The following information is for USPS, FedEx, and other mail carriers in the event a package containing Dubia roaches ruptures in transit or a customer abandons their shipment.
What are Dubia Roaches?
Dubia roaches are harmless tropical cockroaches originally from South America. In the U.S., they are typically used as feeder insects or “feeders” (like crickets and mealworms) for pets like reptiles, amphibians, and other insectivores. They are popular among pet owners because they are nutritious, easy to keep, widely available in the U.S., and more. Dubia roaches do not bite and are not considered pests in the areas from which they originate.
Dubia roaches are different from the American cockroach and other common roach species in several important ways. First, they are not pests, they move slowly compared to other cockroaches, and they are fragile. Second, with little exception, they cannot reproduce on their own in the United States. Dubia roaches require tropical conditions for breeding, and can only survive within a narrow range of temperatures. They cannot live on their own anywhere in the U.S. with the possible exceptions of Hawaii and Southern Florida, and these states restrict Dubia roach importation. Our policy is to not ship Dubia roaches to either of these two states.
Dubia roaches are not considered disease vectors. They are not known to harm people, other animals, or property.
Dubia Roach Shipping
Dubia roaches rarely present a problem during shipping. They can go a month or more without food or water, they prefer darkness and small spaces, and by nature they thrive in low oxygen environments.
However, problems do occur. Dubia roaches do not handle extremely hot or cold temperatures well. Shipping in very cold temperatures, for example, usually requires heating packs. We advise our customers to buy heat packs when local temperatures are very hot or cold. If they ignore our advice, insect death may occur. Other problems that may occur in-transit include package damage leading to rupture and escape.
If Dubia Roaches Escape
When Dubia roaches escape they usually die within hours or weeks. The temperature range they need for survival is narrow, and it’s even narrower for breeding. For example, the temperature must be a constant 85-95°F for Dubia roaches to breed. They also need high humidity (50% and above) and abundant food. If any of these are inadequate, they cannot reproduce. When temperatures dip below this range, they become sluggish and eventually stop eating. When temperatures are at or near freezing, they will die.
Escaped Dubia roaches seek warmth, darkness, and moisture. In addition to being cold intolerant, they cannot survive high heat. They will die if the temperature stays above 95°F for too long – especially if humidity is low.
Dubia roaches are not known to destroy property. They are not burrowing insects and they do not tend to chew through materials. They may chew paper, but usually only if it is moist and they are seeking hydration, or if it contains food or food remnants.
If Dubia Roaches Die
Escaped Dubia roaches that die tend to dry out quickly or be eaten by other insects or rodents. In these cases they typically do not present a problem. However, when a shipment of Dubia roaches is exposed to conditions extreme enough to kill them, like very high or low temperatures, they may all die at once. Due to low air circulation in packages, dead roaches may become foul. Dead Dubia roaches have a uniquely bad smell. If you have a package of dead Dubia roaches, consider disposing of them quickly. We suggest sealing them in a plastic bag and placing them in an outdoor trash bin or another location appropriate for the disposal of dead insects.
Please email us with questions or if you need to contact a customer.