View Full Version : Snake layed eggs!

Snake layed eggs!

06-30-2005, 12:50 PM
I have brought home a female corn snake for the summer. She has not eaten in about 2 weeks and now has laid three eggs. Can snakes lay eggs that arenít fertile like a bird can? As far as my teacher and I know she has not been with a male snake. But he does have male snakes in the room. I am not sure what to do with the eggs. I have them in a plastic container with a heat lamp above it. The eggs are not looking all that great :uhoh: Can some one please help!


06-30-2005, 12:54 PM
It is possible for snakes to lay infertile eggs, and sometimes they lay quite a few of them. If she hasn't been with a male snake at all, then those aren't fertile...they certainly don't look fertile...and I wouldn't spend too much efford on them. Instead, get her a snack and tell her what a good girl she is. :)

Of course, if there's a possibility they might be fertile, you can always put them in damp substrate (I use sphagnum moss, but lots of people like vermiculite) and keep their temperature between about 75 and 85 degrees farenheit. The forums are searchable, and I'm sure you can find more information by searching for egg laying or a similar topic.

06-30-2005, 12:55 PM
first off, are the eggs bright white and plump? or are they small and hard, with a brownish color to them?

If they are the second, then they are more than likely slugs (unfertilized eggs). Most of the time female snakes reabsorb the unfertilized eggs, but sometimes they lay them.

From your picture it looks like they are slugs.

If they were white when they were laid, then you need to get them into some damp Spagnam moss or damp vermiculite. and heat the container to a temperature of 80 to 85 degrees.

For more info on this, use the search function at the top of the forums and look for Egg care, eggs, etc.

06-30-2005, 01:02 PM
I think they are slugs. The eggs are hard and brownish. One of the eggs was very soft when I found it but now it is just as hard as the others. Thanks so much!

07-05-2005, 07:11 PM
I went to check on her today and I found like 10 more eggs! :eek1: She is coiled around them all at the moment. Is this ok? Should I leave the eggs in with her?

07-05-2005, 07:32 PM
I would do a search for threads on incubating eggs. Use the terms incubate, eggs, clutch, etc. What is the climate where you are? If it's fairly warm, you can just put them in a plastic shoebox with a couple of holes in it with some damp moss or vermiculite and cover it to hold moisture in. If it's cooler than about 80 degrees or you're running central air, you'll need some kind of supplemental heat. You can buy an incubator, but I know some people rig up their own or put eggs on top of the fridge. (I don't know how well that works, but I imagine the temperature is pretty constant if it's in the right range.) Good luck with them, and be sure not to turn them over. (Keep them in the same position as now as far as top goes. You might want to mark the top of the clump or eggs with a pencil, not a pen, to remind you.)

07-05-2005, 07:51 PM
I was pretty sure the eggs where slugs but would she coil around them if they werenít and would she lay so much? We have central air in our house.

07-05-2005, 08:15 PM
I don't know if she'd differentiate between good eggs and slugs when she coiled up. One of the pros might be able to help you better with that. Can you get a picture of the new eggs and post it? If they're slugs, there's no need to incubate them. If they're healthy, though, you'll want some way to keep their temp between about 80 and 90 degrees.

07-05-2005, 08:35 PM

Here she is. Sorry the pic is so bad. It was really dark so I tried to lighten it up. She was bred a year ago and had a successful clutch. I heard females could keep the sperm for up to a year is this true?

07-05-2005, 10:28 PM
It is true that they can retain sperm, and those look nice and healthy to me. I'd go ahead an incubate them if you can. Good luck with those babies :)

07-06-2005, 07:32 AM
I donít have any moss for the subtrate right now. Should I just put them in a Tupperware container and have a heat lamp over them for now? How do I know that the humidity is right?

07-06-2005, 07:37 AM
I would pick up some moss or vermiculite when you can. In the mean time, wet some papertowel and wring it out so it's just damp. Crumple up the towels and put them in the box about 2" deep, then put in the eggs, then another towel on top. Don't forget air holes in the lid. The only way to know the exact humidity is with a hygrometer, but you can guess pretty well. Just make sure things don't get looking dry. I only had to add water to my moss once.

I'd look into the temp on the top of the fridge before you go with a heat light. Heat lights notoriously dry things out, where you'll be able to maintain better moisture with the other heat source if it isn't too hot. Your biggest thing is to keep them moist and make sure the temp doesn't go over about 93 degrees for any amount of time. (Minor fluctuations in temperature happen and are nothing to worry about...just don't want any 6 hour heat spikes.)

07-06-2005, 07:43 AM
I just went to look at the temp on top of my frig. It is cold so I donít think that will work. How should I get the eggs out of the cage with out disturbing them? They are on the bottom. She is still coiled around them. Should I remove her from the eggs and gently take them out?

07-06-2005, 07:49 AM
First, make sure you've got the right temp in your incubator. This might take a little while, so don't take the eggs out right away. Check the tupperware in an hour or so and make sure it's not hotter than you expected. Once the temperature is right, take a pencil (#2 or other soft lead will work great for this) and mark the tops of the eggs. Pick her up and let her hang out like you normally would if you're holding her. While she's roaming/chilling/whatever, carefully move the eggs to the container you plan to incubate in. After that, send her home or give her some more exercise if you haven't been handling her much. Once you've put her away, make sure your setup is still maintaining its temp, and then leave them alone. Check every couple of days to make sure they're retaining moisture. If you've got a calendar you can mark, be sure to start tracking the days...around day 60, you should see pippies if they're fertile. If she hasn't fed since she laid the eggs, I'd get her a snack soon. She can certainly use it. Keep us posted on her progress and the eggs. :)

07-06-2005, 07:57 AM
Ok I am going to set up the incubator now. Part of me thinks the eggs are slugs but them I don't....(I hope they are fertile!)

07-06-2005, 09:24 AM
The snake lays the eggs while she is in a rough coil, and so when she's done she naturally looks like she is maternally coiling the eggs. It's usually just the position she is instinctively in that leaves that impression.

As far as temperatures, don't go over 85 or 88* MAXIMUM.... Someone else mentioned 93 but that is a sure way to get kinked or dead babies. (I think the 93 must have been a typo?).... the temps can go higher for very short periods but the more steady you can keep the temperature, the more likely you are to have them hatch, if they are fertile!

Damp (but not WET) paper towels are the best bet but get some vermiculite, perlite, or sphagnum moss as soon as you can. Heat lamps, as mentioned, can dry the eggs out and make them too hot, I would only use one if I could find no other way of keeping the eggs the right temperature.

07-06-2005, 09:27 AM
I am going to get sphagnum moss today. She has been coiled up around them for about a day and a half now. How should I keep them at the right temp with out a heat lamp?

07-06-2005, 01:13 PM
Regarding the 93, from what I have read in Kathy Love's book, she leaves her eggs at Florida room temperature May through September - between 70 and 90 - therefore up to 90 is fine. I have also read that over 93.3F or 34C for even an hour could kill the eggs, but for less than an hour on the odd occasion 90 to 93 would probably not do any harm. Not that it is advisable, but what I have read is that the 93.3 is the absolute maximum that eggs should be subjected to for any length of time. Of course it is better if it never goes over 90, but for very short periods I would not have thought that it guaranteed kinked hatchlings.

07-06-2005, 01:24 PM
I just think that when people are asking the figure 93* should NOT be used, even if some eggs have been exposed to that temperature and produced fine animals.... best not to even mention that to people coming here who don't have the background of having read the Cornsnake Manual.

In general, if new people are advised to have their eggs kept at a temperature range of 80 - 84, then most of them won't fry their eggs if their temperatures are a couple of degrees above what they think it is or a couple of degrees below.... but if we give them absolute maximum temperatures without giving a very strong/severe caution, we risk people not realizing that it is the absolute extreme temperature possible to still get viable babies.

Anyway, the important thing is to help the people who need the help.

07-06-2005, 01:42 PM
That's true enough; it's no good being technically accurate if people are going to follow the advice without doing lots of reading as well, just going by the messages here. I agree with that.

07-06-2005, 02:09 PM
Thanks for that tidbit, ladies. I didn't think about the more moderate range for safety - I'm fairly new at this myself. I'll keep 84-ish in mind as an upper figure for future conversations.

07-06-2005, 06:04 PM
Well I got my incubator to a stable 81 degrees. On closer inspection of the eggs I am almost 100% sure they are slugs. :( Are they supposed to be pure white? Because mine have a yellowish tint to them. Oh I so wish they are fertile, but pretty sure they arenít :(.

07-06-2005, 06:05 PM
Well I got my incubator to a stable 81 degrees. On closer inspection of the eggs I am almost 100% sure they are slugs. :( Are they supposed to be pure white? Because mine have a yellowish tint to them. Oh I so wish they are fertile, but pretty sure they arenít :(. Oh , and some are attatched with a thin floss like string. Is this normal?

07-06-2005, 06:06 PM
Woops didn't mean to do that. Sorry. I only meant to post the last part of the second thread.

07-06-2005, 06:11 PM
Eggs don't have to be PURE WHITE to be fertile. I've had some with quite a yellowish tint to them that hatched.... AND had a few that were bone white but appear to have always been slugs because they never developed ANY veins. So don't go on color alone.

As far as the strings, that does happen from time to time. I wouldn't worry about it. 81 degrees is a good temperature.

If you've never hatched snakes, I really would do you a disservice if I didn't point out that having live viable babies hatch out of eggs is one of the most ADDICTING experiences. It's the hatching season that I look forward to all year long!

Anyway, thought I would share. :)

07-06-2005, 06:27 PM
One thing I am worried about is that I may have done some damage to the eggs when I moved them from the cage to the incubator. She would not move to let me get to the eggs so some of them moved while I was removing her from the eggs. I hope I didnít kill them!

07-06-2005, 08:45 PM
Snake eggs are very hardy creatures.... if they have what it takes to survive, chances are they will. If they moved while you were transferring them and you put them back in the same position they started in, they should be fine. A short time where they are in another position should do them no lasting harm.

07-07-2005, 08:00 AM
Hi, Sydney. One way to tell if your eggs are slugs or not is whether they stuck together as a clump. Since it looks like your female laid most of them in a group, did they come out as a clump when you lifted them up? Good eggs are barely damp when laid, and as they dry off a bit, they'll stick together. Slugs tend to stay sorta damp and slick feeling, and they don't stick together well.

07-07-2005, 08:10 AM
No, none of them stuck together. I am pretty sure they are slugs. :( But I may keep incubating them anyway. Thanks sooo much for the help everyone!