Throwing the Baby out with the Bathwater

Brad Ramsey

Retired Moderator
I spent a good part of the day yesterday cleaning Arthropod enclosures and decided this thread would be a good idea.
As much as we strive to be excellent keepers of our Chameleons, the proper keeping of their food is equally important and involves being good stewards of our surounding environments.
Having a collection of non-native/ exotic insects carries with it a huge responsibility, primarily in regard to security.
It occurred to me yesterday how easy it is to dispose of material that could cause a problem (particularly in a State where infestation or even survival is plausible...ie: Florida, Texas...)
I am in Colorado where it is highly unlikely that any of the insects I keep could survive very long in the wild, but I still implement extremely cautious practices in the keeping of these animals.
Primarily in regard to cleaning.
It is way to easy to throw out B. lateralis ootheca with substrate and frass for example. And particularly now, in the summer....if you don't think those are going to hatch ....you're crazy.
Nymphs of other roach species find it easy to hide between layers in the TP roll or in frass as well.
If you keep phasmids of any type, disposing of branches/ substrate carelessly could mean sending eggs or even adults out into the world.
Remember parthanogenetics is the rule rather than the exception with these, so most if not all eggs are viable and some species can lay thousands!
There are strict regulations about keeping many of these animals...permits and USDA inspections of your containment facilities are technically required.
Unless you're a zoo or University you have a snowballs chance of obtaining a permit....so if you are keeping any "illegal aliens" extreme care must be taken.
My personal recommendation is to utilize ziplock bags and the freezer.
Everything that comes out of every enclosure gets ziplocked, drowned and frozen (for at least a week) before going in the trash.
I'm interested to hear what others do in regard to this and just wanted to remind people of this possibly overlooked responsibilty.

-Brad
 

pohchunyee

Avid Member
Well for me; I worked in a laboratory with mice and stuff foreign to USA. What we did was to place those waste in a biohazard bag inside a freezer for at least 24 hours. Then, I place the biohazard bag in an autoclave to cook them before disposal. For home, zip lock bag (microwaveable) in a freezer and then place those stuff in a microwave for 1 minute and then dispose:D

Hey, Brad:
what exotic insect do you have? I only 2.2 Orchid Mantis and trying to have breeding colony of dubias roaches, some hornworms and crickets.

Do you have any other Mantis/ Phasmids for sale?
 

Brad Ramsey

Retired Moderator
I have European Mantids and Chinese ....but my stock in both these species are dedicated to a little breeding program right now (hopefully I'll have fertile ooths later)
My Ghosts are only L3 or L4 nymphs at present and will go into a breeding situation once they reach maturity..(slow growers these)
My african mantids have yet to hatch......waiting.....waiting.
If I did have any phasmids I wouldn't sell them....way too risky.
Once I have decent #'s of cultures I am working on, I will have lots to sell....
I'll definetely let you know.
Included in this will be:
B. dubia (they're going nuts right now!)
B. lateralis (also nuts....)
G. portentosa (have some decent size nymphs now)

With all of these I have found a huge investment of time is required to really get the ball rolling, but I am patient.


-Brad
 

pohchunyee

Avid Member
Hey Brad,
I am working with Dubias right now as feeder insect. Keep me posted when you have Ghost Mantis available. I am interested in them. :D
 

Dave Weldon

Avid Member
Howdy,

Another thing that I worry about is "disposal" of microbes and parasites. For example, the gallons of used misting water collected in drain buckets gets treated (for about an hour) with about a cup of bleach per 3 gallons of run-off before it gets carefully flushed. You never know what might be swimming in it :eek:!
 

pohchunyee

Avid Member
10% bleach will definately kill everything. Thats what we use in the lab and is safer to the environment. Too concentrated will smell really bad and create fumes which is bad for your chameleon too.
 

Dave Weldon

Avid Member
10% bleach will definately kill everything. Thats what we use in the lab and is safer to the environment. Too concentrated will smell really bad and create fumes which is bad for your chameleon too.
Howdy,

Ooops! You're right!! I guess I wasn't thinking out my numbers too carefully! ~3 gallons is about 50 cups worth of dirty water and 10% of that would be 5 cups of bleach :rolleyes:. I'll have to re-think things...
 

Heika

New Member
Howdy,

Another thing that I worry about is "disposal" of microbes and parasites. For example, the gallons of used misting water collected in drain buckets gets treated (for about an hour) with about a cup of bleach per 3 gallons of run-off before it gets carefully flushed. You never know what might be swimming in it :eek:!
Hmm.. that is concerning. I ignorantly have been watering the flower beds with my drain buckets. They are doing exceptionally well this year... chameleon poo fertilizer..
 

pohchunyee

Avid Member
Poops contain Nitrogen producing bacteria will definately boost the plant growth. Too much poop will over fertilize the plant and eventually causes plant death due to acid buildup.
 

Vegas Chad

Avid Member
hmmmmm might have a market for that special water... You can sell bags and bags of special, exotic and organic fertilizer! :) Just add water, poor on flowers and watch them grow!
 

Brad Ramsey

Retired Moderator
I am guilty of watering the garden with this water as well.
Also, fertilize with silkworm frass, Will suggested this at one point and I haven't wasted a single poo since!
My garden is BEAUTIFUL! and I use zero chemicals...I can't, I have fish, a bullfrog (now 3 years old) a box turtle and several assorted mantids living out there.
I also use the yucky pond water (fish emulsion) when I clean the water garden to fertilize.

-Brad
 

Brad Ramsey

Retired Moderator
Cirque de Solei Audition

Here's a pic of some girls practicing for their Cirque audition!

-Brad
 
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Marc10edora

Avid Member
I use cans of compressed air that is used for cleaning dust off the computer parts. I usually use the cans for freezing clay when I sculpt. If you turn the can upside down, and spray something, it will freeze instantly. The stuff can make anything cold in a flash. I wonder if you could do the same thing with that in order to freeze bugs that are too fast to catch.
 

pohchunyee

Avid Member
Brad I got your pm. They should place something at a corner like... "You have 1 new message(s) everytime you logs in." I always missed my messages for like a week or 2:D
 
Brad - I bought a few dubia from someplace months ago, and no babies. I just realized that the ones that died (over winter) were all my males.

If you have spares, or know of someone who does(I signed up for the roach forum, haven't checked it out though), I need to buy some. I need ot get off of crickets.
 

Vegas Chad

Avid Member
Sounds like you have quite the collection Brad… I envision your place to be something like the bug episode of dirty jobs; ever see that one? Im a big dude and have no problem admitting that roaches give me the willies, just something about them that I cant get over… I have never kept a bug as a pet (other than a caterpillar when I was like 5), but I would think that it would be fu to keep a little cool looking mantis or something. Are they something easy to care for?
 
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