The Guyana Orange Spotted Roach
Blaptica dubia are a roach species located in Central and South America. Baby blaptica dubia are around 3/16” inch and adults can reach 1 ½” to 2 inches. After adulthood they can live up to 12 months. Blaptica dubia have the great advantage of being extremely easy to sex as the adult males have full wings while the adult females have only tiny wing stubs. Even though they may have wings, they are unable to fly. They are also very slow movers. If one happens to escape you will have no problem catching them. They do not burrow and they also cannot climb smooth surfaces. They are a live bearing species and reproduce the slowest of all non-climbers. They have little to no odor making it much easier to be around them. They do not make any noise as they mature unlike Crickets.
Blaptica dubia make a great feeder insect and have become a very popular feeder. This is mainly because of their shell to meat ratio. They are 36% protein while Crickets are only 18.5%. It would take about 7 crickets to compare to 1 dubia. They have a softer shell that makes it easier to digest. It is always good to feed these roaches 24 hours before feeding them to your pets, doing this will give your pets a good amount of protein. Roaches overall are a better feeder insect than most of the other insects for your pets.
A diet consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables supplemented with dry dog food, grain cereal, baby cereal, and fish flakes will provide a suitable diet. Just make sure you remove any old fruits or vegetables, mold can and will harm your colony. These items can be rotated through, or mixed together. There are also roach diets that can be purchased online. These are prefabricated mixtures that just need to be served to the roaches. Watering water crystals are a good source of water, and not messy. Provide a shallow water dish for your colony. They also provide a surface area that the roaches can walk on so no more drowned insects in the water dish!
Housing Blaptica dubia is very simple. Any glass tank or smooth sided plastic container would work since this is a non-climbing species. Provide a lot of egg crates for your feeder insects to breed, provide a good source of food (vegetables, dog food, etc.). Substrate is not required for this roach, and it is highly recommended that you do not use substrate. This will make your life much easier and you won’t have to clean as much. Adequate humidity would be above 40%. You may need to mist the enclosure occasionally to maintain these levels. Always keep mold out of the dubia’s cage, mold can destroy a colony of roaches. This feeder insect does not require as much humidity as other species. They do however need an above average humidity level. If you notice bad molts then you may need to bump the humidity up just a little, you can do this by misting the enclosure. The higher the temperature, the more your dubia will breed. A heat mat can be placed under the container or a heat lamp on the top of the cage will also work. They need a temperature that falls between 80°-95° Fahrenheit. These are some other ways for heating your roaches such as a pre-heated reptile room, a nocturnal light bulb with reflector, heat tape, a human heating pad, a reptile under tank heater, a ceramic heat emitter, or heat cable.
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Review by Jarred