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Substrate for Crickets

Discussion in 'Feeders' started by CrestedGecko21, Nov 24, 2014.

  1. CrestedGecko21

    CrestedGecko21 Active Member

    Hello everyone.

    As the title suggests, I am wondering if any form of substrate is required for Crickets. For my first batch I did not use substrate and quickly found out how fast feces collects, making the container look unsanitary. I then placed newspaper in the container, and the few Crickets that I had left died within three days. Was this a coincidence, from some other unknown cause, or from the newspaper?

    Basically, is a substrate recommended for keeping feed Crickets?
  2. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    I would say don't use any. You want to have multiple containers so you can just lift the egg cartons out and put into a new one. Then just dump the waste out. If you have too much moisture then you will have a harder time cleaning it out and have a nasty stink.
  3. Darkbird

    Darkbird Elite Member

    Agreed, no substrate. The leavings in the bottom should be dry anyway and so don't smell much. Whether the crickets you had left died from the newspaper or not is anyone's guess. They do need something in there to climb around on, so egg crate, toilet paper or paper towel tubes, or whatever should be in there.
  4. BrownFoundling

    BrownFoundling Established Member

    I've been using a single sheet of plain paper towel as the bins I am using are too slippery for the crickets to really even walk on. When I clean out the bins I simply move things from one end to the other, lift up the paper towel to shift the droppings toward the center then repeat for the other end and pull out the towel. This does not get all of the droppings, but it does get most of them and it is not too hard to chase away any crickets who want to stay on the paper.

    This might sound like a weird question, but where do you get egg crate/cartons other than by buying eggs? I don't use eggs in my cooking very much and many of the local brands pack them in plastic cartons rather than the paper pulp type anyway. I've been making do with the small pieces of egg crate that the pet store puts in the bag with the crickets.
  5. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    I've actually seen the Farm Supply store in my town selling the egg flats now.
    But I buy them from the egg grading place near me. It's like $20 for a stack that lasted me over 3 years.
  6. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    You can also try the local restaurants and see if they will save their egg flats for you. Since they just throw them away.
  7. CTU2fan

    CTU2fan Elite Member

    I've seen them on amazon also. Can't recall offhand how many/how much but I know it seemed reasonable.

    I would agree with everyone that you really don't need substrate. If you're looking to breed them just add a dish of soil, let them lay eggs in it, then put it in its own bin after a week or so (or else the adults will eat the new nymphs).
  8. CrestedGecko21

    CrestedGecko21 Active Member

    Thanks everyone. I got more Cricket's this evening and did not use any substrate. In all likelihood they died because they reached the end of their life cycle (I already had them for approximately three weeks).
  9. Darkbird

    Darkbird Elite Member

    If you happen to regularly go to a restaurant that serves breakfsst, just ask if they can save the egg crate flats for you. The truckstop in my town where I get fuel offered to save them for me when I asked if I could snatch some out of the pile of boxes that was on its way to the trash. The conversation explaining why I wanted them for dubia roaches was pretty amusing for me too. They are also available from the bug vendor at my local reptile show, but this won't be an option for everyone.

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