Dyme ramulus "Topo"
(by Bruno Kneubühler)
 

OrderPhasmatodea
 
SuborderVerophasmatodea 
InfraorderAnareolatae 
FamilyDiapheromeridaeKirby, 1904
SubfamilyDiapheromerinaeKirby, 1904
TribeDiapheromeriniKirby, 1904
GenusDyme  Stål, 1875
SpeciesDyme ramulusGiglio-Tos, 1898


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General Notes

  • 2008 - first successful culture of this species by Bruno Kneubühler
  • this species has originally been described as Ocnophila ramulus by Giglio-Tos in 1898. But it belong to the genus Dyme (O. Conle - personal communication, 2008)
  • synonyms: Ceroys ramulus (Kirby. 1904), Ocnophila ramulus (Giglio-Tos. 1910)
  • 2008 - I have distributed this species as Dyme ramulus to other breeders

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Origin

  • my culture stock has been collected by Horst Kaech (Ecuador) in November 2007 at Rio Topo (Tunguragua) in Ecuador
  • the original specimens were found on plants of the family Piperaceae

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Females

  • typical wingless, yet quite spiny stick insect - about 7,5 – 8 cm long
  • their basic colour ranges from dark brown to light brown to greenish-brown
  • several larger spines are located on their thorax and the first abdominal segments, and there are numerous small spines on the underside of the same body areas
  • as it is typical for the genus Dyme, the inside of the first part of the fore legs is coloured bluish
  • feelers are long

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Males

  • typical wingless, yet quite spiny stick insect - about  6,5 cm long
  • their basic colour is generally light brown with some white dots (sometimes small spines) along the side of the body
  • many larger spines are located on their thorax and the first abdominal segments, and there are numerous small spines on the underside of the body
  • the inside of the first part of the fore legs is coloured bluish too
  • feelers are long

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Eggs

  • small, dark coloured eggs, about 2 x 1,5 mm
  • surface is smooth yet matt
  • incubate them at room temperatures (18 – 25°C) on a damp, but not too wet substrate
  • incubation time at these temperatures is about 2,5 - 3 months

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Food Plants

  • nymphs and adults accept bramble as food plants. Nymphs will grow up on bramble easily.
  • but especially adult females will prefer firethorn, Salal (Gaultheria shallon) and the bramble species with the thick, long spines
  • fern is even better accepted
  • further they feed on plum leaves, hazelnut leaves

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Breeding Notes

  • easy to breed – still they need proper basic care
  • this is a species from a higher altitude, so it seems that they do better when kept at temperatures of 20°C or below. But my culture is also doing well at 20-23°C
  • nymphs are green in colour
  • keep nymphs and adults in a fairly airy, yet humid cage. A constantly wet paper towel on the bottom of the cage will provide a humidity, which is high enough for them to moult successfully
  • males mature after about 3 months and females after about 4 months
  • this species is sometimes also active during the day, they can be seen feeding and walking around
  • females will start laying eggs about 2 – 3 weeks after their final moult - several eggs per day, which just let drop to the ground
  • from the prothoracic glands they can produce a white defensive secretion when they feel strongly threatened. This secretion has not specific smell, yet it probably causes a (non-permanent) burning sensation when it comes in contact with the mucous membranes in the mouth or in the eyes. I have not tried this out  :)  Thus one should be careful when handling them

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References

  • Phasmida Species Files  (www.phasmida.orthoptera.org)

 

 

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