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You Win-info on Roaches

Discussion in 'Feeders' started by Frognut, May 25, 2009.

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  1. TheRoachRanch

    TheRoachRanch Elite Member

    Frognut to answer your question about Substrate, if you are not keeping roaches as feeder but more for show than setting up a small cage is very pleasing to the eye. However if you ARE keeping roaches for feeders don't go w/ any substrate. Believe me... The roach frass builds up REALLY quickly and they bury in that. I clean my bins weekly as I can't afford a build up of waste.

    As for sexing Dubia, They come in so many shapes it's rather difficult to sex them w/ 100% certainty before their final molt. However some people get pretty good at it. I for one have realized that once a colony starts to pop I get A LOT of males at first. Than I seem to get A LOT of females. And then it just averages out. It's very strange but happens in EVERY one of my Dubis colonies.

  2. Frognut

    Frognut Subscribed User Premium Member

    Ian --

    Is it true that the last segment of their body is a tell-tale sign of the sex? Do females have a larger 'last' segment then the rest and the boys a smaller one? Have you ever noticed.

    I will say that all the smaller ones are currently showing to be males if that's true -- which holds to your statement about males starting out heavy when the colony is beginning.

    Ok - so no substrate, and more frequent changes. I can do that. I was thinking the substrate would help keep the frass out of hand range and once I picked out the small ones when I clean, the whole mess gets thrown away. Thats why I was asking about the vermiculite. It's cheap here. I know they also use the substrate to bury in, but they are walking all over the frass now.

    Oh, Liz -- you've got a lifetime supply of roaches. Once this colony gets really going, which shouldn't take too long, You'll be getting all you want.

    At this point I think its safe to weed out some of the big ones, because they are sooooo many that have passed the size I can use.

    I'm definitely getting the better side of the deal!:eek:
  3. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    In my opinion I would use no substrate at all. The little ones like to burrow and it will make it VERY difficult to get them all out when cleaning the enclosure(some of the babies are only 1/8th of an inch or so and very hard to see even with no substrate)

    As to the sexing. I have heard about the females having a larger last segment but on the littler ones you really can't tell because they are so small and it's hard to even see the last segment. What I have found is that the smaller females are wider(kind of like a tear drop shape) than the males(kind of a grain of rice shape) and there is a definite color difference, males are lighter than females.

    I'm not 100% sure of my sexing but it is what I've noticed with my colony.(maybe I'll do a controlled test and make a very small enclosure and put what I think are males in there and watch them grow to see if they are males lol)
  4. Ravyn

    Ravyn Well-Known Member

    Would these roaches be better than crickets for other herps, like Bearded Dragons, as well? Would a baby beardie be able to eat them?
  5. Frognut

    Frognut Subscribed User Premium Member

    I can't speak for specific type of critters - but if they eat crickets than I would say yes to the roaches. Roaches have more protein than crickets and I can tell you from my short time in the breeding of them, I like them SOOOOOOO much more than crickets.

    My frogs like them, even if I hand feed them - they are willing to eat more with the roaches then they did with the meal worms.

    The Gecko's are eating them, but not much. They are also not eating the super or meal worms either (actually Gretchen will bite the super and spit it back out, and she gobbled them by 3's a few months ago) -- they are having PMS or something!

    They are fast, but they don't hop around. And I think Steve suggested sticking them in the fridge for a few minutes before feeding to slow them down a touch.

    So yes, I think you could feed them roaches. Someone will chime in if the baby bearded dragon shouldn't have them.
  6. Drache Dame

    Drache Dame Elite Member

    It should be okay as long as the roach is smaller than the space between the dragon's eyes. How old/small is it? You should probably start your own thread.
  7. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    The question was in regard to roaches. It is applicable.
  8. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    Roaches are good for ANY insect eating herp, they have a better nutritional value and a better meat to shell ratio than crickets. They are also easier to breed and don't smell as bad as crickets. If you breed them you will have roaches 1/8th of an inch up to 2-2 1/2 inches so you just dig out the size you need.
    And if they are to fast for the herp to catch you can stick them in the fridge(NOT the freezer) for a few minutes(5 minutes usually slows my Turkish roaches down to almost not moving at all and they are faster than dubias)

    Here is a link to a nutritional value sheet for various feeder bugs

    Nutritional Facts
  9. Ravyn

    Ravyn Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the replies everyone. I don't have a beardie yet but I know I want to breed my own feeders for when I do get it and these sounded like a good idea.
  10. Frognut

    Frognut Subscribed User Premium Member

    Let me know when you have this done -- I would like a copy of the written thesis, thanks!!:p

    OK -- I found ONE problem with the roaches. My girls like to climb through their food dish, and on a few occasions I thought they ate the roach, when really the little roach buggers hitched a ride on the Gecko and found a way in the tank. (and away from the Gecko).

    But that is all I have found -- these things are great! (sorry Dragoness!)

    I am, however, running out of larger-small size. I have a BUNCH of tiny ones, and a billion LARGE ones, but the Gecko sized ones are almost gone. Although my frogs will eat larger ones then I thought:eek: I offered a larger one to my big Gray Tree Frog, but he didn't want it, then my tiny frog jumped across the branch and gobbled it up. She had a time swallowing it - but she did! It was WAY bigger than the space between her eyes! Silly frogs...
  11. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    That's why I feed in a dig box. That way they don't get all over the enclosure.
    Buddy will eat bigger than the space between his eyes also. I'll feed him the ones that are just a little bigger than his head and he eats and poops them fine. As to running low, the colony is still establishing so buy, say, a weeks worth of crickets and feed those for a week, then feed roaches, then crickets. I wanted to establish my colony to be able to feed out of right away so I got 1000 dubia and 1000 turkish. You want the bigger ones to grow up and then all those females will have babies and within 2 months max you'll have all you need in the right sizes.
    (or you could order 500 more and not have to use crickets)
  12. Frognut

    Frognut Subscribed User Premium Member

    I've been feeding outside the tank -- in a separate tank. Which sometimes works and sometime doesn't. But with Gretchen giving me fits about not eating - I always leave one or two roaches in their dish in case they get hungry later.

    When they ate superworms, the Geckos would go for a late night snack. But they never hitched a ride on the gecko and escaped...;)

    And NO crickets. I'll order more roaches before I buy another cricket! As long as Liz is still willing to take a regular supply of big ones once the colony takes off -- I'll be golden!

    (Even my husband was expounding on the virtues of the roaches over crickets the other day to a doubting friend -- but don't tell him I over heard him....)
  13. LovetheBaruu

    LovetheBaruu Subscribed User Premium Member

    Hook, line, and sinker!! I wish you could have recorded the conversation for use at a later time (I know you will eventually need it!).;)
  14. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    Frogs eat prey items way bigger than the space between their eyes. That rule of thumb kind of goes out the window with them. Think about the pacman frog. Their eyes are set close, but their mouth is so huge. Meatball has no problem eating a mouse, yet the mouse is almost as large as him! As long as the ingested item doesn't cause an impaction risk, if it can go down, its fine!
  15. Frognut

    Frognut Subscribed User Premium Member

    Liz, I'm finding most rules go out the window with frogs;) (and toads)

    I have had one frog give up on the roach and spit it back out, but otherwise they gobble the heck out of them. I just wish I could get them to eat them out of the bucket instead of hand feeding them:rolleyes:

    And Kelly - there is no point in ever bringing it back up. He'd deny it even IF I had a recording. As long as I know he said it, that's good enough for me...:)
  16. Drache Dame

    Drache Dame Elite Member

    I've heard my mom do this with other stuff. She hates my pet rats, but I heard her defending them to one of her friends. As long as he doesn't know you heard him he can't deny it :p

    Roaches are great and I'm glad you're having such luck!
  17. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Rule does not apply to monitors either as they have cranial kinesis. That is movable joints within the cranium.
  18. Dragonscalestudios

    Dragonscalestudios Elite Member

    Really? Very interesting bit of info Kriminaal.
  19. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    I think the rule is only really valid for some species of lizards.

    as pointed out, not frogs, and definitely not snakes. Not monitors.
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