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Help on stick insects

Discussion in 'Insects , Snails and other exotic pets' started by Ollie7000, Apr 9, 2011.


  1. Ollie7000

    Ollie7000 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Guys

    I have 5 stick insects. 2 of them over the past few weeks have been losing legs, now they both only have 2 legs. I dont know what is causing this to happen but I dont want it to happen to the other 3. Its not old age as I have only had them in October last year. Is there anything I can do to help? If so what?
     
    #1 Ollie7000, Apr 9, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
  2. Vampyria

    Vampyria PetForums VIP

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    Hello! Welcome to Pet Forums!

    Sorry the reply is late - this part of the forum is very quiet :)

    What stick insects are they? I know of some species that will fight with each other, but if yours are Indian sticks then that is most certainly not the case. How old are they/are they adult? Could they be losing legs from a moult or are they just dropping off? Sometimes this may happen when the stick insects do not have enough room in their enclosure.

    One other thing I would suggest is they have injested some sort of toxin or poison from the leaves. Did your stick insects started to lose co-ordination before they lost their legs? To be on the safe side, I would seperate the two that have lost legs into a seperate container if you can, just in case. Changing/washing the leaves may be ideal as well.

    Sorry I can't be of more help. Its very difficult to see the cause sometimes. I do hope your stick insects are okay though! They may struggle with two legs, but should be fine if kept a close eye on them.
     
    #2 Vampyria, Apr 9, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2011
    AnneMarie Thomson likes this.
  3. Ollie7000

    Ollie7000 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Vampyria

    Thankyou for your help, they are indian stick insects. They arent adult I wouldnt think as they only hatched out of their eggs in September. Their legs just seem to be dropping off, and they are just led on the floor of the tank. I try resting them on a piece of bramble, but they just keep falling off.

    Anyway thanks again, I will try to use your ideas if I can.
    Ollie7000
     
  4. ameliajane

    ameliajane PetForums VIP

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    Have they always got plenty of fresh food and is it food they find palatable? They will resort to trying to eat each other (and legs are easiest being so thin) if they are ever short of food or the food isn't quite edible. And once a stick insect has lost a leg it will become an easy target as it can't escape so quickly - this might explain why only 2 of them are affected.

    Give them plenty of room too. Being constantly in close proximity to each other will increase the risk of them accidentally biting through a leg instead of a leaf.

    Do they have a source of water? A piece of sponge soaked in water will do or spray the leaves every day. If they are a bit dehydrated they will seek an alternative source of fluid... :eek:
     
    #4 ameliajane, Apr 10, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2011
  5. Jazzy

    Jazzy PetForums VIP

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    It could be old age as I think the average life span is six months to a year for Indian stick insects. We used to have them years ago and I know they didn't have long lives but they do breed really easily and most of the eggs usually hatch out - as we found - all 200 of them.. :eek:
     
  6. Ollie7000

    Ollie7000 PetForums Newbie

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    Hey Guys

    Me Again! Sadly 4 out of 5 of my stick insects are now losing legs. But when I was cleaning them out, i noticed that they were laying eggs. So it might just be old age. But thanks for your help. If anyone has any solutions to stop them from losing all their legs then tell me.:001_smile:

    Ollie7000
     
    #6 Ollie7000, Apr 25, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  7. Zanki

    Zanki PetForums Member

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    This happens with stick insects all the time. I kept them eight years and I saw a lot of different things. Sometimes if a stick insect gets an injoury on its leg, espeically an older one, they will chew off their legs, or snap it off some way. I had one walking on me one day, it decided to hold onto my hand and pull one of its legs off on me. I was a little bit freaked out, but they can get around fine with two or three missing legs.
    I did have one little guy, who the whole tank decided to attack one night, he ended up with one leg, which he decided to eat off, wasn't very nice to see. He survived and outlived some of his tankmates with the metal legs I made for him. He couldn't climb but he could walk around, find food etc.
     
  8. Ollie7000

    Ollie7000 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Zanki

    Thankyou for the advice, it has helped a lot!

    Ollie
     
  9. gleedinosawr

    gleedinosawr PetForums Newbie

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    Righty, I had the same problem. It could be a few problems:

    1. Fungal infection
    this could be due to overly damp conditions which encourages the growth of fungi causing the stick insects to lose legs

    2. Space
    like most animals they need their space. As indian stick insects reach about 10cm in length the height of the tank needs to be at least 3 time the size, for moulting etc, therefore 30cm high for indian ones. Overcrowding causes them to fight for food hence the leg loss

    3. Overhandling
    I used to carry them around quite alot, and this to a stick insect means that you could be a preditor. And so they become stressed and as they try to escape they lose legs as its better than dying... if that makes sense...

    Anyhoo I hope this helped :) also remeber that if you feed them bramble leaves with a diameter less than 1cm are poionous. Also if they are still moulting there is a chance it will grow back.
    Have fun :smilewinkgrin:
     
  10. Ingrid25

    Ingrid25 PetForums VIP

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    thats just what happened to my stick insect boogie!

    i have no idea why i happened, he also came down to two legs!
    we left for a holdiay and left him with a friend and when we came back he was dead!!!!!

    i have no idea what happened
    im sorry i didn't give you any help
     
  11. Smolly

    Smolly PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Zanki, don't know if you still use this site but I just wondered if you were serious about the metal legs and how you made them!? I'm in the same boat with 2 poorly Indian stick insects that must have been attacked and have NO legs. They can't move about. I am holding them and feeding them leaves every night which they take, but if I can make legs that would be better! I have been wondering how to make them - any suggestions would be amazing !! Thank you!
     
  12. Cool Pet Bugs

    Cool Pet Bugs PetForums Newbie

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    Your problem is lack of humidity. You should mist the cage twice a day and this will help. You should keep them in a large screen enclosure. I wrote a post about raising stick insects if your interested. Don't worry they will grow back.
     
    AnneMarie Thomson likes this.
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