Help me find some big beetles for my kids
November 8, 2016 9:28 AM   Subscribe

My kids both want a pet. We live in small apartment that's often cold during the day in winter, and I feel shitty about keeping any animal cooped up in it, cage or otherwise (I also don't want to deal with the hair, dung, and exercise needs of a mammal). We've sort of compromised on some stag or other large beetles in an aquarium, but I'm having a hard time finding a source.

They appear to be a dime a dozen in some Asian cities I've spent time in, but finding them here in the US has been a challenge. Does anyone have a recommendation for a reputable dealer? I'm in the DC area, but mail order is also welcome.
posted by ryanshepard to Shopping (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'd try Swift's Inverts link. I've ordered other inverts from these guys, even if they don't have the beetles you want, they may have something else that sparks your interest or can recommend a source.
posted by PinkPoodle at 9:47 AM on November 8, 2016

If you're open to arthopods generally, may I also suggest a giant Millipede?
Otherwise, it looks like Bessbeetles are going to be the easiest to get shipped from reputable sources.
posted by Cold Lurkey at 10:15 AM on November 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

If you're open to arthopods generally, may I also suggest a giant Millipede?

I like the cut of your jib, sir/m'am - you may indeed.
posted by ryanshepard at 10:29 AM on November 8, 2016 sells larvae of a lot of beetle species (and mantises). I'm going to advocate for the Eastern Hercules beetle, just because I found one in the parking lot once and she was very tame and easy to handle, and also I think the freckles are just adorable.
posted by FirstMateKate at 12:42 PM on November 8, 2016 [2 favorites]

Heck, you can get Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches on Amazon! Madagascar Hissers are the kind of bugs that our local science center brings out for kids to handle. Don't let the cockroach moniker mislead you--they are roaches, yes, but they're big and fat and not very fast and don't have wings and can't infest your house.
posted by foxfirefey at 1:14 PM on November 8, 2016 [2 favorites]

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