Anyone with experience breeding black crickets? Gryllus bimaculatus?

Connorology

Established Member
IDK, I’m team banded. The acheta could be meatier and no harm using them of course, but they are sooo much more of a PITA to breed and keep alive than bandeds. I always felt the bandeds looked healthier more often. I think the virus initially set the house crickets back and then people caught on to the overall convenience of bandeds. Plus bandeds tend to eat more IME(just my own observation).
My main issue is they are small so I need to feed more of them, and they escape dishes and hide in the enclosure and my animals never find them. I don't doubt they're easiest to breed, I had like four successive generations in my bioactive leopard gecko enclosure until I managed to eradicate them.
I hate the banded crickets. Way too jumpy and too small. I have been breeding them, but they just don’t suit my larger chams very well.
Here in socal, I actually find banded crickets everywhere around houses. And my escapees have populated my garage- which my wife hates.

To each their own though. Banded crickets are just fine. I just find the larger crickets easier to handle and feed off.
I'm with you, I don't like the banded crickets. Too small and jumpy.
Yeah I should have some. Apparently the Oustalets in FL were eating a ton of lubbers, but I'm still too scared to test it out lol. All I know for sure is that they're non-toxic right after molting, until they harden and start eating again. So, that's the only time I feed them off.
Any tips on hatching S. nitens eggs? You're not doing a diapause, right?
 

SauceGandhi

Avid Member
My main issue is they are small so I need to feed more of them, and they escape dishes and hide in the enclosure and my animals never find them. I don't doubt they're easiest to breed, I had like four successive generations in my bioactive leopard gecko enclosure until I managed to eradicate them.
Yep, not a fan of nocturnal and omnivorous insects hiding during the day and nibbling lizards for some protein while they sleep.

Any tips on hatching S. nitens eggs? You're not doing a diapause, right?
Yeah no diapause. If you cool nitens eggs, they will die lol. Keeping them warm is definitely the most important part.
 

Connorology

Established Member
@jamest0o0 @scags @SauceGandhi Have any of you heard of/tried raising cave/camel crickets? California camel crickets would be my local species but there are a lot of different ones native to the US. My interest in them as a possible feeder is twofold: 1) They appear gregarious, which potentially means you could raise them in a bin at high population density without separating out the juveniles (like roaches but presumably without the high uric acid content of roaches) and 2) they're native to California so if I keep them as a novel feeder I'm not risking introducing an alien species.
 
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SauceGandhi

Avid Member
@jamest0o0 @scags @SauceGandhi Have any of you heard of/tried raising cave/camel crickets? California camel crickets would be my local species but there are a lot of different ones native to the US. My interest in them as a possible feeder is twofold: 1) They appear gregarious, which potentially means you could raise them in a bin at high population density without separating out the juveniles (like roaches but presumably without the high uric acid content of roaches) and 2) they're native to California so if I keep them as a novel feeder I'm not risking introducing an alien species.
Not gonna lie, the only reason I never looked into those is because they creep me out 😆 I think Mormon Crickets (Anabrus simplex) (actually a katydid) are better for that. Super gregarious and chonky. Already seen them grown in the lab at high density for locust-related research.
 

Connorology

Established Member
Not gonna lie, the only reason I never looked into those is because they creep me out 😆 I think Mormon Crickets (Anabrus simplex) (actually a katydid) are better for that. Super gregarious and chonky. Already seen them grown in the lab at high density for locust-related research.
My understanding is those are markedly destructive pests that aren't widespread in California though. I'm sure you're right about comparative feeder value but I worry about helping something like that cross the Sierra Nevadas, even though I suspect intrastate invasion risk is low. Reptile keepers already get bad press for benign insect introductions we aren't even responsible for (I saw some local news articles in Sacramento last year blaming reptile keepers for the recent uptick in Turkestan roaches around Sac Metro - even though they have been present in the area at lower levels for as long as I can remember and a cursory google search indicates they were introduced to California on military planes in the 1970s)

The camel crickets are ugly but benign. I just don't regularly see them so I wouldn't know where to collect.
 

MzLaurie11

Avid Member
You’ve bred the black crickets?
Yes. A good place to buy your starter batch is rainbowmealworms.com they have black crickets that r healthy. The bigger your breeding bin is the better. No substrate make sure you have the sandwich size plastic container with damp soil in there before you put them in so the ready females can lay their eggs in there. Remove dead ones daily. Once they are all dead cover laybin with papertowel then lid tight. Keep a basking lIght on it or on heating pad at low heat with an added towel on the pad so they dont get too hot. be patient zfter a few weeks peak under the top and tuny black specs will let u kniw they are hatching. You must set up a nursrey with subatrate vermiculite works best. set the whole nursery bin on the heating pad on the towel. Warmth will help unhatched eggs hatch and the young ones grow. Finely ground grains will feed them then add parsley at about two weeks. Also you will need plenty of eggcrTes. Good luck!
 

SauceGandhi

Avid Member
My understanding is those are markedly destructive pests that aren't widespread in California though. I'm sure you're right about comparative feeder value but I worry about helping something like that cross the Sierra Nevadas, even though I suspect intrastate invasion risk is low. Reptile keepers already get bad press for benign insect introductions we aren't even responsible for (I saw some local news articles in Sacramento last year blaming reptile keepers for the recent uptick in Turkestan roaches around Sac Metro - even though they have been present in the area at lower levels for as long as I can remember and a cursory google search indicates they were introduced to California on military planes in the 1970s)

The camel crickets are ugly but benign. I just don't regularly see them so I wouldn't know where to collect.
I agree, unlikely, but I get your point.

You probably won't find camel crickets in Sac. I've seen them in Monterey, but they're basically all over the coastline because they require cool and damp conditions year round. These conditions could also make breeding them gross, but I'm interested to see how it turns out. Seems there's a decent population about 10 mins from my house, so if you're ever in the area, I'm down to check it out :)
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
re: your original post, sounds like mites. Would need to remove all humidity source and grains, seeds, etc.

Katydids are cool, but the eggs are weird and annoying to hatch so I only produce 1 gen/year. They also can't be as densely packed as hoppers and are much less prolific.

Also, roachcrossing's pricing is astonishing lol. If you know anyone who wants lubbers, just send them my way. You do not need to pay 30 bucks for one, or 20 for one katydid nymph? and not even the legal kind? holy moly 😆
Katydids would be the best feeder other than being pretty hard/impossible to have a regular supply of. I bred the ones here in PA, but the eggs needed the diapause… took forever.

Regarding roach crossing, I don’t know Kyle that well, but the few times I tried to order some specific things off him, the ‘customer service’ was terrible. it would have been a pretty large orders too.


Yep, not a fan of nocturnal and omnivorous insects hiding during the day and nibbling lizards for some protein while they sleep.


Yeah no diapause. If you cool nitens eggs, they will die lol. Keeping them warm is definitely the most important part.
I’ve never had crickets attack an animal of mine, has this happened with you? I have heard the black crickets are pretty aggressive. I find them outside occasionally, they’re huge.
 

scags

Member
@jamest0o0 @scags @SauceGandhi Have any of you heard of/tried raising cave/camel crickets? California camel crickets would be my local species but there are a lot of different ones native to the US. My interest in them as a possible feeder is twofold: 1) They appear gregarious, which potentially means you could raise them in a bin at high population density without separating out the juveniles (like roaches but presumably without the high uric acid content of roaches) and 2) they're native to California so if I keep them as a novel feeder I'm not risking introducing an alien species.
I’ve caught and observed wild camel crickets, but never tried to breed them. Would be an interesting species to try. I’ve never seen them in Cali, but I used to find them on occasion in Michigan. Usually in dark damp places. I’m not sure if they breed year round in the Midwest.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
@jamest0o0 @scags @SauceGandhi Have any of you heard of/tried raising cave/camel crickets? California camel crickets would be my local species but there are a lot of different ones native to the US. My interest in them as a possible feeder is twofold: 1) They appear gregarious, which potentially means you could raise them in a bin at high population density without separating out the juveniles (like roaches but presumably without the high uric acid content of roaches) and 2) they're native to California so if I keep them as a novel feeder I'm not risking introducing an alien species.

I never have, but wanted to a little while back. I think ‘hisserdude’ on here was breeding them and some other interesting species.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
So for those of you that don’t like bandeds, where do you get the house crickets, any healthy sources still? Even with optimal conditions I could never justify how fast they would die. It was cheaper to order large amounts from ghanns to feed my panthers and parsons than to get the house crickets due to the survivability. I could leave bandeds in a tub for a month and none would die. Almost Every single day the others would have some die off.
 

SauceGandhi

Avid Member
I’ve never had crickets attack an animal of mine, has this happened with you? I have heard the black crickets are pretty aggressive. I find them outside occasionally, they’re huge.
Not personally; it was based on others' experiences, but I stopped using them pretty quickly. I did wake up to one chewing on me in my sleep though lol.
 

Persnickety Parson's

Chameleon Enthusiast
IDK, I’m team banded. The acheta could be meatier and no harm using them of course, but they are sooo much more of a PITA to breed and keep alive than bandeds. I always felt the bandeds looked healthier more often. I think the virus initially set the house crickets back and then people caught on to the overall convenience of bandeds. Plus bandeds tend to eat more IME(just my own observation).

Team banded here too, that said some raising the various tree crickets maybe very helpful for dietary supplementation.

I've also found banded aren't as likely to eat whatever they are being fed too, can't speak for the large black crickets I worked with up in Minnesota though, huge in comparison to all commonly available crickets, but require a winter diapause.

I've had the typical house crickets injure several tarantulas, and completely eat a hatchling anole, that I was working with, and of course it's one that had a cool color mutation as well.
 

SauceGandhi

Avid Member
Team banded here too, that said some raising the various tree crickets maybe very helpful for dietary supplementation.

I've also found banded aren't as likely to eat whatever they are being fed too, can't speak for the large black crickets I worked with up in Minnesota though, huge in comparison to all commonly available crickets, but require a winter diapause.

I've had the typical house crickets injure several tarantulas, and completely eat a hatchling anole, that I was working with, and of course it's one that had a cool color mutation as well.
Oof, sorry about your anole.

By tree crickets, do you mean Oecanthinae? The ones that I've seen are tiny...
 

scags

Member
So for those of you that don’t like bandeds, where do you get the house crickets, any healthy sources still? Even with optimal conditions I could never justify how fast they would die. It was cheaper to order large amounts from ghanns to feed my panthers and parsons than to get the house crickets due to the survivability. I could leave bandeds in a tub for a month and none would die. Almost Every single day the others would have some die off.

Critter Depot has them on occasion. I’ve also gotten them from Petsmart here and there. They do die much easier than banded crickets.
 

scags

Member
Yes, they are tiny for sure but I've seen them active during the day, and soft bodied. They may certainly have a use, much like our tiny green banana roach. Though most are nocturnal.
I’ve caught these in the wild. Similar to lacewings or green banana roaches. Which btw, green lacewings are a great feeder for babies and smaller lizards like anoles. I havent bred them, but I find them around trees in fairly large numbers.
I’ve never had an issue with the g. bimaculatus trying to eat my pets, but they can pack a mean bite. But rarely bite.
 
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