A cautionary word about roaches

Franquixote

New member
Beardie name(s)
Pixel
Hi all, 40 years of reptile experience, but since my last panther I am taking a break.

Had 2 different kinds of roach colonies in NJ. Just wanted to say the panther was the first time I bred lots of roaches.

I am very glad I literally accounted for every roach that went into the enclosure.

A full 6 months after I rehomed the panther after 5 very difficult years of keeping him super healthy, the half dozen dubia and orange heads were still alive in the paper thin cracks of my triple sealed custom enclosure.
I dehydrated it, and bug bombed it twice. Zero food in there. Temps were high 50's,low 60's
They were very much alive and I brought one back from the brink.

Never again. Had they escaped, absolutely would have survived in the house.

To review :the roaches durvivrd months in a fully dehumidified enclisure with no source of food, low temps, and 2 roach specific poisonings a month apart.

I kept them extremely healthy before feeding, gut loading is not the right term, they were raised on a diet of superfoods... But still, I would not have guessed they could survive.

Survival isn't infestation, but no one wants their non-reptile loving family and friends to be surprised with giant roaches in the house.

Similarly, we had literally TWO bbf escape, and 2 weeks later had maggots dropping from the laundry room drop ceiling, the flies were surviving on mouse droppings (I would guess most houses get a few rodents in the walls and ceilings).

Crickets are probably the worst and most common offenders, a lesson I learned years ago and refuse to bring crickets into the house at all now.

I am only posting this in the hopes that someone's hobby is not cut short because they are not vigilant about live feeders escaping. Though it may be cruel, if you are not going to account for every feeder that goes in, do yourself a favor and hobble any live feeders you plan on leaving, or remove them immediately if not eaten.
 
Last edited:

AHBD

BD.org Sicko
That's amazing, thanks for sharing this. We all hear about how indestructable roaches are but that was quite a story. And was it bsfl that escaped + bred in your ceiling ? YUK !

I just wanted to mention that over 30 yrs. of having feeder crickets in my house and knowing there were escapees at times they caused no problems at all. At times there was chirping going on but they don't reproduce because they need very specific conditions. So escapees might live a couple weeks , mostly hidden, and then they're gone.
 

Claudiusx

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
I've had similar experiences with Dubia. They can and most likely will escape. And they can and most likely will survive living in your home. They are one of natures best survivors. HOWEVER, they won't breed like your normal infestation roaches will. They do actually need more of a tropical environment to successfully breed.

So while you likely will have some year's old escapees hanging around, they shouldn't infest your house :)

TBH, if I found one after that long, i'd probably feel bad and give him the life of luxury for the remainder of his life haha. *here's a little 10g container with food and heat for ya fella*

-Brandon
 

Franquixote

New member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Pixel
Good point. I *thought * I was going to emotionally scar my daughter because the single damn roach that escaped in 5 years ended up in her snuggle blanket when she was 5 or so... Only a few feet from the enclosure, but I felt like a jerk.
But she didn't tell mom and cried along with me when we had to rehome the chameleon 🤷
Lol, never brought it up. And she's been 'bugging' me for a reptile, so happy to say it ended right.
 

tropicalsoul

Member
Beardie name(s)
Dusty
Hi all, 40 years of reptile experience, but since my last panther I am taking a break.

Had 2 different kinds of roach colonies in NJ. Just wanted to say the panther was the first time I bred lots of roaches.

I am very glad I literally accounted for every roach that went into the enclosure.

A full 6 months after I rehomed the panther after 5 very difficult years of keeping him super healthy, the half dozen dubia and orange heads were still alive in the paper thin cracks of my triple sealed custom enclosure.
I dehydrated it, and bug bombed it twice. Zero food in there. Temps were high 50's,low 60's
They were very much alive and I brought one back from the brink.

Never again. Had they escaped, absolutely would have survived in the house.

To review :the roaches durvivrd months in a fully dehumidified enclisure with no source of food, low temps, and 2 roach specific poisonings a month apart.

I kept them extremely healthy before feeding, gut loading is not the right term, they were raised on a diet of superfoods... But still, I would not have guessed they could survive.

Survival isn't infestation, but no one wants their non-reptile loving family and friends to be surprised with giant roaches in the house.

Similarly, we had literally TWO bbf escape, and 2 weeks later had maggots dropping from the laundry room drop ceiling, the flies were surviving on mouse droppings (I would guess most houses get a few rodents in the walls and ceilings).

Crickets are probably the worst and most common offenders, a lesson I learned years ago and refuse to bring crickets into the house at all now.

I am only posting this in the hopes that someone's hobby is not cut short because they are not vigilant about live feeders escaping. Though it may be cruel, if you are not going to account for every feeder that goes in, do yourself a favor and hobble any live feeders you plan on leaving, or remove them immediately if not eaten.
This is exactly why dubias are illegal in Florida. The can infest very easily and thrive in our climate. Discoids, however, cannot. They need a tropical climate and most of Florida is subtropical, so they wouldn’t survive our winters. They also can’t fly.
 

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