Your Feeder Choices and Experiences

cr4igo

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 25, 2016
Messages
21
Although new to the hobby & board, my collection has already grown significantly over the last few months...:embarrassed: 5 Arboreals- 1 Terrestrial- 2 Scorp-->With that being said I am considering a feeder colony at home. I know most in the community promote Dubia, Discoid, and Crickets. I am not considering super worms. My questions revolve around how everyone deals with feeder smell and maintenance... Personally, I can't keep crickets... Their smell is repulsive and they seem to be escape artists... I buy my crickets from a local exotic shop or 'Fresh' from Petsmart. I have heard negative experiences about mites and the dreaded 'nematode'... but haven't run into any major issues quite yet. I see the potential for a larger collection costing more $$$ going forward. What are your experiences?

Dubia and Discoid roaches... I can't seem to overcome my hatred of cockroaches... Although these feeders cannot fly or climb, I can't see myself raising them. I even bought a starter colony at a Repticon convention and ended up giving them to a friend because I couldn't handle having them in my home. Simply the idea of their presence was enough... You could cover me in Ts and Centipedes etc etc and I would be fine... Can't do the roaches...

I understand the gut loading process and the environment feeders need to thrive in. I would just like the community's opinion and what everyone is working with. I assume I just need to commit and accept the situation as it is. Hopefully, I can get some solid feedback that will change my mind. Until then, I plan on making weekly shop visits to purchase feeders. Constructive criticism and feedback welcome--> no r/roasting please ;)
 

Poec54

Arachnoemperor
Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
4,763
Everything eats crickets. Most eat roaches, but not all. Arboreals tend not to eat roaches as readily as terrestrials, if at all.

If raising crickets smells bad, you're not doing it right. DRY cage (large plastic storage box), screen top, paper towels on the bottom, lots of egg crates, & feed them romaine, lettuce, carrots, and potatoes, along with a dry food (Purina cricket chow). NO water! People who keep them moist and/or give them too much water have a mess.

BTW, you don't 'gut load' feeders. It's a stupid term in this hobby. You feed your feeders things that are good for them. Don't need a special name for that.
 

Estein

Arachnoknight
Joined
Feb 11, 2016
Messages
154
I used to live pretty far from anywhere I could easily get feeder insects, so having a mealworm colony was perfect for me. Their setup was a Kritter Keeper with a couple inches of dry oats and a damp paper towel on top. Every couple of days I put in some fresh carrots or potatoes cut into large chunks for easy removal. That said, I only have terrestrials, so I couldn't tell you how well mealworms would work for arboreals (but I'd love to hear someone else's experience with them).

These days I live much closer to the pet store, so I tend to pick up a mix of feeders when I go into town for groceries just because I personally enjoy watching the Ts eat different things. They'll take crickets, mealworms, and, for the larger one, dubia roaches. My only negative feeder experience was with fruit flies. God, never again. They leapt out of the container like coiled springs as soon as they got the chance and the experience ended with me sweeping hoards of fruit flies off the floor. After that I fed my sling freshly killed crickets until it grew into the size I could feed live. Ah, the joys of trial and error.

Good luck with what you decide to do, and I look forward to getting more feeder ideas for my Ts here as well!
 

EulersK

Arachnonomicon
Staff member
Joined
Feb 22, 2013
Messages
3,289
I'm a huge advocate for dubias. If it makes you feel better, I had a crippling phobia of roaches when I started my colony. Now I scoop them up by the hand full when I sell them. You'll get over it ;)

I just made this a few days ago. Good timing, mate.

 

PanzoN88

Arachnodemon
Joined
Sep 15, 2014
Messages
691
My preference is dubia roaches, but I still buy crickets since my E. Sp. Red and both of my B. Sabulosums seem to prefer crickets over roaches.
 

Sana

Arachnoprince
Joined
Oct 26, 2014
Messages
1,143
I'm in the very small minority that is absolutely creeped out by roaches. I can't handle working with them. Opening a container filled with roaches is enough to give me bad dreams for days. I use crickets kept in the same manner as Poec54. I don't technically breed them (I would consider breeding to be hatching and raising enough of them to steadily supply my tarantulas). I used to raise crickets but it was more trouble then it was worth to me. I buy mine several hundred at a time and they have access to a couple containers of dirt to lay eggs in if they are so inclined, which they generally are. I hatch just enough tiny crickets to feed my slings without having to buy them at a small size but not nearly enough to feed everyone. I also periodically buy meal worms, wax worms, horned worms and super worms to offer a little variety to my tarantulas. Any worms that I use get their heads crushed before they go into an enclosure. All of those worms have strong mandibles and will burrow as soon as they hit the substrate. They can injure a tarantula and if they burrow and disappear they can easily kill a tarantula that is molting later on. I do have several tarantulas that won't eat anything but crickets. Another fun feeder to try out are moths, especially with arboreals. Always a good time to watch a tarantula pounce a flying bug.
 

Chris LXXIX

ArachnoGod
Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
5,670
I have yet to stomp into a hungry Theraphosidae, from a first instar to adult, that will refuse a cricket. Crickets are always the best option; yes I know they sing & smell & etc but really.

B.dubia are without doubts, perfect. But as Poec54 said, I witnessed as well certain arboreals (hungry) being choosy with those.
 

Trenor

Arachnoprince
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
1,899
I'm in the very small minority that is absolutely creeped out by roaches. I can't handle working with them. Opening a container filled with roaches is enough to give me bad dreams for days.
Good to know...... :D

You have strange eating habits. Were you raised that way?
Hey man, you got to get that protein some where. :p
 

Sana

Arachnoprince
Joined
Oct 26, 2014
Messages
1,143
Good to know...... :D


Hey man, you got to get that protein some where. :p
I know it makes no sense that I can work with very large and venomous spiders all day long but shudder at the mere thought of roaches. I don't know what it is about them but ick.
 

louise f

Arachnoangel
Joined
Jul 8, 2012
Messages
936
I know it makes no sense that I can work with very large and venomous spiders all day long but shudder at the mere thought of roaches. I don't know what it is about them but ick.
Haha, i used to have the yikes for roaches as well, i think it is their legs, sticking your skin. Brwarrdrr:D Now i dont mind if hundreds of those crawling me.
Came over that fear too. :D:p Dont worry i think you will too friend.. ( i hope ):angelic:
 

Sana

Arachnoprince
Joined
Oct 26, 2014
Messages
1,143
Haha, i used to have the yikes for roaches as well, i think it is their legs, sticking your skin. Brwarrdrr:D Now i dont mind if hundreds of those crawling me.
Came over that fear too. :D:p Dont worry i think you will too friend.. ( i hope ):angelic:
I might someday but for now crickets are all good.
 

cold blood

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 19, 2014
Messages
11,830
I used to live pretty far from anywhere I could easily get feeder insects, so having a mealworm colony was perfect for me. Their setup was a Kritter Keeper with a couple inches of dry oats and a damp paper towel on top. Every couple of days I put in some fresh carrots or potatoes cut into large chunks for easy removal. That said, I only have terrestrials, so I couldn't tell you how well mealworms would work for arboreals (but I'd love to hear someone else's experience with them).
Every single t I own eats mealworms without hesitation...same for wax worms, but those aren't something one can generally breed themselves. Even very large ts have no issue taking a mealworm or three.

I don't breed them, but I should, from what I understand, there's no easier feeder to breed.
 

gypsy cola

Arachnoknight
Joined
Jan 16, 2014
Messages
195
I want to take look into horn worms. Those things are AWESOME as feeders. Starting a dubia colony next month.
 

REEFSPIDER

Arachnobaron
Joined
May 6, 2016
Messages
412
I will tell you straight up I was against roach rearing as much as you, having grown up in not the best neighborhoods around so cal was always taught to hate the pesky 'water bugs' which I later came to know as American roaches. but they really are the best choice as far as price, longevity, smell.. Or lack of one, and they're self sustaining besides occasional foods and water changes. I will not touch another cricket nor will one see the insides of my enclosures. They die. They smell. They lay eggs on my substrate and then a thousand baby crickets drive the effected t crazy. I use mealworms in my roach bin. This helps with smell even more. Get an adult hisser and keep it in your collection, that's what I did and it's now one of my favorite residents.
 

Trenor

Arachnoprince
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
1,899
I know it makes no sense that I can work with very large and venomous spiders all day long but shudder at the mere thought of roaches. I don't know what it is about them but ick.
Yeah, I had one take off up my arm the other night and it running across my skin gave me the hebejebes. Most of the time though they don't bother me.
 

REEFSPIDER

Arachnobaron
Joined
May 6, 2016
Messages
412
Yeah, I had one take off up my arm the other night and it running across my skin gave me the hebejebes. Most of the time though they don't bother me.
My hisser bolted and hissed simultaneously and I messed up and flinch reacted and flung him directly at my girlfriend luckily she likes him :happy:
 

REEFSPIDER

Arachnobaron
Joined
May 6, 2016
Messages
412
Did she catch him?
;)She did he made a rather soft landing on her chest if you get me. I have trained myself not to flinch with my spiders from having the same attributes from keeping reptiles, the roaches can still bring it out of me though.
 
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