The common Armadillidium vulgare, are also known as roly polys due to their tendency to roll up into a ball when disturbed or threatened. They are a European species of woodlouse and are the most extensively studied terrestrial species of isopod. Unlike some other species, A. vulgare rolls into a complete ball with no gaps or spacing.
Armadillidium vulgare are excellent additions to heavily planted tanks with woody, herbaceous plants and those with large amounts of cork hides or wood substrate. These helpful cleaner isopods consume decaying wood and leftover vegetables. They are a very hardy species that can tolerate high and low temperatures. They range in colors and patterns but are typically light gray and are often spotted.
Size: .71 inches.
Housing: Plastic storage bin or glass terrarium
Food Preferences: Decaying wood, cork, vegetables, dried leaves, grasses, lichen.
Temp Requirements: approx. 60 Degrees to 90 Degrees. Extreme cold and heat can be lethal. May go dormant in winter if kept in colder temps.
Breeding: Easy - with proper care sub-adults will begin to breed before reaching full size
Substrate: Coconut coir, peat moss, or Reptisoil, slightly moist with a layer of leaf litter
Humidity: slightly humid
Isopods are gaining popularity in the reptile industry for a number of very good reasons. They are natures janitorial crews! Add them to your home enclosure to reduce mold, feces, decaying matter, and improve substrate health! All while providing a calcium rich, nutritious snack for your critters to enjoy any time they wish.
Our Isopods are fed a mix of organic vegetables and mushrooms. They are kept on coconut coir substrate with moist sphagnum moss to help maintain humidity, provided cuttlebone for calcium, and cork hides for enrichment, snacking, and mating space.
In rare cases, starving isopods may attempt to consume the carapace of freshly molted invertebrates or even gnaw on small or delicate reptiles or amphibians. We strongly recommend providing supplemental food to your clean up crew in the enclosure, such as pieces of carrot or commercial crested gecko food. When in doubt, using dwarf species of isopods, such as Dwarf Tropical Whites, may be a safer option.
For more information, check out our information page about going Bio-Active!