Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

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Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 6:19 pm

Sticky Bun (Indian Stick Insect) started laying her eggs a couple of days ago and there are already about 50 of them. Does anybody here want any? happy Free, of course! And I'd include a care sheet, if you want. They can hatch from anywhere between one and six months from now, though it's usually sooner rather than later.
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by ella on Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:04 pm

how do you look after them? I've never kept stickies before

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by LyndaW on Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:05 pm

Thanks, but no thanks (been there, done that!) Congratulations on the future babies though.

Bearing in mind that you had to lash out good money to get your future stickies, why not try selling them on Ebay?
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Caryll on Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:53 pm

ella wrote:how do you look after them? I've never kept stickies before
They're really easy! Just give em ivy & a spray if water.

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Thu Sep 11, 2014 10:41 pm

OH I SOOO WANT SOME

I have an empty tank that i always meant to get more stickies for!!! The hedge outside my house was a favorite of theirs.
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 10:58 pm

laughing I'll sort some out for you, if you want, Hayley!

Like mum says, they're very easy! happy I'm halfway through typing up a care sheet at the moment. Indian stickies are the easiest stickies to care for, as well.

If push comes to shove, I'll sell them on eBay, but I'll only charge on there for postage and packaging. The stickies themselves were very inexpensive! happy

Once I've finished the caresheet, I'll copy/paste it on here to give a better idea of what they need. happy
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:01 pm

Mine were fine until winter hit and the hedge died. I think they got used to that and wouldn't eat anything else! I would give ivy instead lol
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:03 pm

Oh dear laughing Only moved them into their new enclosure earlier this afternoon and there are already five eggs on the bottom! And just watched her pop out another - amazing!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:04 pm

Yeah, that's something I'd have trouble with if I got a species which didn't eat ivy. tongue Evergreen plants aren't always easy to find!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by ella on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:06 pm

I'd be interested in some if you would post the care sheet on here happy

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:06 pm

ewwwwwwwwwwww lol i want a boy egg
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:12 pm

Great! happy I'll try and get it finished up by the morning.

laughing Here's a snippet from the care sheet... Sorry Hayley!

'• They are almost completely guaranteed to be female, as they reproduce parthenogenetically. This means that they do not need males to reproduce. Although males have been found in captivity, it is unknown whether males even exist in the wild.'

laughing You'll get a lot of eggs!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:48 pm

Almost done with the caresheet!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:58 pm

Here we go!

Indian stick insects (Carausius morosus):

Basics:
• Relatively easy to care for in UK climates, as they will tolerate lower temperatures than other stick insects (21-24 C, although this temperature can be allowed to drop a little during the night).
• They reach roughly 10cm long, once fully grown
• They are almost completely guaranteed to be female, as they reproduce parthenogenetically. This means that they do not need males to reproduce. Although males have been found in captivity, it is unknown whether males even exist in the wild.
• They will shed their skin several times throughout their lives. The hard exoskeleton does not allow growth, so this is shed, to reveal a larger, softer skin beneath. The stick insect will then grow to fill this skin.

Housing:
• Ideally, the enclosure should be at least three times as tall as the length of the stick insect and two times as wide as its body length.

• An Indian stick insect will hang from a stem or from the top of its enclosure, in order to shed its skin. Inadequate space, particularly in height, may cause deformations or death as the stick insect will be unable to shed its skin properly.

• The roof of the enclosure should be made of mesh or netting, in order to allow proper ventilation and provide a surface for the stick insect to hang from whilst shedding.

• The floor of the enclosure should be covered with something to absorb moisture, such as paper towels or tissue paper.

• Depending on the type of housing you choose for your stick insects, the enclosure will need misting with water. Well-ventilated enclosures may need more misting than others. Stick insects need the water droplets to drink, although they get most of their moisture from their food. It also helps them to shed. You will probably need to mist the enclosure either daily or every other day.

• Remember, ventilation is important! If it gets too damp in there, mould can start to grow. If you notice mould, remove the stick insects and place them in a temporary enclosure so that you can clean the mould away. Left unchecked, this can cause the stick insects to develop mould infections.

• If you’re worried that your stick insects are getting too cold at night, a heat lamp can be used above the enclosure. Heat mats are not advised, as these can dry out the enclosure. For use at night time, opt for a blue or red bulb – white bulbs will simulate daylight and could interfere with the insects’ sleeping routines.

• The enclosure should be cleaned approximately once per week, or more frequently if necessary. This involves removing old/eaten stems and replacing them with fresh ones, as well as cleaning up faeces or, eventually, eggs. You will also need to change the paper towels (or whatever substrate you decide to use at the bottom). While you’re cleaning, the stick insects can be placed in a secure temporary enclosure, such as a Tupperware tub.

Feeding:
• Indian stick insects can eat the following leaves: Blackberry/bramble, raspberry, ivy, privet, rose, oak and hawthorn.
• If you use bramble, you may need to trim the thorns when using it to feed nymphs, to avoid them hurting themselves.
• A few freshly cut stems, as tall as possible, can be used as food. These can be placed in a small container of water to keep them fresh – the water container should be sealed off, to prevent the stick insects from falling in and drowning. Alternatively, you can use potted plants to be placed inside the enclosure.
• Remember to make sure that the plants are free from insecticides and herbicides! It is also advisable not to collect stems from roadsides, as exhaust fumes and pollution may cling to them.
• Please be aware that not all plants are evergreen. It’s often easier to keep potted plants for winter food!
• Baby stick insects (nymphs) often cannot eat undamaged leaves. For this reason, it is advised that you cut or tear the edges of the leaves to allow them to feed properly.

Handling:
• To pick up a stick insect, carefully take hold of the body, whilst being careful to avoid the legs. You can also gently nudge the tail, to urge them onto your hand.
• Take care not to handle your stick insects when they are very small, as they can be fragile before their first couple of sheds and may ‘throw’ (lose) a leg. If they do lose a leg, this will often regrow after the next shed.
• You should also be careful not to handle a stick insect during or just after a shed, as they are especially vulnerable and delicate at these times. After a shed, they will usually take on a light green colouring, which is some indication. As they grow into the new skin and it hardens up, they’ll go back to a darker, brownish-green.
Reproduction:
• Females can lay hundreds of small eggs during their lifespan. These eggs are small, smooth, dark and round, with a tiny, pale-coloured cap at one end. They are easily distinguishable from faeces, which have a rougher, irregular shape.
• They can be collected from the bottom of the enclosure and stored in a warm place, if you wish to hatch them.
• Please be aware that eggs should never be thrown away or left in a garden! If they hatch out, they may become classified as an invasive species. In the US, they have already reached ‘pest’ status because of this. Some people recommend freezing unwanted eggs before throwing them away, to prevent this.
• Eggs may take anywhere from a month to nine months to hatch – or longer, depending on the environment! To increase the chances of a speedy incubation period, place the eggs in a tub, on top of some paper towels. Keep the paper towels damp by misting them occasionally with water. Ensure that no mould grows, though, as this can kill the eggs. If mould does appear on the eggs, gently brush it off.
• In the wild, eggs hatch after rain. For this reason, it may help to allow the eggs to dry completely, before misting them with water. The water (rain) loosens the sticky glue attaching the pale cap to the egg, so that the stick insect nymph can then push its way out of the egg.
• The nymphs will moult several times before reaching adulthood. They will hang from a stem or from the top of the enclosure during this process. It is very important not to disturb them, as they are fragile. Handling should only take place once the new exoskeleton has hardened.
Tips/extras:
• Don’t be alarmed if you find a stick insect lying on the bottom of the enclosure, with its legs pinned to its sides! They often ‘play stick’ as a defence mechanism and will soon start walking around again, once they feel the danger has passed.
• If you see one of them swaying from side to side or walking with a lurching gait, this is also a defence and camouflage mechanism, which mimics a stick swaying in the breeze.
• Their lifespan is roughly one year.
• They will probably start producing eggs anywhere from six to nine months of age.
• They are very good at hiding! Don’t be alarmed if you can’t find them. Just keep searching and eventually you’ll spot them.
• You might not see the shed skin after a moult, as they often consume this skin afterwards for nutrients.


I'll add to it if I remember anything new! happy


Last edited by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:01 am

Eleanor wrote:Great! happy I'll try and get it finished up by the morning.

laughing Here's a snippet from the care sheet... Sorry Hayley!

'• They are almost completely guaranteed to be female, as they reproduce parthenogenetically. This means that they do not need males to reproduce. Although males have been found in captivity, it is unknown whether males even exist in the wild.'

laughing You'll get a lot of eggs!

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Mine was definitely male. No eggs here!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:04 am

p.s. thanks for the care sheet!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:09 am

Are you sure you didn't mistake them for poo? laughing
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:11 am

No problem! happy Just adding pictures to it!
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:14 am

Can't be bothered to edit them in at the moment, so I'll add them here for now! tongue


Eggs


Adult stickies, picture taken today. Twiglet (left) and Sticky Bun (right). About nine months old.
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by ella on Fri Sep 12, 2014 9:35 am

thanks for that Eleanor I will have some eggies wink please!

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 10:17 am

Okey dokey, great! happy I'll count up the number of eggs I have.

Do you want me to send you both ten eggs each? Or would you like more/less? happy Bearing in mind they might all hatch, or you might only get half of them hatching. tongue I can always give you more eggs if some of them don't hatch though.
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Hayley on Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:44 am

Would they like eat eachother?
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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Caryll on Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:47 am

No, Twiglet & Sticky Bun have been together right from birth (or is it hatch?).

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Eleanor on Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:46 pm

Well that's complicated! tongue If you have enough space for them, then they'll be absolutely fine! If it gets overcrowded, though, they may mistake another sticky's leg for a leaf.

My current enclosure for Sticky Bun and Twiglet is 30cmx30cm at the base and 45cm in height. This would probably be enough for five to ten fully-grown stick insects. If you wanted more than this, you'd probably need to switch to a larger enclosure or buy another same-sized enclosure. happy

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Re: Free giveaway - does anybody want them?

Post by Caroline on Sat Sep 13, 2014 8:01 pm

Congratulations! happy
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