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Adult Hissers Molting?


dcfarms
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We have had a healthy colony up until the last week when several adult hissers started molting. At first we thought that some sub-adults were going through bad final molts. Has anyone dealt with this before? Could this be an inbreeding issue? Is there anything that we can do to keep this from happening?

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Diet is chicken feed with weekly feeding of veggies or fruits like bell pepper, carrots, tomato, apple, salad mix, occasionally some bread. Water is always available. The colony is kept in a ventilated see-through storage container so that we can keep an eye on food and water levels. Humidity is low to medium. When the issue started we increased the humidity by misting a couple times a week. There are normal molting as well as what appears to be adult hissers molting. We managed to get one completely out of it old exoskeleton but it did not harden up at all. We put it down as it was just suffering.

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Hissers molting post-adulthood are really rare, and the cause seems to be unknown. Such molts are usually unsuccessful regardless of the humidity levels. Hopefully the issue will resolve itself, keep us updated on them!

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You absolutely sure they were adults? It seems really strange that so many of them are having that problem, however inbreeding is almost certainly not the cause. Inbreeding does not seem to affect roaches that much, if at all, and I don't see why it would cause adults to try to molt. If anything inbreeding would cause sickly, deformed nymphs, or a higher than usual nymph die off, any that survived to adulthood would probably be in the clear when it comes to the effects of inbreeding.

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You absolutely sure they were adults? It seems really strange that so many of them are having that problem, however inbreeding is almost certainly not the cause. Inbreeding does not seem to affect roaches that much, if at all, and I don't see why it would cause adults to try to molt. If anything inbreeding would cause sickly, deformed nymphs, or a higher than usual nymph die off, any that survived to adulthood would probably be in the clear when it comes to the effects of inbreeding.

It's possible for adult roaches to molt?

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It's possible for adult roaches to molt?

It sometimes happens in adult hissers, but they aren't supposed to, so when they do molt post adulthood they usually die, don't know if I've ever seen one that lived actually.

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It sometimes happens in adult hissers, but they aren't supposed to, so when they do molt post adulthood they usually die, don't know if I've ever seen one that lived actually.

Interesting, never knew that.

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We haven't had any others molt and have been watching diligently. My husband still thinks it is a genetic issues and that all the ones we lost may have come from the same litter. So far we have had successful molts of younger hissers and several successful births. 2 in the past weeks as well as 3 newly pregnant females.

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Adults molting due to "genetic issues" sounds like science fiction, just because somebody says it doesn't make it true. I hope your animals do better but if we blame husbandry issues on science fiction it makes it hard to find the real answers. Your roaches' problems likely relate to moisture, ventilation, temperature, or food.

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Any scientific documentation on this or just internet rumors?

No, here's a thread with someone who had the same problem though, and they took pictures of the affected roaches:

http://www.roachforum.com/index.php?showtopic=6126&hl=%2Badult+%2Bhissing

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That looks like the common bloating bacterial infection. I don't see any sign of a new exoskeleton.

Interesting, perhaps that is what they were all experiencing. Though the person in the link I posted said "Yeah looking at her today I saw a small crack in the shell and peeling it showed she had molted and it already hardened underneath".

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  • 2 weeks later...

I believe it has also been said here (perhaps by Allpet) that there is no such thing as breeding too close in insects. In vertebrates, inbreeding reduces fertility, fecundity and hardiness. Insects seem to not suffer from this. The University of Kentucky did a genetic study on a massive bedbug infection found in a 15 or 16 story apartment building in Louisville ky. The found that all of them (thousands) were the result of one female. The building was so bad they had to fumigate it.

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I believe it has also been said here (perhaps by Allpet) that there is no such thing as breeding too close in insects. In vertebrates, inbreeding reduces fertility, fecundity and hardiness. Insects seem to not suffer from this. The University of Kentucky did a genetic study on a massive bedbug infection found in a 15 or 16 story apartment building in Louisville ky. The found that all of them (thousands) were the result of one female. The building was so bad they had to fumigate it.

Not true, at least for some insects:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/2425089?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

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