Feeding wc katydids and grasshoppers

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ve been collecting katydids and hoppers, hoping to one day breed... but otherwise just feed off. I am in a residential / suburban part of Baltimore where it is definitely possible they came into contact with chemicals AND rats. My neighborhood isnt infested but you do see the ocassional rat at night.

I’ve been finding a lot of posts where people feed them off without hesitation, and other posts warning that they can carry the same parasites as snails, and more. I am obviously concerned about introducing potential parasites, especially lung worm.

Id love to breed them, but not sure how successful I would be... and then I would need to seperate the eggs and raise them in another area. Grasshopper poop is tiny... is the tiny frass blowing around my bug room capable of infecting my other feeders? Ugh! I am so paranoid about them now, I may just release them.

Anyone out there breeding them or have more insightful info?
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ve been collecting katydids and hoppers, hoping to one day breed... but otherwise just feed off. I am in a residential / suburban part of Baltimore where it is definitely possible they came into contact with chemicals AND rats. My neighborhood isnt infested but you do see the ocassional rat at night.

I’ve been finding a lot of posts where people feed them off without hesitation, and other posts warning that they can carry the same parasites as snails, and more. I am obviously concerned about introducing potential parasites, especially lung worm.

Id love to breed them, but not sure how successful I would be... and then I would need to seperate the eggs and raise them in another area. Grasshopper poop is tiny... is the tiny frass blowing around my bug room capable of infecting my other feeders? Ugh! I am so paranoid about them now, I may just release them.

Anyone out there breeding them or have more insightful info?
I would advise against the grasshoppers. I think they are bad, well they say Lubbers are bad, but Grasshoppers are Lubbers? Idk, it's kind of confusing but I been told never to never feed grasshoppers.

Edit: checked, yep grasshoppers are "Lubbers" lubber grasshopper. Wikipedia
Scientific name: Romalea guttata

And Lubbers are bad.

NOOOOO @jannb!That is a lubber! Literally the only hopper species in NA that is toxic, it will kill your Cham!

@jannb i diddnt take the time to read others comments I hope I’m not too late!
But maybe not all grasshoppers are Lubbers? Idk the ones I had were said to be Lubbers, so I have just swore off hoppers.
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ve been collecting katydids and hoppers, hoping to one day breed... but otherwise just feed off. I am in a residential / suburban part of Baltimore where it is definitely possible they came into contact with chemicals AND rats. My neighborhood isnt infested but you do see the ocassional rat at night.

I’ve been finding a lot of posts where people feed them off without hesitation, and other posts warning that they can carry the same parasites as snails, and more. I am obviously concerned about introducing potential parasites, especially lung worm.

Id love to breed them, but not sure how successful I would be... and then I would need to seperate the eggs and raise them in another area. Grasshopper poop is tiny... is the tiny frass blowing around my bug room capable of infecting my other feeders? Ugh! I am so paranoid about them now, I may just release them.

Anyone out there breeding them or have more insightful info?
I’ve attempted breeding a few different kinds over the past 2-3 years with limited success. They just require so much food and space it just wasn’t feasible for me. They will stress out and die if kept with a lot of other hoppers.

And honestly they are so easy to catch at night it’s not worth the effort. We can literally catch 100s at a time during peak season. My chams are fed a 100% WC diet from Spring to Fall every year.

I agree you should be concerned with the chemicals but for the parasites it’s a completely different story. This is exceedingly rare. In order for there to be a legitimate threat of contracting a parasite both the parasite and host(Cham) must have evolved together over many, many generations. So unless your in your chams natural habitat the risk of contracting a parasite via WC feeders is minimal.
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ve attempted breeding a few different kinds over the past 2-3 years with limited success. They just require so much food and space it just wasn’t feasible for me. They will stress out and die if kept with a lot of other hoppers.

And honestly they are so easy to catch at night it’s not worth the effort. We can literally catch 100s at a time during peak season. My chams are fed a 100% WC diet from Spring to Fall every year.

I agree you should be concerned with the chemicals but for the parasites it’s a completely different story. This is exceedingly rare. In order for there to be a legitimate threat of contracting a parasite both the parasite and host(Cham) must have evolved together over many, many generations. So unless your in your chams natural habitat the risk of contracting a parasite via WC feeders is minimal.

So not all hoppers are Lubbers? Right?
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast

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cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
In Southeast Louisiana all we have are the big black and yellow ones. Everything else is safe.
I guess AZ has 3 from what I am seeing. I added the 3rd pic.

So she may want to search for her state and search the ones she is planning to feed, as there seems to be quite a few "Lubbers"
 

SauceGandhi

Member
The toxic ones are Eastern Lubbers and Horse Lubbers. You can tell because they're brightly colored and move very slowly/clumsily. As far as I know, Plains Lubbers and Dragon Lubbers are fine. Most grasshoppers are not toxic, and breeding them is very simple. This setup gives me about 500 babies per month, from 10 females.

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SauceGandhi

Member
Looks like there are some errors in that guide. It's showing an Eastern Lubber as a Horse Lubber. They have different colors depending on locale, but still look quite different from horse lubbers as adults. Also, there are 2 pictures of the differential grasshopper but its labeled as something else the second time lol.

Eastern Lubber: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/466003-Romalea-microptera

Horse Lubber: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/82018-Taeniopoda-eques
 
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snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
These aren’t lubbers - they are easily identified by color. The katydids and hoppers are bright green... almost look the same at this age except for antenna length. (Hoppers have short thick antenna vs katydid’s long thin ones).

Im not worried about chemicals as I dont catch and feed... they are getting fed and misted long enough it should clear the system, but as Brody mentioned the parasites are my concern. Thats a relief if thr threat isnt as bad as some have said.
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
The toxic ones are Eastern Lubbers and Horse Lubbers. You can tell because they're brightly colored and move very slowly/clumsily. As far as I know, Plains Lubbers and Dragon Lubbers are fine. Most grasshoppers are not toxic, and breeding them is very simple. This setup gives me about 500 babies per month, from 10 females.

View attachment 239415
This is awesome - exactly what I’m going for. Looks like a similiar setup to crickets (minus the flats). What are you feeding? Looks like dry food. Ive been giving mine oak, romaine, carrots and squash. Dry food would be easier, or a combination. How often do you pull your laybin?
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
Looks like there are some errors in that guide. It's showing an Eastern Lubber as a Horse Lubber. They have different colors depending on locale, but still look quite different from horse lubbers as adults. Also, there are 2 pictures of the differential grasshopper but its labeled as something else the second time lol.

Eastern Lubber: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/466003-Romalea-microptera

Horse Lubber: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/82018-Taeniopoda-eques
Very possible, I’m definitely no expert on them. I usually hit up Andee or Motherloade to confirm when I catch a new species. The most common ones here are these and Carolina Mantis. Easily catch hundreds a night
and god only knows how many moths and XL dragon flies with a light trap.

It’s work but I do it because it allows me to feed a far larger variety to my chams than I could by just buying or breeding my own. This lessens my dependency on gut loads greatly, but I do still use them regularly. It does save me a bit of money too.

However I do not encourage anyone to follow in my footsteps. I live in the middle of nowhere with zero chance of unexpected pesticides and have my chams tested regularly, usually every 6 months to ensure this parasite idea is still holding through. So far, zero infections. E5301D8B-09F4-44FC-80C3-2BBD96CE5ED6.jpeg04E84D06-0643-4B5E-99E5-CBCFE043F131.jpeg8BA12F99-CF16-4DE5-9E33-CBA52B23E5C0.jpeg5F65DA2E-B193-41AC-8C90-A254A2D22E29.jpeg5DDB9884-EA90-4514-ABD0-7C49372CAF60.jpegAE0D39FB-DF30-47EC-AC8B-DDEBB61A6768.jpegCDA77BD2-2DB6-4626-818C-9F24C2017D91.jpeg6432E21E-5CF4-4030-993C-339266AE758C.jpeg
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
Wow @Brodybreaux25 !! Do you catch all those katydids with light traps? Or do you catch those by hand? I think I would get mostly beetles with a light trap around here
Moths and dragon flies with the light trap.

For the hoppers and mantis’s we jump on our bikes and go find an overgrown field and just walk along some trails and just pick them off as we go. They are DENSE this time of year. We spot them with headlights and just snatch them up off plants. They seem to really like this one kind of wild Louisiana hibiscus, usually 2-3 per plant. If you put your spotlight on them they will freeze and just sit there. Then you just grab them, that simple. We could easily catch hundreds in a few hours, only reason we don’t is because we don’t have the space to put them all. The pics below are from a single 30min trip, if you’ve got young kids they will love it!
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SauceGandhi

Member
This is awesome - exactly what I’m going for. Looks like a similiar setup to crickets (minus the flats). What are you feeding? Looks like dry food. Ive been giving mine oak, romaine, carrots and squash. Dry food would be easier, or a combination. How often do you pull your laybin?
Dry food and lettuce is the way to go. I pull the laybin every 20 days For this species. I have another one that I pull every 25. Just depends on hatch time, of course.

Send me some! :D
Sure, just PM me lol. I always have extra.

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