How to care adult stag beetles
Stag beetles, plastic case with a lid, wood chip, wood for feeding, wood for laying eggs, food, spray, and cellophane wrap (or saran wrap)
Once you got stag beetles, you can set up living space for them. Only one pair of male and female or single insect should live in a single case. Otherwise they will fight with each other and shorten their lives.
The size of the case is ideally larger than 20 cm x 15 cm x 15 cm if you try to get eggs (details will be shown in the next section). Even if not, larger case is still better because it provides insects the place to hide. Common case looks like below.
Lid is needed because stag beetles will try to escape from the case.
Wood flake is suitable for flooring material. Oak (quercus acutissima or quercus serrata) is commonly used. The flake should be wet by water. The depth would be around 10cm.
For food, insect jelly is easy if it is available for you. Cut fruits like apple and banana are also suitable. These foods are better to be placed on a food-stand to prevent the breeding of mites. Wood is suitable for a food-stand.
The case should be kept in silent and shade place. Food should be renewed daily. Daily spraying is needed to keep humidity. If you put a cellophane wrap between the case and the lid, humidity will be maintained. Of course the wrap should have holes for air circulation.
Passing the winter
If the conditions are appropriate, stag beetles live long. In the winter season, they will stop activity and pass the winter. Feeding is not necessary, but spraying is necessary. The cellophane wrap method is recommended. Air conditioner should be avoided because it will wake up the insects and shorten their lives.
Typical life span
Dorcus hopei binodulosus (オオクワガタ)…More than 1 years
Dorcus titanus (ヒラタクワガタ)…More than 1 years
Dorcus rectus (コクワガタ)… More than 1 years
Prosopocoilus inclinatus (ノコギリクワガタ)…Will die in autumn