If you’re looking for a low-maintenance pet that’s fun to watch and also provides a nutritious snack (for various animals, not you), then you should consider the Cubaris sp. ‘Cappuccino’, also known as the Cappuccino Isopod.
These tiny land-dwelling cubaris isopods are one of the most unique and intriguing invertebrate species to keep as a pet, and they make a great addition to any home.
Read on to find out more about why the Cappuccino Isopod is such a great pet and how to care for it.
|Common Name||Cappuccino Isopod|
|Scientific Name||Cubaris sp. 'Cappuccino'|
|Use||Cleaning, Aerating Soil, Feeders|
|Adult Size||2-2.5 cm|
|Breeding Type||Egg Layer|
|Minimum Tank Size||10 Gallons|
What Are Cappuccino Isopods?
Cappuccino Isopods are land-dwelling invertebrates belonging to the order Isopoda. They are native to Thailand and closely related to the pill bug.
The Cappuccino species is a comparatively small isopod, measuring in at around 1-2cm in length.
Their name derives from their unique coloration pattern, which is reminiscent of a cup of cappuccino.
What Does Cappuccino Isopod Look Like?
Cappuccino Isopods, or Cubaris sp. ‘Cappuccino’, are small isopods with a rounded bodies measuring around 1-2 cm in length.
Their color is a unique combination of light brown to the tan body and a few black stripes running down their sides, hence the common name.
They have two antennae on the forward part of their body, which they use to communicate and locate food.
The other end of their body is covered in several short, stumpy legs, helping them to quickly move about their habitat.
Cappuccino Isopods have four sets of spiracles, used for respiration. They have seven pairs of exoskeleton plates, which act like armor.
All of these features together give Cappuccino Isopods a very distinct appearance and are why they are such a popular terrarium pet species.
Cappuccino Isopods have two eyes located on the top of their head, which they use to detect movement and light.
These eyes are relatively small and can help give the isopod an overall angry look. While Cappuccino Isopods cannot produce sound, they can make short but surprisingly loud clicks when threatened or annoyed.
Benefits Of Using Cappuccino Isopods
Cappuccino Isopods (Cubaris sp. ‘Cappuccino’) are becoming increasingly popular in the terrarium space thanks to their attractive color, low-maintenance lifestyle, and their ability to help maintain the health and balance of the habitat.
These small isopods are non-invasive and easy to keep, making them the perfect clean-up crew member in any type of vivarium.
They do not require any specialized care and can be fed a variety of different foods. They also make great nutritional finds for larger inhabitants.
The presence of the Cappuccino Isopods will help to reduce the amount of organic waste buildup in the enclosure, as well as aid in nutrient recycling.
They will also provide interesting activity, as they are nocturnal and feed at night, being sure to liven up your vivarium and provide an extra bit of life and interest in the environment.
Cappuccino Isopod Facts
Cappuccino Isopods’ natural diet consists of decaying material, like leaf litter and other decomposing matter, which they consume for nutrition.
These isopods are one of the hardiest species of isopods and are quite resilient to changes in temperature and humidity.
Cappuccino Isopods are typically found in moist environments, so it is likely that Thai farmers were the first to accidentally introduce them to the pet trade.
Since then, the species has been selectively bred to retain its interesting coloration, while also producing offspring that thrive in captivity.
It is likely that over the last decade or so, there has been a significant increase in the captive populations of Cappuccino Isopods.
Cappuccino Isopods (Cubaris sp. ‘Cappuccino’) is native to Thailand, where they inhabit a variety of natural habitats.
The natural habitat of the Cappuccino Isopod is composed of a combination of damp soil and leaf litter.
Generally speaking, they prefer to live in underground burrows, which they excavate themselves.
Additionally, they tend to enjoy living in moist areas, as this provides the perfect environment for their scavenging activities.
Cappuccino Isopods are detrivorous creatures, which means they feed on both plants and decaying animals.
In their natural habitat, they primarily eat decomposing vegetation and fruits, as well as insects, fungi, and other invertebrates.
They are especially fond of decaying leaf litter and rotten logs, as they are great sources of nutrients.
Due to the fact that they live off of the forest floor, they are able to scavenge food items that they may not find elsewhere, like tiny mollusks or aquatic invertebrates.
They may even come across some animal droppings such as frogs or insects, which they consume as a source of protein.
Cappuccino Isopods also benefit from their unique capability of having a symbiotic relationship with certain fungi and algae.
This gives them a diverse source of nutrients from both the plant material and the fungi. They will consume this in the form of both spores and mycelium that grow on the forest floor.
Cappuccino Isopods are gentle, docile creatures that don’t pose threat to animals or humans. Due to their small size, they should be kept away from larger animals that could harm them.
Cappuccino Isopods are sociable but slow-moving and may appear curious when exposed to humans or other animals.
They tend to avoid subjects that possess any predatory skills and mostly just move away from any perceived threats.
Even when handled, these isopods prefer to stay motionless until placed back in their habitat.
They do not practice aggression towards one another or other animals but will retreat to the safety of their habitat or burrow if they feel threatened.
These intelligent isopods are interesting creatures to observe as they can often be seen hiding, eating, and doing simple tasks like cleaning each other.
Cappuccino Isopods have an average lifespan of two to three years, though they can live longer if provided with proper care.
The life cycle of an isopod has several stages, beginning with the egg, which hatches into a juvenile isopod and later matures into an adult.
These isopods molt several times depending on their age and diet, and with each molt, progress to the next life stage.
Juveniles typically molt about three to four times before reaching the adult stage, where they will no longer need to molt and will reach their maximum length.
As adults, Cappuccino Isopods are capable of reproducing and laying eggs which will then repeat the cycle.
In optimal conditions, Cappuccino Isopods have been known to breed and have a long, healthy lifespan.
Cappuccino Isopods reproduce sexually through the process of mating; however, the act itself is quite different from the way humans mate.
In most species, male Cappuccinos will approach a female, climb onto her back, and clasp her with his chelae (claws) at the pleurite or abdominal region.
It is then up to the male to initiate copulation by placing his modified first pleopods into the female’s genital opening. Mating can last anywhere from several minutes to several hours, depending on the species.
After mating has occurred, the female’s eggs ripen and develop into egg capsules. The female will then lay the egg capsules on the underside of stones, logs, or other debris in her habitat.
Depending on the temperature of the environment, the eggs will hatch between 10-30 days, with newly hatched Cappuccinos looking similar to adults but lacking all of the same features.
Once the newly hatched Cappuccinos become adults, they are able to reproduce, starting the process all over again.
It is important to note that male Cappuccinos, like many other Isopods, have the capacity to mate more than once a day.
This is why Cappuccino Populations can grow so quickly in optimal environments.
Where To Find Cappuccino Isopods
The Cappuccino Isopod can be found in Thailand, usually living in undisturbed leaf litter and damp, dark environments.
While they’re shy and tend to hide from sight, they can be easily captured using a variety of different methods. One of the most popular methods is to gently move aside the leaf litter and scoop the critters up with a spoon.
It’s important to remember to be gentle in order to avoid damaging the Isopod or its habitat.
If you’re looking for an easier way to catch them, consider buying specimens online. Online stores offer isopods that are already raised and cultured in captivity.
They can be purchased and added to your terrarium with ease. In addition, buying from an online store will guarantee the quality of the specimens, since the health of wild-caught isopods can be difficult to guarantee.
Cappuccino Isopod Care
Cappuccino Isopods require a living environment with a temperature between 75°F and 80°F, a humidity of 60-70%, and a habitat with half soil, and half decaying wood.
Proper habitat maintenance, temperature and humidity, and the right food will ensure they thrive.
Cappuccino Isopods are content living in a standard 10-gallon aquarium and prefer a loose substrate such as terrarium soil mix, peat moss, or coco coir.
They thrive best in an environment with a temperature ranging from 72-76°F and humidity levels at or above 80%.
In order to keep the tank environment stable, it is important to maintain a pH of 7.0-7.2 and hardness levels at 4-8 dKH.
In terms of terrarium lighting, Cappuccino Isopods tend to prefer complete darkness, so no additional lighting is required.
However, it is still important to ensure that this tank environment imitates their native habitat as closely as possible.
What Does A Cappuccino Isopod Eat?
Feeding Cappuccino Isopods is easy! These creatures are detrivores, so you can feed them a mix of plant and animal matter.
They will gladly munch on foods like fruits, vegetables, fish flakes, algae wafers, and fresh fish or shrimp. A shallow bowl of food should be placed in your pet isopod’s tank every few days.
Here is a list of things you can feed your Cappuccino Isopods:
- Fruits (mango, banana, apple, etc.)
- Vegetables (carrots, celery, kale, etc.)
- Fish flakes
- Algae wafers
- Fresh fish/shrimp
If you’re more of an avid hobbyist like myself, be sure to check out my ultimate DIY Isopod food guide. I give a more in-depth explanation of the best foods and my personal favorite recipe.
Best Tankmates For Cappuccino Isopods
Cappuccino Isopods are highly suitable tank companions.
Keeping your Cappuccino Isopods with other compatible tankmates will provide them with the company and make it easier to monitor their health and well-being.
Shrimps, springtails, small snails and mollusks, and other isopods such as dwarf red isopods make good tankmates for Cappuccino Isopods.
All of these animals are peaceful and require similar water parameters and care to Cappuccino Isopods, which makes them very well-suited to live together.
I recommend creating an environment where neither species is competing for food.
The Cappuccino Isopod is a great pet for any home, adding an interesting element to your house that provides hours of fun to watch and a nutritious snack every now and then.
With its low-maintenance care and unique look, it’s sure to be a conversation starter among family and friends. So, why not consider adding a Cappuccino Isopod to your mini menagerie?
Frequently Asked Questions
The scientific name for Cappuccino isopod is Cubaris Sp. ‘Cappuccino‘.