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   Insects By RRF      Caresheets      How To Buy Dermestid Beetles Care & Setup

     Buy Dermestid Beetles That Work To Clean Skulls                                     Care & Instructions 

                   Dermestid Beetles By RRF Insects



When You Buy Dermestid Beetles By RRF They Work for you by cleaning animal carcasses where they arrive to feed.  They will feed on the tough leathery hide, drying flesh and organs, and will eventually strip a carcass bare.  Due to their bone cleaning abilities they are used by museums, universities and taxidermists worldwide to clean skulls and skeletons. 

Enclosure:  In addition to Adult Beetles and Mature Larvae, Your Dermestid Colony will come with substrate that includes countless number of eggs and tiny larvae that will mature in short time. After receiving your newly purchased Beetles By RRF, put your Dermestid Beetle into a Plastic Bin or Tub.  Choose a tub to suit the size of the colony that you will eventually have. Dermestid Beetles cannot climb well at all especially on smooth plastic.  They do not fly at (temperatures below 80-85 F). although they have wings. Ventilation is required. Simply cut an opening in the plastic lid and replace it with mesh screen. 

Substrate: An inch or two of varied substrate may be used from Bran to Shredded Paper, A Preferred Bedding Material for Dermestid Beetles is Reptile Bedding made of Wood Shavings (Never Use Cedar) Several inches is required for beetles to shelter within, and it provides an excellent medium for eggs to be laid into. Pieces of styrofoam, wool or cotton are great also for this purpose and the chewed styrofoam will become natural bedding material.  

Temperature: The ideal temperature for Dermestids is 75-85°F although they will tolerate cooler conditions and operate more slowly Heating can be achieved via a heat mat, but only place the mat under half of the enclosure to ensure that they do not overheat.   Beetles can fly above 80 F.

Reproduction: Your Dermestid Colony will breed continuously all year round in warm conditions. As long as food, ample dry substrate and warmth are provided your colony should continue to grow. Adult females will lay hundreds of tiny eggs within the substrate and in crevices around the food source.  You will not see the eggs as they are microscopic. Small larvae will hatch and begin feeding soon after.  Larvae eat the most flesh. As the larvae grow they will shed their skins.  Larvae pupate after reaching around 10-12mm. They will remain within the substrate during this stage, and come out to feed.

Life span: About 60-70 days. (They can complete their life-cycle in 5-7 weeks at temperatures of 75-85°F) Each female beetle may lay hundreds of tiny eggs, and are usually laid on or near their food source. 

Food: Your Beetles will need to be fed for at least 30-45 days before they become a "Hot" colony able to tackle projects like a skull.  Dry or partially dry animal material should be offered.  The most important rule when feeding is not to over feed and allow food to rot and spoil the enclosure. Build up the volume of food slowly over time and allow the strength of the colony and its ‘eating power’ to dictate how much food to provide. If you are not cleaning bones/skulls the colony can be maintained on dry materials sold in pet stores for dog food (pig or cow ears,  Dermestid beetles will consume some moist flesh, but it should be kept to a minimum. 

Water: Very little water is required and it important not to allow your enclosure  to become damp. Supply water by lightly spraying substrate every 2-3 days keeping careful to not moisten too much as water will hasten a mite infestation.  All water sprayed on substrate should be dry within 24 hours.  Water Gel Crystals for Dermestids are preferred over other water source as their is less chance of drowning or attracting mites.

Buy Dermestid Beetles that Work Cleaning Flesh From Bones & Skulls

After Buying, Dermestid Beetles should be slowly prepared for larger skull cleaning or taxidermy projects by feeding for 30-45 days or by supplying small projects that will Work up to larger projects.  Doing this should enable the colony to Work most effectively as intended.  A large enough Dermestid Colony should be ordered to build up to Work as needed.  For instance 

Cleaning a Rabbit Skull with Dermestid Beetles requires a minimum of 4000 Beetles to effectively clean it.   

Cleaning a Fox or Beaver Skull will take 8-9,000 Beetles to clean it. 

Cleaning a Deer Skull will need 25-30,000 Beetles 

Cleaning a Bear Skull will need 45-55,000 Beetles

It is imperative that the right amount of beetles must be bought as meat that is not consumed before turning rotten and molding will KILL your Colony.  You must remove the eyes, brains and skin and as must meat as possible with a knife before giving to beetles.

First time customers Please Note, 

Adult Dermestid Beetles Work at producing babies 
and concentrate on little else besides breeding and laying eggs.  For the experienced hunter or taxidermist it is realized that Dermestid Larvae Work to consume the most flesh/meat from a carcass.  Due to the lifecycles you will have as many as 25-50 times as many Dermestid Larvae at any time than adult Dermestid Beetles.  This is perfectly normal.  Our beetles are fed on a diet that consists of slightly dried to dried meat (Think slightly freezer burned rather than jerky)

Our Dermestid Beetles are Raised on Flesh.   Due to sanitary and shipping reasons our beetles are fed a dry diet consisting of dog food or cow ears ( Powdery substance in frass.) for a week or two before being shipped to you.  The juvenile larvae will consume this material for several weeks and during shipment.  It may take up to 30 days of feeding slightly dry meat to get them used to meat again.  This is called Getting the Dermestid Colony "Hot".  When first starting your colony feed (Only) the amount of meat that can be consumed in 24 hours and slowly increase this over the course of 30 days before giving larger amounts or a carcass to Work with.  In the interim when not feeding flesh the beetles may go on a maintenance diet consisting of some flesh interspersed with feeding dry dog food or beef/pig ears.  

Dermestid Beetles Bedding Material Contains additional  Eggs and Larvae and are also shipped in a bedding material that may consist of wood shavings.  Please Note that we separate beetles from bedding and count them out before adding the bedding material back.  This bedding has numerous tiny larvae (Not included in the ordered count,) as well as many eggs taken from near the food source.  The bedding may have shedded skins or exoskelteons and these are not dead beetles.  This is normal and may serve as nourishment for the beetle larvae.  No need for alarm if you view these things The Dermestid Beetles are at Work reproducing and Working for You.

Dermestid Beetles & Dermestid Starter Colonies May Be Purchased at Dermestid Beetles By RRF Insects 



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