How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

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How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby discojan » Tue Nov 16, 2010 11:50 am

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Hi all,

I'm a little confused. My big girl (3 year old citrus), laid a clutch of eggs on Oct. 26--they didn't look too good--all collapsed and orangey, so we planted them in our garden.

Yesterday, she laid another clutch--about 26 again! and these looked much better. I'm wondering what are the chances that they are viable?

Although she is currently housed on her own, we adopted her Aug. 15 from another owner, and at the time, she had been housed with a sexually mature male. She laid her first clutch of eggs in May (about 15 eggs), when she was not under our care. Her second clutch came in Oct. and her third clutch came yesterday. I did the best I could, in terms of getting them on a bed of moist soil and keeping them warm (though it was cold in the house last night--about 70--and we thought it was unlikely that they were/are viable).


Although her previous owners never saw the male/female mate, it is possible that they bred at some point when no one was looking. If that were the case, would it take that long between Aug. and now for her to become gravid?

She is doing fine, eating voraciously, looking a little stressed day before and after laying (dark color), but otherwise good. Loving and lovable as ever.

I just don't want to inadvertantly harm the eggs if they might be viable.

Your advice and insight would be greatly appreciated!

Best wishes,
J
discojan
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Re: How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby jharris08 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 9:21 am

it is possible that they did mate w/o the owner seeing them and it generally takes around 4- 6 weeks before they lay after fertilization... you can "candle" the eggs by gently sitting them on top of a flashlight in a dark room...if they are fertile they will be full and plump, and will have a pinkish tint inside and will actually have a small ring around one side of the egg ( thats the developing embryo).
make sure you are feeding your female well with generous amounts of calcium...it takes a lot of calcium to produce those eggs and she will pull it from her bones if she's not getting enough .
if they are fertile you need to get them into an incubator asap
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Re: How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby discojan » Wed Nov 17, 2010 9:29 am

Thanks for your response. We've got them in a make-shift incubator--on potting soil in a sweater box (plastic) on top of a heating pad set to medium. The temp gun reads 81 degrees inside. I will get some vermulicite if they look fertile after candling. How soon can we candle?

Meanwhile, big momma is eating like a champ--a veritable all-you-can-eat buffet of dubias, gut-loaded superworms and crickets, and greens. Everything is being dusted with calcium and vitamins, and she is bathed daily and pooping regularly.

Wish us luck, we weren't planning to breed when we adopted our girl :)

Many thanks again, Jan
discojan
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Re: How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby jharris08 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:22 am

I would candle asap...the longer the eggs sit if they are fertile, the easier for the embryo to detach and die when handled...I think within the first 3 or 4 days is fine
good luck!!
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Re: How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby discojan » Wed Nov 17, 2010 6:17 pm

Well, the eggs don't look so good at the moment. They are turning a bit yellow and getting wrinkly. When I shined the flashlight on them there didn't appear to be any blood vessels. HOw long does it take for them to form? I guess maybe they' aren't fertile afterall. I'm a little disappointed, but also a tiny bit relieved.
discojan
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Re: How Long from Fertilization to Laying??? Please help

Postby jharris08 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 7:19 am

yea if they were fertile they would look good from the start...sorry to hear that, but with expecting the eggs, it would have been hard to have had success with hatching anyways.
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