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Brumation Trigger

Discussion in 'Help *General*' started by caters, Oct 27, 2015.

  1. caters

    caters Member

    I know that lots of reptiles go into brumation either when it is very hot or very cold. Most reptiles from north america go into brumation during the winter. As an example alligators form alligator holes and all except a breathing space for the alligator freezes over. The alligator is in cold water and breathing cold air so it goes into brumation to survive the cold.

    So if my future children or I get a reptile as a pet and I want the reptile to go into brumation during the winter so that I have a low maintenance period and can focus on other things would I need to do this:

    1) Take a waterproof and watertight box and put the reptile inside.

    2) Put the warmer box inside a bigger waterproof box to use as a cooler.

    3) Put ice in the box and let the smaller box cool down.

    4) Close the box of ice and check on the small box temperature regularly to see if I need to add more ice(The best way to do that would be to listen for activity from the reptile).


    5) wait until winter is over and gradually warm it up so that the reptile can wake up naturally.
  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Ok first off, putting a reptile into brumation is usually done preparatory to breeding and not just for convenience. And there is more to it than just getting the animal cold. If things are not just right and the animal isn't in tip top shape, it may never wake up!
  3. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    Hi, I would agree with Merlin, you make it sound as if the animal/s are just objects to use or not use at your convenience.
    There`s really no need to deliberately brumate an animal to save on the "effort" of looking after it, and not brumating if conditions are supportive is not necessarily detrimental to their health in captivity as it may be in the wild.
    mshrmheadcharge likes this.
  4. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    There's also a difference between brumation and hibernation. You are describing more of a hibernation period of total inactivity. Brumation is usually done for breeding Uromastyx and can be deadly even if done correctly.
    Since the reptile is depending on you for all aspects of it's life, you must be sure to provide what they need, when they need it.
    In brumation a heat up period is still required during the day.
  5. Qwerty3159

    Qwerty3159 Elite Member

    Very few reptiles can withstand being in the conditions you've described for very long. Garter snakes, a good example, usually need brumation to breed. Even then they are kept well above freezing and carefully monitored in temperature controlled devices (think incubator but with cold not heat)

    TBH the many tried and true starter reptiles are probably among the easiest animals to keep if set up properly, and if you're looking for a pet you can switch on and off when it's convenient for you, look again.
  6. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    I`m not sure the animals mentioned above (Uromastyx and Garter snakes) actually "need" brumating in order to breed in captivity? They don`t brumate in the wild in order to breed, it`s the conditions that force them to do it (too much or too little heat, less prey animals etc, etc), if the conditions were supportive year round surely they would still breed and possibly more frequently?
  7. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Most Uromastyx do require a brumation period to stimulate breeding activity. I say most as not all species require the same cooling off period depending on what area they come from. The Sudanese that I have require the least seasonal differences than any of the others.
    That's just info I'm passing on from deerfernfarms website.
  8. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    Hi Mike, it doesn`t make much sense as far as captivity is concerned because the conditions "should" be supportive year round?
    They used to say the same about Varanids (some still do) yet it`s been proven for many years they do not...
  9. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Yes I tend to agree with that. I wonder what the 'triggering' factor could be to stimulate breeding. I am planning to split the pair which should help. But have to build new tanks first.
  10. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    I would think the "trigger" would be the conditions (whenever the breeding "season" is in the wild in terms of temps, humidity and food availability, etc) which in captivity should be year round (not to say you should allow them to breed nonstop).

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