deformed darkling beetles??

guitarlust

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
112
what could cause the deformation of a darkling beetle?? i have had it occur before too. the mealworm appears healthy and normal, same goes for the pupa and then BAM!! out comes the deformed darkling beetle. this time around the beetle does not have a shell covering the body. why would this happen?? i keep it humid and warm during the pupa period. normally this does not occur, but it irritates me and was wondering the cause.
 

fantasticp

Arachnocompulsive
Old Timer
Joined
Jun 18, 2004
Messages
512
what could cause the deformation of a darkling beetle?? i have had it occur before too. the mealworm appears healthy and normal, same goes for the pupa and then BAM!! out comes the deformed darkling beetle. this time around the beetle does not have a shell covering the body. why would this happen?? i keep it humid and warm during the pupa period. normally this does not occur, but it irritates me and was wondering the cause.
I think it just happens sometimes. Once I got a half beetle, half pupa mutate walking around. Mutants get fed off before they can harden in my house. More commonly is half of the back plate missing or something.
 

arachnocat

Arachnoangel
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 27, 2005
Messages
792
Most of mine seem to come out deformed too. I'm not trying to breed them though I've just had a few develop into beetles lately because my turtle is still hibernating. I rarely find normal beetles. Maybe it's due to so much inbreeding or something. Causes wierd mutations.
 

bugmankeith

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
2,731
Only once have I had darkling beetle with curved wings. I also had one healthy but, very small beetle, I guess it was a dwarf.
 

guitarlust

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
112
coolenss, at least it aint the way i am caring for them. i had the dwarf beetle syndrome happen once; it ended up being a male too. majority of the larvae get fed to the bluebirds that are in the backyard.
 

Mr. Mordax

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Oct 22, 2006
Messages
2,301
I get lots of freak-beetles. Maybe I should start separating them so I don't start getting freak-larvae. Thing is, most critters prefer the larvae (at least, I think most inverts do), so I can't always feed off the freaks.

On a side-note, it's kinda weird that I found this thread . . . I was tempted to post the same thing a couple days ago.
 

bugmankeith

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
2,731
If you bred those odd beetles for fun who knows what their offspring would be like. You should try breeding them for fun, pretend to be a scientist. ;)
 

KrisKhaos

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jun 14, 2010
Messages
1
I'm no expert, but I am guessing that those experiencing excessive numbers of deformed beetles as I am, (and have just recently started there own culture of them from store bought larvae), have been fed a hormone that is intended to prohibit them from pupating. Thus allowing a larger mealworm to be sold.

I assume they add it to the cheap/crappy food they feed them, however the dosage vs. tolerance may be the cause of the problem. I started my culture a few years back on the same commercial stock and never had a problem. When I restarted my culture again a few months ago, most of my adults are half pupa looking insects, where the abdomen looks as it does with the pupa, plus lacking the hard protective shells and wings found on the adults.

Thankfully I have plenty of living garbage disposals about the house to take care of the freaks. :) As long as it moves, the bullfrogs will eat em. If they don't, then the koi/goldfish will. lol
 

BiologicalJewels

Arachnoknight
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 16, 2008
Messages
256
some beetles will have elytra deformations if one or more of the following factors are present:

Too humid
too dry
improper nutrition

I am not suggesting this is what is going on with your darklings, but it may be something to look at.

What are you feeding your larvae?
Can you separate the larave into groups and try different feed, different humidity?

Might be something to consider.
 

GunOffSafety

Arachnopeon
Joined
Feb 18, 2010
Messages
3
some beetles will have elytra deformations if one or more of the following factors are present:

Too humid
too dry
improper nutrition

I am not suggesting this is what is going on with your darklings, but it may be something to look at.

What are you feeding your larvae?
Can you separate the larave into groups and try different feed, different humidity?

Might be something to consider.
I second Balam.

Approximately 5-10% of my beetles pupate out deformed. It is likely improper nutrition which leads to an inability to molt properly.
 

ZephAmp

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 8, 2008
Messages
530
I'd bet on pupal damage or incorrect humidity.
If you leave the pupae in with the beetles they might get nibbled on, pushed around, etc. This causes scarring which could lead to strange deformities and problems with emerging.
Incorrect humidity could cause it too.
 

skips

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Oct 1, 2008
Messages
521
some beetles will have elytra deformations if one or more of the following factors are present:

Too humid
too dry
improper nutrition

I am not suggesting this is what is going on with your darklings, but it may be something to look at.

What are you feeding your larvae?
Can you separate the larave into groups and try different feed, different humidity?

Might be something to consider.
I third this, with the addition of maybe too warm. I get that a lot when I use a heat lamp. Increasing heat should, unless some other mechanism interferes, increase maturation rate--correct me if i'm wrong. I feel like jump starting there growth may not have a great effect. I actually doubt it's genetics simply because deformed individuals probably dont breed too often. Inbreeding is also too broadly assumed to be bad. For many species it really doesnt matter, bugs especially. I doubt most colonies have much genetic variation anyway. Plus, inbreeding can be a good thing in the way that once you get past the initial inbreeding depression, all deleterious recessives have been weeded out anyway, leaving only super genes which leave your beetles with the potential to become a genetically superb crime fighting force.

I also doubt it is the feed. that discussion has been had before and wasnt to convincing to me. To others it might be though.
 
Top