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Salutations from the 51st US State: Confusion


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I have yet to post introduction posts on a couple of forums. I have this bad habit of just jumping right into discussions, so before I go too far in this form, greetings! I chose my title because I thought it was funny; I do not think of myself as confused (most of the time), and one of my favorite childhood movies was Charlotte's Web. I keep a number of roaches right now. I started several years ago with the classic hissers, and I managed to kill my small starter colony. I tried again, and now I have hundreds. After several failed attempts, a few of which were impressive, of breeding crickets, I started culturing feeder roaches. Due to the size of my pets, I did not want the standard Blaptica dubia, so I pursued Panchlora nivea and Nauphoeta cinerea. Well -- Panchlora nivea fly, a lot! Therefore, I never used them much as feeders because I never wanted to have the tank opened for more than a few seconds. They were pretty though, and some roach-haters actually liked my "leaf roaches." I tried the N. cinerea, and they worked well. I also acquired adults of Blaberus giganteus, and I soon had dozens of nymphs. Then, in my quest to understand the regulations on exotic mantids and beetles, I learned about the USDA regulations on roaches, and all my roaches, except G. portentosa, were illegal. Therefore, I gave them to a museum and pursued the proper permits. I acquired more lobster roaches from Josh's Frogs as they have the proper commercial biological supply permits. I submitted permit applications for many species of cockroaches. Permits for some of those species were recently granted! I now have the USDA permits for Therea petiveriana, Blatta lateralis, Rhyparobia maderae, and a number of others. Unfortunately, Blaberus giganteus was not one of the approved species, and I was told that they require a containment facility.

I currently have Gromphadorhina portentosa (200+), Nauphoeta cinerea (a lot), and Rhyparobia maderae (2). 

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Where exactly do you live? Technically most roaches in the continental US shouldn't be legal to keep, but since they are kept by so many people, with many species having been bred for years and years, the USDA doesn't bother enforcing said laws anywhere except FL. You generally won't encounter trouble with keeping roaches in the US unless you go looking for it, and I don't know of anyone who's had the USDA knock on their door to confiscate their roaches, (whereas phasmids, exotic Orthopterans and exotic beetles are MUCH more strictly regulated).

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  • 3 weeks later...

Since I think anyone who really wanted to know could find this information, I live in NC. I am pursuing the permits for exotic phasmids, orthopterans, stag and rhino beetles, mantids, lepidopterans, and millipedes. As a result of the USDA oversight, I have to follow the regulations precisely. 

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Ah OK, yeah they don't really care about most average Blatticulturists keeping exotic roaches, especially since the majority of them don't pose much of a threat to agriculture or of becoming household pests, but since you're applying for permits on Phasmids and exotic scarabs, they're gonna be monitoring ALL your pet inverts pretty strictly...

Still feel like they probably wouldn't bust your chops over most of the species that have been firmly established in the US hobby for years even without permits, like all the Blaberus species, Gromphadorhina, Eublaberus, ThereaGyna, etc., but some of the newer stuff like Pseudoglomeris magnifica, Archiblatta hoeveni, Hemithyrsocera spp., etc. MIGHT draw some reprimands...

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