Raising Dubia Roaches for Poultry Feed

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by InsectivoreCo, Dec 18, 2014.

  1. Crickets

    0 vote(s)
  2. A wholllllle lot of nope, not doin that.

    1 vote(s)
  3. Dubia Roaches

    4 vote(s)
  4. Turkistan Roaches

    1 vote(s)
  5. Sowbugs

    1 vote(s)
  6. Black Soldier Fly larvae

    1 vote(s)
  7. Red Wigglers

    1 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. InsectivoreCo

    InsectivoreCo In the Brooder

    Dec 17, 2014
    Raising Dubia for Poultry Feed

    I have seen a lot of info on here on DIY, etc and would like to make a few notes on raising insects.
    We will share care info for a variety of insects over the next month - hope you enjoy!

    I know most of you are cringing while reading this, but hear me out! I hope I can change some of the misconceptions about raising roaches.

    A few little facts...
    1. Dubia Roaches are quieter, do not smell and are much easier to raise than crickets.
    2. While worms and many other insect species can carry diseases and parasites, Dubia carry far less.
    3. Dubia Roaches beat out crickets by a whopping 20% in protein!


    What you will need to start your Dubia colony:

    1 Rubbermaid/Tupperware bin - sized to fit your colony (which will grow quickly)
    6-10 cardboard egg cartons/flats
    2 strips of packing tape
    1 drill to make some air holes in your bin
    1 heat pad if you are in a colder climate
    water crystals or fruit to provide moisture and dog, cat, chicken food or scraps to feed.

    Besides your new colony, that's it!


    How to Set Up your Dubia Bin
    1. Drill some holes in the top and top-sides of your bin. Holes should be about the size of a pencil eraser or slightly smaller.

    2. Place one strip of packing tape on the top-inside of your bin and place a strip around the outside as well. Although Dubia cannot climb glass or most tupperware products, you want to be careful as built-up dust can provide a climbing surface for newly born young. If you are using a glass terrarium, skip this step but check the sealant edges for a climbing surface.

    3. Place your egg cartons so they are on their short side. Starting with your first one, place every other one backwards. (This will ensure they have gaps in between and the bugs will not get crushed in between the egg cartons.) The roaches will move up and down the flats to regulate their body temperature. They will also drop their frass(poop) into the bottom, which will make your bin a clean environment and save you time in the end.

    4. Take two pieces of egg flat or egg carton, (solid bottom) and lay them laterally across the egg flats you already placed in your bin. These will be your feed trays. This should end up looking like a little roach stonehenge, essentially. With the living quarters being the up and down parts and the feeder trays laying across the top. Unlike stonehenge, you don't want any sacrifices here so make sure there are plenty of "up and down" cartons for the feeders to rest on top of.

    5. In one of your feeder trays (you should have 2) you will place water crystals, fruit or whatever you are hydrating you insects with. In the other tray you will place your dry food. (stale dog, cat or chicken food will work - make sure it's crushed!) If climate makes it necessity to mist your colony, simply lift up the dry food tray while you quickly mist. Moldy food is not food for anything, even roaches.

    6. Again, if climate makes it necessary you will have to provide some heat for optimum breeding output. A reptile heat pad or similar heat pad placed under your bin should achieve these temps.

    That's it! Keep your colony in a dark place with fair ventilation and watch it grow! Each female will have about 20-35 live young a month, which will be adults in a few months' time.

    Here is some nutrition info on Dubia:

    With a nutrient composition of 61% moisture, 36% protein, 7% fat and 2% ash, Dubia Roaches far outweigh the 16% protein available in crickets.

    Hope ya'll find this useful! Have a great day and thanks for reading.

    Last edited: Dec 30, 2014
    bertrn likes this.

  2. cityfarmer12

    cityfarmer12 Songster

    Oct 18, 2014
    Thanks for the info! i raise mealworms and crickets, but i actually like roaches (ok, i'm one of those crazy people who keep hissing roaches as pets, they are really cool [​IMG]) and might like to raise some for the birds (and the lizards and T's). Thanks again!
    1 person likes this.
  3. wcbpolish

    wcbpolish Chirping

    Feb 16, 2017
    Pierson, Michigan
    Good post. I have a dubia colony (not on heat) that I really need to wake up and get producing.
    I use mealworms as a cleanup crew in my colony

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by