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Cryptocercus darwini


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Very cool, and probably the coolest of the Cryptocercus simply on account of the species name. I collected a specimen of Cryptocercus clevlandi a few months ago. I plan to go back at some point and look for more. It was my target species for that particular (family) road trip though I never actually expected to find one. I probably only collected a total of 30 minutes and it was waiting for me in the only real log that I tore open with a hammer. I was happy just to find the one because it's so hard to actually go looking for something with limited time in the middle of winter and actually find what you're looking for.

I wonder how many species in this genus are not photographed on this forum yet. I do need to upload my photo still.

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Cool! They're a lot darker than the one I saw in NC. Probably a different species since I think darwini is the heat tolerant lowland one... Or maybe I'm mistaken. Has anyone here ever thought about keeping true termites? Since they don't last long out in the open, I think the risk of them escaping and eating your house is not very high, plus if you have wood suitably in contact with soil you've probably already got termites. And then there are exotic species, like those really neat tropical ones that hang nests from trees and forage out in the open and the ones with the acid nozzles... I read one old book that made a mention of raising termites as feeders that said "the colony is self- sustaining so long as you have at least some winged reproductives, some of which will stay behind as new kings and queens."

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Cool! They're a lot darker than the one I saw in NC. Probably a different species since I think darwini is the heat tolerant lowland one... Or maybe I'm mistaken. Has anyone here ever thought about keeping true termites? Since they don't last long out in the open, I think the risk of them escaping and eating your house is not very high, plus if you have wood suitably in contact with soil you've probably already got termites. And then there are exotic species, like those really neat tropical ones that hang nests from trees and forage out in the open and the ones with the acid nozzles... I read one old book that made a mention of raising termites as feeders that said "the colony is self- sustaining so long as you have at least some winged reproductives, some of which will stay behind as new kings and queens." But somehow I was under the impression that they are extremely delicate.

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They are currently in a 10 gal tank that's been filled 3/4 with the woods I brought back from the park.

Ok, thanks! I may go to Oregon this year to find some Cryptocercus, I would love to try keeping these guys! Again, good luck breeding them! :)

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Cool! They're a lot darker than the one I saw in NC. Probably a different species since I think darwini is the heat tolerant lowland one... Or maybe I'm mistaken.

I believe C. garciai is the species you are referring to. They've been found in lowlands in GA before. C. darwini on the other hand are found in mountain range in northern AL and certain parts of TN.

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Thanks! I wonder if I could find some here in Idaho, there are some mountains near me, they like pine wood right?

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I lived right by the national forest when I was in AL. Had no idea these guys existed. And I was actively looking under all sorts of rocks and logs for other animals. I'm really going to have to look more next time I go back to visit.

Which national forest was it? These are usually found in high elevation so if you lived near areas with low elevation, you wouldn't be able to find them.

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  • 6 months later...

Sorry to hear that, that sucks. :( Hopefully you can catch more and try again someday.

Thanks. I'm thinking of quitting to breed this genus since they are such a pain in the butt to breed. Will be collecting some during winter though so I could send them to a friend of mine who seems to be doing well with this genus

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Well, it sounds like you've just been having some bad luck, they were doing fine till they got put out in the sun, or baked in fermenting substrate. So they seem to not be too hard to keep, just really sensitive to heat. Maybe if you put them in a cool dark place, like under a bed or something, and put a really bright colored sticky note that says: DON'T UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES MOVE THIS CONTAINER ANYWHERE OR SO HELP ME! And just check them like once a month, then you could keep them alive and maybe even breed them. :)

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Well, it sounds like you've just been having some bad luck, they were doing fine till they got put out in the sun, or baked in fermenting substrate. So they seem to not be too hard to keep, just really sensitive to heat. Maybe if you put them in a cool dark place, like under a bed or something, and put a really bright colored sticky note that says: DON'T UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES MOVE THIS CONTAINER ANYWHERE OR SO HELP ME! And just check them like once a month, then you could keep them alive and maybe even breed them. :)

They were certainly not too hard to keep, but they never bred for me :(

Also, providing wood for them has been an obstacle so I'm going to quit for now. Maybe I'll try them out again when I have good resource available for them.

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