Deformed stick insect after moult?

Kinyonga

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
7
My female New Guinea spiny stick insect (Eurycantha calcarata) moulted last night, and despite having enough room to do so safely, she moulted quite low down with the result that the tip of her abdomen was touching the floor.

Her ovipositor is now bent, which I hope isn't that much of a problem - I'm more concerned about how her abdomen is slightly crumpled as well. Photos attached (apologies for the quality, taken on my phone).

Does anyone have any experience with this? Will she have issues with egg-laying and/or excretion? Will she survive? I'd appreciate any thoughts on this!
 

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ColeopteraC

Arachnobaron
Active Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2020
Messages
341
The crumpled abdomen is unlikely to pose a problem. Even if so there is little that can be done with it...

As for the ovipositor tip wait and see if it has any effect on the dispersion of the ova, I wouldn’t recommend removing the bent tip, that’d inhibit her laying of the eggs into substrate.

If it does then perhaps remove the ovipositor as a last resort...
 

Kinyonga

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
7
Update: so five days later she's still alive, I've seen her eating, though she remains quite thin. Today, however, she's been very active (E. calcarata are nocturnal...) and is curving her abdomen and pushing the tip against the side of the enclosure, as well as occasionally thrashing it around or rubbing it with a hind leg. Plus she's somehow broken/bitten off the end of the lower part of the ovipositor. I'm guessing she's having difficulty excreting or egg-laying? I'll keep an eye on her and see what happens, but I'm not too hopeful.
 

InvertNix

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 23, 2020
Messages
13
Please keep us updated I am hatching some stick insects myself and this is something I worry about. I hope she's ok.
 

Kinyonga

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
7
Unfortunately she died the day after my last message - six days after moulting. Continued pressing her ovipositor up against things as if it hurt/she wanted to get something out, and then eventually became still.

From what I understand, provided they have a high enough place to moult this is a rare occurrence, and not something the worry of should prevent you getting some sticks of your own. In the future I'm going to make sure my remaining stick insect has even more choice as regards high moulting places, and limit the climbing options so she is not tempted to moult or dry low down.
 

InvertNix

Arachnopeon
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Jul 23, 2020
Messages
13
I'm so sorry. Would keeping branches high an limit low ones reduce the risk then?
 

Kinyonga

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
7
I'm so sorry. Would keeping branches high an limit low ones reduce the risk then?
Thank you. It was rather a blow to lose her.

I would think that should reduce the risk, yes. I don't know how you plan on setting up their habitats... I've seen one option which is to have a small jar with longish branches of brambles in, and as the insects can't cling to the jar they're forced to stay higher up or come down onto the ground entirely.
Which species are you getting?
 

InvertNix

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 23, 2020
Messages
13
I have just eggs at the moment extatosoma tiaratum and peruphasma schultei they still have a few months til they hatch but I bought large storage tubs that I made sure were sturdy stood up right and cut out large windows for bug mesh for breathing
 
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