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Posted by Blackwater on January 05, 2003 at 07:01:08:
In Reply to: feeding cont.... posted by Rich G.cascabel on January 04, 2003 at 13:45:06:
Let me start by saying that you are indeed very unselfish with the information you have provided and I am grateful for the time you have invested in this subject and in me. Thank you.
I'm making a mental note to get some foam rubber to make a pinning tool as you have described. I have a snake that needs to be tube fed this week and I'll give your technique a try.
I am going to try to capture all of my thoughts in this one post, so if I miss a point or two, do not be surprised. I have often thought to apply some of the "Retes" husbandry methods to animals other than lizards, and I find Franks observations about how to keep and breed lizards to be very well founded in theory and in practice. So, if I understand what you are telling me it boils down to this...
Brumation is a good thing, but not completely required. You find that feeding smaller meals with an available basking spot is preferable to feeding larger meals (I like this method of feeding better anyway) and that your female takes advantage of both when she is gravid. Males and females seem to bond or mate for life, but they will both "cheat" on their mates if the opportunity presents itself.... and Blat-tailed Rattlesnakes seem to need to be a little older than some in order to reproduce. And, you find your animals are late-August breeders almost exclusively, which is pretty regular if you ask me. I could go into another barrage of questions, but I think I've grasped the greater part of what I was hoping to hear from someone who has been successful in breeding these snakes.
I can wait for them to be ready, as I am primarily interested in learning more about rattlesnakes in general, and Black-tailed rattlesnakes specifically. I've rarely turned a profit from reptile sales, but not from a lack of trying... lol
Now for the hard part... locating prospective animals for rearing and pairing... I am goint to try to attemd Hamburg to see what I can see, as I'd rather begin with captive bred animals than take more from the wild. It isn't so much that I think the few animals I'd buy from a collector will deplete the native population of some locality, as it is that I'd rather have animals that never were a part of a wild ecosystem so their behaviors are all linked to being in captivity from the start...
In that way they will not have been conditioned to anything in particular, and their behaviors will hinge on being taken care of instead of having to survive. I expect the overall chances for successful breeding will be significantly increased as a result.
I can't thank you enough for your contribution. I will keep the board posted as to any progress I make, and I will certainly credit you with having been a positive influence in my efforts.