Just how amazingly resilient these hatchlings are!

Wanda

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image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg there is a bit of a back story to this but I thought some of you might find it interesting.
I have a group of horsfields and one of them lays me a clutch of three eggs twice a year regular as clockwork. This year she had had her clutches and all were in the incubator. Three weeks later I thought I would do some maintenance on the nesting bed in their shed and I found a stray egg. Well, more accurately I dug up a bog clump of earth and the egg flew up in the air. It was huge, and it was the only one and it was a strange oblong shape, like a tictac. It had started to partially chalk and I didn't hold out much hope for it. Anyway, I popped it into the incubator and thought I would just see how it went. I think it might have been a first egg from my younger female who is about 850g.
After a week I candled it and saw two faint rings with the 'comma' inside, one each end of the egg. It looked like twins! I left it on a fairly low heat (30c) as I was off on holiday and my daughter was egg sitting. When I returned there was only one embryo at the end of the egg.
This one went much longer than usual but then pipped and there was still loads of room at the other end of the egg. The hatchling had its nose out and say like that for a long time.mit was not trying to move and was looking increasingly lethargic. To cut a long story short, I think the combination of an extra thick shell and excess room meant the hatchling could not get enough traction to push out. It exhausted itself from pipping. Anyway, I decided that if I didn't intervene I would lose it, so I helped it out of the shell. I stress this is not something I would normally do and it was a decision I did not take lightly.

It came out, huge yolk sac with blood vessels on the end of it and missing two scutes - one vertebral and one caudal. It was so crooked I could not find a pop cap small enough to stand it on to protect the sac because it managed to get at least one leg on to it. So a cling film belt was used. The pictures show its progression. After 36 hours, the sac has nearly absorbed, it is much less crooked, it has had a drink and even a first mouthful of weeds. This one is special and a keeper for sure. Apologies for long post but I know I find this kind of story interesting and I always learn from them. What amazing creatures they are!

Sorry the photos are out of order but I am sure you can work it out!
 

Carol S

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Very interesting. It sure had a huge yolk sac. So far all of my Russian hatchlings have hatched with the yolk sac already absorbed. Thanks for sharing your experience.
 

Tidgy's Dad

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Thanks for posting, a very interesting tale.
Resilience indeed!:)
Please keep us informed of the little fellow's progress.
 

Wanda

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image.jpeg image.jpeg Two days later the little one is doing incredibly well. The yolk sac is completely absorbed and the plastron is starting to close. It is drinking and has tried to eat a mouthful or two of weeds and is much more active. Still in the incubator on damp kitchen towel but hopefully can join the rest of my hatchlings in the next day or two!
 

Tidgy's Dad

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View attachment 153078 View attachment 153077 Two days later the little one is doing incredibly well. The yolk sac is completely absorbed and the plastron is starting to close. It is drinking and has tried to eat a mouthful or two of weeds and is much more active. Still in the incubator on damp kitchen towel but hopefully can join the rest of my hatchlings in the next day or two!
Excellent news!!!
Thanks!
 
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