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hybernation for baja herps


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Posted by petereg on January 30, 2003 at 07:10:11:

Hi, I saw the postings of Toms "Terrible winter", very sad. I am keeping some S.hispidus and Petrosaurus repens and thalassinus and I really think that temperutures under 55F (or 13C) are very dangerous for them, longer then 1 week! Tom also wrote at his posting: http://forum.kingsnake.com/chuckwalla/messages/6698.html that he had some problems with digesting of his varius, too. Could this be reason for the losts ?
I lost 3 hispidus a few years ago, because I put them into hybernation, after 4 weeks with no food and normal themps and a spot with 100F for warming up. After 2 month of hybernation at 60F (15C) and slowly warming up, three died. Only the 3 older hispidus (older then 5 years) died, 4 other in the same cage (2 Years old) under the same conditions are still in perfect healt.
I am sure that older hispidus and maybe varius too, need a longer time for digest! After dissection we found indigested food, the reason for their death.
This winter I put them into hybernation after 6 weeks. Every week I bath them in warm water (35C or 95F) for a few minutes. First they didnt like it very much but they always poop alot during bathing and I think its also important to fill up their "tanks" to get not dehydrated during hybernation. I never saw them drinking. Humidity during hybernation is also very important for them, it never drops under 80% in their sleeping caves. I dont mist the cage, only the plants increase humidity after I pour them. I found a study of a german herpetologist and he wrote that in the morning around the islands of Baja there is a lot of fog during the winter month and the tempertures can grow up to 75F (24C) at daytime/shade. Only the nights are colder.
I never was in Baja or the Islands of baja.
Did anybody now some day or night themeratures / humidity for this area ?
I know started to wake them up slowly after 2 month of sleeping and I hope all of my hispidus will survive.
bye, peter


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