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Platyarthrus hoffmannseggi Care?


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18 hours ago, Acro said:

I'd like some solid care info on Platyarthrus hoffmannseggi.  

Is there a good link?  Or, please tell how you keep yours.  :)

As @Arthroverts mentioned, me and @Cariblatta lutea are both keeping this species. I'm just starting out with mine, but from what Alan (C. lutea) tells me, the need for rotten wood is the only really unique part of their care from most other isopods in the hobby. He has been successfully culturing his for over a year now I believe. 

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Huh!  That's the first I've heard about them needing rotten wood.  Very interesting.  

I've also read that they need a very dry setup with just a corner that's moist, and a lot of ventilation.  Seem about right?

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I keep mine on sawdust from wood pellets (tractor supply's wood pellet seems to work the best). You just mix it with potting soil (20 potting soil to 80 sawdust) and let it age for about a week. I keep mine on moist side. 

Interestingly they only seem to breed in spring time. I've had them for 3 years now and I've only see newborns pop up when the spring warmth hits. 

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11 hours ago, Acro said:

Huh!  That's the first I've heard about them needing rotten wood.  Very interesting.  

I've also read that they need a very dry setup with just a corner that's moist, and a lot of ventilation.  Seem about right?

Indeed! Based on how few species require it, I would have never suspected that facet of their husbandry myself. lol Glad someone else did, though!

For the rest, what @Cariblatta lutea said. lol

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Yeah these and a few other obscure micro-pods like Haplophthalmus danicus are some of the very few isopods in culture that actually require rotten wood in their diet to do well, and appear to be truly xylophagous...

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17 hours ago, Acro said:

Does the rotten wood need to be moist or dry?  Or does it matter?

I keep it moist. Never kept it dry before. Also, not all wood seems to work (probably has something to do with the level of decay) but the sawdust from wood pellet has worked for me. 

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On 4/10/2020 at 9:56 AM, Cariblatta lutea said:

I keep mine on sawdust from wood pellets (tractor supply's wood pellet seems to work the best). You just mix it with potting soil (20 potting soil to 80 sawdust) and let it age for about a week. I keep mine on moist side.

 

On 4/10/2020 at 11:08 AM, All About Arthropods said:

Indeed! Based on how few species require it, I would have never suspected that facet of their husbandry myself.

 

On 4/10/2020 at 6:25 PM, Hisserdude said:

Yeah these and a few other obscure micro-pods like Haplophthalmus danicus are some of the very few isopods in culture that actually require rotten wood in their diet to do well, and appear to be truly xylophagous...

A friend just game me some of these huge isopods!  

I think I've got them setup right, now I just need to get some wood for them . . . but I don't have a Tractor Supply store near me. 

Is there anything from Home Depot that will do?  Maybe their "Traeger Signature Blend Wood Pellets - a blend of hickory, maple, and cherry hardwoods" ?  What do you think?

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3 hours ago, Acro said:

A friend just game me some of these huge isopods!  

You're not confusing Porcellio hoffmannseggi with Platyarthrus hoffmannseggi are you? Because the care recommendations thus far have been for the latter, which are TINY, seldom kept, and completely different in husbandry needs from the former... 

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7 hours ago, Hisserdude said:

You're not confusing Porcellio hoffmannseggi with Platyarthrus hoffmannseggi are you? Because the care recommendations thus far have been for the latter, which are TINY, seldom kept, and completely different in husbandry needs from the former... 

Aww man . . . what a ridiculous oversight!  I've been keeping bugs for over 20 years . . . just goes to show that even us 'old timers' can make a super rookie mistake!  

Thank you for pointing that out . . . yes, I've been meaning to type Porcellio hoffmannseggi this whole time . . . 

Guess that brings me back to my original question . . . Any good care info or links for Porcellio hoffmannseggi?  

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1 hour ago, Acro said:

Aww man . . . what a ridiculous oversight!  I've been keeping bugs for over 20 years . . . just goes to show that even us 'old timers' can make a super rookie mistake!  

Thank you for pointing that out . . . yes, I've been meaning to type Porcellio hoffmannseggi this whole time . . . 

Guess that brings me back to my original question . . . Any good care info or links for Porcellio hoffmannseggi?  

Mine do well in an 18 qt. container with good ventilation. Things are basically bone dry except for one corner of the enclosure that I keep a moist clump of sphagnum moss in. Besides that, they have a couple, large pieces of bark for hiding under. Their diet consists of dog food and carrot.

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5 hours ago, Acro said:

Aww man . . . what a ridiculous oversight!  I've been keeping bugs for over 20 years . . . just goes to show that even us 'old timers' can make a super rookie mistake!  

Thank you for pointing that out . . . yes, I've been meaning to type Porcellio hoffmannseggi this whole time . . . 

Guess that brings me back to my original question . . . Any good care info or links for Porcellio hoffmannseggi?  

Haha no problem man, we all make mistakes, no matter how long we're in the hobby! ;)

Now for Porcellio hoffmannseggi, the substrate type isn't all that important, and rotten wood isn't actually a necessity, (can't hurt to add some though if you have it). Just make sure they have a load of ventilation, lots of surface area, (eggcrates, bark, etc.), and keep one or two corners of the enclosure humid, the rest dry. I've heard these are one of the more forgiving Spanish Porcellio, so hopefully they won't prove too picky! 

Also, make sure that if your starter group is male heavy, you remove excess males from the enclosure, as they can stress females out to the point of death, I'm guessing from frequent mating attempts. In a larger colony I think this sort of behavior is diffused a bit, but in a smaller starter colony, keeping only one male in with the females at a time seems to be a good idea.

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6 hours ago, Acro said:

Aww man . . . what a ridiculous oversight!  I've been keeping bugs for over 20 years . . . just goes to show that even us 'old timers' can make a super rookie mistake!  

Thank you for pointing that out . . . yes, I've been meaning to type Porcellio hoffmannseggi this whole time . . . 

Guess that brings me back to my original question . . . Any good care info or links for Porcellio hoffmannseggi?  

 

I hope you don't mind that I might be telling this story for a while ;D...

Thanks,

Arthroverts

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On 4/14/2020 at 2:13 PM, All About Arthropods said:

Mine do well in an 18 qt. container with good ventilation. Things are basically bone dry except for one corner of the enclosure that I keep a moist clump of sphagnum moss in. Besides that, they have a couple, large pieces of bark for hiding under. Their diet consists of dog food and carrot.

That matches up (much more) with what I've got setup.   lol

On 4/14/2020 at 6:28 PM, Hisserdude said:

Now for Porcellio hoffmannseggi, the substrate type isn't all that important, and rotten wood isn't actually a necessity, (can't hurt to add some though if you have it). Just make sure they have a load of ventilation, lots of surface area, (eggcrates, bark, etc.), and keep one or two corners of the enclosure humid, the rest dry. I've heard these are one of the more forgiving Spanish Porcellio, so hopefully they won't prove too picky! 

Also, make sure that if your starter group is male heavy, you remove excess males from the enclosure, as they can stress females out to the point of death, I'm guessing from frequent mating attempts. In a larger colony I think this sort of behavior is diffused a bit, but in a smaller starter colony, keeping only one male in with the females at a time seems to be a good idea.

Some real good details for their care (lost of surface area, removing males, etc.).  Know of a photo source for sexing males and females?

23 hours ago, Arthroverts said:

I hope you don't mind that I might be telling this story for a while 

If you can find people that will think its funny, go for it!  

I'm just glad that we actually have 2 "care sheets" combined into one thread.  Hopefully this will be able to help out those looking for isopod info!  :)

 

~~~~~~Thanks everyone!

 

.

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27 minutes ago, Acro said:

If you can find people that will think its funny, go for it!  

 

When you are the leader of an invertebrate club, its not hard to find people who will think its funny ;)...

Not trying to be rude or anything either by the way, I just found that genuinely hilarious. Put a smile on my face :D.

Thanks,

Arthroverts

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32 minutes ago, Acro said:

Some real good details for their care (lost of surface area, removing males, etc.).  Know of a photo source for sexing males and females?

Males have really long uropods, (the pointy bits sticking out of their butts), whereas females have much shorter ones... Should be easy to sex even half grown individuals.

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5 hours ago, Arthroverts said:

Not trying to be rude or anything either by the way, I just found that genuinely hilarious. Put a smile on my face

I didn't take it as rude.  If my mistake makes people laugh, than I'm good with it.  :)

5 hours ago, Hisserdude said:

Should be easy to sex even half grown individuals.

That's the bit of info I needed to know.  Great details!!!  Thanks!

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1 hour ago, Acro said:

That's the bit of info I needed to know.  Great details!!!  Thanks!

No problem, happy to help! :D

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On 4/14/2020 at 6:28 PM, Hisserdude said:

if your starter group is male heavy, you remove excess males from the enclosure . . .

So I checked my male/female ratio today.  I have 9 adults and 4 are male 5 are female.  There are about 3 or 4 juveniles with them (Actually, I found one of the females guarding a group of manca, so my numbers are already going up!) too.  

Should I remove some of the males, or does that male/female (and juvenile) ratio seem safe?

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2 hours ago, Acro said:

So I checked my male/female ratio today.  I have 9 adults and 4 are male 5 are female.  There are about 3 or 4 juveniles with them (Actually, I found one of the females guarding a group of manca, so my numbers are already going up!) too.  

Should I remove some of the males, or does that male/female (and juvenile) ratio seem safe?

If it were my culture, I'd remove all but one male until the next generation matures and they are numerous enough that any aggressive behavior becomes diffused... But some people never have problems with males stressing females out, so you could be fine leaving them in there.

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3 hours ago, Hisserdude said:

If it were my culture, I'd remove all but one male until the next generation matures . . . 

That's a good thought.  If I split them:

Would it be better to have (Group A) of 3 males and (Group B) 1 male with 5 female and the 3 or 4 juveniles.

Or with (Group A) consisting of 3 males with 3 or 4 juveniles and (Group B) 1 male with 5 females?

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2 hours ago, Acro said:

Would it be better to have (Group A) of 3 males and (Group B ) 1 male with 5 female and the 3 or 4 juveniles.

This option would be best IMO... 

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