Thursday, April 17, 2003

[Egg Alert!] I was thinking about when Indi would lay her eggs and how close together her and Roxy were last month, and I decided it might be a good idea to look around the tank. Yes, I recovered two fully-hydrated Indi eggs from where she was guarding them inside a humid hide. I guess it was humid, because I think it was at least a week since I soaked down the bag of perlite. So I'm happy. I can't vouch for the fertility of the eggs - Roxy's look much better - but we'll see if they mold over or survive to hatching.

Roxy is looking much thinner, even in the tail, after producing these two clutches of eggs. I have seen her, probably within the last month, really chase down those crickets before anyone else is even out of there hide. So I have a new feeding idea - not to feed the crickets all at once, but to feed some and give Roxy a little time to chase them all down, then feed the rest. It should help.

[Egg Alert!] Roxy layed her second clutch last night, so we'll call it 4/17, which is very close to 4 weeks from her first clutch. These eggs seem a bit smaller than her first clutch.

Monday, April 14, 2003

Well, I guess Indi is the one doing the digging, and she's just getting ready to lay eggs because she's still carrying them. I took her out of the laying box to look at her belly and when I put her back she jumped out of the laying box into another hide. I hope she goes back, because that would be a good place to lay her eggs and she clearly intended to lay them there up 'til now.

I'll post when I find the eggs - sounds like an Easter Egg hunt, eh?

Most of the dirt in the laying box has been kicked into one corner and Indi is in there, so it looks like she layed a clutch in there last night. Roxy could have done all the work and left with Indi going in afterward - I notice that she likes being around eggs - so I won't be sure who layed the eggs until I see them and see their size - small would be Indi and large would be Roxy.

Indi's first clutch didn't make it, so I hope that this clutch is viable. And the other female, whichever she is, should lay her eggs soon.

Sunday, April 13, 2003

I found two more eggs buried inside the laying box around the time of my last post here which are probably Roxy's. I made an incubator, and the eggs have been inside for a couple of weeks. The temperature is 80F and the humidity appears to be 90. The eggs look fine.

Here's a pic I took of my leopards' current habitat:

The Habitat

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Roxy, my younger (2 yrs.) leopard, laid 2 eggs the night before last. By the time I got to them they were at least 50% dehydrated because she laid them on the felt substrate in the cool end (about 80*F). I'm trying to bring them back, but it's slow going. I've got them on perlite, so we'll see how that goes. I like the idea of perlite because it seems more intiseptic than vermiculite and doesn't have the risk of asbestos.

Indi, my older female, is gravid and I'm watching her as much as I can. She is hanging out in a laying box, so hopefully she will lay her eggs in there. The humidity in there is very good.

I just bought 40 crickets today and I'm going to stuff the hell out of them. I may try frozen pinkies, which cost around $10 for 6 at the local pet store. It will be nice to fall asleep to the sound of crickets chirping again.

Saturday, March 15, 2003

[My Setup] What follows is a detailed description of my leopards' cage.

The enclosure is about 3 square feet surface area and was made from a 29 gallon fish tank over on its side with the now topmost side taken out and cut to put where the tank top was. I hope that's clear. The substrate is felt with small pieces of slate, mostly over the area that the under-tank heater is, bought from the local pet store.

Heating is a Cobra 11" x 11" under tank heater (uth) on a 1/2" thick piece of styrofoam for insulation, on a thermostat, set to 78* F, and it starts maintaining that temperature at night after the daytime equipment has gone off. During the day, I have a ceramic heat emitter (che) on a lamp dimmer, then a thermostat set for 90* F., then on a timer set for 13 hours of daylight. A fluorescent fixture is also plugged into the timer.

The tank is sort of cluttered, even though there's so much space, because I have many hiding boxes, made out of frozen macaroni and cheese containers. They work rather well. I use perlite in small aquarium filter bags, moistened and put into some hides to create humid hides. I also have a humid hide made out of a tupperware-type container with the sides taped with duct tape (make sure no tape is loose or can come off - leopards can get stuck on tape), a hole cut in the lid for access, and a mixture of vermiculite and potting soil (not recommended, but I haven't had any problems) inside the container. It also doubles as a laying container.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

My favorite leopards (short for leopard gecko) are the ones I live with - Jake, Indi, and Roxy, in order of age. Jake is something like 25 months old, and Indi and Roxy are not much younger. They are all normal phase Leopard Geckos. They have been super!, even though they don't know I'm complimenting them here. Stand by for more content...