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HOUSING INVERTEBRATES
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Housing Guidelines
Other Housing Options
Breeding Housing Options
Heating and Lighting
Floor Linings (substrate)

FEEDING AND HUSBANDRY
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Moulting and Diseases
Feeding Regimen
Cleaning and ova separation
Providing Food

BREEDING STICK INSECTS
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Sexing and Mating
Egg Laying and preparation
Rearing Nymphs

BUGS, BUGS & MORE BUGS
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Species in Culture
Sending live insects by post
Picture Gallery
Related Websites
 
 
Housing Guidelines
by Gareth Price
28th May, 2001
Page 2

Facts and Figures
Now that we have discussed the general do's and dont's of housing your invertebrates, lets take time to look at some general facts & figures which may make your job just a little bit easier. These include handy product tips, design techniques and guidelines all developed from personal experience.

If you have anything to add, or have refined my own ideas, please feel free to contact me and I'll see about publishing them on the web. Similarly, why not post your ideas on the phasmid mailing list, or the sticklist? I'm sure there are many less experienced beginners who would be glad of your help (i'm one of em!)

A Rule of thumb
As far as housing your phasmids is concerned, it is generally accepted that a height of three times the total length of the insect is adequate, as this allows it to move around and moult without difficulty. Adequate accomodation will alow for proper ventilation and circulation, which will retard the growth of moulds and fungi. Therefore, I would strongly advise you to consider an insects needs before you make any long term commitment. If the housing is improper, it is likely that your encounter with your new pet will be brief. You can easily calculate the size of your enclosure by multiplying the adult length of your insect by three, to find the height, halving this to find the width and subtracting 1/2 an inch for every inch of width to find the depth (got it?). However, for those of you who are hopless at maths, I have put together a handy table for you to print out and use as a reference if you wish.

 Species  Size of species  Est. size of enclosure (min)
 Epidares nolimetangere - 2inches x-small  6 x 4 x 3 inches
 Carausius Morosus - 4inches  small  12 x 6 x 4 inches
 Extatosoma tiaratum - 6inches  medium  18 x 9 x 6 inches
 Eurycantha spp. - 8 inches  large  24 x 12 x 8 inches
 Heteropteryx dilatata - 10inches  x-large  30 x 15 x 12 - inches
 Pharnacia spp. - 12inches +  x-x-large  48 x 24 x 18 - inches

Another important thing when designing your enclosure, is to allow for the implementation of clips, which will service as retainers for the insects food plant. I usually build these into the roof, as they can then hang down into the enclosure, leaving more floor space for ground dwelling animals and egg laying females.

Speaking of which, it is a good idea to line your enclosure with some good quality sharp sand (available from garden centres and DIY stores) as this allows gravid females to lay their eggs effortlessly and also because it is one of the only substrates that can be effectively "cleaned." By using a fine sieve, particles of waste can be removed and the remaining sand can be soaked, spread on a broad sheet of paper and left outdoors to dry.

That's all folks! it won't belong before you all start raiding your tool sheds and building something cheap and really spectacular! Just don't rip up your Mum's best cupboard (gulp!!)


HOUSING INVERTEBRATES | FEEDING AND HUSBANDRY | BREEDING STICK INSECTS | SPECIES IN CULTURE | SENDING INSECTS BY POST | PICTURE GALLERY | CONTACT ME |

All information contained herein is copyright ©2001 Gareth Price. All rights reserved. Any media that has been borrowed from external sources has been done so with the full consent of its respective copyright owner. For more information, see the legal agreement.