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Moldy oothecae?


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There is a white mold growing on some of the oothecae (B. Orientalis) that I've transferred to a separate container. This cannot be a good thing.

What is the proper incubation environment for oothecae? Too little humidity and they dry out, too much and you get mold. I am perplexed.

Is there a remedy? I was thinking of a water rinse, or pehaps a quick dip in a diluted bleach solution, followed by a fresh water rinse.

Thanks for any tips!

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  • 2 weeks later...

If the mold is growing near or on the opening, it's probably too late for them as the mold is likely growing out from inside. If it's just growing on the surface of the casing due to stuck-on detritus, I you could gently remove the mold and what it's growing on with a damp Q-tip. To avoid this happening in the future, I suggest cleaning the oothecae before setting them aside for incubation.

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If the mold is growing near or on the opening, it's probably too late for them as the mold is likely growing out from inside. If it's just growing on the surface of the casing due to stuck-on detritus, I you could gently remove the mold and what it's growing on with a damp Q-tip. To avoid this happening in the future, I suggest cleaning the oothecae before setting them aside for incubation.

Good suggestion. As an experiment I gave the oothecae the "float test" in a solution of water with a little bleach. Out of 19 oothecae, 8 were floaters which were then destroyed. The remaining 11 were gently wiped down with a cotton swab and left to air dry. These were then placed in a container which was also rinsed out with a bleach solution. Time will tell if this an effective protocol.

One thing is bothersome, though. Some of the oothecae are showing signs of puckering, like they may be drying out. I don't know what that means.

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Sure you got a male in with the females? The only ootheca I have seen mold are infertile duds, usually healthy ootheca don't mold.

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Sure you got a male in with the females? The only ootheca I have seen mold are infertile duds, usually healthy ootheca don't mold.

Oh, yeah. Originally all the critters were in one container, about half adult male and half adult female and subadults. Their behavior was crazy, and I thought the females were being overly stressed. A lot of activity, but little mating (according to time lapse video); the females were being coy and ignored the males. I put six males in a separate container, leaving one male with the females and subadults, and they all calmed down.

The last two subadults are sure taking their time for the final molt, though...if it *is* the final molt. They look relatively small. There is also quite a variation in the size of the adults, which I find interesting.

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