baby Northern bluetongue!

dtknow

Arachnoking
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Picked this guy up a few days ago and he/she has been settling in. Currently lives in a big sweaterbox tub with heatpad/light on one side(left heatpad on 24 hours and the baby prefers to stay on the warm side even at night). Eating catfood topped with powdered calcium and some CGD thrown over just because. Any suggestions would be great!


Pretty inquisitive little bugger. However, seems somewhat wary of my hand(will often run away if I reach for him to put him back when I put him outside the cage). Have been trying to keep movements slow/gentle.


 

Jmugleston

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Beautiful lizard. Though certain aspects of the lizard make me question whether it is a northern. The northerns lack the temporal streak and the front legs are supposed to lack any pattern. The lizard in the picture appears to have a darker than normal temporal streak and the anterior legs do not appear clean as would be expected. It may be a T. scincoides intermedia crossed with Tiliqua sp.( The undescribed Irian Jayan blue tongue).

Anyway, a diet that is a nice mix of animal and plant matter works well. Mine eat a mix of fruits and veggies with the ocassional mouse or dog food mixed in. Feeding happens every other day for the younger blueys and three times a week for the older animals.

The defensiveness toward you will end soon. My babies would display their tongues at me when I tried to pick them up. My adults have all since outgrown that behavior.

You may want to inquire further about its parents if you intend to breed that one as it may not be a "pure" northern. Not bad at all if you want a pet, but not the best candidate for a breeding program. Although, pictures can be deceiving. The confusion may be due to the lighting/identifying from pictures.

Good luck. Blueys are one of the best pet lizards in my opinion.
 
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Shell

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Aww, he is adorable :D My list of lizards that I want just seems to keep growing. I only have experience with geckos and beardies as far as lizards go, but just wanted to say that he is really cute, congrats on the new addition.
 

dtknow

Arachnoking
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Jmugleston: I got him from Andrew Seike. Its a baby from some of his older adults(his bloodlines consist of pretty much all the Northerns in the US). We did note the spotting on the forearms of these babies which is definetly unusual but perhaps they will clear up with age. These pictures are a pretty good representative of what this baby does look like and I am curious as to how he will look when he gets older.

Thats really neat yours actually do the tongue thing! This one will just try to run away or puff up and hiss. But I've been holding it every day or so and it seems to be gradually becoming calmer.
 

Jmugleston

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If it came from Andrew and he said it was a northern then I wouldn't worry too much.

The only time my adults displayed was when they were mating this year. I walked up on a pair (they were mating outside their cages) and the female thought she'd threaten me. It was hilarious.
 

dtknow

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Did yours come from him as well?

I am a little worried if the spotting persists with age(yes I do intend on breeding some of these if they really grow on me and it seems they will) that people will be skeptical of it being from pure Northern bloodlines. Clean arms is definetly a characteristic of Northerns but looking at some individuals from Australia some do have some minor speckling on them.
 

Jmugleston

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Did yours come from him as well?

I am a little worried if the spotting persists with age(yes I do intend on breeding some of these if they really grow on me and it seems they will) that people will be skeptical of it being from pure Northern bloodlines. Clean arms is definetly a characteristic of Northerns but looking at some individuals from Australia some do have some minor speckling on them.
I have a couple that look to come from his "caramel" lines, but most mine are not from him. I have one that is about 13 years old and her parents are from before IJ were commonly imported. She has only a tiny hint of any flecking on her arms and it isn't quite dark enough to really notice. Some in the wild will have speckling on the back or their forearms, but I've only seen that on the Kimberly locales. Those aren't in the states yet...give the Germans some time though...I'm sure they'll get them going. I think if the black persists it may be difficult to sell them as northerns to other breeders. They want the "ideal" northern and anything that varies may be labeled as a hybrid or intergrade. Though if they are the casual keeper I doubt they'd mind. Plus look at the adult size once it matures. Northerns are much bigger than IJ. If this guy grows over 24" you won't have trouble convincing people it is a northern. Most the others except the Merauke gigas get only to about 22". Northerns grow large enough that an adult is easy to see. Even with speckled arms, I think a 24" plus specimen won't have much debate if it were labeled as a T. s. intermedia.
 

dtknow

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Neato-would love to see photos of that female or any of her descendants.

Interesting point on the size. I did have the opportunity to view a young IJ x Northern and it seems the main thing that happens is the banding becomes more prominent and the black on the sides pretty much dissapears.

It is interesting that many breeders are selecting for lighter colored animals as it seems that one of the Northerns more distinctive traits would be the black on the sides.

We'll see how things develop as he/she grows, and if the speckling dissapears/becomes less noticeable. Hoping for the best!
 

Jmugleston

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Neato-would love to see photos of that female or any of her descendants.

Interesting point on the size. I did have the opportunity to view a young IJ x Northern and it seems the main thing that happens is the banding becomes more prominent and the black on the sides pretty much dissapears.

It is interesting that many breeders are selecting for lighter colored animals as it seems that one of the Northerns more distinctive traits would be the black on the sides.

We'll see how things develop as he/she grows, and if the speckling dissapears/becomes less noticeable. Hoping for the best!
There is quite a bit of variation for the black on the sides. Some are just faint outlines between the scales while others look like you took a Sharpie and filled in between the mango colored bands. I'm trying to get my "original" bloodlines to produce this upcoming year. The "caramel" are pretty, but the normal looking northerns are starting to disappear.
 

kripp_keeper

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I wouldn't suggest using CGD and calcium powder, as it could cause calcium toxicity. Also I'm curious as to what brand of cat food you use. You typically want to avoid anything with gravies or fish. We use Wellness brand cat food mixed with endive or collard greens and various fruits.


If he/she can't see you through the contain he is in it will probably take more time for him to get used to you.
 

dtknow

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Kripp Keeper: I understand why not to use fish(purines) but why no gravy?(messiness? I've heard of some blueys getting face scale rot problems due to cat food) I was feeding science diet for a few days but I reread the ingredients and their is fish/fish oil so I switched to a brand of food I found at Ralphs called Aristo-cats. They make a chicken something or other flavor that contains chicken, broth(which is rather annoying but can be simply drained off for the most part,liver, turkey, tomatoes, and even a little bit of parmesan and oregano. Little bugger seems like he will eat just about anything. I'll look into wellness. Assuming you use the chicken/liver flavor of the said brand? Also, I'm not sure how CGD would cause calcium poisoning as it alone is about a 2:1 ratio, so it over catfood would not change the ratio as much as supplement alone.

The container is clear-so little bugger can watch me while I am at the computer etc.
 

kripp_keeper

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Kripp Keeper: I understand why not to use fish(purines) but why no gravy?(messiness? I've heard of some blueys getting face scale rot problems due to cat food) I was feeding science diet for a few days but I reread the ingredients and their is fish/fish oil so I switched to a brand of food I found at Ralphs called Aristo-cats. They make a chicken something or other flavor that contains chicken, broth(which is rather annoying but can be simply drained off for the most part,liver, turkey, tomatoes, and even a little bit of parmesan and oregano. Little bugger seems like he will eat just about anything. I'll look into wellness. Assuming you use the chicken/liver flavor of the said brand? Also, I'm not sure how CGD would cause calcium poisoning as it alone is about a 2:1 ratio, so it over catfood would not change the ratio as much as supplement alone.

The container is clear-so little bugger can watch me while I am at the computer etc.
I'm not sure on the gravy I just know it is recommended to not use it in the BTS society. We use wellness chicken flavor, but there are other recommended brands, but I can not remember then off the top of my head.
GCD(assuming crested gecko diet) contains calcium, and calcium powder contains calcium. Using both is seems to me like to much calcium. There are people who don't use any calcium thinking it is not needed and can cause harm. We personally use calcium once a week.


This is probably the best caresheet online, and while it is very long it is very helpful. http://bluetongueskinks.net/ Just click on caresheet at the top of the page.
 

Jmugleston

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I don't use calcium since there is already calcium in the dog or cat food and I supplement their veggies with the occasional rodent.
 

dtknow

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Interesting POV's for both. Not only is it the amount of calcium that matters but also ratio of Ca:p...not sure what that is in dog/catfood but it probably is appropriate. Using CGD and calcium would actually result in less calcium then just calcium alone. Breeders I've talked with on forums mention feeding catfood, supplemented frequently with calcium/mv to babies and then dogfood for adults.

Jmugleston: Is that just straight dogfood for your adults or do you do that for the babies also? Many breeders seem to think it is not quite enough calcium so will opt to supplement juveniles frequently and adults at least occasionally.
 

Jmugleston

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Interesting POV's for both. Not only is it the amount of calcium that matters but also ratio of Ca:p...not sure what that is in dog/catfood but it probably is appropriate. Using CGD and calcium would actually result in less calcium then just calcium alone. Breeders I've talked with on forums mention feeding catfood, supplemented frequently with calcium/mv to babies and then dogfood for adults.

Jmugleston: Is that just straight dogfood for your adults or do you do that for the babies also? Many breeders seem to think it is not quite enough calcium so will opt to supplement juveniles frequently and adults at least occasionally.
I don't think I supplement the babies any more than the adults.
 

Krippschick

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Jmug: Would love to see pics of your skinks and enclosures. I just love them, and it is always helpful to see other peoples set ups for different ideas. Thanks.
 

dtknow

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Little guy shed so here are some more photos.






downing a meal


I read a few posts on here of moist cat/dog food causing problems with the face scales. What should I do/watch for? I've noticed a few of the scales around the lower jaw look slightly different than the others. I've been wiping his face off after eating to get any stray bits but it seems he does a decent job of that himself also.
 

Krippschick

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Have you checked out the caresheet on bluetongueskinks.net. It will answer just about any questions you may have, and if not you can always ask on the forums. You just click on caresheet at the top of the main page. I have only had my skink for about 2 months, so I am still learning myself. Many people on that site feed cat/dog food, and I havent heard anyone say anything about mouth problems, but I do as you do, and wipe my guys face after he eats. I always feed my guy outside his terrarium. I usually mix collard/endive greens cut up, squash cut up small, and a little bit of fruit (his favorite is strawberries) with the cat food. I mix calcium with D3 every 4th feeding or so (everyone seems to have varying ideas regarding this). Like I said, there are many threads in the forums regarding feeding, use of calcium/D3, etc on bluetongueskinks.net, and the care sheet, that can answer your questions better. Good luck, and cute little guy you have there.:)

Also, my skink is over a year old, and things like feedings and such are different for a baby like yours. Hope you check out the care sheet. The people on that site also recommend a fecal check for parasites, even with CB skink. I am glad I got my guy check and treated, he was a bit thin when I first got him, now hes a little pudge pudge lol.
 
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