Parabrosoma bispinosum "Sibayak"
(by Bruno Kneubuehler)
 

OrderPhasmatodea
 
SuborderVerophasmatodea 
InfraorderAreolatae 
FamilyAschiphasmatidae Brunner v. Wattenwil, 1893
SubfamilyAschiphasmatinaeBrunner v. Wattenwil, 1893
TribeAschiphasmatini   Brunner v. Wattenwil, 1893
GenusParabrosomaGiglio-Tos, 1910
SpeciesP. bispinosum(Dohrn, 1910)


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General Notes

  • Dohrn (1910) described this species first as Abrosoma bispinosum
  • synoynms: P. bigibbum , Giglio-Tos (1910)
  • Marco Gottardo (Italy) will soon describe the female and the eggs
  • 2010 - eggs were imported from Sumatra
  • 2011 - first successful culture by Bruno Kneubuehler

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Origin

  • eggs were collected from wild-caught females, which were found in late November 2010 on Mt. Sibayak at an altitude of about 1500 altitude by Jimmy Gideon (Sumatra). Mt. Sibayak is near of the town Brastagi (North-Sumatra)

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Females

  • slim, small phasmids
  • about 4.0 to 4.5 cm long
  • dark brown, with numerous light brown dots and patches all over the body
  • the abdomen is broadened in the area of the 5th to the 7th segment, giving it a somewhat swollen appearance. This is a characteristic feature of this tribe
  • antennae are quite a bit longer than the fore legs
  • especially the underside of the body and legs is quite hairy
  • no spines present
  • no wings

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Males

  • very slim and also small insects
  • about 3.2 to 3.5 cm long
  • dark brown
  • abdominal ending with some light brown areas
  • 2 prominent and forward pointing spines on the dorsal prothorax
  • antennae quite a bit longer than the fore legs
  • especially the underside of the body and legs is quite hairy
  • no wings

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Nymphs (L1)

  • very small
  • about 10 mm long
  • light green, numerous dark dots
  • eyes are dark
  • antennae are longer than the fore legs
  • antennae are green with dark rings
  • antennae tip is dark
  • in L1 it is not possible to distinguish males and females with the naked eye - due to their small size

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Eggs

  • very small and lentoid
  • about 2 x 2 mm
  • dark brown - with two reddish-brown lines which surround a lighter colored band
  • rather fragile

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Food Plants

  • nymphs (also L1) as well as adults feed easily on bramble (Rubus sp.)
  • cut of the leaf margins for the freshly hatched nymphs, this makes is easier for them to start feeding

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Behaviour

  • males will be adult after about 3 - 3.5 months (at 20 - 23°C), females after 4 - 4.5 months
  • females start to lay eggs after about 2 -3 weeks
  • preferably eggs are being lay on moist ground
  • about 14 eggs per female and week
  • matings can be observed very frequently
  • often males stay with the same female for some time
  • nymphs as well as adults (especially males) react very hectically when feeling threatened (e.g. when being touched)
  • nymphs and adult males can make real jumps with which they try to escape. Such jumps can be a few centimeters for adult males. When landing after jumping, then they often wriggle around frantically for a shor moment, then run a short distance - just to freeze again quickly
  • small nymphs have a rather funny behaviour - when they reach a place where they want to settle, then they slap the abomen with a swinging movement on the ground
  • adults (maybe also nymphs) can produce a protective spray from glands just behind their head. This spray is potentially irritating to mucous membranes (like in the eyes), and thus it might be advisable to be careful when handling this species

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Breeding Notes

  • it is very easy to culture this species
  • yet due to their very fidgety nature and their defensive spray they should be handled carefully
  • incubation with the HH-method (on slightly damp sand) yields a good hatching ratio
  • some moss spread over the eggs strongly facilitates successful hatching
  • incubation time at room temperatures (20 - 23°C) is about 2 months
  • hatching ratio for F1 generation was high (50+ %)
  • keep the nymphs in a cage with high humidity
  • take care that the humidity does not drop too low, otherwise fatal mismoults are frequent
  • a constantly wet paper towel on the floor of the cage helps raising humidity
  • nymphs and adults can be kept in a Faunabox (or similar cages)
  • the openings in the lid of the Faunabox can closed partially with plastic wrap (thus humidity is increased further)
  • move nymphs to a bigger cage as they grow bigger
  • a Faunabox of about 20 cm x 15 cm is big enough for several adult pairs
  • I have never sprayed nymphs or adults with water
  • make shure that nymphs, which are about to undergo their adult moult, do not find places in the cage which would not offer them enough space beneath to moult successfully

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References

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

 

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