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Breeding/Egg Production & Care Any topics concerning breeding of the cornsnake, brumation, egg laying, or issues concerning problems in any step along the way.

My first year breeding
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Old 05-14-2022, 09:13 PM   #111
Caryl
Sounds suspicious, lol. After that big first clutch, I won't be surprised if she lays again. Seems like the fertile ones are really fertile! And it's usually about when the first clutch is due to hatch, so she's timely. I don't want double clutches either, but Tulip nearly always does it anyhow. No matter how she's fed.

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Old 05-14-2022, 09:38 PM   #112
inu009
Man

If she starts a shed within the next two weeks I know to get a laybox ready. I don't even know if I'd even incubate a second clutch, I'm moving in august and I don't want to have the stress of moving eggs and whatever babies I'd have left. Plus right now my incubator is only set up for one clutch right now, but then again it would be take minimum effort to re-arrange the set up. But discarding them seems very wasteful (and disrespectful to her hard work lol)

I guess I'll cross that road when(if) I get there.
 
Old 05-14-2022, 09:45 PM   #113
inu009
I forgot to mention, she's also spending most of her time on the warm side, which is uncharacteristic for her...except for during the first time she laid her eggs x.x
 
Old 05-14-2022, 10:06 PM   #114
Caryl
Definitely sounds suspicious! I know what you mean about the stress of dealing with moving and eggs and babies... We had been planning to move in the late spring, before anybody would have been due to lay. That fell apart, and I've just pretty much planted my feet for the moment. We have the luxury of being able to choose our timing, for which I'm grateful. I can't think about moving hundreds of miles with incubating eggs. Not gonna happen. Now, as long as hurricane evacuation doesn't happen, we will be thrilled.

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Old 05-17-2022, 11:37 AM   #115
DinosaurMorph
I just read all 12 pages of this thread, it’s a pleasant and informative read. Thank you to all who contributed. I hope that when it is finally finished it will be archived or stickied or whatever the term is so that future 1st time breeders can look back at it and relate their experiences.

I have a question re the double-clutching, actually two questions on that same topic. The first is to the OP: Why after all of your effort and years of planning do you not want two clutches from this process? It seems to me it’s like a 50% off sale; the brumation the pairing the locking the wondering… that’s all done and now because the female retained some of the male’s initial sperm so early in the season you get a double-scoop for your efforts. I’m not implying that you are in this for the money but breeding, even just keeping snakes (or any kind of pet for that matter) does in fact cost money and now here’s your chance to recoup some of the expense for the incubator, hydrometer, temp gun, enclosures, hides, moss, feeders, the list goes on and on.

The least expensive morph hatchlings on MorphMarket, Fauna, expos, Craigslist, sell for ~$50 each. Do the math. Certainly not worth quitting your day job but having a hobby that pays for itself or even earns a few tanks of gas never hurt anybody. And you’d get to share the fruit of labor with other hobbyists, some of which, like you, might be eager to breed for the 1st time.

My 2nd question re 2x-clutching goes to the experienced breeders. Correct me if I’m wrong but 2x-clutching is a (mostly) unnatural process. I mean it has only been happening for the past ~50yrs that humans have been cultivating Corns and providing them with ideal (unnatural) conditions. In our houses, reptile stores, breeding facilities, there’s a steady and reliable supply of food for the snakes. There’s no famine, drought, flood, hurricanes, heat waves, cold snaps, predators, invasive species, Corns propagated by humans have no competition for survival there’s no “only the fittest survive” going on.

Pairing/Locks in captivity occur when many Corns (especially north of Florida) would normally still be in brumation. This jump, this head-start early in the reproductive timeline is the main contributing factor to 2x-clutching. Again, correct me if I’m wrong; this is my understanding from looking at the timeline in Don Soderberg’s book and knowing what goes on naturally/climatically in southeastern US which is the natural range of Corns, i.e. the origin of every Corn morph ever produced no matter how aberrant its skin color/pattern/scales may appear today.

But, what if our Corns were brought out of brumation more naturally. The term “summer room temperature method” from Kathy Love’s book comes to mind. What if Corns were not paired in March but were instead paired in April, May, or June. After all, the warmest, most humid, most stable temperatures (most conducive to incubation) in the US are during July/August (the Summer Doldrums). What is the latest that Corns could be paired in time to yield a single-clutch?

BTW OP if you are reading, and if you are gonna breed again next year, and if you really want only 1 clutch (or to anybody who wants only 1 clutch), the surest way to prevent a double is to begin the process when it is beginning in the woods, fields, swamps of southeastern US. (Or am I wrong?)

 
Old 05-17-2022, 08:55 PM   #116
inu009
Quote:
Originally Posted by DinosaurMorph View Post
I just read all 12 pages of this thread, it’s a pleasant and informative read. Thank you to all who contributed. I hope that when it is finally finished it will be archived or stickied or whatever the term is so that future 1st time breeders can look back at it and relate their experiences.

I have a question re the double-clutching, actually two questions on that same topic. The first is to the OP: Why after all of your effort and years of planning do you not want two clutches from this process? It seems to me it’s like a 50% off sale; the brumation the pairing the locking the wondering… that’s all done and now because the female retained some of the male’s initial sperm so early in the season you get a double-scoop for your efforts. I’m not implying that you are in this for the money but breeding, even just keeping snakes (or any kind of pet for that matter) does in fact cost money and now here’s your chance to recoup some of the expense for the incubator, hydrometer, temp gun, enclosures, hides, moss, feeders, the list goes on and on.

The least expensive morph hatchlings on MorphMarket, Fauna, expos, Craigslist, sell for ~$50 each. Do the math. Certainly not worth quitting your day job but having a hobby that pays for itself or even earns a few tanks of gas never hurt anybody. And you’d get to share the fruit of labor with other hobbyists, some of which, like you, might be eager to breed for the 1st time.

My 2nd question re 2x-clutching goes to the experienced breeders. Correct me if I’m wrong but 2x-clutching is a (mostly) unnatural process. I mean it has only been happening for the past ~50yrs that humans have been cultivating Corns and providing them with ideal (unnatural) conditions. In our houses, reptile stores, breeding facilities, there’s a steady and reliable supply of food for the snakes. There’s no famine, drought, flood, hurricanes, heat waves, cold snaps, predators, invasive species, Corns propagated by humans have no competition for survival there’s no “only the fittest survive” going on.

Pairing/Locks in captivity occur when many Corns (especially north of Florida) would normally still be in brumation. This jump, this head-start early in the reproductive timeline is the main contributing factor to 2x-clutching. Again, correct me if I’m wrong; this is my understanding from looking at the timeline in Don Soderberg’s book and knowing what goes on naturally/climatically in southeastern US which is the natural range of Corns, i.e. the origin of every Corn morph ever produced no matter how aberrant its skin color/pattern/scales may appear today.

But, what if our Corns were brought out of brumation more naturally. The term “summer room temperature method” from Kathy Love’s book comes to mind. What if Corns were not paired in March but were instead paired in April, May, or June. After all, the warmest, most humid, most stable temperatures (most conducive to incubation) in the US are during July/August (the Summer Doldrums). What is the latest that Corns could be paired in time to yield a single-clutch?

BTW OP if you are reading, and if you are gonna breed again next year, and if you really want only 1 clutch (or to anybody who wants only 1 clutch), the surest way to prevent a double is to begin the process when it is beginning in the woods, fields, swamps of southeastern US. (Or am I wrong?)

I didn't/don't want her to double clutch I really don't want any extra stress on the female. The first go around went pretty perfectly, I don't want to temp fate. I consider myself a generally unlucky person so I don't want Murphy knocking on my door lmao.

I didn't brumate, because it doesn't get cold enough here for it. (And tbh, I'd miss the snakes too much if I did) I just light cycled them, and started pairing in January. It wasn't perfect because the female either never had an ovulation shed, or the ovulation shed happened in December, but luckily it all worked out in the end.

I started pairing so early this year due to impatience to be honest, I really wanted to get everything started. I was too antsy, I couldn't wait another day to start pairing lol. Regardless still had to wait like 2 months before anything happened, away. If I breed next year, I'm not sure when I'd start pairing. Since I don't brumate, I cant really predict when the females would ovulate. Bean (the mother of this clutch) is definitely taking next year off, and my other female, Sprout would be ready to go, but I'm not sure If I'd be ready to go (again).

In terms of recouping cost with the babies, I haven't been thinking about the monetary aspect. I keep having to remind myself, oh yeah the babies do technically, kinda, equate to some monetary value. Any money spent on my snakes (so the incubator, the hatchling rack I ordered, etc) is really just me spending my money as a 28 year old with no (human) children lol. I don't really consider it an investment or anything.
 
Old 05-19-2022, 09:25 AM   #117
inu009
Saw movement in a few eggs today during my egg check!

Hopefully this means we’re looking at 60ish days for hatching, opposed to 70+
 
Old 05-19-2022, 12:09 PM   #118
Caryl
That's exciting!

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Old 05-19-2022, 12:23 PM   #119
Caryl
My phone's going wonky (this is the NEW phone too, Grrrr) so I'm delayed on replies. @Dinosaur Morph posed some good questions. Here's my take on some of the double clutch related questions, for what it's worth.

I personally have been excited about double clutches in the past, based upon the reasons already brought up. This year is different for me personally, and it's just me. I've currently got 81 eggs incubating, and I'm thrilled. Every clutch was very much hoped for. That's nothing compared to many, but I know that with my physical limitations, it's going to be a lot for me. I don't know that I can handle a whole lot more. Maybe some first round hatchlings will have been sold before any later arrivals hatch, or maybe I'll lose a lot of eggs through incubation. I don't expect to, but tragedies happen and aren't always in our control.

That said, I'm still not pulling for doubles from my two young first time mothers, nor from Tulip who is the oldest of my dams. They're recovering well, and honestly I expect Tulip to double bc she always does, and has even done it when she's not been bred. That brings me to the next point.



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Old 05-19-2022, 01:00 PM   #120
Caryl
[quote=DinosaurMorph;1744498]
My 2nd question re 2x-clutching goes to the experienced breeders. Correct me if I’m wrong but 2x-clutching is a (mostly) unnatural process. I mean it has only been happening for the past ~50yrs that humans have been cultivating Corns and providing them with ideal (unnatural) conditions....

Pairing/Locks in captivity occur when many Corns (especially north of Florida) would normally still be in brumation. This jump, this head-start early in the reproductive timeline is the main contributing factor to 2x-clutching. Again, correct me if I’m wrong; this is my understanding from looking at the timeline in Don Soderberg’s book and knowing what goes on naturally/climatically in southeastern US which is the natural range of Corns...

But, what if our Corns were brought out of brumation more naturally. The term “summer room temperature method” from Kathy Love’s book comes to mind.... the surest way to prevent a double is to begin the process when it is beginning in the woods, fields, swamps of southeastern US. (Or am I wrong?)
[quote]

There are some potential misunderstandings and conflations here. It's inaccurate to state that double clutching only occurs in captive conditions. It's absolutely correct that corns kept with good husbandry have a better chance at successful reproduction, and logically at double clutches. But there's no reason to think it's solely possible under captive conditions.

Wild snakes can and do produce clutches at varying times. You referenced the wonderful book by Kathy Love. She mentions (p.100) a wild caught gravid female laying 45 eggs in a single clutch on May 23, 1984. This is plenty early enough to have a second clutch. The referenced clutch is remarkable for size, but not for date. Eggs can be found through much of the summer and well into autumn some years in their southern range. It varies, naturally.

I live on the Gulf Coast, and have only brumated one year since I got into the hobby back in 2008. It's just too warm here and I don't want to bother specifically cooling my snakes. (By the way, Kathy Love's "summer room temperature " referred to incubation rather than to brumation.) They live indoors, and they start cycling on their own calendar. This year they happened to go early. Last year was much later. It varies naturally, and that's okay.

So yes, you're correct that pairing in captivity can begin before breeding activity in nature in the northern part of their range. I would expect that it's usually on a par with what happens in the southern portion of their range. And logically I would expect that corns in Southern Florida are more likely to double clutch than those in Indiana. That flexibility and adaptability are why they're found in such a wide range.

Which is pretty great!


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