Leaf insect for sale

Phyllium letiranti: a stunning leaf insect for sale

Phyllium letiranti: a stunning leaf insect for sale

Leaf insect for sale in

Phyllium letiranti is a beautiful leaf insect species found in Peleng island, Indonesia. It comes in a wide variety of colours, from light green to yellow and even brown-reddish, one of the many characteristics that makes this phasmid desired and loved by many insect breeders. 

You can now raise Phyllium letiranti yourself, buy the eggs in our shop at Time to Breed! 

Phyllium letiranti, leaf insect description and ecology 

Phyllium letiranti is a phasmid species belonging to the family “Philliidae”, commonly known as leaf insects or walking leaves. Insects of this family are an amazing example of cryptic mimicry, resembling perfectly tree leaves in all their textures. In nature this is a major strategy against predators, who usually disguises them for actual leaves. Leaf insects are, indeed, completely harmless: hiding is their only chance to survive the threats of the forests in which they live. When disturbed, those leaf insects tend to drop on the ground and move messily before remaining completely motionless and faking death, they may also perform autotromy. 

Phyllium letiranti nymphs
Phyllium letiranti nymphs

One of the most interesting textures of the walking leaf Phyllium letiranti is certainly its stunning colours: I have personally observed green, brown and yellow females, although males were always bright green. This phasmid is medium-sized: females reach a body length of about 9 cm, while males don’t exceed 8 cm.  

Like many other Phylliidae species, P. letiranti exibits sexual dimorphism: females have a round abdomen with very large elytras covering almost the entirety of it, atrophied wings unsuitable for flight, and small antennas. Males are instead slenderer and smaller, with long antennas and wings with which they perform short flights to escape predators and reach females.  

 

How to rear the leaf insect Phyllium letiranti 

All Phyllium letiranti eggs available on this shop were obtained from sexual reproduction, that means that copulation has occurred and nymphs will be both males and females. Those eggs will hatch in 3 to 5 months at a temperature of about 25°C, they have to be incubated in a small ventilated box with a humid substrate: vermiculite is strongly recommended for all phasmid eggs, since, unlike wet paper, it’s not organic, so it doesn’t develop moulds that would be a threat to the eggs.  


Phillium letiranti’s eggs are quite peculiar: they are covered with very tiny strands that expand when exposed to humidity; it is not known what their purpose is, but some people think they might be useful in order to get more humidity from the air.  

Freshly hatched leaf insect nymphs tend to run around very fast; they usually wait a couple of days before starting to feed, but in case that they refuse to eat, you can help them by cutting their foodplant’s leaf edges. Wild Phyllium letiranti individuals feed on Guava plants, however, bramble is a very well-accepted alternative. Nymphs need a humidity of about 70-80%, if this level isn’t respected having them stuck into their moults can become a very common occurrence; they also need to be reared at a temperature of about 25-27°C, so room temperature can be fine.

Phyllium letiranti females
Adult females of P. letiranti

Overcrowding must always be avoided: it can make illnesses spread easier in your enclosure. Small nymphs can be kept in faunariums, but since phasmids need an enclosure that develops in height (in nature they live on trees), those boxes will have to be placed vertically. As they grow up you should always provide enclosures proportioned to their dimensions, a 40x40x60 is fine for 3-5 adult couples.  
Adulthood will be reached in about 6 months, although this strictly depends on the temperature, mating can be observed after a few weeks

Can beginners rear the leaf insect Phillium letiranti?

Among all the Phylliidae species available on the market, this species is one of the easier to rear. However, all leaf insects including Phyllium letiranti aren’t generally recommended to beginners, that is because they need certain humidity and temperature levels in order not to get stuck in their exoskeletons while moulting.

Getting the right humidity and temperature levels in a leaf insect enclosure can be quite hard for less experienced breeders, so if you are not familiar with other phasmids, we strongly recommended to start by rearing easier species like Extatosoma tiaratum, Peruphasma shultei, Sipyloidea sipylus or Phaenopharos khaoyaiensis, also available in ous shop.

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