Beetles >.<

ZergRush

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 10, 2007
Messages
18
Hi everybody! I've been your friendly lurker for a good 2 years now and have finally come up with something I couldn't figure out through searching old forums. I'm in need of some advice, here's the story.

My spiders have never had anything but crickets, so as a "treat" I decided to do some research and find another bug to feed them. Unfortunatley, I found mealworms which have rather suddenly become my nemesis and which I will never get again (unless science proves they're miracle tarantula food... which I doubt). I put them in a high sided cup because I knew the trouble they could cause. The spider had no problem getting them out and I never saw any escape but apparently some did and are now beetles. That in itself isn't so bad, but my 4" g. aureostriata whom they are plaguing just molted.

I naively figured the last of the buggers had died out long ago when my spider went into pre-molt behavior. So I stopped feeding him and he appropriately did up his cage in webs and furrows for a good 3 weeks before he finally decided to molt today (about 5 weeks since the last mealworm). Apparently that was perfect mealworm metamorph time because low and behold I come home to my new 5" monster to see the webbing under him moving oddly... So I watch longer to make sure he's not just moving it himself and no... Something's under there.

So I got out the paint brush and apologized the whole way as I gently prodded him out. Poor guy was shaking so bad I'm still worried I did more harm than good. I retrieved two beetles from his den and watched for about 10 minutes to make sure nothing else was moving. He immediately hunkered into a ball in the middle of his enclosure and hasn't moved since.

So now I'm worried that there are more in there... He's obviously still hardening and I've read all about the dangers of insects in with freshly moulted tarantula. Should I risk moving him to a pristine enclosure to make sure there are no more bugs to plague him? Or should I wait it out and hope that only two escaped? He does need a new tank to fit his new size but I was going to wait at least a week to make sure he was comfortable in his skin. What do you think?

And because I'm still a very proud parent, here's his picture before I so rudely disturbed him.
 

Nitibus

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
728
The darkling beetles are no threat to your T. Super worm beetles are, but the standard meal worm beetle is a herbivore... It only eats " meal " like oats or bran.

Just leave the T be. I ONLY feed my T's mealies when they get close to a moult so that I have no threat of my T's getting eaten. Plus they are VERY easy to breed.
 
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Moltar

ArachnoGod
Old Timer
Joined
Apr 11, 2007
Messages
5,450
Nitibus, are you saying that the beetles from superworms are carnivorous? I have an escaped superworm digging around in the substrate of my adult smithi's tank at this very moment. Do you think they are a danger to T's in general or only to a freshly molted T?
 

8Pat

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 6, 2006
Messages
81
Hi!
I can confirm, superworms are definitely carnivorous (well in fact they're omnivorous) and although I never witnessed it, I'm sure they can chew through a molting spider. I'm raising some and I occasionaly give them insects (dead or alive) and they will readily eat them.
As a precaution, I would make sure there are no worms when a t is preparing to molt.
8Pat
 

bonesmama

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Sep 28, 2004
Messages
1,019
Lol-- when I first started keeping T's I decided the same thing- to vary their diet with superworms. They burrow so fast that we started calling them "Tremors". I freaked out,too about having one in the substrate with my adult seemani, and ended up changing the substrate. I realise now how silly I was- a healthy, adult T would have no problem with dispatching a superworm (unless of coarse it was molting....but what are the chances of that?)
There are a couple thiongs I was wondering about them-does any one know how long those buggers can stay alive without food? And will they eat carrion- like cricket remains, say?
 

ZergRush

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 10, 2007
Messages
18
Oh good, glad the mealworm beetles aren't harmful! :)

I did see one more in there this morning when I checked on him but I'll give him his week or two of rest before disturbing him again.
 

Nitibus

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
728
Nitibus, are you saying that the beetles from superworms are carnivorous? I have an escaped superworm digging around in the substrate of my adult smithi's tank at this very moment. Do you think they are a danger to T's in general or only to a freshly molted T?
In my research I have only heard of one case of a super worm beetle killing a T, and it was during moult. As long as yout T is eating you should be OK. Keep in mind some T's will never eat a super worm or its beetle so be prepared to remove it.
 
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Nitibus

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
728
There are a couple thiongs I was wondering about them-does any one know how long those buggers can stay alive without food? And will they eat carrion- like cricket remains, say?
They will eat cricket remains that are reasonably fresh, but other crickets do the same thing... I have heard ( don't quote me ) that they can live up to three to four weeks without food.
 

luna

Arachnoknight
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 5, 2005
Messages
178
I've never liked the heads of mealworms or superworms but always thought the gooey insides were probably yummy to the inverts. I know this sounds terrible but when I do use them, I cut off those nasty heads. Can't burrow or bite then.
 
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