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Dubia Roach Diet

Discussion in 'Feeders' started by Jkbauer13, Jun 25, 2012.

  1. Jkbauer13

    Jkbauer13 Elite Member

    Hey guys, just wanted to know what you guys think of Beneful Original Dry Dog Food as the staple protein source for my Dubia colony. Here's the link :Beneful® Original Dry Dog Food | Beneful®


    10.0%CRUDE FAT (MIN)
    14.0%MOISTURE (MAX)
    1.1%CALCIUM (CA) (MIN)
    175 mg/kg IRON (FE) (MIN)
    0.2 mg/kg SELENIUM (SE) (MIN)
    10,000 IU/kg VITAMIN A (MIN

    Ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, whole wheat flour, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), rice flour, beef, soy flour, water, meat and bone meal, propylene glycol, sugar, tricalcium phosphate, phosphoric acid, salt, animal digest, potassium chloride, sorbic acid (a preservative), dried peas, dried carrots, calcium propionate (a preservative), choline chloride, l-Lysine monohydrochloride, Vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, red 40, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, yellow 6, yellow 5, Vitamin A supplement, blue 2, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, Vitamin B-12 supplement, brewers dried yeast, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, Vitamin D-3 supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite.
  2. AjaMichelle

    AjaMichelle Elite Member


    You shouldn't feed dog and cat foods as a gut-load. There are a variety of reasons why.

    First of all, this is a dubia diet recommended to me by Jarich, another experienced member:
    "alfalfa, oats, squash, collard greens, green beans, whole grain corn flour, organic cheerios and calcium carbonate"

    I feed this diet as well as bok choy occasionally and Repashy's Bug Burger.

    Reasons why dog/cat foods don't make good gut-loads:
    1. The protein is TOO HIGH!
    You've quoted Beneful at 25% protein. Roaches do best with protein levels around 13 to 15%. Higher than this and the adults store excess energy consumed as nitrogenous components, specifically uric acid, for use later. Feeding roaches with these reserve energy stores can contribute to gout in reptiles.

    Reptile Resources :: Nutrition Articles :: Can Feeder Insect Diets Contribute To Gout In Reptiles? - Repashy Ventures - Distributor Center

    Kells, SA, et al. 1999. Estimating nutritional status of German cockroaches, Blattella germanica (L.) (Dictyoptera: Blattellidae), in the field. Journal of Insect Physiology. Vol 45: pp 709-717.

    2. The preservatives used in the dog and cat foods can be dangerous to reptiles.

    From Wayne (Infernalis) and
    Phosphates in food!

    3. Food colorings shouldn't even be fed to dogs and cats.

    Honestly, Beneful and most other commercial dog and cat foods are BARELY acceptable foods for mammalian companion animals, let alone as an insect gut-load for your sav. IMO commercial diets aren't even acceptable for use with dogs and cats.
  3. AjaMichelle

    AjaMichelle Elite Member


    "meat and bone meal" can literally be anything--- dogs and cats euthanized at city shelters and sold to rendering plants, euthanized/dead zoo animals, road kill, leather jackets, leather shoes, etc.

    "animal digest" and "animal fat" can come from ANY animal

    "propylene glycol" is the main ingredient in deodorant and is also used in antifreeze. It's added to keep dog food from drying out. it's been banned by the FDA for use in cat food due to it causing blood disorders like Heinz body anemia.
  4. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    Not dubias but I have discoids.

    While I use Dog food it makes up a small portion of my roaches diet. I feed about equal part of dog food, alfalfa, fish food, whole grain, and baby cereal. I blend it all together. I keep fresh produce such as carrots ,kale , squash, apples, and oranges available and always have water gel available.


    Yet again I see this mentioned as high protein diet isn't supposed to be good for the reptiles, but low protein diet is not good for the roaches. I read on a roach breeders site that under about 18% protein roaches start wing nibble ing on each other. I believe this to be true as I had wing nibbling going on before I added dog food and fish flakes to my chick mash diet I was providing.

    While dog food may not be the best food for dogs it doesn't out right kill them usually. I do agree with Aja, that most are barely worthy of being on shelves. When selecting dog and cat foods I suggest looking for "Feed Tested" rather than formulated. Formulated gives you alot of the garbage Aja mentions(i.e. leather)

    Not to say high protein levels don't cause this because some dog foods are as high as 35% or more protein.

    I do recommend you use a better grade dog food than that if you are going to use dog food however. Beneful is a garbage dog food filled with perservatives, dyes, and fillers.
    Get a dog food that is a single color/shade and the first two or three ingredients are something you would eat..... not ground corn or by products.

    Attached Files:

  5. mld

    mld Subscribed User Premium Member

    I wouldn't even feed Beneful to my dog!
  6. AjaMichelle

    AjaMichelle Elite Member

    Better dog foods are going to have higher protein and none of the garbage found in commercial dog foods :)

    Using the Bug Burger has prevented the wing nibbling.
  7. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    I don't want to make this a discussion about dog food but the quality of dog food doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the % protein. I have never really looked into the bug burger, actually only just recently heard of it. Care to elaborate on it?
  8. AjaMichelle

    AjaMichelle Elite Member

    I promise I won't derail this thread and make it about dog food lol but I do want to say that...
    The quality of dog food definitely correlates with percent protein. Commercial dog foods use discarded items like brains, feet, feathers, and beaks, and of course previously mentioned unsavory meat sources, while higher quality meat-based, by-product, and filler-free foods are using choice pieces like muscle tissue, heart, kidneys, liver, lung, etc. and thus a higher percentage of the food is actually protein which results in a higher percentage overall. Protein in foods like Pedigree is typically listed as around 20 to 25%
    ("senior" and "large breed" levels) while the protein in foods made by and Blue are upwards of 25%, with the food being 80 to 90% meat protein depending on the formula. You can only do so much with corn and soy.

    Of course, this is assuming that we're just referring to standard adult dog foods because there are some specialized formulas that are healthy but have protein levels of 20 to 21% (Natural Balance LID).

    My issue with commercial diets is with the nasty chemicals etc. in the food, not with the corn, etc. I am curious about how the amino acid content might affect reptiles.

    The bug burger is basically a powdered gut-load to which you add water then microwave; It turns into a patty when it cools. You can also boil water and add it to the powder, then let it cool. It's just like making Jello. It's got respectable levels of calcium and other vitamins and minerals, but the calcium isn't so high that it kills the insects. The ingredients are as follows:

    INGREDIENTS: Alfalfa Meal, Flax Meal, Corn Meal, Potato Granules, Brewers Dried Yeast, Pea Protein Isolate, Dried Kelp, Calcium Carbonate, Carrageenan, Konjac, Carob Bean Gum, Guar Gum, Dried Krill, RoseHips, Cinnamon, Calendula Flower, Marigold Flower Extract, Phaffia Rhodozyma Yeast, Paprika Extract, Spirulina Algae, Turmeric, Salt, Potassium Citrate, Magnesium Gluconate, Canthaxanthin, Malic Acid, Calcium Propionate, Methylparaben, and Potassium Sorbate (as mold inhibitors), Lecithin, Rosemary Extract and Mixed Tocopherols (as preservatives), Vitamins (Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin D Supplement, Choline Chloride, Ascorbic Acid, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Beta Carotene, Pantothenic Acid, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B-12 Supplement).

    GUARANTEED ANALYSIS: Crude Protein min. 20%, Crude Fat min. 5%, Crude Fat max. 8%, Crude Fiber max. 12%, Moisture max. 8%, Ash max. 10%, Calcium min. 5%, Calcium max. 6%, Phosphorus min. 0.5%.

    Source: Repashy Superfoods :: RETAIL :: By Product Name :: Bug Burger :: BUG BURGER 4 oz BAG - Repashy Ventures - Distributor Center
  9. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    I was referring more to the label %'s and not by-products. I was referring to any dog food available to the public that brand made at that "level". Not necessarily a prescription diet but yet any of their formulas. We are not limited here we are feeding bugs!

    The bug burger sounds interesting. Something to consider adding in anyway.
  10. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    What are the relative benefits of discoids v. dubias?
  11. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    They are comparable, not much difference other than females also have wings making discoid more difficult to gender ID. Dubias are not available here in Florida. Discoids are about the only ones. We have a few native species that you can breed but they fly and climb so I'm not interested, maybe in the future for stimulation.
  12. Jkbauer13

    Jkbauer13 Elite Member

    First off let me clarify that I wasn't using dog food as a gut load. I have commercial rephashy gut load. I simply use the dog food as the regular diet to provide protein while I also provide much more fruits, veggies and grains. I generally consider "diet" and "gut load" something different. Also, don't worry I don't use it with my dog haha it was simply on sale.

    What do you use for your protein source then? Or if I just continue with the diet I've been feeding minus the dog food will that provide adequate protein?
  13. Jkbauer13

    Jkbauer13 Elite Member

    A thing I really like about the dubias is how easily the adults are sexed, although discoids get bigger. Past that, I think there pretty similar.
  14. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    The main thing I use for my Dubias is wheat bran from the feed store. I pay about 12 dollars for a 50 lb bag!
    With the additions of various fruits and veggies. I have occassionally given a pinch or two of dry cat food but it isn't something that I regularly supply. And I am up to my ears in dubias so it must be working.
  15. SpidaFly

    SpidaFly Elite Member

    I'm probably just echoing the sentiments of other posters, but... yeah, don't make a habit of feeding roaches that are on a very high protein diet to your reptiles. However, dubias DO need some protein or they will cannibalize. You'll start noticing missing legs, shredded wings.

    Personally I'm still waiting for my dubia colony to get to a point where it can supply enough for my current dragons, tarantulas, and another dragon I expect later in the year. So for now I'm going with the "dog food and oranges" route. The dog food is ~25% protein. I take 5-10 pieces, soak them, and put them in my colony with a fresh slice of orange every night. They devour it, ESPECIALLY the nymphs and females. I feel safe doing this because I'm just trying to get the colony to explode for now.

    Later on when the colony is ready to be fed, I will have three or more bins:
    - Breeder bin(s): one or more totes just for breeding. I'll cut back on citrus and probably target 18-20% protein instead of 25%, but at that point I should have so many roaches that slower production should still be fairly fast.
    - "Good food"** bin: This will be a "long term" holding roaches that are destined for my reptiles' bellies. There will be "good stuff"... vegetables, oats, etc.
    - Gut load: smaller box with nothing but a high-calcium zoo grade gutload and water crystals.

    I feel like this is a pretty solid plan.

    ** I'm going to avoid going on a big ol' rant here, but I don't feel that feeding insects "good food" equates to "gutloading". You're not actually reaching 1:1 ca-phos levels in bugs by feeding them "good food". If your goal is to bring a 1:1 ca-phos ratio, a quality gutload is necessary for 12-48 hours. This must be done carefully because a lizard's beneficial calcium levels are typically deadly to the insect. I have to clean out my cricket gutload box every week, so many dead.
  16. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    If it was going to be my only protien source for their regular diet I would still select a higher quality one. Chick mash is like 12 bucks for 50 pounds and koi fish pellets are relatively cheap protein source also.
  17. Jkbauer13

    Jkbauer13 Elite Member

    Ya I agree, that's what I meant by difference between diet and gut load

    And thanks Rakoladycz, Ill have to go get one of those
  18. Jkbauer13

    Jkbauer13 Elite Member

    Went out today and bought a 50# bag of chick starter for 15$ from the feed store :)
  19. Knox

    Knox Elite Member

    I am JUST about to start a dubia colony. It seems they are all the rage now, and for good reason. Here is the start of my bin:


    I will be following this thread closely, gaining all the knowledge that I can. I have seen just about every Youtube video on dubia colonies, I believe.

    I am getting 50 in mixed sizes. I hope to have a nice breeding colony going in about 4 - 6 months.

  20. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Congrats Michael on joining the roach revolution! LOL!
    2 things I would do different. The opening in the top I would have made much smaller as it will help to keep in the warmth and humidity. If its too dry they have molting issues.
    Second, and you mentioned it at the last, is that I would suggest not using the clear tub but an opaque one.
    My take on this comes from once living in a place where there was a german cockroach problem,...
    The roaches were more active at night and when you turned on a light they scattered!
    Also the wood roaches and water bugs that I see outside only come out and become active after dark.

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