Are you interested in breeding dubia roaches for your gecko, beardie, or other exotic pet? In that case, this blog is for you. We’ve covered setting up your breeding colony, where to get your dubia roach colony starter kit, the dubia roach lifecycle, and dubia roach care. Today, we’re sharing how to plan for the perfect-sized dubia roaches for your reptile-keeping needs.

How Big are Newborn Dubias?

Newborn dubia roach nymphs are tiny (roughly 1/8″ long). These little guys typically hang around mom for several weeks until they are big and strong enough to set off on their own.

Why are Some Dubias White?

Dubia roach nymphs will transition from white to gray within a few hours of being born as their exoskeleton dries and hardens due to air exposure. If you’re breeding dubia roaches, you will often see a few white ones in the mix. This is due to molting.

Dubia roaches will molt seven times throughout their lifetime. Their molting stage is referred to as an “instar.”  Each time your dubias transition through an instar, they will emerge from their exoskeleton just as they did when they were born (white and soft). Remember, dubia roach nymphs and adults are very fragile while molting, so be sure not to handle them until they turn darker.

How Long Does it Take For Dubias to Grow?

We carry a variety of dubias in sizes to suit any reptile, amphibian, or arachnid.

We offer:

If you decide to start breeding dubia roaches yourself, you may want to achieve the exact sizes we offer. In that case, please keep this tip from Rich, The Bug Shed Co-Founder, in mind:

“It takes a dubia roach roughly two weeks to transition between each size category. Several factors come into play, like temperature and diet, but plan accordingly if your pets require a specific size.”

How to Grow or Shrink Your Dubias

Suppose you have an excess of dubias that are too large for your pet, or you would like to speed up their growth process. In that case, growing or shrinking your dubia roach nymphs is the perfect solution to ensuring the correct size for your needs.

Here’s how to do it…

  • To GROW dubia roaches: Dubia roaches elongate when they eat. So, if you need some larger dubia roaches in short order, our best tip is to start gut loading them with water-rich foods like bananas. Raising the heat in their breeding enclosure to hover between 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit will also help dubias grow faster.
  • To SHRINK dubia roaches: You can slightly decrease the size of your dubia roaches by withholding water and food for a few days (up to a week). This won’t hurt the insects as they can thrive for months without food and weeks without water.
  • To keep dubia roaches nymphs at the PERFECT size: Keep your dubias in the “Goldilocks zone” by feeding them regularly and keeping their enclosure between 50-70 degrees Fahrenheit. At the lower end of this temperature range (50 degrees), your dubia roach nymphs can grow as much as 10X slower than when kept at an ideal temperature range.

As you can see, there are many ways to achieve the perfect-sized dubia roach nymphs if you’re breeding dubia roaches. If you have any questions about this process, please reach out to our Instagram, Facebook page, or email. We will do our best to support you in your dubia roach breeding adventure.

Our 1/4"-3/8" size dubias are shown next to a quarter for size comparison.
Breeding dubia roaches can take some trial and error, but soon you’ll have perfectly sized dubias every time!

Breeding Dubia Roaches? Enjoy These 5 Free Resources!

To support you in setting up your very own dubia roach breeding colony, we have gathered some of our most helpful resources all in one place!

  1. Learn how to start your own dubia roach colony by clicking HERE.
  2. To learn more about our dubia roach colony starter kit, click HERE.
  3. For information on creating a prolific dubia roach colony, click HERE.
  4. For details on storing your roach colony, click HERE.
  5. To learn how to care for your dubias properly, please review our FREE Dubia Roach Care Guide HERE.