Hissing Cockroaches

kindofabigtiel

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 5, 2021
Messages
2
I bought two hissing cockroaches a couple days ago, which I think are both females. The smaller of the two is moving around the habitat at night, eating, drinking water off the glass after I mist, and sleeping under the food bowl during the day. The larger was very sluggish when I got them (I had to poke her to get her to move, while the other crawled right out into the habitat). She moved into a small hollow under a piece of wood as soon as I put them in the habitat and hasn't moved since. I'm a little worried about her and don't know enough about roaches to properly troubleshoot. Is she sick? Is she about to give birth? Is she just getting used to her new house? Do any experienced roach keepers have advice?
I've left her alone so far, and tonight I put a piece of dog food at the front of her cave to see if she'll eat it. Tomorrow I plan on getting them some veggies and greens.
I keep the humidity in the habitat at around 60-80% to keep the terrestrial isopods happy and have a large patch of moss for water and a bowl for food. The tank is unheated at the moment, and sits at around 70 degrees. The substrate I'm using is a mix of coconut fiber, "creature soil" I got from my local pet shop, and a bit of potting soil I confirmed to be pesticide free. I have a light I keep on during the day for the live plants, but I try not to leave it on for more than 8 or so hours because I know my roaches don't appreciate bright light.
Thanks in advance for your help.
 

RoachCoach

Arachnobaron
Active Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
362
The females tend to be longer and heavier but the pronotum on the males is considerably wider and more robust than the females. For me the males tend to hiss much more when they are bothered than the females. The humidity is fairly inconsequential to healthy ones. They will be happy in sub 20% humidity. They would be fine in all day darkness. The light is pretty much for your pleasure or to display them. They are pretty hard to keep from breeding as long as they have a modicum of normal environment. Grind the food to powder and throw a 1/4 banana in there and then mist it. If the hiding one isn't up looking for the scents then you might want to pull it out and inspect it for any weird conditions. Look for a strong grip and vivaciousness.
The preggers aren't usually timid when they are gravid. They still venture all over the place. They are eating for like 20+
 

connieisdead

Arachnopeon
Joined
Feb 18, 2020
Messages
37
I have quite a few hissers, it sounds to me like she's going to have babies. Does her abdomen seem swollen or particularly large? A photo would be lovely. If you think it could be babies I would also make sure to quickly baby-proof the tank. They are quite small and can escape easily, and having twenty giant cockroach babies loose isn't the most pleasant experience. :)
 

Dry Desert

Arachnobaron
Active Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2016
Messages
594
I bought two hissing cockroaches a couple days ago, which I think are both females. The smaller of the two is moving around the habitat at night, eating, drinking water off the glass after I mist, and sleeping under the food bowl during the day. The larger was very sluggish when I got them (I had to poke her to get her to move, while the other crawled right out into the habitat). She moved into a small hollow under a piece of wood as soon as I put them in the habitat and hasn't moved since. I'm a little worried about her and don't know enough about roaches to properly troubleshoot. Is she sick? Is she about to give birth? Is she just getting used to her new house? Do any experienced roach keepers have advice?
I've left her alone so far, and tonight I put a piece of dog food at the front of her cave to see if she'll eat it. Tomorrow I plan on getting them some veggies and greens.
I keep the humidity in the habitat at around 60-80% to keep the terrestrial isopods happy and have a large patch of moss for water and a bowl for food. The tank is unheated at the moment, and sits at around 70 degrees. The substrate I'm using is a mix of coconut fiber, "creature soil" I got from my local pet shop, and a bit of potting soil I confirmed to be pesticide free. I have a light I keep on during the day for the live plants, but I try not to leave it on for more than 8 or so hours because I know my roaches don't appreciate bright light.
Thanks in advance for your help.
If the smaller hisser is doing all the normal things there is nothing much wrong with the setup. I would leave the light on during the day or you will loose the plants. Probably the best advice for any invert of unknown age or origin is to leave well alone and let nature take its course. What will be will be. Quite time will aid recovery, or giving birth, whatever is going to happen will happen.
 

kindofabigtiel

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 5, 2021
Messages
2
I have quite a few hissers, it sounds to me like she's going to have babies. Does her abdomen seem swollen or particularly large? A photo would be lovely. If you think it could be babies I would also make sure to quickly baby-proof the tank. They are quite small and can escape easily, and having twenty giant cockroach babies loose isn't the most pleasant experience. :)
Here are the best pics I could get. She moved to under the food bowl with her buddy the other night, and when I moved the bowl the smaller hissed and ran off but she didn't. I tried to get a pic of her underside but she did NOT want to move. As far as baby proofing goes, I installed a window screen type thing under the normal mesh top when I was having trouble with flies a few months ago and I put some vaseline around the top of the glass earlier today. Is there anything else I would need to do?
roaches 1.jpg roaches 2.jpg
I did what RoachCoach said and have given them a ground up food with some carrot, banana, and an orange slice so we'll see what they do.
 

RoachCoach

Arachnobaron
Active Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
362
Two thick preggo beaches. Ignore the dry looking skin on my hands. I used Great Stuff expanding foam without gloves when I was drunk. You don't have to punish me, I will be be for the next week until it literally gets mechanically removed from my skin...
Edit: Notice the expanded segments between the plates. They get even more obvious the older and bigger they get.
 

Attachments

connieisdead

Arachnopeon
Joined
Feb 18, 2020
Messages
37
She looks pretty big to me. I would definitely assume babies, probably in the next couple weeks, maybe sooner, it's sort of hard to tell in the photos. It sounds like you did a good job baby-proofing, as long as there aren't any holes they can squeeze through it should be fine. When they're born they're about the size of a large isopod, and they do give live birth so you will all of a sudden have a thin lady and somewhere between 10 and 20 babies. They eat the same stuff as the parents, and sometimes they die for no particular reason, so don't be too hard on yourself if they don't all make it. Hope this helps. :)
 
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