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Zebra Isopods (Armadillidium maculatum) - Woodlouse Culture

Zebra Isopods (Armadillidium maculatum) - Woodlouse Culture

 

Possibly one of the most popular isopods in the hobby! A striking isopod with a shiny smooth black and white striped body which is unique for each isopod. This species is much bolder and active compared to some other isopods and are a great choice for beginner hobbyists that are wanting something that catches the eye without the difficulty. 

 

Armadillidium maculatum are naturally found in Southern France. These are suited to living in temperate conditions, but can tolerate slightly more tropical set ups. These also do well with a nice thick layer of decaying leaf litter and rotting wood. These can take a little while to settle into a new environment like most armadillidium species but once established are very prolific and rewarding to keep. 

 

  • Adult size: 1.8cm
  • Lifespan: 2-3 years
  • Status: captive bred 
  • Place of Origin: France
  • Temperature: 18-23˚C
  • Humidity: 60-80%
  • Diet: Hardwood leaf litter (oak, beech, hazel etc), rotten hardwood, flake soil, organic waste/ faeces, sphagnum moss, mushrooms, variety of fruit and vegetables (favourites include cucumber, carrot, and sweet potato), sepia/ calcium supplement, protein source (fish flake, shrimp pellets, dry mealworms)
  • We suggest keeping A. maculatum between 21-22˚C and 70%  humidity for best results. We keep a large colony of isopods in a 40x20x20cm plastic storage tub with vent holes across the lid. A smaller colony of 10-20 will do just fine in a 20x15x15cm enclosure.

 

  • Like other isopods, these need a humidity gradient which can be achieved by making sure there are dry and damp areas in their environment. The best way is to provide sphagnum moss or live moss on one half of the enclosure as a 'hydration station' and keep this constantly moist. We suggest keeping the substrate moist (not soaking!) and provide plenty of bark pieces and leaf litter to allow them to seek out dryer spots.

 

  • Make sure you use a high-quality substrate (no coco coir!) such as our Premium Millipede Edible Substrate as this will be the main food component for your isopods, and provide crushed cuttlebone or eggshells for calcium, as well as a good quality protein source once a week for optimal health. We prefer to feed vegetables and non-sweet fruit to our isopods to help deter fruit fly and fungus gnat infestations, but that’s just our choice! Like many invertebrates one of their favourites is cucumber which we provide in slices and replace once completely eaten, which is around once a week.

 

  • We recommend NOT keeping any protein-hungry isopods with millipedes as they can sometimes nibble on them whilst molting! 
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