Thursday, February 22, 2018

Lots of Darkling Beetle Updates!

First off, I thought I'd just let you all know that I have released most of my Eleodes hispilabris, on account of me losing interest in breeding them. I still have three CB adults that are housed in various other Tenebrionid or cockroach enclosures, but I have stopped breeding them for now.
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Secondly, after adding a bit more sand to my Eleodes osculans enclosure, I have finally found some larvae in there! They are short, stubby little things, very cute IMO! 😊 (Just like the adults!).

Here are some pictures of them:














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Most of my Coniontis sp. "CA" adults have died off now, presumably due to old age. The larvae have proven to be hard to pupate, however I was pleased to see that at least one of the larvae I've isolated has created a pupal cell and is in the pre-pupal stage now! 😁 Seems like the more cramped the pupation enclosure, the better. Hopefully the others will follow suite soon, there are a LOT of larvae that have reached maturity now, I want to rear up as many as I can before they expire!
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The larger Eleodes sp. larvae I received from Brandon Woo several months ago have proven to be extremely difficult to rear, with the majority of them dying before or while entering the pre-pupal stage. This is likely due to improper humidity levels, the pre-pupae don't seem to like it quite as moist as most of the other Eleodes species I've bred.

I DID get two larvae to pupate successfully though, and two more are still in the pre-pupal stage, so hopefully I can get at least one pair to mature successfully and breed! Anyway, one of the pupae has finally eclosed, and I can finally announce the identity of these larvae!

Here she is, introducing Eleodes acuticaudus!!!:























Will let you all know if I can rear the rest of them to maturity!
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Now, here are a couple sad announcements...

I am sad to say that the one Alobates larva I was able to save died, it did not seem to be able to ingest the wood I fed it, and refused to feed on any chick feed or dead mealworms I offered it. All but one of my adults have died off as well, probably due to old age, so it looks like I've completely failed at breeding this species. 😢

Also, most of my Edrotes ventricosus adults are showing signs of old age, and a few have died off already. Doesn't look like they've given me ANY offspring at all, so this was also a big bust.
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Now let's end on a high note! My Eleodes tribulus have been breeding very prolifically for me, and the larvae are very easy to rear as well. I've got a couple dozen adults now, which are producing even more larvae!

Here are a few pictures of some adults:


















Well, that's going to do it for this post everyone, thanks for reading, will see you all next time! 😉

Monday, February 19, 2018

Updates, Updates & More Updates! (I'm Moving)

So, I've had a bit of a mishap with my Lanxoblatta rudis nymphs. Namely, they seem to not like the bark and cardboard hides that I have given them, and have taken to resting on the lid and sides of the enclosure, which is a sure sign of stress and a lack of a proper resting surface. As a result, at least one of them has passed away, and another one is walking around half eaten, (though it's just the outer fringe that's been consumed, so it's possible it could survive to the next molt and regenerate).

I'm not sure exactly why they are rejecting the hides I provided for them, especially since the adults are doing just fine, (my subadult female has even molted to maturity now!), but I think it might be that the bark is too old and rotted, (it came from a long dead maple tree after all).

Upon the recommendation of a buddy of mine, Brandon Maines, I bought some Cork Tiles at my local Walmart, to see if the nymphs would accept it as a resting place. They are supposedly all natural, and seem pretty smooth, so as a last resort I decided to try and see if my nymphs would accept them for hides. Well, I threw a couple pieces in their enclosure yesterday, a few of them do seem to be resting on it, and I have yet to see any more nymphs on the walls or on the lid of the enclosure, so that's a good sign! 🙂

Will keep you all updated on their status!
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Finally, after several months of waiting for their ooths to hatch, I've found some first instar Ischnoptera deropeltiformis "Ruby Red"! 😁 They are larger than I thought they would be, and I wasn't expecting the nymphs to have white tipped antennae!

Here are some pictures of them:






















So glad to have successfully bred these, these are by far one of the prettiest US natives I have in my collection!
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Unfortunately, my Paranauphoeta discoidalis colony is REALLY acting up, I've had an abnormal amount of adults die off for seemingly no reason, and a lot of my females have aborted their oothecae too. I'm really not sure what to do, I've tried increasing heat levels, decreasing heat levels, I lowered their humidity levels as advised by Kyle Kandilian, gave them more hides, and just recently I rehoused them again due to the springtail population in their old enclosure reaching pest levels.

I'm afraid this is a result of me not culling out adults with crappy wings, thinking it was related to humidity levels or improper perches instead of genetics, and now I've got a colony with super bad genes... I do have roughly a dozen nymphs from one litter, and a couple nymphs from a different one, but that's it. I should have like 10 times more nymphs than that, but for some reason this generation is crashing... whether I'll be able to save my colony from this nosedive or not, we'll see.
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Lastly, it appears that I will be moving soon, (for REAL this time), so I have NO idea when I'll be able to ship again, I'm aiming for late March, but it might be later, we'll see. Posts will probably be even more scarce now, and I'm not sure how my collection will handle the move...

Well, that's going to do it for today folks, hope you enjoyed this post, will see you all next time! 😉

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Invertebrate Photoshoot!

I decided to take some pictures of some random roaches and isopods today with my little Olympus digital camera, which takes pretty nice macro pictures, but only in very bright light, (like sunlight). Here they are! 🙂

First off, we have one of my Arenivaga sp. "Algodones Dunes" females, I finally got some half decent pictures this time, at least, better than most of the other pictures I've taken of this species!






















Sadly, my attempts at finding a new source for this species have failed, so I think these girls will die without mating. 🙁 Funnily enough, one of them laid an ooth the other day, it's infertile, so it won't hatch, (unless they happen to be able to resort to parthenogenesis when isolated from males, though I guess that's what happened to the Polyphaga saussurei in the hobby...).
















It's a neat looking ooth for sure, and doesn't look exactly like the other Arenivaga ooths I've seen thus far.
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Next, I took some pictures of my largest Porcellio bolivari male. All of my males are still doing very well, and I have housed a couple male P.silvestrii and my remaining P.ornatus "South" females with them, all of which seem to coexist without any problems.











Close-up of a couple Sinella curviseta from the second pic














Looks like I'll be trading with Alan Grosse again for some more females, so that's great, hopefully I'll be successful in breeding them the second time around!
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I also took some pictures of a few Compsodes schwarzi, which is a species I've rarely photographed, (and almost all the pictures I took of them were a bit too saturated IMO). My colony is doing very well, I've got several dozen nymphs now, and some of them have been maturing recently, so even more are on the way!

Nymphs

Subadult male

Adult female















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Next up we got a few pictures of some Oniscus asellus "Mardi Gras Dalmatian"! My colony has exploded over the winter, I've got so many now! 😊



















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Lastly, I got a few pictures of my Dorylaea orini nymphs. As usual, these were a pain to photograph, these few pictures were the best I could get.


















This species has been doing very for me, all my nymphs are growing pretty quickly! Hopefully by the end of spring I'll have adults! 😁

Anyway, that's gonna do it for today folks, I hope you all enjoyed this post, will see you next time! 😉

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Lanxoblatta Babies & More!!!

A couple days ago, I decided to rearrange my "Bug Closet", so that I could place my Lanxoblatta rudis enclosure besides the heat cable in there, as my adult female was several weeks overdue in giving birth, and I assumed a lack of heat was the culprit. Well, turns out I was right, because today I checked on them and found a whole bunch of babies in there!!! 😁

Here are a few pictures of them, they are SO adorable! 😊


















I was starting to get quite worried about the fact that my female hadn't given birth yet, I'm so glad I figured out what the problem was, and fixed it in short order! Hopefully these resulting nymphs will be easy to rear! 
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My Hormetica apolinari nymphs are doing well, and growing ever so slowly. I sexed mine a little while back, and it turns out I have three males and three females, which is great! It turns out this species is even bigger than Lucihormetica grossei, which is already quite a large roach, so I'm very excited to see mine mature! 

Here are some pictures I took of a female nymph, (my largest), she molted somewhat recently and has turned a beautiful black color with a couple dark red spots on the pronotum:















Such a beautiful species, even as nymphs! 😍
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My Balta notulata colony has exploded recently, and I've even had to start splitting the culture in two to avoid an overpopulation crash! This is probably the most prolific Ectobiid I've ever bred, too bad I'm not a mantid or small spider enthusiast, as I'm sure these would make great food for them in place of fruit flies! 

Anyway, I got a picture of some nymphs and an adult eating, as well as a video that I'll upload to my YouTube channel soon:














As you can see, it's a real feeding frenzy in there! 
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Lastly, I'm sure most of you have noticed by now, but in case you haven't, I have created a new page titled "Care Sheets", where I'll be writing care sheets for some of the invertebrates I've successfully bred, (particularly those that are hard to find care info on). Feel free to check it out, I'll be adding new care sheets every now and then, when I have the time, (and the interest). 🙂

Well, that's gonna do it for this post, I hope everyone enjoyed, will see you all next time! 😉