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Hello, I have three male roaches. Well, had. I now have two. The smallest one began to seem lethargic and lazy a day after I brought him home. Then, he turned turn white the other day, burrowing himself slightly into the substrate. I assumed he was molting? 

However, the next morning, I checked on him(his name was John Snoach) and he was gone, for sure... His legs and antennae weren't moving. He was stiff. He has been buried already, but as a new roach owner, did I do something wrong? My roaches always have adequate food and water, they are kept warm with humidity up, and in the dark 98% (the other 2% is feeding and humidifying) of the time. I did not touch Jon Snoach at all after he turned white. I would appreciate some help as I am wondering what happened and I fear it might happen again. My other roaches seem fine, eating and drinking and crawling and climbing. 

I feel guilty but I don't know how or if I could have helped him.

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They are white after they shed the old skin. Then it darkens as it hardens. They are delicate during this hardening time. Hissers do not burrow. When mine molt, they just hang out on a piece of bark usually away from the others. Hissers should be kept dry. If it is humid this might have been the problem. They also need bark, sticks or plastic plants to hang out on and hide under. Male hissers also will fight with each other. Now yes roaches are nocturnal, but think most animals benefit from a daylight, dark cycle.

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7 hours ago, Matttoadman said:

I will also add that there are three states that ban hissers...........

Tennessee used to ban roaches, but apparently that's changed and it is now legal to keep exotic roaches (like hissers) in that state. :)

To the OP, just sounds like a fluke to me, stuff like this happens occasionally, I don't think anything you did caused it. As long as they have good ventilation, humidity shouldn't have been a problem, while most people keep their hissers dry, others have had great success keeping them fairly humid too.

Keeping a cage pretty dry is easier than keeping it humid though, and honestly I'd suggest making half of the enclosure bone dry, and the other half fairly moist.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 7/16/2017 at 2:38 PM, Matttoadman said:

I will also add that there are three states that ban hissers...........

I was aware of the roach ban! I checked for sure, and a local pet store sells them. I believe Florida and Louisiana are two because the climates allow the hissers thrive and eventually to become invasive. 

I've been giving my new roaches a cycle of day night, as well as keeping them slightly less humid than I was. Their substrate right now is a soft sort of dry grasslike bedding, and they have adequate climbing access and hiding places, including a carved out coconut shell which they seem to enjoy. 

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