at Tue Dec 4 07:00:37 2007 [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by 7serpents ]
The “Season” is for pre-breeding condition is late summer/early fall. Feed your breeding group of 1.1 or 1.2 heavily with Crickets as main diet with 2 pinkie mice per animal once weekly, waxworms bi-weekly, small superworms once a month, superworms beetles 1 or 2 once a month males may want more, and a variety of berries offered every week. Berries favored are blueberry, strawberry, and raspberries. Kale, collared greens, and dandelion greens will be taken in small amounts at this time depending on each plated lizards preference. The animals will go off feeding on their own with no temperature changes; this is when they do their biological Brumation. Do not changes anything except fluorescent light time to our daylight savings (when the sunrises turn on/when sunset turn off); Red Infrared Spot Light stays on always. During Brumation offer crickets twice a week unless they want more in which case you feed them what they want.
Around September/October you will start to notice the Femoral pore secretions. Males will have what I call long spiral tubes and Females will have smaller secretions, bulb like secretion. The male will also have more pronounce Hemipenes bulges at base of tail under spurs (which both sexes have spurs). If you have a high range UV black light you can check for smearing, this is areas of cage where males rub against cages furnishings leaving smears of femoral pore secretions, territory markings/scenting for females to be attracted to his range for future breeding. Terra cotta saucers, cork bark tubes, and 16” x 16” ceramic or flagstone tiles under or around basking site and cool side are usually marked.
Late November/December is Breeding Season where breeding is done in humidity box, cork bark tubes, and in tunnels in Aspen bedding. Copulation takes 20 minutes to several hours during which the male may change hemipenes during the copulation. From December start feeding normally as the lizards will become more active (usually hiding under aspen or in hide areas) the more crickets gone the more you offer. Keep records to help you determine increased feeding. When this occurs start offering 2 – 3 pinkies each and once weekly offer a dish of mixed fresh vegetables and fruit (banana, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, cooked/diced squash or sweet potato, leaves only of: red leaf, romaine, butter, kale, collared greens, diced: cucumber, green beans, carrots, snow peas, and moist packaged cat food or dog food. Calcium preference used is “T-Rex Bone Aid Microstick Calcium Powder” which in my experiences has proven females to produce stronger calcium efficient eggs without calcium depletion of females skeletal bones.
January the females will start preparing a nest in the humidity box for egg laying which will be guarded by the group. Females will be digging in the “Bed-A-Beast” to prepare for egg deposit so be sure medium is moist/not wet while keeping moss lightly misted daily. If your group is 1.2 or 1.3 then a second nest box may be considered, if there is no room near basking area the place on cool side using heat tape underneath cage set at 80f-84f due to tunneling and heat exchange area from bottom of cage through bottom of humidity box. Depending on group interaction and cage size a second humidity/nest box is considered unless all females share the nest/humidity box without aggression. Egg laying last form January through March with females double clutching as they are mature and up to health or you normally receive one clutch of two eggs.
As long as all animals are well feed and have been in the group for at least one year egg laying and guard should go well. Pay close attention to group interactions as to anticipate future behaviors, aggressive animals should be removed for future placement in another group. Wild caught groups take from 1 to 3 years to acclimate while CCB CH animals should be raised together.
As for violence towards each other that is usually when introductions are done or group behaviors are unchecked. It is best to introduce females to males cage (cage size plays a role/3X length of adult by 2 ˝ X width) 1.2 Sudan Plated lizards do well in 60” x 24”/36” W x 24”tall. Home made cages (made out of Melamine or Plywood painted with non-toxic paint work the best) glass tanks lose too much heat & moisture also they do not allow for free uninhibited body movement. While naturalistic setups look nice they have a tendency to allow bacteria and insect reproduction which is detrimental to health of animal.
Before introducing animals it is best to place temporary cages across from one another so they can see each other, helps them get used to one another. I have found that introductions are best done in fall when it is best time to determine sexing. Sexing is more accurate with lizards’ length @ 10” to 16” depending on species; and fall is when femoral pore secretions are more pronounced along with male hemipenes being more detectable.
This information should get you started. Gather as much information as you can while observing your lizards to see what they are telling you. Always treat for parasites, get their body mass up, ensure calcium levels are proper, and breeding group is thriving without a lot of aggression. Any more questions just ask and I will do my best to help.
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