Update - May 12, 2005. Right now I have over fifty of them. Some are really huge and almost and adult size.
Below a rear view of one of them.
And here a bunch of them together when I was cleaning their cages.
Here is the setup in which they live. It is a Rubbermaid plastic container with holes for ventilation.
The branches are place in a container with water (covered with lid - to protect insectgs from getting
into the water and drowning). The container is placed on a rubber mat to prevent it from sliding and
there is a string attached to the sides of the cage to keep the branches inside. The branches should
be placed vertically, like in the photo. The Australian leaf insects like hanging upside-down and grow quite large and heavy,
so the branches should be thick and strong enough to support them (especially when keeping few adults together).
I glued a piece of plastic to the bottom of the cage to keep anything that falls down (poop mostly) in the cage when
I open it. I cut out a rectangular opening in the cover of the cage and covered it with window screen
mesh. I mist the whole invironment once a day or two. The cages are attached to a piece of wood and
hang from the wall.
When handling the insects a care should be taken to do it gently not to pull their legs off when pulling them from a branch.
There is no reason to panic if such thing happen by accident - they eventually grow thier limbs back.
Here a photo of one of the earlier babies, already almost adult size now, soon after shedding.