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Can You Clean A Small Animal With Dermestids?

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by sunflowersnake, Apr 5, 2022.

  1. there's an eastern glass lizard (ophisaurus ventralis) i've had in my freezer for a long time now that i'd like to articulate. glass lizards look a lot like snakes, so they'd be articulated much like snakes (skull, and then a long spine with lots of ribs basically).

    i was planning to skin and clean him off a little bit and put him in with dermestids, but i'm a little worried because his bones are so small (especially the ribs) and i don't know if the dermestids will just push them all around.

    does anyone here have experience trying to articulate the skeleton of a small animal they cleaned with dermestids? i'm willing to put in some effort to make him look better, but i'm not excited about the prospect of trying to match every single rib and reattaching it.

    thank you for any input!
  2. moonshine

    moonshine Active Member

    Yes you can , you just haveto monitor it bec if you leave it in too long the beetles will chew on the soft bones

  3. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Yes, and I use dermestids almost exclusively to clean small, delicate things. Prep your specimen and put it in a separate container, not the main colony. Hand pick small larva and transfer them to the container with the lizard. You will still have to monitor them but not as much. If you are careful, the bones will be cleaned and the skeleton will still be intact.
  4. CJMartin

    CJMartin Member

    look up a guy on youtube Flocken's Nekoparlor he does stuff like this all the time. Puts the thing being clean up on a few egg crates so the bugs have to work harder to get to it so it makes it easier to keep an eye on.
  5. fogbound

    fogbound Member

    I clean LOTS of small materials with dermestid. I place the material in a small plastic container with holes drilled in the sides and top, and place this in the larger colony. The smaller larvae seek out the meat/tissue and will quickly clean any delicate material without damage or transport (derms don't transport much anyway...).