Friday, July 30, 2021

New Darklings from Fort Stockton, TX! (Pt. 3)

Gabe Shaheen is such a dear, you think those Eleodes were all he had in store for us? Nope, my just man sent me even more desert beetles to work with, which I am quite excited to work with! 😁

Let's start with the unusual Triorophus sp., a genus I've seen online when browsing many times before, but have never had the pleasure of working with before now. I don't know of anyone who has kept or bred these before, they are in the tribe Edrotini, which is home to the notoriously difficult to breed Edrotes spp.... Hopefully these will prove easier to culture than that genus, fingers crossed!

I have mine set up in a well ventilated container with a sand and coco fiber mix for substrate, about an inch deep. I have pieces of bark on top for hides, and will be keeping a third of the enclosure humid, the rest dry. For food I'll offer dog food. With any luck they will breed, Gabe did send around 6 or so, and they are of varying sizes, so I should have males and females in there.

Here are some pictures of the cute little buggers:

Very odd looking darklings, would really love to breed them and document what the larvae look like! 

We also have this little weirdo that was thrown in with the Triorophus, only one, and in fact since it's almost the same size as them and the same color, I almost mistook it for one of the Triorophus at a glance. It seems to also be something in the tribe Edrotini, I was thinking either Melanastus or Trimytis, so I once again asked my friend I Fox for ID help, and he said they looked to be Trimytis.

I'm actually just leaving it in with the Triorophus, since it likely needs very similar conditions to them, and I would have set it up basically identically to them... So to save space I'll just keep them together, and hopefully if both species breed their larvae won't be very aggressive towards each other. 🤷

Here are some pics of the chonk:

Fingers crossed this one's a gravid female, and that I can breed both species successfully, that would be awesome, and possibly a first for both! I actually don't know if ANY Edrotini have been bred in captivity before, seems like getting them to oviposit in the first place is the biggest hurdle...

Anyways, that's gonna do it for this post, thanks for reading everyone, hope you enjoyed, stay safe, and I'll see you all next time! 😉

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Salganea Surprise, & Rapid Cryptoglossa Growth!

Well, um, first off... apparently I bred my Salganea taiwanensis taiwanensis months ago and didn't realize it this whole time, just found at least half a dozen HALF GROWN nymphs in their enclosure last week!!! 😂 I went from doubting I had a single pair in there due to no noticeable breeding activity, to having half grown babies, what a surprise that was! 😁 Evidently their nymphs are quite photosensitive, so I never saw any in the few tunnels the adults have dug up against the sides of the enclosure.

The funniest thing is I dug up the five individuals I started with in March, and judging by how big the nymphs are, they had to have been born by then, so I guess I'm just blind as a bat and didn't see them when I was digging around! 🤣
I am super surprised at their fast growth though, like I legit mistook the first nymph I saw to be one of my starter 5 individuals, specifically that subadult pictured in my March post... But then I quickly realized that it was not a subadult, and that that subadult should have matured long ago, so I went digging. 😅 At this rate, I should have adults by the end of the year or beginning of next year, I was expecting a much longer turnaround time!

Sadly no pics, because I didn't think to take any in my excitement, and I don't wanna stress them out and dig them up again... Which sucks because when they are this age they look very much like young Cryptocercus spp. nymphs, kinda termite-like. Figured I'd update ya'll anyways, this is quite an achievement for me, I've now bred two Panesthiinae species, my Panesthia angustipennis cognata are the last to go! 😉

Now for a Cryptoglossa muricata update. So, in addition to the four I originally found, I found an additional two a couple weeks later, and then just a week or so ago I found another two, bringing me to a grand total of eight larvae. The first six have been growing very well over the last two months and are pretty similar in size to each other despite a couple having been much larger than the others, guess they catch up to each other quickly. 

Speaking of quick... Despite them only being around two months old, those six larvae are about HALF GROWN... Super fast growth, like insanely fast. Now, I'm sure the growth will slow down a bit, but they are already an inch long, a couple more months and they'll be pupation size!!! I wasn't expecting such rapid growth from these guys, but I do appreciate it, and so far I've not lost a single one by the way! 😄

Here are some pictures of a couple of the larger larvae:

Getting a little chonky now! 😊 Hopefully they continue to do well for me!

Anyways, that's gonna do it for this post, thanks for reading everyone, stay safe, keep on bugging, and I'll see you next time! 😉

Monday, July 26, 2021

Rosie's New Clothes, & Other Misc Updates

Well well well, after YEARS of relative inactivity and sparse feeding behavior, Rosie, my female Grammostola porteri has molted! (on the 18th to be exact) 😁 Been quite a while since she molted, always nice to see her in her new skin, as she is always exceptionally pretty and shiny after a recent molt!

Here are some pictures of her in her new clothes!

Here's to many more years of Rosie being my best pet rock LOL, it's crazy that I've had her for over a decade now! She was one of my first invert pets, and my first exotic pet invert. 😊 Glad she's still going strong!

Unfortunately, the smallest and youngest of my Lucihormetica grossei females randomly aborted her ootheca the other day, and I've no idea why... 😕 The other two females are doing fine, and my large female looks about ready to burst. The nymphs birthed by the medium sized female are all L2 now and seem to be thriving, so that's good at least. 😅

Hopefully my big female gives birth to a huge brood soon, and fingers crossed my smallest female produces another ooth soon. Wish I knew why she aborted, my husbandry hasn't changed at all lately, and like I said, the others are all doing fine. 🤷

Last but not least, I have some good news and bad news regarding my Tomocerus minor, "Giant silver springtails".

Good news? They're breeding well, and even ignoring the predatory mites that found their way into their enclosure, so they seem pretty dang hardy! 😁

Bad news? Because I wanted to ensure other springtails (mainly my cotton springtails) wouldn't get into their enclosure and outcompete them, I put their tall, 32 oz container with only lid and upper side ventilation in a corner of my current bug closet, away from almost all my other inverts. The unfortunate bit is, there was one more container in that corner, directly UNDER my Tomocerus, that were isolated from the rest of my collection because of their pest potential... My jar of Sinella curviseta, AKA "Satan Springtails" (a term coined by my buddy Brandon Maines 😂), which only has minimal lid ventilation.
Well, SOMEHOW those pesky Sinella found their way into my Tomocerus container, and are already breeding in there too... So now I must go through the painstaking process of moving as many of the Tomocerus out of there without bringing ANY Sinella along with them, and I have to set up a new, clean culture of them. 🙃 So that's fun...

Oh well, lesson learned, and at least it seems like these Tomocerus will be relatively easy to culture! 😃

Well, that's gonna do it for today, thanks for reading, I hope everyone enjoyed, stay safe, and I'll see you all in the next post! 😉

Saturday, July 24, 2021

New Darklings from Fort Stockton, TX! (Pt. 2)

Continuing from last post, here are the two other Eleodes species I got from Gabe! 😁

Let's start of with a species that's actually been in the hobby on and off for years, Eleodes goryi. I received one female of this species, and they are actually rather easy to breed apparently, the only reason that cultures don't stick around longer than a couple generations is due to a lack of interest I guess. This female seemed a bit weak on arrival but seems to be doing better now, hopefully she lays lots of eggs for me! 😄

Like the other Eleodes spp., I've got my female E.goryi set up in a well ventilated container with a substrate mix of sand and coconut fiber an inch or so deep. I am keeping one third of the enclosure moist, the rest dry. There are some long fibered sphagnum moss strands and cardboard rolls on top for her to hide under. For food I'll be offering dog food and perhaps the occasional bit of fruit.

Here are some pictures of her:

I'm excited to finally get some hands on experience with this species, and this is a new subgenus for me too! (subgenus Promus). Hopefully they'll do as well for me as they do for most other people! 🙂

Now we get to the last of the new Eleodes I got from Gabe, E.debilis. This species has actually never been in the hobby as far as I know, and marks yet another new subgenus for me, Omegeleodes, which is actually monotypic! So I have no idea how difficult these will be to breed, but I'll give it my all and see if I can find success. 😄

I got a group of 4 females and 1 male, there was another male but he was freshly DOA. Not that that matters terribly, the females are all undoubtedly mated, and four mated females should be WAY more than enough to get a culture started, unless this species ends up being super finicky... 😅
Like the other Eleodes spp., I've got them set up in a well ventilated container with a substrate mix of sand and coconut fiber an inch or so deep. I am keeping one third of the enclosure humid, the rest dry. There are some long fibered sphagnum moss strands, cardboard rolls and old eggcrate pieces on top for hides. For food I'll be offering dog food and perhaps the occasional bit of fruit.

Here are some pics of them:


Male (the dead one, easier to photograph)

Big thanks to my buddy I Fox on Bugguide for identifying this one for me, I highly suspected they were E.carbonaria, I had considered debilis but thought they looked a little too different (granted I was going off of ONE image on bugguide of that species). I wasn't 100% sure on the carbonaria ID though, so I sent these pics to I Fox, and he keyed them out to E.debilis. Just goes to show, when in doubt about an ID, call in your fellow bug nerd friends, and you can usually work it out. 😊

Well, that's gonna do it for this post, thanks for reading, I hope everyone enjoyed, stay safe, and I'll see you all next time! 😉