How do I house or culture Isopods?

We keep our isopods in plastic KIS shoe boxes. At one end, a soldering iron is used to melt 3 small holes in the upper portion of one small side, below the lid clasp. This will create a humidity gradient across the culture, and allow for a small bit of air flow.

 

Use a soldering iron to melt small holes in one side of the culture. This will increase the air flow to the culture, and allow one side of the culture to dry out. We feed on this side, as it reduces the amount of mold in the culture.

The shoebox is filled with 3” of ABG mix and ground leaf litter, at a proportion of approximately 3:1. The mix is wet beforehand, so that it is moist, but not dripping excess water. On top of the substrate, multiple layers of clean corrugated cardboard is placed. This allows the isopods extra shelter, as well as an additional food source. Most species seem to be more productive when kept in the mid to high 70s F, and slightly moist.

 

Side profile of a typical isopod culture.

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