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New to Roaches

Discussion in 'Feeders' started by jono, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. jono

    jono Elite Member

    hey everyone i got about 100 discoids today. im very excited to start a colony so i will be able to feed from it by the time i bring my bd home. i just have a couple questions about taking care of these guys. first off, i need to know the most efficient way to supply heat to them. right now ive got a human heating pad under their bin that is doing an ok job at keeping them warm, but problem is that its got a 2 hour auto off feature for safety. i cant always be around to turn this thing back on, ya know? whats my best option for supplying heat? ive heard of lots of people fastening a heating pad to a picture frame so the pad doesnt come into direct contact with the rubber bin. is this a good idea? i really dont want to use a che and i cant find a human heating pad that doesnt have the auto off feature. should i invest in a uth and thermostat for the roaches as my alternative? also i made a home made blend of roach chow, i want to know what you think of it. i used (roughly, no real measurements were used) 2 parts flukers cricket diet to 2 parts kitten food to 1 part cherios. they are already all over the mixture and seem to like it, but is this sufficient as far as nutrition? ive also got a couple apple slices and water pillows for moisture. i appreciate your input! :)
  2. jono

    jono Elite Member

    oh i also want to add that i have 5 egg flats standing vertically in there as well. the manager at waffle house said she will save their egg flats for me so i can take them.
  3. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    I posted in the other thread but I will also post here ;)

    Yes you should invest in an uth but don't bother with the thermostat unless you want it for something else. Here is how I heat me roaches(I have taken their heat away because i need to slow their breeding down some) I attached an uth to an old picture frame glass and put the tub up on 1/2 inch spacers to raise it above the heater. It kept the temp of the tub at around 85-100 (depending on the temp of the room, 85 being a cold winter day ;))

    For food I just use a high protien dry puppy food, fresh fruits and veggies diced up small, and water crystals
  4. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Attaching the heater to a piece of glass or plex means it can be used on different enclosures. If you stick it directly to the cage, you can't remove it without risking damage to it, and would have to buy a new one if you ever needed a new roach bin. This way just makes them transferable. I do the same with all my heaters nowadays.

    I'm going to grind of some grain cereals and toss in my enclosure too, in addition to my fruit/veggies and cat chow.

    Do roaches need to be sprinkled with vitamin dust before feeding? or are the pretty nutritionally complete if gut loaded?
  5. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    They are pretty nutritionally complete but I dust with vitamins and calcium with every feeding, 1 day calcium and then 2 days vitamins then start the cycle again. I don't know that they NEED to be but I feel it's better safe than sorry ;)
    (when you dust there is just a very thin layer that sticks to the roach)
  6. jono

    jono Elite Member

    i see thanks guys. so do you think a human heating pad without the auto shut off feature is a suitable replacement for a reptile uth? im also curious if its safe to leave the human heating pads on 24/7..
    (sorry this is kinda the same stuff im saying in the other thread too guys lol doubling up in case anyone new pops in)
    also i think its best to dust the roaches. they are indeed more nutritious in general but it cant hurt to stick with a regular supplementing schedule.
  7. avoidtheboyd

    avoidtheboyd Elite Member

    i think itd be safe. Ive heard of people doing that but ive never done it. i usually just buy the repti pads. ill probably start putting them on glass now. I want to have like sterilite tubs for homes for leos but i tried it one tim and it started bowing the tub....
  8. jono

    jono Elite Member

    hmm well i am using a sterilite tub so it would probably be smart of me to put the heater on glass or at least raise the tub above the heater 1/4" er so..
    im still weary about leaving the pad on 24/7 but once i get a heater that doesnt turn off by itself then ill give it a shot. if it bothers me too much ill make the switch to a reptile uth.
    biggest thing to me is getting it warm enough in there so the roaches will flourish and breed.
  9. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    As I said in the other thread ;)
    I would think it is just as safe as having an uth on 24/7. I have my roach enclosure in the spare bathrooms tub. Not only does this prevent any possibility of fire it also makes it so if there is an escape they are contained in the tub (I have not had an escape yet but better safe than sorry ;))
    Also, they CAN climb the enclosure walls if the walls aren't as smooth as glass and kept clean (mine climb the sterilite tub all the time) What I did to prevent escape is use packaging tape. Just run it around the top and they can't climb past it as long as it stays clean, just wipe it down once a week and it works great. You could also use vasaline or there is some stuff made for climbing roaches to prevent escape (I forget the name) but the tape is the cheapest and easiest in my opinion.
  10. jono

    jono Elite Member

    lol i did run a strip of packing tape around the top just in case. so far i havent seen any climbing the sides of the tubs yet. i watched one of the adults try and it just flopped over on its backside lol.
  11. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    Ya, they have to climb really slow but they will figure it out eventually (unless discoids are dumber than dubias ;))
  12. jono

    jono Elite Member

    lol well see in time i guess.
  13. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    On the subject of human type heating pads.
    I have somethat I use on my smaller snakes that have been running 24/7 for years. And they predate the ones with the auto shutoff.
  14. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    I have a 40 watt blue bulb for my guys, in the tank with them, with a lid on top. Keeps it at a nice roasty 90.
  15. jono

    jono Elite Member

    well i found a pad that doesnt have the auto shut off, its been running about 12 hours now. hopefully it will do the trick to warm em up.
    and i have a confession to make... im scared to touch the roaches!! :eek: thats right i admit it! i was so determined to not use stinky crix as my feeder so i ordered a bug that scares the **** outta me. im not affraid to put my hand in the bin to change food/water crystals, but when i try to pick one up i get scared. i feel like such a sissy! lol
    how in the world am i going to feed these guys to my dragon if i cant even man up to touch them?? help me get over this! lol
  16. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    LMAO, you need to talk to Frognut ;)
    She finally broke down and got roaches and was scared of them too but she got over it. Just keep in mind this thought, they do NOT bite :D
    If you want a little protection you can always wear latex gloves when you need to handle them (I have to use gloves and a respirator because I developed an allergy to them (just the smell makes me not be able to breath and they have almost no smell))
  17. teach920

    teach920 Subscribed User Premium Member

    Just a thought...and I know it might sound odd...but I've found that those disposable "latex gloves" are VERY helpful in dealing with the "EWWWW GROSSSSS" factor....when I first got my colony going, I had no problems with touching and picking up the nymphs (I just kept telling myself, "these aren't really roaches, they are just the rollie pollies I used to play with when I was a kid.)...but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't think of anything to do with the ADULT Dubia...and the thought of touching them just grossed me out...., so I picked up a box of latex gloves and, at least for me, that small barrier between my hand and them......helped me get past the EWWWWWW factor.....

    Hope it works for you as well
  18. jono

    jono Elite Member

    lol i did think about getting latex gloves, just never got around to it i guess. theyre so interesting to watch. this morning i sat by their bin and just peeked under the lid for a good 30 minutes. i dont know why i get such a kick outta watching them scurry around..
    ill have to get the gloves for sure though, i bet that will help me not be such a wimp.
    and i totally agree about the adults! when im watchin the little nymphs scurry around and then i see one if the big boys looming from within the egg crates it sends chills down my spine! haha :eek:
  19. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    You pansy, put on your big boy pants :p;):D

    Attached Files:

  20. jono

    jono Elite Member

    :eek: EEK!
    ok when i get home from work in the morning im just gonna reach in and grab one! haha

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