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Anyone with Experience Keeping Tantilla?

Discussion in 'Colubrids *General*' started by pkosnik, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. pkosnik

    pkosnik New Member

    Hey all,
    I have been collecting herps for about 20 years and have succesfully kept many lizards and a few turtles and snakes. I've stuck with species that were pretty easy. I'm a dad now and two days ago i found a few Tantilla gracilis here in the Austin, TX area. I was going to just show them to my daughters and release them, but they are enraptured and want to try to keep them as pets. I found the publication in copeia by Cobb, but i'm not sure any of the prey are comercially available.

    So my question is, does anyone have experience successfully keeping Tantilla species? If so, what did you feed them? Google searches for care sheets don't come up with anything. Any ideas would be appreciated, and if we can't get them to eat within a few days we'll release them where we found them.

    thanks!
    Paul
     
  2. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    They would eat insects. Crickets, roaches, centipedes, and other small invertebrates. You have to research your laws first though as most of these small snakes are protected.
     
  3. pkosnik

    pkosnik New Member

    Thala,
    thanks for the response. yes, TX has limits on collection but there are exemptions for personal pets up to a certain number. We are well within the law and also within responsible collection; if i can't establish them eating within a week or so i'll return them to suitable habitat where i found them.

    Cobb 2004 indicates that of 68 specimens he collected and examined the stomach contents of, there were no crickets, roaches, etc. He indicated that they only ate elongate prey, predominately some beatle larvae and centipedes. so i know what they eat, i'm just not sure there is a comercial or practical source for prey items for them. I'm wondering if anyone has specific experience keeping this genus, and if they found a comercial source of food, or if they had to develop their own breeding colony of food, and if so, if they could share their experience?

    thanks!
    Paul
     
  4. CourtneyAnn

    CourtneyAnn Elite Member

    It looks like Thalatte was saying that it might be illegal to own that particular species (some laws protect endangered, threatened, protected species). :) Wild snakes tend to do much better in the wild. From what I hear wild caught animals can be very difficult feeders. After a quick google search, they are really cute little buggers, though. Good luck!
     

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