Cricket breeding: how big, how many?

Molch

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Sometime in the near future I'd love to set up a tank for fire belly toads (B.orientalis).

My specific problem is, I live in a small town in NW Alaska off the road system, and any live food I want to feed between Oct and May I have to breed myself. Most vendors won't send live food to our town :( because they believe are on Mars or something...

- how big a cricket breeding operation would I need to keep, say, 5-6 fire belly toads in good grub?

- will fire belly toads also take drosophila, or are they too small for them to bother?

- can Bombinas learn to eat frozen food? My newts love frozen bloodworms and daphnia and do very well on them...

- I can get a compost chamber for earthworms started. Do earthworms grow fast enough to be able to take some out regularly for feeding?

Any insights?
 

freves

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Crickets are a real pain to breed (IMO). Maybe you should consider one of the commonly available roach species. I cannot comment on what to feed firebellies because I have never kept them.
Chip
 

frogman

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I have found that breeding crickets is really easy. No heat and no light is required. All you need are some big fat males and females and put a tupperware container full of Eco Earth. Give it about a week and then you will see females sticking a long black tube that is protruding from the abdomen into the dirt. you will see small white slit eggs in the dirt. Then remove the container and use low wattage bulb to incubate them until they hatch. Be sure to keep the dirt moist but not soggy.

GOOD LUCK!
 

tonymontanaflows

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i think isopods(sowbugs,pillbugs,slaters) would be a great alternative to crickets. i have large community of them in my tanks providing both cleanup and food duty. they survive perfectly as long as they have moisture, food, and shelter. if you go the compost route you can have both eathworms and isopods.

i've collected my isopods outside long ago. provided your area is pesticide and pollution free and if ispods exists they're pretty easy to gather. a square of plywood or cardboard placed over leaf litter, vegetable scraps, in a moist area will attract them and is pretty much the same setup you can create in a tank or compost.

here's my in tank setup, rocks, moss, and bark. a carrot as food, fish flakes or even supplement powder under a rock all provide enough food

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mamatoulouse

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I have had crickets start breeding accidentally in a salamander set up... It was annoying all the babies climbed out and ended up in our neighbors , needless to say their place was full of crickets.
 
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baddfish

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I have found that raising crickets is extremely easy. I took a 20gal long and left it bare bottom. Then i took about 3 to 4 cups of regular potting soil with no fertilizer of any kind and packed it to about an inch thick on one side of the tank. As soon as i put the crickets in the tank, they immediately started laying eggs in the soil and before i knew it, there were hundreds of pinheads all over the place. I kept a few pieces of egg crate on the other side as well as the empty rolls of paper towels and toilet paper for cover for the crickets. I used a plastic low container filled with water and a sponge in it so the crickets wouldn't drown. Just change the water every couple of days so it doesn't begin to smell. Also mist the soil about 3 times a week and the crickets will lay eggs over and over again. Within a couple of months, i had more crickets than i knew what to do with. Luckily i also had fish that would eat crickets as well. Believe it or not, i even ate a few. Very high in protein im told. Hope this info will help you out. :talker:
 
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