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Madagascar Hissing Cockroach - Pet

Guest Author - Diana Geiger

Insect exotic pets such as the pet Madagascar Hissing Cockroach are particularly popular. They are fascinating animals. A lot of people enjoy these amazing creatures as pets. They are not like the more common cockroaches found in dwellings, they spend their time naturally on the forest floors not in homes! Unless of course, a person should decide to have a hisser as a pet but keep in mind they are excellent climbers however, do not fly.

Hissers do make good beginner insects because of their durable outer shell; they are hardy insects. They are also quite docile, don't move very fast, and are easy to handle. If you want to start a responsible child out with an insect pet, this would be a good starting point. Making sure you supervise because all critters deserve the best of care. Hissers would rather hide when frightened, they do not bite.

Gently pick them up. They will be holding on to whatever they are sitting on. Scoop them up from underneath making sure their claws are unattached from whatever they are standing on so that you don't hurt their little legs!

Madagascar Hissing Cockroach (Gromphadorhina portentosa) just one of the many species of unusual life found only on the island of Madagascar, which is a country off the coast of Africa. They reach an impressive size of 2-3 inches; about one inch wide at full growth. The male more portentous with their horns (pronotum). They are a wingless roach. Bearing live young after the young hatch from an egg sac inside of the mother, meaning they give birth to live young (more accurately living young) after the eggs hatch.



Madagascar hissing cockroaches bugs gromphadorhina portentosa by Walton LaVonda, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

They get their name from the grand hissing noise they make. This hissing noise is mostly made during mating rituals and fights between male hissers the victorious often making the most hissing noises making a person wonder if it isn't the noise of the conqueror after many display hisses during the fight. Males are territorial. They may also hiss when they are startled. It is not unheard of to hear many members of a colony of hissers making this hissing noise at the same time. So perhaps, this is one of the many mysteries humans just don't entirely understand.

They make the hissing sound when they squeeze air through the body part spiracles (breathing tubes) found in front of the abdomen. The hissing noise can be quite loud; audible up to 12 feet away.

The hissing cockroach is found primarily in the rich vegetation of forest living between rotting logs and other debris eating rotting fruits, vegetation, rotting animals and insects. They are said to be a herbivore but this isn't true they are nature's perfect composters.

Hissing cockroaches are an invertebrate and go through growth cycles counted through each molting of their exoskeleton. They usually are capable of hissing when they reach maturity after their fourth molt.

They should have a large tank of at least 15 gallons (this will support a small colony) with a very secure (remember they climb) mesh top. Provide a much larger tank if you have more than a small colony. They should be kept at temperatures of 75-90 degrees F. Keep them warmer than 68 degrees F. Remember if you want an exotic pet you must keep them safe, happy, and secure keeping them as close to their natural environment. They live in warm tropical and must be kept warm.

I am going to presume they are a social critter since they live in colonies. I would expect it would be unhealthy to have just one hissing cockroach.

Provide a substrate making sure to stay away from the pine and cedar which will kill insects and small mammals, they have a toxic oily substance that are quite poisonous to critters. The best substrates or beddings are aspen. Supply plenty of safe hiding places to make them feel secure as they would on the forest floor. You can use cut up cardboard (without ink or paint) empty toilet paper rolls, or anything else along that line. Small pieces of wood (not treated). If you get wood near the bank of a lake make sure it isn't contaminated with chemicals from farm run-off.

Feed your hissers leafy veggies (not iceberg because it is as close to a non nutrient food as you can get., other fruits and vegetables, dry dog foods. Remove fresh fruits and veggies quite often so that they do not spoil. Spoiling in a tank and natural forest floor rotting are quite different. Besides the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach naturally knows when forest floor vegetation is safe.

Change the food daily and clean the cage at least once a month. Remove the cockroaches and cage accessories and toss everything else . Sanitize the cage making sure it is will rinsed and dried. Make sure there are no odors from whatever sanitizer you used such as bleach.

Provide a shallow water dish very shallow to keep the hisser from drowning. Make sure they can safely get in and out. Put some safe material in the dish to help the hisser get in and out without drowning. If you use cotton freshen it up frequently. Change the water frequently. Don't forget to use a filtered water; filter for impurities and chlorine.


Madagascar hissing Cockroach for sale - Madagascar hissing Cockroach Breeders
hissers for sale hissing Cockroach es for sale

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I am also the Bird editor if you enjoy pet birds subscribe to the Birds newsletter. Birds BellaOnline

Other pet insect articles
***Scorpions - Care for the Pet Scorpion
***Stick Insects - Indian Stick Insects
***Praying Mantis - Care for the Praying Mantis
***What’s a Weta – Pet Weta
***Tarantulas - Pet Tarantulas
***Honey Bees - How to Care for Bees
***Ant Farm



Diana Geiger Exotic Pets Editoron


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Content copyright © 2014 by Diana Geiger. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Diana Geiger. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.

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