C. angulata Successful Hatching @ GardenStateTortoise

Tom

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@Markw84 I'm going to try this with a clutch of sulcata eggs and SA leopard eggs. I'm going to try long fiber sphagnum moss and also some sphagnum peat moss (the stuff that resembles coco coir). With the SA leopard eggs, I figured I would wait to add the moss until after the cooling period.

If the results are good, I'll try it on some platynota eggs next year too.
 

Sterant

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@Markw84 I'm going to try this with a clutch of sulcata eggs and SA leopard eggs. I'm going to try long fiber sphagnum moss and also some sphagnum peat moss (the stuff that resembles coco coir). With the SA leopard eggs, I figured I would wait to add the moss until after the cooling period.

If the results are good, I'll try it on some platynota eggs next year too.
I currently have 2 chersina eggs in the incubator. Both are in the substrate they were deposited in (organic soil and sand mix) covered about 75%, inside a hovabator set for 86 during the day and 70 at night - roughly 75% RH. I am thinking about adding some peat moss to the mix right now.
 

HermanniChris

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@HermanniChris I have a few thoughts in thinking about your efforts and the changes you made that seem to make a difference. For what its worth, here are some of my thoughts.

I have been researching and discussing incubation techniques and the possible effects of the media used as it may effect calcium uptake from the eggshell, water mobilization through the eggshell, and the transfer of respiration gasses. One speaker at this last TTPG conference has done a lot of work, more in the area of aquatics, but his insights I find are offering ideas that I feel are applicable.

For example, Matamatas lay hardshelled eggs. They have found if incubated on/in vermiculite, the eggshells will remain too hard for the babies to emerge. If they add a mixture of peat, the babies are able to hatch successfully, plus they are of an average size that is larger with the addition of peat. It seems this aids in the utilization of calcium and calcium uptake from the eggshell. It has also been found in some works that increasing the surface area in contact with the incubation media increases the water exchange in and out of the eggshell. A paper on snapping turtle eggs (also a hard shelled egg) looked at calcium mobilization from the eggshell. They found that most of the calcium that was used from the eggshell during incubation, came from the sides and bottom of the egg. - the areas that were in contact with the incubation media. While the top and exposed part of the egg had little calcium mobilization occurring there. Dave points out that humic substances chelate calcium. His belief is that the presence of humic substances help catalyze eggshell dissolution. So this could be an important factor.

He also uses oscillating temperatures in incubating. He has found this not only lowers the average temperature the egg experiences, but allow for higher, female producing temps without constant high temperatures. He was motivated to try this in an attempt to minimize possible scute deformities. However, he also found the oscillating temperatures created corresponding humidity fluctuation where the differential in temperatures as they rose and fell, also created condensation and changes in moisture uptake in the eggs.

My thought is that since this is such a small species, it cannot dig a nest very deep. So at such a shallow depth the nest would be much more subjected to daily temperature swings than a nest that is 12" deep. The difference is substantial in ground temperature studies. So I see great value in oscillating temperatures. Additionally, the swings in humdity may also facilitate water, and ionic exchanges.

Since only one egg is laid in a clutch, the egg is probably more buried in substrate as opposed to stacked in an open chamber with neighboring eggs creating substantial air exposure to most of the egg. So with the single egg, there would be far more substrate in direct contact with the eggshell. If the female seeks out areas of more mixed organic matter in the soil - around bushes, and leaf litter, than you would have your humic matter mixed in with the substrate that would naturally facilitate calcium uptake and natural degradation of the eggshell as the embryo grows and uses this source of calcium.

Since you found sanding the eggshell of possible value, perhaps that is an indication that the egg is not able to properly be utilized by the growing embryo. that the addition of a humic substance, and greater contact with the substrate could facilitate this. Nature does not sand the eggshell. But nature does provide the substrate that allows for substantial thinning of the eggshell (and therefore respiratory gas exchange) though the moisture, humic content, and greater contact with the eggshell, and combines this with a fluctuating temperature that causes daily changes in available water exchange through condensation changes.

Things that could be tried that would do that:

Perhaps a mixture of vermiculite and peat.
Eggs anywhere from 50% to totally covered in that mixture. This would probably require a bit drier substrate.
A covered container with minimal ventilation
Oscillating temperatures that will also create periods of condensation in the container and a cycle of in/out of moisture in the egg.
Weigh the egg and entire container to monitor water loss and adjust accordingly.
You’re a wealth of knowledge Mark. Thanks for all of this. I’m a little nervous to break away from exactly what I did to hatch this one since it’s been such a long, depressing battle, but I definitely like what I’m reading here.

This is literally the only species I’ve ever had this issue with, everything else across the board hatches just fine but I think once I hatch another 1 or 2, I will experiment more.
 

kingsley

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Congratulations Chris!! Looking forward to more hatchlings!!
 

HermanniChris

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It's pretty humid, 60-65% during the day and 80-85% at night. It's in a closed "snake rack" style unit that I use for all indoor raising now.
I'm amazed at how voracious this little thing is already. I post photos of its enclosure.
 

Salspi

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Chris

Congratulations. And, thank you for describing what you’ve tried and what worked for you. It means a lot to know that members here are so willing to help each other with info. I’m very happy to be a relatively new member on this forum. I can’t wait to get my Kleinmanni pair!
 

Salspi

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They have one of the coolest looking shells out there.... Do you have any other eggs that are close to hatching for your Bowsprit colony?
 

CarolM

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Sorry for not getting back to this sooner but we’re swamped here with the season starting.

Here are some shots of Ayanda today 4/20/18. The animal is absolutely thriving.
View attachment 236492 View attachment 236493 View attachment 236494
Ayanda is looking beautiful. And I see the beginnings of Ayanda's white rim is starting to appear as well. On the Adults you don't see the white rim at all, so I wonder if it will dissappear or if it is there due to them being raised in captivity. My Rue has it. Kang and Clark are also starting theirs and @kingsley also has it on his hatchlings. But you don't see it on the pics of the hatchlings that JeanineD has shown.
 

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