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Working with nature

KEEPING ASSASSIN BUGS

Any aquarium with a suitable well fitting mesh lid will do for housing; they are particularly good at escaping especially as small nymphs.

A colony of these bugs makes a good display and although predators, given enough food, they seem to tolerate each other well.

The temperature can range from 18 to 30c with the higher temperature promoting breeding. We find the best heating method is a standard light bulb which allows for a more natural heating from above allowing for the bugs to burrow to lower there temperature.

SUBSTRATE

We find the best substrate to be leaf litter or peat to a depth of approx.5cm this should be kept moist at the base level and allowed to dry on the surface. The tank should have plenty of hiding places which can be wood, bark or old egg boxes. Also a small tray of wet cotton wool or sponge should be supplied to allow for drinking.

FEEDING

As true carnivorous predators Assassin bugs eat just about any live insect prey. We find a mixture of mealworms, cockroaches, maggots and crickets make a good diet.

CAUTION

These bugs can not only give a painful poisonous ‘bite’ but they are also capable of spraying venom over some distance, although this only happens under extreme duress it must be kept in mind and the bugs at arms length and away from your face.