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Old 08-14-2011, 11:09 PM   #1
GHC Exotics
Talking Giving birth after 6 years from a male...

Hey guys, thought I would share this with you all. Today to much... much... MUCH suprise, as turning on our lights and getting ready to open the shop today, our Eastern Diamond Back Rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) had a suprise happening. After over 6 years in captivity, and being in complete solitude the entire time, she was giving birth Obviously I was in shock, but, throughout the entire day, I took photos and videos of the process, as she pushed out 2 live babies and 11 slugs. One of the two babies is missing one eye, though seems healthy, while the other, larger one is visually healthy. I plan on trying to preserve if possible, the hardened slugs, to put on display at our exhibit, they are currently frozen until I find a solution for them. As for the babies, they are going to be kept on exhibit, and will hopefully stay alive for us, since we do not know exactly how old the mother is. She was an adult when we got her. Though nature is always suprising, this is definately one of the more interesting things that I have experienced while dealing with any species of reptiles. Below is a photo of the two babies shortly after being taken from mom. Hope you all find this as interesting as I did!!
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Old 08-14-2011, 11:51 PM   #2
That is just amazing. I'd heard that snakes can hang onto sperm for up to two years, but 6???? That's crazy.
Wonder if there are any records of longer times (seriously you should approach the Guiness book of records...)
Congratulations anyway - really hope that both do well.
Old 08-15-2011, 12:00 AM   #3
Old 08-15-2011, 01:36 AM   #4
Have you sexed them yet? This is very interesting.
Old 08-15-2011, 12:13 PM   #5
GHC Exotics
Yes, Ive heard many many times before about retaining for 1 or 2 years, but 6 just seems so out of the way! I would have assumed that the sperm would have died out by that long from the transfer, or just plainly not taken at all. Also, we had thought about the "what if" factor on parthenogenisis, but has anyone else heard of that from any reptiles? I personally havent, but Im up to hearing all thoughts and suggestions! These little ones have not been sexed, as we were both very shocked, and suprised, and we've never had plans to do any hot breeding lol. So far everyone that I have contacted about it cant come up with an explanation or theory other than amazingly being able to retain for that long!!
Old 08-15-2011, 02:21 PM   #6
Yes, there are documented cases of parthenogenesis in reptiles...not positive whether those include snakes, but I'm pretty sure it has occured.
With parthenogenesis, you shouldn't get any male babies - so sexing the babies is the first step to getting an answer.
Old 08-15-2011, 03:53 PM   #7
Even if the sex's are all female then there will still be no solid proof wether or not it is in fact partho. People will still be able to argue that its a coincedence that they're both female and that theres a slight posibility she was placed with a male during cleaning or that sperm somehow got into the cage. Cool event none the less.
Old 08-15-2011, 04:45 PM   #8
No, all females would not be proof of parthenogenesis...but having a male baby would eliminate that possibility.
Old 08-15-2011, 07:07 PM   #9
GHC Exotics
I will try to get the sex determined asap. But yes, Im sure there will be people to argue that fact either way. Though fact is, we have only had 1 diamondback for the entire 6 years. Also, living in Georgia, with most GA laws, we have no desire, or reason for breeding any venomous species. We cant sell them, so therefore there is no reason to take that time or up the amount of risk on daily cleaning or care with those animals. Hopefully there will be someway to tell what happened, because it was very interesting experience, and want as much information as possible.
Old 08-15-2011, 07:09 PM   #10
GHC Exotics
Other than that, if the sperm somehow got into the cage..... Id like to know what kind of person carries around E. Diamondback sperm in their pocket for that kind of occassion LMAO!!

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