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Old 06-03-2020, 10:10 PM
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Default Isopods Fail Molting???

I've never attempted to culture isopods before so I'm very new to all their ins and outs. Over the past few days several have died due to what I think is failed molting (they appear half white, half normal). Is this a normal thing that just happens a lot or could there be something I'm doing/not doing that is causing this? I'm just looking for solutions on what I can do to fix this if I can or if this is even caused by failed molting.

They're just Armadillidium Vulgare isopods and I keep them in a medium sized plastic container with two, two-inch holes for ventilation. I've been using Eco Earth compressed coconut fiber for a substrate, and feeding them hardwood leaves from the trees around my house as well as some substitute foods such as fish food shrimp pellets and fruits and vegetables.
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Old 06-03-2020, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

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Originally Posted by Cinderdraco View Post
I've never attempted to culture isopods before so I'm very new to all their ins and outs. Over the past few days several have died due to what I think is failed molting (they appear half white, half normal). Is this a normal thing that just happens a lot or could there be something I'm doing/not doing that is causing this? I'm just looking for solutions on what I can do to fix this if I can or if this is even caused by failed molting.



They're just Armadillidium Vulgare isopods and I keep them in a medium sized plastic container with two, two-inch holes for ventilation. I've been using Eco Earth compressed coconut fiber for a substrate, and feeding them hardwood leaves from the trees around my house as well as some substitute foods such as fish food shrimp pellets and fruits and vegetables.
Do you have any moist/wet moss or soil on one side? It seems like they're having trouble molting and are stuck.

Also, it's best to wash/boil the leaves you're using so you don't bring pesticides in
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Old 06-03-2020, 10:43 PM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

Inverts failed molt = too dry, most commonly.
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Old 06-04-2020, 02:36 AM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

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Originally Posted by fishingguy12345 View Post
Do you have any moist/wet moss or soil on one side? It seems like they're having trouble molting and are stuck.

Also, it's best to wash/boil the leaves you're using so you don't bring pesticides in
Yes, I wet one side of the cage every few days. Maybe I need to do it more often???

And I do bake the leaves in the oven for half an hour. Does that have the same result or should I wash them too?
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Old 06-04-2020, 02:43 AM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

Baking wouldn't necessarily get rid of any pesticides.

I make sure there is always a moist side in all of my Isopod bins.
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Old 06-04-2020, 04:31 AM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

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Originally Posted by fishingguy12345 View Post
Baking wouldn't necessarily get rid of any pesticides.
Give that man a cigar!
Unless the tree in question was a fruit or nut tree, intended to be harvested for human consumption, any sprays would be systemic. Think about it. It's really hard to completely coat every leaf on a tree with an organic spray. It's also expensive. But systemics? They don't need complete coverage. They enter the vascular system of the tree, or the "bloodstream", so to speak. This carries the toxin to every single cell in the entire tree, and it's all internal.
You cannot wash off systemics. Those may not be safe even after they have fully decomposed to soil.
You need a tree that has not been sprayed with anything for at least 6 months before the leaves died. i.e. If the tree was sprayed 6 months ago, but the leaves turned from green to brown only 3 months ago, those are crispy little poison packages. They are fully three months away from being clean, but now it's locked inside and they can't ever be used.

Unsprayed, alive, and 6 months green. Anything less will never be clean.

p.s. Baking could actually alter the chemical composition of a toxin, making it much, much worse. There are sprays approved for use on vegetable plants, that become very toxic when combusted. Those sprays cannot ever be used on tobacco crops.

Baking, or boiling, is hard on leaf litter. It makes it decompose faster. I boil my leaf litter used for culturing springtails, because I am trying to eliminate mites. However for in vivarium use, I bag or box my dry leaves, throw them in the basement for 6 months, and use them as is.
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Last edited by Pumilo; 06-04-2020 at 04:32 AM. Reason: added info
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Old 06-04-2020, 04:36 AM
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Default Re: Isopods Fail Molting???

I also donít bake/boil or otherwise process my leaves. I get my oak leaves from a friendís property and I store them in large trash bags in the garage. Some have been sitting in there for 2+ years before I use them. They go straight from the bags into vivs or isopod tubs.
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