How to raise crickets?

If you have a pet that eats insects, you may have valued the option of creating a cricket colony and you are looking for a cricket farm for sale to start your own community. It is very important to highlight the importance of looking for cricket farms in Spain or in any other country and never take them out of the way, because in addition to causing an environmental impact, we could infect our domestic animals with pathologies.

In this AnimalWised article we will show you how to raise crickets, explaining in detail how to care for crickets at home and achieve a stable, productive and healthy colony. With this you will achieve enough savings to soundproof the room or the place destined to contain the boxes that will contain the colony and will be enough to ensure the protein contribution in the feeding of a bearded dragon, for example.

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  1. Necessary material
  2. Modification of boxes
  3. Substrate for the background
  4. Egg laying containers
  5. Captive cricket feeding
  6. Temperature
  7. Reproduction
  8. Crickets growth

Necessary material

For a correct cricket breeding, you must have a couple of plastic containers between 30 and 50 liters each. The size will depend on the number of crickets you want to raise. The first container should be used for rearing and reproduction. The second container should serve for the incubation of cricket eggs.

It is convenient that the containers have high walls to minimize the risk of escape of some of your crickets and decide to stay and live in your own home. A 50-liter container is suitable for about 400 specimens to live together. If it is less, the number of tenant crickets must be reduced in proportion.

If you decide to start your own cricket farming in a more modest way, which I highly recommend, a shoe box will be optimal to house up to 9 crickets. Do not try to disturb more crickets because then they will devour each other (I also say this from my own horrifying experience). The crickets are clear that in a reduced space it is convenient to eliminate the maximum number of competitors to access the finite resources of their environment. For the eggs to hatch you will need a second shoe box.

Modification of boxes

Boxes, both large and small, will need some modifications to prevent the flight, while the correct feeding of your colony of crickets.

In large plastic containers, drill holes in the plastic lid (round or square) of about 15 cm. in diameter, or side if the shape is square. Cover these holes with metal mosquito netting, since the plastic can bite and break with its powerful jaws. Secure the mosquito net with duct tape to make it removable. In this way you can put and remove the food from the colony.

Obviously in shoe boxes the holes will be smaller: 3 cm. in diameter or on each side. With such a small hole you will have to use a funnel to supply the food.

Substrate for the background

At the bottom of the boxes you will deposit a substrate of vermiculite or cork granules. Under this substrate you will put a layer of active carbon of 0.5 cm. of thickness. The vermiculite or cork layer should be between 3 and 7 cm. thick, depending on the size of the container.

This substrate must be changed frequently, as crickets produce a bad smell. The removal of dead crickets must be carried out on a daily basis. Otherwise, epidemics can occur that destroy the entire colony.

Egg laying containers

In the interior of the tanks or boxes that house the cricket colonies, small containers with relatively high walls should be placed, filled with superficial soil without pesticides..

These smaller vessels must be covered with a metal mosquito net, so that female crickets can deposit their eggs through an organ called ovipositor, through holes in the mosquito net. In this way the eggs will be protected from the cannibalism that crickets use against their own species..

The soil in this smaller container should be kept slightly damp..

Once the eggs have been laid, the small container must be transferred to another container or box, to achieve the hatching of the eggs and the birth of the tiny cricket babies (the size of a grain of sand).

Captive cricket feeding

¿Have you ever wondered what domestic crickets eat? It is important that the crickets have a flat plastic container (its size will depend on the colony of crickets) in which we will add commercial cricket food, fresh green vegetables, fruits or potato wedges. Food must be mixed for a healthy diet. It is vital to always remove old food before renewing it. In this way, diseases that can spread between the colony will be avoided..

Fresh and renewed water should never be lacking in the neighborhood. For the water you must use a plate with a damp sponge. Excess moisture can lead to mold, mites, or flies. Lack of moisture can prevent your colony from thriving.

Temperature

The ideal temperature for breeding crickets should be between 25º and 32º. All 27º it is the optimum temperature for reproduction. The optimal temperature for the cricket eggs to hatch will be 29º.

There are different ways to heat cricket bowls. One of them would be a reptile heater. Another form can be an electric mat on which the containers are placed. For the shoe box a nearby light bulb may be enough.

Reproduction

The colony should start with 30-50 crickets if you use the large containers. Or 9 if you use the shoe box. Once you have confined the crickets in their container, after 2 weeks You will observe that the females begin to deposit eggs in the small containers with shallow soil. These eggs are similar in size to half a grain of rice..

When the container with soil is sown with eggs you must transfer it to the tank or breeding box. Remember that the optimal incubation temperature is 29º, and that the earth with the eggs should be slightly moistened with a spray bottle with mineral water (without chlorine). Lack of moisture will dry out the eggs and they will not hatch; excess moisture will cause mold and kill the tiny crickets.

When removing the container with soil to the tank or breeding box, you must put a new one with superficial soil and with a metal mosquito net so that the female crickets continue with the laying of eggs. In the colony, the number of females should predominate over the males.

Crickets growth

When the crickets are large enough, move them to the container or brood box. Do not forget that the excess of individuals causes them to attack and devour each other. Therefore, you should be very careful about this aspect of cricket farming. Every five or six months, replace the hatchery with new crickets, to avoid inbreeding.

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