Saturday, 30 March 2019

Breeding the Eastern Hercules beetle, dynastes tityus at home, Part II : pupation and hibernation

     The eastern Hercules beetle, Dynastes tityus, which can be found in Eastern and South Eastern US states, is one of my old time favourite beetles. The main reasons are: (1) even these beetles are relatively small compared to their tropical Dynastes hercules relatives, they are still cool looking rhino beetles with an amazing leopard pattern of their elytra; (2) It is one of the easiest rhino species  which you can raise at home from the larvae. As adults they also live for several months which is pretty long compared to their close relative, the Western Hercules beetle, Dynastes granti, adults of which live only about two months on average. The larvae of Dynastes tityus are usually not fussy with their food and grow quite well on my "worse" substrate which would not be good for picky eaters like the larvae of large hercules beetle, e.g.  Dynastes hercules hercules or Dynastes hercules lichyi. Although using such poorer substrate results in smaller (but still perfectly healthy) beetles, it is massively beneficial for my breeding, since it ensures that no substrate is wasted. Here I made a short breeding report video which starts from the part where the larvae are already developed into the late L3 stage. Once the beetles wake up from hibernation, I hope that I will be able to make the part one which will  be about the breeding of adult beetles, housing and the substrate for raising the larvae. 
The video is pretty much straightforward with some tips along its time-course and hopefully it will be informative enough for those who want to try to raise these spectacular beetles at home.