Tag Archives: Cooper

I’m Awake! (and hungry!)

Cooper has decided he is done with brumation – a condition somewhat similar to hibernation in mammals. “I’m awake!” he says, “Feed me!”.

Someone also needs a bath to help him with that shedding skin!

Someone needs a bath to help him with that shedding skin! Also note the half black throat.  Male beardies will do a lot of displaying after they come out of brumation.  In their natural habitat, it would be time to mate!

Fooood!

Fooood!

Chomp!

Chomp!

Yum Yum! Green beans are his favorite after dandelion greens. So out of a mixed dish he will pick them out first. Picky, picky.

Yum Yum! 

 

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Yay! I Have Roaches! Dubia, that is!

If you all remember, I have been raising crickets to feed to my bearded dragon, Cooper.  Unfortunately, I have not been having a good time of it these past few months.  Spiders have been a consistent problem, but one I could control.  Virus’s, on the other hand, are not so easily dealt with when I have to buy crickets from the outside to bring in to supplement my population.  It has gotten to the point where it is extremely difficult to raise babies to adulthood.  Which means buying more crickets.  At 12 cents a piece, it costs more to feed a little lizard than a 50 lb. dog.  So after research and discussion, I have decided to switch over to Dubia roaches (blaptica dubia).

Dubia roaches are roughly 35 percent protein compared to about 18.7 percent for crickets.  Their shell is softer than an adult cricket’s exo which means it is easier to digest.  Die off is minimal and instead of living just a few months, they can live 1 1/2 to 2 years.  And there is very little smell and no noise.

You can keep them in plastic containers or aquariums. Drill holes in the plastic tubs for air circulation or cut squares out of the lid. You might want to glue screening across the openings in case the small babies manage to climb the sides.  The adults aren’t so good at it.   A screen lid for the aquarium is fine.  Egg cartons, toilet paper tubes, paper towel tubes, cardboard stacked closely together, all are good for the roaches to hide in. They eat grains, vegetables, and fruits.  That means what you have in the house can be used to feed them.  Feed your roaches well and you feed your pet well. They do require heat, 80 to 90 degrees, in order to reproduce.  Light bulbs, heat emitters, or under the tank heaters are options. Water is a must.  Supply it in a dish filled with cotton balls or water crystals.  Babies drown VERY easily. This will also help keep the humidity up so they can molt.  Mold is the biggest danger to the roaches so keep everything clean and remove food before it goes bad.  The only drawback is the start-up price.  These guys aren’t cheap.  But spread out over time they’ll more than pay for themselves.

I bought my roaches at http://www.buydubiaroaches.com/ .  I am thrilled.  All the roaches I purchased arrived alive.  It has been a week and there have been no deaths.

Here is how they arrived minus the newspaper that held everyone in place.  Note the styrafoam lining the box.  It also came with a heat pack because it was in the 20's here.  They also have the post office hold the box for you to pick up to reduce the amount of time the roaches are exposed to the cold or heat.

Here is how they arrived minus the newspaper that held everyone in place. Note the styrofoam lining the box. It also came with a heat pack because it was in the 20’s here. They have the post office hold the box for you to pick up to reduce the amount of time the roaches are exposed to the cold or heat. Awesome!

These are the 1 in. to 1 1/8 in. large nymphs that were in the top container. Look how healthy they are!

I ordered 50 of the 1 in. to 1 1/8 in. large nymphs. They were in the top container. Look how healthy they are!

Here is the bottom of the Mixed sizes container (1/4 to 1 in. / 200 count)

Here is the bottom of the Mixed sizes container (1/4 to 1 in. / 200 count).

These are what were left after I got the egg cartons out.  As you can see it is a good mix of sizes.

These are what were left after I got the egg cartons out. As you can see it is a good mix of sizes.  There are chunks of water crystals in the shipping containers to supply water in transit.  They are to the left of the quarter along with some pieces of exoskeletons.

Even after being locked up in a dark box being bounced around for two days, they began to explore their new home within minutes.

Even after being locked up in a dark box being bounced around for two days, they began to explore their new home within minutes.  Note all the toilet paper tubes stapled together.  They’re cheaper than egg cartons! 😀  Roaches need someplace to hide for most of the day.  They are nocturnal insects.  Once they get used to where they live they will move around occasionally during the day.  But they much prefer the night.  I have discovered this past week that they are like the Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches I used to own in that they need to be touching each other to be happy.  Thus all the little ones have stuffed themselves into the small spaces between the tubes.  When I move them to a 10 gallon tank, I’m going to smash the tubes into ovals so that it is easier for them to touch each other.

This guy decided that exploring could wait.  He was hungry!

This guy decided that exploring could wait. He was hungry!

This is a top view of the plastic tub I have them in, one week later.  Still no dead roaches.  Note the cap full of cotton balls.  That is their water dish.  Small roaches drown VERY easily.  You need to keep water available at all times.  Water crystals are also good for supplying water.

This is a top view of the plastic tub I have them in, one week later. Still no dead roaches. Note the cap full of cotton balls. That is their water dish. Small roaches drown VERY easily. You need to keep water available at all times.

Some people will tell you to keep your roaches in the dark all the time.  This is something I disagree with.  I believe all critters that are used to a day/night schedule in the wild should have one in captivity as well.  So there will be light when I finally get these guys into a tank.  Right now I have them in this tub and have them on top of my refrigerator where it stays in the low 80’s.  Which is fine, they’re eating and molting.  But as they approach adulthood they’ll need better heat to get them into breeding mode.

Roach pile!  Don't they look good?  When I run out of crickets, this will be Cooper's new protein source.

Roach pile! Don’t they look good? When I run out of crickets, this will be Cooper’s new protein source.

Hope you enjoyed the post.  With any luck, when they’re grown,  I’ll catch somebody making their egg case and get pics.  Fingers crossed!

Just Touching Base

Random Thoughts

So life has been making me crazy.  It’s taxes, which my husband’s work screwed up and we’re probably going to get stuck paying the penalties.  It’s financial time for my daughter’s school and I’m late – again.  It’s getting my son’s admissions and financial shit done so he can start college in the fall.  And I need to get him a passport for the school trip in June.  Oh, and did I mention the sleep deprivation that’s helping me function so well? (heavy sarcasm)  And, of course, Boston.  So I’m a little bonkers right now.

However, I did want to try to get at least 100 posts up this year.  Hopefully, I’ll do more than that, but that’s at least 2 a week and I’m behind already! 🙂  I need to start making notes.  I think to myself, “Oh, I should put this on the blog.” and then it scoots right out of my brain.  Notes, I need to make notes.

I have nothing profound to say today.  Just touching base.  Hopefully, I’ll get all the financial crap out of the way by Wednesday and have myself a sleep in day.  And then it’ll be onward and forward.  Spring is here and there is sooo much to do!

“There’s a crack in everything – that’s how the light gets in.” — Leonard Cohen

Life At Our House

Saver came home for the weekend.  It is always nice to get some daughter time.  Saver came home because Spider Bait was given his Eagle Scout award.  I cried.  Saver cried.  We were so thrilled.  He doesn’t like his picture on the blog or I would show you how handsome he looked all dressed up.  You’ll have to make do with a picture of the pin I got ’cause he’s an Eagle Scout.

Dad got one, too.  Only it says 'Dad' on it!  :)

Dad got one, too. Only it says ‘Dad’ on it! 🙂

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I caved and bought a rosemary plant and a basil plant (I have seeds).  Even though the basil is still a baby I pinched some leaves and made a tomato sandwich.  *sigh*  I wish it was summer all year.

Yum!

Yum!

Fur Babies And Other Critters

I'm going to climb wherever I want to!

I’m going to climb wherever I want to!

Mmmmmm, Saver's home.

Mmmmmm, Saver’s home.

Out In The Yard

I took these pictures about 2 weeks ago.  My crocuses’ last hurrah.

Little irises and crocus

Little irises and crocus

Lotsa purple

Lotsa purple

Stripes!

Stripes!

Mug of the Day

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I cannot remember how I got this mug.  There’s a story.  I just cannot remember it right now.  *sigh*  Saver, how ’bout you?

New Tarot Deck And A Surprised Lizard

Random Thoughts

My husband actually got a bit of a bonus.  I was surprised and relieved.  It was not a ‘good’ year for the company my husband works for, but they are not sentimental.  If there is no money, there are no bonuses.  So we decided to take a little for each of us (mad money) and throw the rest at Christmas.

I decided to go after another Tarot Deck.   I’m still just a dabbler, still just learning, and there are so many wonderful decks it’s hard to choose just one.  I eventually narrowed it down to two;  Shadowscapes Tarot by Barbara Moore and Stephanie Pui-Mun Law and Steampunk Tarot by Barbara Moore and Aly Fell.

Shadowscapes Tarot has the most beautiful Faerie art imaginable.  It’s stunning.  Go  to  www.shadowscapes.com/Tarot/ to see the cards.   In truth, this was my first choice.  But as I was cruising around looking for the best deal, I was also reading comments.  Two things bothered me personally.  One was the repeated complaints about how small the art work was on the cards.  For those of us whose arms are no longer long enough to read without glasses, this is a problem.  Stephanie Pui-Mun Law’s art work is detailed and delicate.  Gorgeous.  Being unable to see all the details would mean losing some of the meaning of the card.  The second problem I had was that the meanings of the cards that I saw seemed to be either all ‘good’ or all ‘bad’.  Granted I didn’t see all of the meanings; but those I did see seemed to be too constricting for me personally.  But if you can see the art work on the cards, it would be a wonderful deck to have for the beauty alone.   She does have two art books out, one for the Major Arcana and one for the Minor Arcana that has the paintings inside with information about each card.

After checking out the comments on the Steampunk Tarot, I decided to go with it.  It’s modeled after the Rider-Waite Tarot with a Steampunk twist.  For those of you who aren’t into the art of Steampunk,  you will find the artwork too dark in a lot of the pictures.  There are also no Reverse card meanings.  Apparently Barbara Moore doesn’t do Reverse cards, feeling she can get what she needs from the upright images alone.  An interesting concept to be explored further. I haven’t read all of the card meanings, but I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read so far.  The book also begins with Tarot basics and I found some new ways to read cards.  My only complaint is the blatant sales pitches for her other books.  And, OH!, I also join the rest of the crowd in complaining yet again about the fact that Llewellyn Publishing really needs to get better card stock for their cards.  I will, however, be keeping this deck.  I’ll just have to be careful with it.  Here are some pics:  (Please remember my shaky hands and cheapo camera.)

The Box.  This is the Queen of Cups.

The Box. This is the Queen of Cups.

The back of the cards.

The back of the cards.

This guy didn't want his picture taken.  It took me four tries to get a decent one.

The Magician. This guy didn’t want his picture taken. It took me four tries to get a decent one.

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The High Priestess

I love this version of The Devil.

I love this version of The Devil.

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Knight of Wands

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Knight of Cups

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Knight of Swords

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Knight of Pentacles

Life at Our House

Spider Bait had to work at the Greenhouse today.  Tomorrow he will once again be out working on his Eagle Project.

Except for a couple of items the stores didn’t have (like dry cat food in our brand), I finished the monthly shopping.  I also bought some meat on sale so the husband will get to Foodsaver pack them and put them in our clean, defrosted freezer (which took me 2 days to do).

And here is our ancient washing machine lying on its side awaiting parts:

What have you done to me?

What have you done to me?

Also, earlier today as I stepped out onto the porch I nearly stepped on this beautiful feather.  I wonder what message is coming my way?

Most likely a dove left this as a gift.

Most likely a dove left this as a gift.

Fur Babies and Other Friends

Baby Cricket Report:  Death all around.  I have been trying to raise crickets to feed my lizard.  (see this post https://crittersandchaos.wordpress.com/2012/07/14/le-tour-de-france-just-past-half-way/ ) I have done this before.  But for some reason I just could not get these guys to live very long.

One day while tipping the toilet paper tubes on end to dump poop out, a whole bunch of dead babies fell out of one particular tube (I have them stapled together).  What the ???  What is this, the tube of death?  I held the tubes up so I could look into them and inside that tube was a spider.  A fat spider.  I began checking all the baby cricket tubs.  In every single one there was a spider hiding between the paper tubes and in the adult breeding tub there were three!  So I am now starting over again and part of cricket maintenance is spider removal!

*****

Lizard Report:  Name change again!  (Poor lizard.  I can’t remember ever having this much trouble finding a name for an animal.)  I moved over to Cooper.  I tried to think how I came up with this one and realized the dog in What Lies Beneath was named Cooper.  A character in Jayne Castle’s (aka Jayne Ann Krentz) book Ghost Hunter was named Cooper.  And, of course, Karl Urban’s character in Red (one of the best movies ever) was named Cooper.  And so far, so good.

I’m going to end this post with my surprised lizard (it’s after midnight, again).  I had the Christmas music turned up loud and went striding into the room and just poofed into lizard view.  He jumped straight up and landed on a piece of wood.  He wasn’t so upset that he showed teeth and hissed.  But he was upset enough to puff up like a puffer fish and also puff up his neck and turn it black.  Poor baby.

Don't DO that!

Don’t DO that!

I am NOT amused!

I am NOT amused!

Have a good weekend, everyone!