Cleaning Dubia Colony

bryverine

Arachnoangel
Joined
Apr 18, 2012
Messages
894
Up until now, cleaning their poo had been an easy chore. I shake the tub, the poo gathers in a corner, I shoo out the little baby dubia that think the big poo pile is the perfect hiding spot, scoop it out, done.

Well I had some extra cucumber and they demolished it overnight for the last two nights in a row! Unfortunately, they left a nice pile of more moist poo (they must take the food to go) that the little ones love to play in it seems....

How do you clean it up without losing a bunch of little dubia?
 

Izhizm

Arachnopeon
Joined
Nov 27, 2016
Messages
26
Up until now, cleaning their poo had been an easy chore. I shake the tub, the poo gathers in a corner, I shoo out the little baby dubia that think the big poo pile is the perfect hiding spot, scoop it out, done.

Well I had some extra cucumber and they demolished it overnight for the last two nights in a row! Unfortunately, they left a nice pile of more moist poo (they must take the food to go) that the little ones love to play in it seems....

How do you clean it up without losing a bunch of little dubia?
thats always a hard question, i always lose some little ones when cleaning them out. As long its not a large amount, its all cool. How do you harvest your dubias? do you separate them usiing buckets with different hole sizes?
 

bryverine

Arachnoangel
Joined
Apr 18, 2012
Messages
894
thats always a hard question, i always lose some little ones when cleaning them out. As long its not a large amount, its all cool.
I see, I've been trying to make small piles and getting them to leave, then scoop the poop.

How do you harvest your dubias? do you separate them using buckets with different hole sizes?
I use the tong method... I didn't think they'd take off quite so well and to feed only 11 Ts, it's a bit overkill... :embarrassed:
 

EulersK

Arachnonomicon
Staff member
Joined
Feb 22, 2013
Messages
3,290
If you provide less wet food, their frass will be completely dry. It actually looks like coarse sand. But remember, the little nymphs actually like the frass. They don't eat it, but they do like to burrow in there. It also helps lessen the losses from roaches getting stuck on their back, as they're usually able to flip themselves over if there's a decent amount of frass. I usually don't clean my enclosures until there's about 1/2" of frass all along the floor.

I think your life will be made a lot easier if you change how you clean them. Get yourself another separate, empty tub. Shake off your egg crates into that (yes, they will be left out in the open, so you'll need to work fast-ish before they start cannibalizing from stress). By the time you're done, you'll be left with a container full of frass and a few straggling roaches in the original container. Pick out the big ones by hand. For the frass, just get yourself one of these (or preferably something like these with a mesh bottom, square, to fit into corners) and just sift out the frass into a third container. You'll be left with nothing but nymphs and old exuvia, which the nymphs will eventually eat, so it's alright to put back into the colony. Now just set your colony back up and pour your roaches back in.

Keep the frass! Either sell it or put it near the base of plants. It has almost no odor, and it works wonders as a fertilizer for houseplants.

If you ever end up with a fly infestation, throw the frass away! Babies and all, just chalk it up as a loss. The fly larvae hitch a ride on the roaches when you disturb them that much, and you'll have cleaned your colony for nothing.
 

chanda

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Jun 27, 2010
Messages
2,059
I think your life will be made a lot easier if you change how you clean them. Get yourself another separate, empty tub. Shake off your egg crates into that (yes, they will be left out in the open, so you'll need to work fast-ish before they start cannibalizing from stress). By the time you're done, you'll be left with a container full of frass and a few straggling roaches in the original container. Pick out the big ones by hand. For the frass, just get yourself one of these (or preferably something like these with a mesh bottom, square, to fit into corners) and just sift out the frass into a third container. You'll be left with nothing but nymphs and old exuvia, which the nymphs will eventually eat, so it's alright to put back into the colony. Now just set your colony back up and pour your roaches back in.
Good advice! I've been putting off cleaning my dubias because of the hassle of picking out all the babies. I'll have to get one of those sifters and give it a try!
 
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