Dubia roaches are a common feeder insect for reptiles and tarantulas. Some exotic pet enthusiasts prefer feeding dubia roaches instead of crickets.
If you want to feed dubia roaches and are wanting to know more about them before you purchase, continue reading for the 6 interesting facts you should know.
Do Dubia Roaches Have Wings?
Dubia roaches reach adulthood at around five or six months when they are 1.5 inches in length and sexually mature. At this age, males develop wings.
Can Dubia Roaches Fly?
The male dubia roach has wings that run the entire length of their body, extending past their belly, but they cannot fly.
The wings are used to help them if they fall from a distance. When they fall, the male flaps their wings quickly to help glide them down to the surface.
The fully developed wings and pigmented musculature is common in cockroaches to help them meet the energy requirements to sustain flight, but they only use them to control and direct their descent.
Laboratory testing, which launched the males from 2.5m in height, found males direct their descent, but they are not powerful enough to increase altitude.
Females, in the other hand, have forewings and do not have muscles to fly, they have no flight control.
It has always been assumed that arboreal species of cockroach would be good at flying, but the wings seem to be used in the event of being knocked out of habitats or evading predators.
Even though they may be capable of flight, dubia roaches don't use it as a way to get around.
Can Dubia Roaches Climb?
Dubia roaches can climb, which is why they need to be kept in a container that has smooth sides, such as plastic or glass. This ensures they cannot climb out of the container.
They are not great climbers, but they can use rough surfaces, such as wood and egg boxes, holding on with their toes to climb.
Adults and juveniles are unable to climb vertical and smooth surfaces.
Can Dubia Roaches Jump?
Some dubia roach owners have observed their colonies and found that adult male dubia roaches can and do jump. They seem to jump when its dark.
Are Dubia Roaches Fast?
What makes these roaches great feeder insects is that they are not fast.
Crickets are faster.
This makes them easier for your pet to catch and enjoy.
It also makes it much easier to remove any uneaten live food from your pet’s habitat when it’s finished eating.
Note that dubia roaches are illegal in Canada, Florida, and other states. Here are some good alternatives.
Can Other Roaches Fly?
There are some cockroaches which are capable fliers, such as the Asian, brown, and wood cockroaches.
The American cockroach species are not great fliers and will use their wings to direct and glide to their chosen landing place.
Some Notes On Dubia Roach Containers
Dubia roach colonies do well when kept in a ten gallon or larger aquarium or plastic tube. It's recommended to keep a cover over the to protect them, even though they don't climb or fly.
Use screen covers on glass tanks or use the plastic cover that comes with the plastic tub.
The HOMZ Plastic Container is preferred by professionals for housing dubia roaches. It is a plastic tub, made from durable plastic with a secure snap lid. These are stackable and measure 19.25 x 14 x 13.5 inches, including the lid.
Setting Up Your Dubia Roach Container
The good news is that dubia roaches are easy to keep and they are not too worried about where they are housed, as long as they have space to move, some hiding places, food, water, the right temperature, and ideal humidity levels.
In order to set up your dubia roach container, you will need:
- A 10-gallon glass tank or plastic bin
- A reptile heating pad
- Hiding places – toilet paper rolls, newspaper, egg crates, small boxes
- A piece of cloth or netting
- A hot glue gun / soldering iron
Make Ventilation Holes in Plastic Containers
If you have chosen a plastic container for your dubia roaches, then cut a hole on the top or side to allow ample ventilation.
Using the cloth or netting you have selected, cut it slightly larger than the hole, using the glue gun glue the material in place.
Alternatively, you can use a soldering iron and make small ventilation holes that are not big enough for the cockroach to escape.
You can cover the top or top sides of the container with small ventilation holes.
You can cover these with material if you feel they are too big and there is a risk of your roaches escaping.
Heating and Feeding
In order to keep your feeder dubia roaches alive, you need to provide them with adequate heating and feeding.
These roaches come from humid and warm environments, which means in order to survive and breed they need heat and humidity.
Buying a reptile heat mat is one option (though ensure the heat mat you select will work with the material of your container).
Maintain humidity by misting the container once every second day.
When it comes to feeding, roaches are not fussy eaters and will eat just about anything. Try dry foods, vegetables, and fruits. These will not make the container smell.
Roaches will eat just about anything, so you can food fish food, cat food, dog food, cereals, bird foods, and more. Do not feed them bird seeds, but rather the pellets.
Their water requirements are met through the misting you provide. Roaches are not the best swimmers, so it's not recommended that you provide them with a water dish.
The final step is to introduce hiding places before introducing your dubia roaches to their new habitat and let your pet enjoy the nutritional benefits they provide.
Many exotic pet owners prefer dubia roaches over crickets because they are easier to care for, they do not fly or climb and they are relatively slow movers, which makes them easier for your pet to catch.
It also makes it easier for you to remove any uneaten roaches from your pet’s enclosure.
They are easy to care for and are fast-breeding, making them excellent feeder insects.