Feeding Slings

Godzilla2000

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As I've stated, I'll be getting some babies from Swift Inverts (I need to send them a Money Order today). I'm not totally sure if my local petshop carries pinhead crickets or small mealworms. I guess I'll just have to call them and see. But I was just wondering if there are any other alternatives to feeding slings like maybe purchasing crickets in a can or something like that just in case.
 

Code Monkey

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Sliced and diced larger crickets, mealworms, and roaches are my foods of choice if appropriately sized prey isn't available. Slings are generally not picky about scavenging so cutting a medium to large cricket into six pieces and splitting each drumstick (the jumping leg) let's me feed 8 slings at a time. Similar vivisection techniques will serve you with other prey items.

Some people have also used small pieces of animal heart with success. Flightless fruit fly cultures are another food for the really tiny slings.

I've never heard of anyone using the canned crickets with Ts but, in theory, they could work (although I'd be worried about spoilage, that's a lot of crickets in one of those containers and as pointed out, 1 larger cricket is enough for multiple slings).
 

Godzilla2000

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Originally posted by Code Monkey
Sliced and diced larger crickets, mealworms, and roaches are my foods of choice if appropriately sized prey isn't available. Slings are generally not picky about scavenging so cutting a medium to large cricket into six pieces and splitting each drumstick (the jumping leg) let's me feed 8 slings at a time. Similar vivisection techniques will serve you with other prey items.

Some people have also used small pieces of animal heart with success. Flightless fruit fly cultures are another food for the really tiny slings.

I've never heard of anyone using the canned crickets with Ts but, in theory, they could work (although I'd be worried about spoilage, that's a lot of crickets in one of those containers and as pointed out, 1 larger cricket is enough for multiple slings).
I'll keep that in mind should my petshop not have appropriately sized crickets. :)
 

rapunzel

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flightless fruitflies

If you happen to be like me...I cannot squish , squeeze ...chop ,slice a cricket or a mealworm...*shuddering* ..so, flightless fruitflies work until I get pinhead crickets. Swift includes a vial of either micro crickets or itsy bitsy mealworms..just in case...that will get you by until you locate another food source. So far I have been lucky and have located pinheads before having to hire a cricket hitman.
 

Mojo Jojo

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In regards to the fruitflies and beef heart. I have done both of these in the past. In fact, I just used beef heart last night. But you don't want an exclusive diet of either. They really should only be used as supplements. There is some indication that a diet rich in flightless fruitflies can cause health problems, i believe, in the spiders.

Cricket parts are good.

Jon
 

That Guy

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Is it like a petco( I hate them) or something? If it is, then they most likely will.... Or what about those "beef heart" things? I havent found those in petco, petsmart(Or any local shop at all)...Hope you have better luck then I do :)
 

Code Monkey

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Fruitflies lack an amino acid which is essential for true spiders. If you feed, say, a black widow spiderling on fruitflies exclusively it eventually develops limb deformities. However, it's never been established whether this is the case for tarantulas to my knowledge. It's better to be safe than sorry and only use fruitflies as either a "treat" or temporary food for no more than a few months at a time.

I have used fruitflies in the past, but no longer bother because it's cheaper and easier to use diced up crickets and roaches. Plus, even a tiny 1/4" sling has little issue with tackling a cricket almost the same size as it is - actual pinheads are a waste of time and money in my opinion. I just go straight for the small crickets.
 

Code Monkey

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Originally posted by hampton
Or what about those "beef heart" things? I havent found those in petco, petsmart(Or any local shop at all)...Hope you have better luck then I do :)
You could always try your grocery store ;P
They may or may not package beef heart for animals (never looked for it at a petstore), but it would still be cheaper to pick it up at the grocery where a whole heart costs chump change.
 

Gillian

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Hi all,
I agree with CM about the fruitflies. I only fed them for about 3 months, to my parahybana slings I got from Swifty. When I got them, they were VERY tiny. However, I now feed beefheart to all my slings. However, a question. Due to my having a Leopard Gecko and, snakes, I already have a mix of Reptivite & Reptical.
Its a microfine powder, and I take a tiny pinch, and lightly dust the beefheart before feeding. (or, crickets) Could this be supplying the missing nutrients, if I rely on beefheart? If I try to chop cricket parts small enough for my tiny slings, I usually end up with a mushy mess.
I just had an idea. (most of you may already know this.) The beefheart sold at Petsmart/Petco, comes in little icecube looking trays, giving you little gumdrop looking things. I've been saving these trays. I get beefheart from the butcher, and chop it into pieces that will fit into the trays. This makes it easier to feed, and is ALOT cheaper.


Rapunzel, it was hard for me at first, too. But, if you have a razor blade, and make a clean cut, taking the head off, its over for them. If they kick afterwards, its nerves. (correct me if I'm wrong, anyone.) I grew up on a ranch, and we routinely had to kill chickens. It doesn't make it easier, by any means. However, lest you think you are some cruel demon, chopping a cricket up, crickets are worse. If a cricket is freshly molted, the others will seek it out, and eat it . Nasty things...
Peace,
Gillian
 

Godzilla2000

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Originally posted by hampton
Is it like a petco( I hate them) or something? If it is, then they most likely will.... Or what about those "beef heart" things? I havent found those in petco, petsmart(Or any local shop at all)...Hope you have better luck then I do :)
There is a Petco in a neighboring city 50 miles away from where I live. So finding some cricket substitutes might not be a problem. I too am loathe to chop up a bug, not because I just don't like to be cruel. It's just that I'm a little squeamish about bug guts and all that stuff. But if I have to do it, I will.
 
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Godzilla2000

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Originally posted by Gillian
Rapunzel, it was hard for me at first, too. But, if you have a razor blade, and make a clean cut, taking the head off, its over for them. If they kick afterwards, its nerves. (correct me if I'm wrong, anyone.) I grew up on a ranch, and we routinely had to kill chickens. It doesn't make it easier, by any means. However, lest you think you are some cruel demon, chopping a cricket up, crickets are worse. If a cricket is freshly molted, the others will seek it out, and eat it . Nasty things...
Peace,
Gillian
Crickets are hateful little things. And they smell bad too.
 

Godzilla2000

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Well I've sent my money Order out today. Now all I have to do is get my setups for these guys and wait.
 

Godzilla2000

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I know I must be driving you guys crazy with al of my questions. But I really want to make certain that I'm doing things right. I really appreciate all the help from those who've responded to my mundane questions.
 

Wade

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One trick that makes cutting up crickets a little less messy is to pop them in the freezer. Once frozen, the crickets can be diced up easily with sissors. The pieces thaw quickly since they're small.

I know of at least one keeper who purchases a box of crickets and puts the whole thing in the freezer and thaws out the individual crickets as she needs them.

Wade
 

Godzilla2000

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Originally posted by Wade
One trick that makes cutting up crickets a little less messy is to pop them in the freezer. Once frozen, the crickets can be diced up easily with sissors. The pieces thaw quickly since they're small.

I know of at least one keeper who purchases a box of crickets and puts the whole thing in the freezer and thaws out the individual crickets as she needs them.

Wade
I'm going to sound like an idiot here but.....extreme temperatures don't kill them? If so that would save alot of needless cricket cannibalism and wasting money on my part if I sink $5.00 into crickets for my G. rosea and A. avicularia.
 

Grael

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Originally posted by Godzilla2000
I'm going to sound like an idiot here but.....extreme temperatures don't kill them? If so that would save alot of needless cricket cannibalism and wasting money on my part if I sink $5.00 into crickets for my G. rosea and A. avicularia.
lmao she feeds the crickets to her pets dead :p
 

Godzilla2000

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Originally posted by Grael
lmao she feeds the crickets to her pets dead :p
Where's the fun in that? :confused: :p But anyways, I know living up north where it gets really cold that I've had crickets go into suspended animation. Here I was thinking they were dead and then they sprung to life the minute they were thawed out. I guess if I put them in the refrigerator and not the freezer they might become sluggish and go into suspended animation. Does this make any sense?
 

Wade

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Yes, the crickets are dead. Tarantulas, as already pointed out, will take dead prey. As with most feeding techniques, pre-killing the cricks has it's pros and cons.

Pros:

Dead crickets cannot harm a molting tarantula
Frozen crickets do not need to be fed and watered
Frozen crickets remain usable for a long time
Frozen crickets don't chirp (if you don't like chirping)

Cons:

Some tarantulas may not be interested in non-moving prey
Uneaten dead crickets rot very quicky, which can draw mites and flies if ot removed
Frozen cricket don't chirp (if you like chirping)

Wade
 

Wade

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Originally posted by Godzilla2000
Where's the fun in that? :confused: :p But anyways, I know living up north where it gets really cold that I've had crickets go into suspended animation. Here I was thinking they were dead and then they sprung to life the minute they were thawed out. I guess if I put them in the refrigerator and not the freezer they might become sluggish and go into suspended animation. Does this make any sense?
Some of the wild crickets from your area might be able to survive this, but I doubt the commercially available Archea domestica (the pet trade cricket) will live for long in the fridge. A brief cool down might put them into a torpid state, but if they're that cool for long they'll just die.

Wade
 
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