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RE: Amphisbaeidae, Rhineura floridana (worm lizard)

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Posted by: EdK at Sat Jul 17 22:11:31 2004  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by EdK ]  
   

I would strongly suggest removing the eggcrating and other items from the bottom of the enclosure.
I would suggest setting the tank up with 5-6 inches loose sandy soil collected from the same area where you found the Rhineura. Place a pvc pipe that runs to the bottom of the tank in one corner and use this to create a moisture gradient in the substrate by pouring water into the pipe. The bottom can be very moist but you want the top to be pretty dry. This species regulates its moisture needs by going up and down in the soil and keeping it totally dry is a death sentence. Yopu can keep a small water bowl in the tank but I strongly doubt it will use it. There is care literature published in some of the older herp journals like Journal of Herpetology (which you can search if you have access to in many Universities).
Do not use any substrate heating but shine a basking lamp on the surface of the substrate (maybe place a flat stone here) and heat the surface of the soil to around 92 F in the day and drop it to about 70 at night. The lizard will move up and down to regulate its body temperature.
It should take most small soft bodied arthropods so feeding shouldn't be that much of a problem.
Other than the type of substrate and the heat lamps the care of this is not that dissimilar than that of some terrestrial caecilians.

Good luck,
Ed


   

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