Insects as Pets
Living with insects as pets may seem strange to some people, but is fascinating to others. They are among the
more unusual pets
to be kept by man. The study of insects is called
They say you never really know anyone until you live with them, this is very true of insects. There is no better way to study insects than to have them in your home as pets.
The advantages of keeping insects as pets:
they are inexpensive
require little space
are contained within their own environment
do not require time consuming exercise
zero veterinary bills
they are quiet and clean
Before you acquire any insects it is important to check up to see what their needs are, housing, environment, temperature and feeding requirements and any special needs as if you do not care for them and provide a reasonable habitat they will not survive.
Some commonly kept insects as pets
Stick insects come from tropical or semi-tropical environments, there are almost 3000 species of stick insects , all of which eat vegetation.
It is important when buying a suitable tank to house your stick insects that you consider ease of replacing food which in the main will be brambles, the tank must also be deep enough to allow the insects to hang from the branches when shedding their skins, it should be three times the length of an adult insect.
the majority of insects are best kept at 25 degrees C. The common Indian stick insect will survive at much lower temperatures of 17 degrees C and above
Handling your stick insects should be done with great care as they can loose limbs if handled roughly
The Giant African Land Snails (Achatina sp.) living for several years and grow up to 20cm in length ideal as pets as they are easy to care for.
A glass or plastic aquarium tank makes the ideal housing, being easily cleaned and allowing good observation from the sides and from above. Fill your tank with several centimeters of peat-free compost and a piece of bark, avoid grit and gravel.
The snails like to burrow. Keep the substrate moist but not wet and soggy. The ideal temperature of the tank should be 20-25 degrees C a heat pad is ideal to maintain these temperatures during the winter months. Keep the tank moist, use a hand held plant spray and keep it specifically for the snail tank, ensuring that it is never used with any chemicals
Eating a wide scope of foods, it is very easy and not expensive to feed a African Land Snail, favorite food lettuce and cucumber, also apple, banana and cabbage can also be fed to give a little variety to their diet, remember when feeding soft foods that spoil easily that these must be removed if they start to go brown.
Calcium is very important to snails to maintain their hard shells, buy cuttlefish bone from any pet shop and make it available to your snail.
If you like to study at a slow pace these are the pets for you.Important to all pets is exercise, a word of warning allow plenty of time if you are taking one of these for a walk they tend to travel at their own pace!
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