looking for a bug for my son..please help me choose one

Dravensmom

Arachnosquire
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Oct 26, 2010
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86
My son is 2 and he really LOVES bugs the bigger the better. Now that it is getting cold we cant go outside and catch any. He keeps asking to hold my Ts (which are all slings) and I feel really bad saying no. I have let him hold my half inch rosie a few times but I would really rather him have something else to hold. I know it would make his Xmas if he got his very own bug. Im looking for any type of bug that is a decent size,Under $20, slowish,lives for atleast 2 years, wont hate being handled every day and can not hurt him in any way. He is very very careful so im not extremely worried about having a sturdy bug but it would be nice. So does this bug exist or am I searching in vain
?
 

jt39565

Arachnoknight
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Aug 28, 2010
Messages
179
I'm no expert but maybe try a millipede? They seem docile enough, relatively slow, and come in several color morphs.
 

Alireza

Arachnosquire
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Sep 4, 2010
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First, congratulation on having such a kid. most kids dont like bugs!
I suggest you Rhinoceros Beetles.they can get quite large and will tolerate handling.I dont think they'll be much expensive too.
 

Poxicator

Arachnobaron
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Nov 16, 2007
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Hissing cockroach, - they grow large, don't mind being handled, can be kept communally, males and females look different, plus they're fairly hardy
 

skippy

Arachnoangel
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Jan 6, 2009
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+1 oh hissers, you can get him his own colony!
 

webbedone

Arachnobaron
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Aug 27, 2010
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get him some B.Dubia roaches he can start a feeder colony for you and you can help him take care of them. They dont stink, they dont bite, they wont survive if they escape into the house and it will give you a father and son thing to do if your Ts are all slings by the time they start maturing you should have a nice size feeder colony!
 

xhexdx

ArachnoGod
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Jul 20, 2007
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Nothing venomous.

Roaches or millipedes are a great start. Joseph (my son - he'll be 3 in April) is happy holding the feeder crickets. :}

 

jebbewocky

Arachnoangel
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Oct 1, 2009
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I'd suggest G.portentosa, Magascar Hissing Cockroach. The Giant Cave Roach, B.giganteus is also a good idea, but are prone to being quicker than G.portentosa, so they might not be ideal but IMO they look better. Both species have leg spines, so you might want to look at one in person before buying either of them.

Millipedes might be a good idea, but I've never kept one. I understand they can musk when stressed, so that might not work.

I'd suggest a colony of ispods (pill bugs) but they aren't big by any means.

EDIT: Getting some B.dubia would be good--you could use them as feeders as well, provided the kid doesn't get too attached to them. :D
 

Le Wasp

Arachnoknight
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Oct 25, 2007
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Hissing cockroach, - they grow large, don't mind being handled, can be kept communally, males and females look different, plus they're fairly hardy
I'll second that! I use my colony of hissers for feeders and the adults get humongous. Love the horns the males get.

...might not want to use your sons pets for feeders though :)
 

dannyboypede

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Aug 22, 2010
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I'll second that! I use my colony of hissers for feeders and the adults get humongous. Love the horns the males get.

...might not want to use your sons pets for feeders though :)
From what I've read, if B. dubia are kept properly you could go from 100 to thousands in just months. If all of the OP's T's are just slings, they will only have to feed nymphs, leaving the adults for handling. By the time the T's are adult and eating adult dubia, the OP's kid won't even notice the difference, or will understand that they are food too. I don't think feeding a small fraction of your son's pets will be a problem, but I don't know the kid in question.

--Dan
 

wicked

Arachnobaron
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Apr 15, 2005
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Another vote for Hissing Cockroach. My kids love them.

Giant millipedes are also very cool for the little ones, too. :)

 

TomM

Arachnobaron of Pennsylvania
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Oct 15, 2009
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+1 on millipedes... look how happy she is and look at the size of that MONSTER! I've never owned a giant millipede but have only heard good things. But if you are looking on the less expensive side of the hobby, Hissers are not only cheap, hardy, and long lived, they also make sounds. Just my opinion.
 

malevolentrobot

Arachnobaron
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Jan 21, 2010
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i second millipedes (or third, etc. whatever). also, sometimes when i miss having handleable pets, i'll let a dubia run around my arm :p

my millis are the only bugs anyone in my family will get near and are not afraid of :confused:
 

Vespula

Arachnodemon
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Jul 27, 2010
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I agree on the hissers, They make great pets. I volunteer at a "bug fest" and we have Roach Races. When the races are over, each kid there gets to take a hisser home. They're eyes light up at the prospect of getting their own bug! So hissers are a sure bet!
 

zonbonzovi

Creeping beneath you
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Oh my! How long is that A. gigas? What a beast! I agree on the hissers & millipedes. What about mantids or amblypygids? It sounds like your child is pretty careful and either of those would be fascinating to a young'n, although the mantid would be a bit more tolerant of handling.
 

jebbewocky

Arachnoangel
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Oh my! How long is that A. gigas? What a beast! I agree on the hissers & millipedes. What about mantids or amblypygids? It sounds like your child is pretty careful and either of those would be fascinating to a young'n, although the mantid would be a bit more tolerant of handling.
Mantids are kind of fragile (or at least, I get that impression from my reading--I'll defer to anyone with actual experience), and short-lived. The longest lived species, the Ornamental Ghost Mantis (still learning binomial names for mantids) lives at most 18 months from the research I've done at mantidforum.net. Never kept a mantid so far.

Amblypygids--no idea, never had one.
 
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Arborealis

Arachnoknight
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Another vote for Giant Madagascar Hissing roaches. They get fairly large and are pretty hardy. The spines do hurt a bit though if they decide to stick you with them but not bad.

I wouldn't recommend a millipede for a child that young. They release a chemical when stressed that is similar in compound to cyanide and when this chemical is released onto bare skin it causes what looks like blood bruises under the skin. (yes I have experienced this myself when moving baby millipedes). Also if for some reason he decides to stick his hand in his mouth while handling (who knows why he would but children are strange) and has any of this defense compound on his hands it could possibly make him sick.
 

jebbewocky

Arachnoangel
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Another vote for Giant Madagascar Hissing roaches. They get fairly large and are pretty hardy. The spines do hurt a bit though if they decide to stick you with them but not bad.

I wouldn't recommend a millipede for a child that young. They release a chemical when stressed that is similar in compound to cyanide and when this chemical is released onto bare skin it causes what looks like blood bruises under the skin. (yes I have experienced this myself when moving baby millipedes). Also if for some reason he decides to stick his hand in his mouth while handling (who knows why he would but children are strange) and has any of this defense compound on his hands it could possibly make him sick.

I think hissers might release a similar chemical, but I'm not sure.
I've definently been goo'd by Lats and Dubia though. Whether or not it includes cyanide is beyond my knowledge.
 
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