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Blatta lateralis with substrate

Discussion in 'Insects, Other Invertebrates & Arthropods' started by Francesco, Jun 3, 2018.

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    Hello everyone,
    I am starting my Blatta lateralis colony. I have noticed that they smell quite bad because of the feces. I was thinking to add substrate (cocofiber, potting soil and sand) with a cleaning crew. For the latter I was thinking about springtails for sure with, maybe, isopods. I am a bit concerned about isopods, cause they could eat the ootecas. What do you think about this setup? Any experience? I would need for sure to find an alternative to paper egg crates/rolls cause they will get too wet on a substrate.
    Thank you very much for your answers
  2. Arachnotroik

    Arachnotroik Arachnopeon

    I'd stick with a bare bottom bin or whatever kind of thing you're using to house your colony and put more ventilation such as a screen mesh or more holes. Naturally, B.Lateralis do have a stinky cheesy smell and all you can do is to reduce it by putting a lot of ventilation, cleaning your colony regularly (i suggest once a month), removing dead roaches (they definitely smell bad), and removing left-over fruits/vegetables before they rot. If you don't like the smell, i sugget you to go for B.Dubia roaches since they don't really smell but they do try to burrow and play dead when you feed them. :)
  3. pannaking22

    pannaking22 Arachnoking Active Member

    Agreed with no substrate and bumping up ventilation, but you can add "buffalo beetles" or some sort of dermestid to eat the dead roaches and they'll work on the feces after a point too. If you really want to add substrate, a robust colony of springtails should help with that. I'd avoid isopods unless it's a tiny species (Trichorhina tomentosa or maybe some of the micropods, dwarf orange or purple) that will stay hidden for the most part.
  4. Thank you very much for your answers.
    I prefer B. lateralis cause I will used them mainly to feed my Assassin bugs. Therefore, I need something that trigs their chasing responce and does not borrow. Moreover, B. lateralis corpses are almost completely eaten by the clean up crew in the Assassin bugs substrate (springtails and mealworm). I will try first to keep them substrate free in a bigger tank (33 liters). I cut almost the all lid and placed some fine mesh. I have a ventilator on top for high ventilation. I am afraid to use dermestid cause they might feed on the ootecas.
    In case you have more advice, let me know. Thank you again to share your knowledge and thoughts.
  5. LdLrLyChLd

    LdLrLyChLd Arachnosquire

    I use toilet paper rolls with damp paper towel underneath. I switch the tubes to another big cage about twice a week and replace the paper to keep it pretty clean. Had substrate for awhile and I thought with the moisture the smell was way worse
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. I am doing something similar LdLrLyChLd. But only with the egg cases. They seam to be fine also in relatively dry conditions. However, I am keeping the ootecas moist all the time.