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Keeping micro blatta alive in captivity.


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Hello everyone.

I would like to discuss captive husbandry of roaches smaller than a german roach per say.

In my experience I have had minimal sucess in haveing kept them alive for more than a few weeks.

I have used slightly ventilated cages with "seasoned substrate"(good decomposition and spring tails) with a gradient from 85 to 72 room temp.

Here are pics of species I have failed to keep alive.

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Here is A gamma and I managed to get this spp to have ooths "but nothing ever came of them"

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A species I found on a mango branch has been doing well so far.

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Cheers everyone.

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I tried to breed them in small boxes (2,5 liters) with the substrate I use in most of my tanks, so dead leaves mixed with rotting wood. I fed them with apples an pond sticks, the substrate wasn't dry, they had pieces of wood to hide. For the temperatures, it was in summer so probably something like 25-30 degrees...

I think this failed because I had not enough roaches to start a colony (one or two roaches each time), maybe it was to hot as I said, and maybe bigger tanks would have been better. I tried with roaches from my area and from south of France.

A few years ago, I brought Loboptera decipiens back from Greace. I had something like 10 roaches, put them in a 2,5 litters tank, breed them with a dry substrate, egg boxes to hide, and fed them with apples and pond sticks... I had loads of babies (one or two hundreds, can't remember), but the third generations failed and I lost them...

A friend of mine told me about roaches in my area, looking like Loboptera decipiens, that he use to find when he looks for bugs for his collection. I'll try this summer to catch some of them with him and to breed them... Hope it will work this time!

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I am surprised others haven't posted there experiences.

I don't think you failed because you didn't have enough specimens, this post is actually about just keeping them alive in captivity, "not breeding them" I havent gone that far with micro blattids.

Let me ask you why do you think a larger tank would have been better?

Reason being I was emailing Kyle awhile back and touched the subject lightly, Kyle's finds that a smaller more controled cage has worked better for him in keeping micro blatta.

But in my experience a larger cage has resulted in the longest lifespan "2 months". but my cages have a wide gradient of temps from 95 to 70.

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I think container size is critical for keeping "micro-blatta". I'm currently working with small and large quantities of several small species and if I can get them to breed in my current, conservatively sized set-ups I think it will be a good step forward in terms of keeping them in general.

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In a bigger tank, you can control the molding and the temperaure more easily. I mean, in a little terrarium, if you're not aware, you can quickly get it totally dry, too hot or too cold... A little variation is really important, in a big tank, it take more time to change parameters.

If you just meant to keep them alive, it's not so difficult, but those species don't live long. My aim in the hobby is to breed them, not just keeping them a live, that's why I said I failed ;)

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  • 1 month later...

About a month ago I received a hundred or so Cariblatta lutea. From previous experience with small Blattellids I set them up with the appropriate substrate and leaf litter but I made sure they were a little on the crowded side. Now I have hundreds of nymphs though most of the adults have died. If these nymphs continue to grow that would make this the first successful culture of less than one centimeter Blattellids that I have ever kept. The only problem I'm seeing so far is that the nymphs can climb and seem to get stuck in the Vaseline on the sides of the container, but since this container is also escape proof I just wiped off all the Vaseline. We'll see how much of a hell it is to get in there for tank maintenance but I feel that it will be worth it. I will be trying a similar set-up with hopefully as many E. pallidus in a few weeks.

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Blaberidae sp. "Kenya" (Little Kenyan Roach) include as " Micro " ? I bought a colony from Kyle which are doing great !! I haven't really done anything special ... so far they are thriving. These are probably one of my favorite roaches in my collection. I'm still very new at the roach hobby so forgive me if " Kenya " doesn't include as " micro blatta " ..... thanks

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Those are certainly the smallest roach in culture but for some reason the culture took very quickly and easily. I guess they could be considered "microblatta" but I think that term refers more to the tiny, quick Blattellids that are common in many places but have proven difficult to culture.

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Great update fellas.

My last few tiny blattids have died or just disintegrated into there enclosure. They are not too hard to find in low lands "soil under water" in spanish moss or native bromeliads. I have finally said too hell with it....When I get more time and resources I will try again.

PS I kept that group with the bromeliad and just sat it inside the tank.

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Its funny to think there are guys all around the world thinking "damn i cant get this tiny and absolutly useless cucaracha to breed!"

For what its worth I think of them as little tiny easily dehydrated bags of water. The day its too dry they shrivel up and die. Yet I find these roaches sometimes on flowers or underside of leaves during a summer or spring day. But in winter they are nowhere to be found.

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Good news!

All of my "microblatta" that I have brought back from Florida (C. lutea and two unidentifed species) have successfully produced babies! Time will tell if they will grow and mature correctly in their set-ups!

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  • 2 years later...

Going to resurrect this thread just to see how things have gone? I'm sure there have been advances in knowledge in this particular area of keeping since the last posts!

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Well a few small natives have been bred successfully, but for the most part these guys are still a huge pain to try to breed.

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Yeah I figured as much. Be nice if they were easier to keep. I've been thinking of trying a couple of these species, but would like as much info as I can get before jumping in.

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Well it really depends on the species, some like it dryer, some like it moist. Some may have to be kept separate as nymphs. They all have their own care needs.

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Geez, I didn't realize it could end up being that specific (other then some needing to be kept moist, others dry, etc.). The two species I was looking into getting were B. asahinai and B. nipponica, which seem to be two of the easiest to start with.

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  • 11 months later...

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