Tis the Season...

pitbulllady

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
May 1, 2004
Messages
2,290
for baby Water Snakes to be born, that is!

My reddest Red-Belly(Nerodia erythrogaster) girl just gave birth to 16 young 'uns, and I don't think she's done yet! She's the first one to drop so far. Like all Red-Bellied babies, they are HUGE, pretty close to a foot long each. One of them has a noticeable spinal kink up near the front of its body that I will have to keep an eye on, to see if it has an impact on his ability to eat and keep down food. Hopefully it will just be a cosmetic thing and he'll be able to live a normal life and still make someone a great pet, but usually kinks that are closer to the head are more likely to cause problems than those near the rear end of the snake. I hope I don't wind up having to euthanize this little guy. With large litters of ANY animals, spinal deformities become more common, though.

I've got one more Red-Bellied girl ready to go any day, and three Banded girls due, including the green/anery girl and the golden one.

Looks like I'll be spending a lot more time down at the mill pond catching killifish and mosquito fish!

pitbulllady
 

MichiganReptiles

Arachnobaron
Joined
May 14, 2010
Messages
408
Congrats on the babies, PBL! I hope the one with the spinal kink turns out to be OK. Would love to see some pictures when you have the chance!
 

the toe cutter

Arachnobaron
Joined
Mar 20, 2010
Messages
424
Deformities are not unseen in large litters but temperature actually plays a major role in the developmental stage of most reptiles. Due to inexperience when my first clutch of red-tail green ratsnakes(7)hatched 3/4 of them had numerous spinal deformities because of low temps as well as my first attempt at breeding Thamnophis sirtalis pickeringi, the Puget sound garters which I didn't think I would have much of an issue with seeing how they are live born and from a cooler climate. Temp was brought to my concern from a friend whom breeds alot of Asian colubrids so I gave it a shot. The next year I raised temps inside the enclosure during the developmental stage of the egg about 5 days after the first mating and all were well with 1 "slug" from the garter and none from the green rat. My 3ft female snow corn laid 17 eggs this year, which is very large for a corn, and all but 1 hatched with no abnormalities. Kinks are usually formed when a HOX genes in developmental stage of the embryo are not activated in the proper timed sequence. That is where the constant temperature comes into effect in development of embyo in ectotherms. This is also caused when lets say you are moving somethings around in an incubator and then take something out and accidentally leave it out overnight! the drop in temps even for a short period of time disrupt the activation of HOX genes in their proper sequence and give you deformities!
 

pitbulllady

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
May 1, 2004
Messages
2,290
Deformities are not unseen in large litters but temperature actually plays a major role in the developmental stage of most reptiles. Due to inexperience when my first clutch of red-tail green ratsnakes(7)hatched 3/4 of them had numerous spinal deformities because of low temps as well as my first attempt at breeding Thamnophis sirtalis pickeringi, the Puget sound garters which I didn't think I would have much of an issue with seeing how they are live born and from a cooler climate. Temp was brought to my concern from a friend whom breeds alot of Asian colubrids so I gave it a shot. The next year I raised temps inside the enclosure during the developmental stage of the egg about 5 days after the first mating and all were well with 1 "slug" from the garter and none from the green rat. My 3ft female snow corn laid 17 eggs this year, which is very large for a corn, and all but 1 hatched with no abnormalities. Kinks are usually formed when a HOX genes in developmental stage of the embryo are not activated in the proper timed sequence. That is where the constant temperature comes into effect in development of embyo in ectotherms. This is also caused when lets say you are moving somethings around in an incubator and then take something out and accidentally leave it out overnight! the drop in temps even for a short period of time disrupt the activation of HOX genes in their proper sequence and give you deformities!
"Drops in temps" haven't been something I've had to worry about for quite some time, given that for the past two months or so, the LOW temps in my room(where the snakes are) has been around 80! We've had a long "spell" of very hot weather, and even with the AC running, with only one floor vent in my room, the temps climb up around 85 during the day, since the outdoor temps have been in the triple digits more often than not. Since only one baby is affected, it's more likely not temperature related, but just one of those things that happens, even with dogs or other mammals.

My internet is running at about 1/8 normal speed right now, and most sites won't open at all. I cannot upload any photos whatsoever since my upload speed is virtually non-existant. This has been going on now for three weeks. AT&T thought they'd fixed it, and we actually had a fairly normal DLS from Jul 29 through yesterday, then it went down sometime during last night. There were a few storms in the area, though none really close and no lightning strikes nearby, but it was lightning hitting the ISP's equipment that started this mess in the first place, and whether it had anything to do with the "relapse", I don't know. IF we ever get a normal-working internet back again, I'll try to post some pics. I think one of my Bandeds, a huge normally-colored girl, is going to drop tonight, since she's showing some out-of-the-ordinary behavior, trying to hide under her paper, etc., something she normally doesn't do, so hopefully she will have something interesting. I don't know what she got bred to, though, whether it was a normal or hypo male, but I guess I'll find out soon enough.

pitbulllady
 
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