Friday, April 16, 2010

Frog Friday! Crickets 1, Barkerias 0

Frogs were my original concern with growing miniature orchids in the vivarium.  I was worried that one of the fat ones like Bob or Alice would crush the delicate plants.  I didn't anticipate the cricket factor.

The frogs like small crickets, but sometimes the crickets grow up too fast and/or "medium" or "large" crickets sneak in with the "smalls." As Trixie explains, the crickets live on a strict diet of fruits and vegetables, but they're not opposed to eating air roots or plant leaves if it comes to it. 

Recently, some larger crickets infiltrated the vivarium and laid waste to the Barkerias.  It was brutal.  The Bulbophyllum flavescens and the Certostylis retisquama remain untouched and healthy, which is something I need to keep in mind when I buy more orchids for the vivarium.  Stick with what's working.  

I've struggled with the Barkerias in the recent past but the crickets ultimately sealed their fate.  Some orchid scientists, like Dr. Robert Marsh, think Barkerias will be the next big thing.  They might be.  The genus has a number of attractive features, but keep the crickets away!

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