Sunday, September 26, 2021

Plectoptera Hatchlings!

Well, I've got Plectoptera poeyi hatchlings! 😁 Actually found the first ones on the 11th, and I've had several more oothecae hatch out so far. The first instars are less than 1 mm long, almost have the length and definitely half the mass of an L1 Hemithyrsocera palliata. They actually look exactly like L1 Chorisoneura texensis to me, just smaller, which makes sense considering how similar the ooths of this species are to C.texensis ooths, and to an extent even the adults are similar to those of Chorisoneura. As they age though they get rounder and gain white spots on their abdominal margins as well as some darker spots too.

The survival rate in the first and maybe second instars is kinda low, however several of mine have already molted to L3-L4, so it seems the culture as a whole is doing OK for me so far! 😅 I rehoused them to a better container that actually has a feeding port in it, since the nymphs of this species LOVE to hang around on the underside of the lid, and all climb up to the top if the enclosure is disturbed even slightly... While rehousing them I counted at least 20 nymphs, plus my females are still alive and laying ooths, so I will hopefully still have a decent amount to work with this generation despite the low early instar survival rates.

Alan Jeon told me that supposedly, due to their size they really suck at finding food when younger and that he had low survival rates with his as a result, however I have made sure to place lots of food in various places in the enclosure, so I am not sure if that is the case with mine. After all, all the nymphs in my enclosure do seem to be pretty well fed and plump. Honestly it may have been the high number of springtails in their old enclosure that caused some of the deaths, (yet another reason I wanted to rehouse them).

Anyways, after much struggle, here are some pics of an L2 nymph... These tiny things are quite skittish, and VERY good climbers:

Not the best pics, but I am surprised my camera was able to pick them up at all! 😄 

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

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