Confused about drying advice

Submitted by Scott on 12/04/2003. ( )

I've been letting my skulls dry since all the advice I've read on this site, but I looked at a new site that was talked about on the message board. It had a section on skull cleaning which said to soak the skull in water for a while before putting the skull in with your beetles because they like it wet. This contradicts what I was told before. I do spritz the skulls with water every couple of days, but I don't soak them. Is this correct?

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No One Way.....

This response submitted by Old Fart on 12/04/2003. ( )

....That is totally correct. The end result can be achieved in different ways. Your situation will dictate how you need to do it. I have always keep the skulls moist and let the bugs do it in the summer, our winters are tough on bugs. When I need them done in the winter, my bug lady wants them dried out for her bugs.

About the soaking

This response submitted by Superpig on 12/04/2003. ( )

it says to soak the skulls if the meat on them is totally dried up as in old skull which had been sitting out for an extended period of time. Just misting them is not going to soften them up. Those are the ones you want to soak for a day or two to rehydrate the meat. Hope I could help.

Not too wet - not too dry

This response submitted by Raven on 12/04/2003. ( )

For maggots etc it's no problems to soak them - they don't mind dripping wet meat. Dermestid beetles on the other hand are a different story entirely. Too wet will raise humidity and risk bacterial and fungal infections that can easily kill your colonies.

A good rule of thumb for the correct level of moisture for feeding meat to dermestes that I go by and have heard from others as well - beef jerky.

Think 'beef jerky' and you can't go far wrong.

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