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Posted by chrish on March 03, 2003 at 00:23:42:
In Reply to: I agree to disagree, but my compromise... posted by deathstalker on March 01, 2003 at 15:17:32:
Interesting discussion (and its getting very technicolor!), I guess we agree about the basis for our disagreement. I guess that's progess....right???
In my defense however.....
:"Just because all two year old are sexually mature doesn't mean that it is the age that determines the onset of sexual maturity.
- LOL You kind of contradict yourself here--just wanted to address this first. Anyway...
Not at all. A two year old snake is sexually mature. That doesn't necessarily mean that it is the length of time since birth that has led to its sexual maturity. I argue that it is intake of a sufficient amount of nutrients to allow it to reach reproductive size. If it can do this in 2 years, great. I would argue that if a snake puts on sufficient size in 12 months it will reach maturity as well.
I base this on my experience with African House Snakes as much as anything else. Female House Snakes will start to breed when they are about 24" long. Generally this takes a year to 18 months. However, you can powerfeed a female up to this size in as little as 8 months (I have seen several people do this). And they will lay fertile eggs at that age if they are 2 feet long. A sixteen inch 3 year old won't breed.
Just for the record - those females which are bred at 8 months and lay two clutches before their first birthday invariably die young. I have seen this experiment repeated several times by overzealous breeders of House Snakes.