.gov.au/Find+out+about/Animals+of+Queensland/Insects/Cockroaches/Common+species/Surinam+Cockroach

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Hi,

Thank you for clearing up the confusion concerning winged/ wingless females. I know I was planning on using them for feeders so it really shouldn't matter, but I think the two-tone wingless nymphs are actually quite attractive, it would have been nice to have adults that remained like that. So, my confusion concerning the above has been rectified, but what about sexually reproductive populations of surinamensis? Is this more internet misinformation, or does such a thing exist?

Kindest regards,

Alex

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  • 2 weeks later...

Currently Pycnoscelus surinamensis is the name for the parthenogenetic taxon; Dr. Roth split the taxon in to two species after discovering that they could not be bred together. The sexual taxon is called Pycnoscelus indicus, and it has males that resemble slim P. surinamensis. The females of P. indicus also sometimes have ever-so-slightly brachypterous wings, which P. surinamensis never has. Interestingly though, most populations of P. surinamensis have differing chromosome numbers, which may or may not have emerged from chromosomal mutations. One theory is that they represent individual parthenogenetic-line founding events from the P. indicus line, which would make P. surinamensis a paraphylletic taxon.

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