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RE: 7serpents..cage set up & incubation

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Posted by: 7serpents at Tue Dec 4 05:39:26 2007  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by 7serpents ]  
   

Greetings RONST3R,

The “Season/Breeding Season” is what I refer to as North America (USA) late Fall & Winter which is opposite to African and Madagascan Spring & Early Summer in those continents. The barometric pressure changes and humidity levels which naturally occur here in the United States (Midwest & 4 Corner Southwest States) directly effect natural brumation and Breeding without any “Cooling Period Induced).

Photogenic periods are altered according to our natural Sunlight phases, UVB fluorescent lights are turned on/off when the Sunrises/sunsets occur naturally. Out of preference use “Red Infrared Spot bulbs” 50 watt for Vision cages (Models: #332, 400, 422, and 432) & Melamine cages (sizes: 48”L x 24” D x 24” H, 48”L x 36”D x 24”H, 60”L x 24”D x 24”H, 60”L x 36”D x 24”H). The room of your home these cages are placed in directly effects Ambient Temperatures and Basking areas of the type wattage Spot Light used. Also fluorescent lights used in melamine cages are a single 24” or 36” tube (mounted inside top of cage) and for Vision cages a dual tube 48” shop light with starter on models: 432 and 433, a single 36” or 24” tube using hood with starter on smaller cages placed outside along back vents. Cages are always setup before housing animals, using a digital Temperature gauge with probe to check basking area and ambient temperature ranges 24/7 for days.

Basking area is setup using 16” x16” ceramic or flagstone tiles with terra cotta saucers or hide boxes and a Humidity box close to tile. Air temperature will range 90f –95f while the surface temp range of tiles & hide boxes range 98f to110f at different locations of surface area. The coolest ambient air temperature of cages is 76f -78f with middle range air temps are @ 82f -86f. Note water dish large enough for animal to soak in is placed near proximity of basking area thus ambient humidity of cage is @ 50%. The important humidity/egg laying site is the Humidity box, which is a Rubbermaid type container with a circular hole cut made @ 1”-1 1/2” up from bottom (large enough for animals to comfortably enter) along with 1/8” holes made along sides of top & in top of container for ventilation/moister control. Place 1’ at entrance ramping up to 3’ near back of box of coconut husk (Bed-A-Beast) with Long New Zealand Sphagnum Moss layer on top. The Humidity box should be moist not wet and large enough for female to comfortably lay length wise also is able to turn around in. Large chip Aspen bedding is used as substrate medium to allow tunneling. Species larger than Sudan Plated lizards need for specialized setup.

The cage set up is never changed except for cleaning, only daylight periods are changed seasonally. Bed-A-Beast must be checked weekly to keep it moist while Moss is misted lightly once daily. Use latex gloves or similar when checking for eggs, this is time consuming and carefully done removing small amounts of material at a time. Eggs are normally close to bottom of container so using a clean/used set of paint brushes to uncover eggs is recommended. Preference is a “Hovabator Incubator” set at 86f with 1degree variance/humidity @60%-70%, using 2” deep of “Hatch rite” or “Vermiculite”. My experience has shown that incubating eggs with my Leopard and Fat Tail Geckos eggs at 86f for equal sexes works the best, only never along the temperature to reach 90f or eggs will die; 85f to 86f is perfect. Glass thermometer inside incubator with digital probe embedded in egg medium reading 85f – 86f is perfect allowing eggs to hatch 60 to 90 days depending on species. Humidity control of incubator is done by adding h2o to water trough in the plastic insert in bottom of Hovabator only, using small humidity gauge inside Hovabator works best. Open egg containers once a week for fresh air exchange and to check medium for dryness-if so add small amount of water is corners without touching eggs.

Once hatched you can either place babies in their own cage as a group or return to parents’ cage. You will see mixed opinions on this as everyone has different experiences. My experiences have shown that Sudan & Zonosaurus quadrilineatus, Z. ornatus hatchlings do best when introduced back to parents’ cages. Feeding then must be done daily (dish feeding/you will have to pinch legs off crickets of different sizes and places several dishes for adults with a dish of 1/8” to 1/4” size crickets for babies in a different location than adult feeding area. Feeding will be posted with breeding next posting.

I hope this answers some of your questions, but not it is best to get as much information from many sources. Then see what your animals respond to for you and your regiem.


   

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