Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Pineapple Beetles

The video shows a thriving colony of pineapple beetles in a 4' fish-tank.  They have taken just 45 minutes to devour a 12" loaf of sliced soft bread.  It was not enough and they are still excited and looking for more food.

PBs are completely vegetarian and must not be fed animal protein or food processed from it.  Commercially available pellets for feeding chickens are not a suitable food and they will die if so fed. Fruits, fruit skins, banana leaves, vegetables and commercially available food intended for vegetarians, such as rabbits and guinea pigs are suitable for them.

The males have wings and can climb up the fish-tank.  The females do not. They are soft bodied and the shamas love to eat them.

The PBs (they are really a species of cockroach) come out only at night to feed.  When they are hungry they will swarm everywhere to look for food.

Make sure that the food is completely eaten during the night. Leftover food can get mouldy and cause problems.

If you have a thriving population of PBs, be very careful about introducing new stock. I don't think there is any need to do so.  The danger that you must most guard against is introducing lotus worms or beetles into your habitat of PBs.  The lotus worms and beetles are carnivorous and they will eat the young of the PBs.  Once they contaminate your PB population, it is almost impossible to eradicate them.

The PBs have been in the tank for several years.  The soil has never been changed.  There is no need to do so as there is a complete absence of smell. When the tank was first set up, I put in about 2" of potting soil.  After several years, the depth of the soil has increased to about 5".

1 comment:

  1. Hi David,

    I now kept both PBs (Asian and American), it took me 2 years to have it up and running. Now I have enough to feed all my shamas. Btw the American ones breed much fast and are much bigger.