Heating Bug Containers

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm looking for suggestions / your solutions to keeping your bugs at optimal temps. I have a variety of feeder insects on a large rack in my basement. Right now I'm using light bulbs over cricket bins to keep their temps up, and above the cricket bins are roach bins that get radiant heat from the lights as well. The roach temps aren't quite as high as I'd like, but are acceptable. To the sides I have snails, stick bugs, supers, isopods, and hawk moths - all of whom don't mind slightly cooler temperatures than the roaches and crickets. So they get slightly radiant heat, but their temps are closer to 73 degrees. The issue with the lights is that the roaches and crickets don't like the lights, and when I turn them off at night the temps obviously drop, too.

I've thought about a small oil heater, but it is summer... so paying to both heat and cool the same floor sure would suck.

I've thought about a heating pad (for humans) under the cricket and roach bins. This is my #1 choice so far... but then I'm concerned the ambient temps for the other bugs will drop to 67-70.

I don't like the idea of heat tape at all. The bugs are on a metal rack in my home... and all I can think of is electrocuting myself or burning my house down. After Charlie's T5 light burned up, I'm even more paranoid about an electrical fire.

I've considered moving them outside to my shed... but then the risk of other bugs entering the enclosure is high.

So what is your genius, fool proof method for heating your bugs?
 
I have my roaches in a large Rubbermaid container on top of my filing cabinets. I just have a human heat pad under the bin. It always registers at 88-95 with a temp gun depending on where I aim the gun in the bin. Then I have my fruit flies on top of that bin. I have bugs coming out my ears. Maybe in your situation you could use red or blue lights at night for the roaches and crickets. As long as it’s not near the Chams. Good luck!
 

Rst_Cham

Chameleon Enthusiast
P.S. The CHE do radiate heat so helps with ambient temps just like light bulbs, and I use them in the regular clamp light fixtures.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have a reptile tank heat pad under my roaches with an on off thermostat to control the exact temp. But that is all that I heat. lol.
I have it hooked to a 10 gallon tank and then I have the roaches in the large cricket keeper inside it.
 

snitz427

Chameleon Enthusiast
What don't you like about using light bulbs?

I like the bulbs other than turning them off at night. I do that to both replicate a normal light schedule, but also as the bugs are more active in the dark. Even the neighboring bugs do better when they have periods of darkness. The problem with that is heat loss at night, which can sometimes be significant. Also the bulbs tend to burn out a little quicker than I'd like.

The heat emitting bulb is a good idea that didn't even cross my mind. I have fluorescent overhead lighting that is on the 12 hrs on/off schedule so they'd still get the light changes without the temp swings. I need to think about how best to mount them around the roach containers where I can't remove the lid. The radiant heat / stacking works well, but I need more rooooooooom!
 

Rst_Cham

Chameleon Enthusiast
I like the bulbs other than turning them off at night. I do that to both replicate a normal light schedule, but also as the bugs are more active in the dark. Even the neighboring bugs do better when they have periods of darkness. The problem with that is heat loss at night, which can sometimes be significant. Also the bulbs tend to burn out a little quicker than I'd like.

The heat emitting bulb is a good idea that didn't even cross my mind. I have fluorescent overhead lighting that is on the 12 hrs on/off schedule so they'd still get the light changes without the temp swings. I need to think about how best to mount them around the roach containers where I can't remove the lid. The radiant heat / stacking works well, but I need more rooooooooom!
I'm hanging my fixtures over my bins from hooks I installed in the ceiling.
 
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