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Talyn's X-Ray pics

Discussion in 'Rainbow Boas' started by BlackJack, Feb 13, 2006.

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  1. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Here are 2 of Talyn's Xray pics: I've included the whole X-ray from the neck to tail. Unfortunately, one part didn't come out well because she was curled up there. You can see the eggs in the middle of her body and some urates or stool just past them on the tail end. From what I can clearly see, I counted 20 eggs, but they're pretty squished together in that coiled end and I'm not sure how much may have been overlapped (or left out!)
    I've also taken a close-up of the last few eggs: these measure 3cm long by 2.5 cm high. Talyn is pretty thick in the middle -- the widest ventral scale is about 7cm wide --but I'm not sure how much of her girth is taken up by the eggs.



    She's back home with me now. She had no interest in the male and he stayed away from her. In fact, she bullied him away from the warm end and stayed there the whole weekend. So I went and picked her up last night.
    I'm just going to treat her as if she were gravid and wait and see what happens.

    Thanks for looking!
  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Cool xray Andrea!
    Wouldn't it be a great surprise after all you have been thru with her to come home to a bunch of wiggling baby boas!
  3. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    With her reaction to the other male it might be that Q was male afterall and they mated and from that Talyn retained the sperm and is developing offspring! Keep us updated and good luck.. pretty cool! We're all gonna be grandparents of lots of babies this spring:p
  4. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Thanks Rachel, thanks Merlin! I'm excited for sure, but I'm trying not to get my hopes up too much.
    I'm sure going to change vets though: can you believe she wants me to give Talyn oxytocin to abort the eggs?! It would kill me not knowing if they had been fertilized or not and killing off Q's last chance to contribute some of his wild-caught genes to the captive gene pool.
    Fingers crossed! :)
  5. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    I sure hope she produces some babies for you Andrea, it would be so cool!

    I'm also trying not to get too excited.. Bonnie, our Hogg Island Boa, refused food for the second week in a row - she NEVER refuses food:p - and is gaining weight by the day, so we are 99.9% sure she is gravid,, i just hope they are fertile babies!!!

    Why would your vet encourage you to administer oxytocin??! It's not like Talyn isn't old enough or big enough - she is huge! It will probably do her some good to reproduce!:D I can't understand your vet's suggestion.. what did she say? I would be searching for another specialist too...
  6. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Another point, after re-reading your post, is that oxytocin forces labour, so it should in theory make Talyn lay the eggs, which obviously haven't formed into neonates yet, which would seem a very strange thing to suggest? She would have still used calcium resources and it would be a stressful thing for her to endure.. it might also result in egg-binding, although I'm not 100% sure on this, since I can only talk from experience with egg-laying snakes.
  7. venus

    venus Founding Member

    Good luck Andrea and awesome pics I must say. Hopefully a congratulations to you Rach if you get some babies too :D...Ok now I'm excited,,,keep us posted you two :p
  8. DarkMagician207

    DarkMagician207 Elite Member

    thats so cool!! keep us updated. never saw a snake x ray before except for on tv so those are neat pics. :)
  9. zaroba

    zaroba Elite Member

    *me holds up a glass of kahlua
    heres hoping you get a bunch of babies.
  10. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Thanks everyone! Fingers crossed! :)
    Rachel: my vet has obviously never heard of snake's retaining viable sperm for any length of time. She believes the eggs are unfertilized and that they pose a serious threat of obstruction to Talyn. She recommended inducing labour with oxytocin because she is afraid Talyn is already egg-bound.
    Now that I know about the eggs, I'm not worried about the obstruction... even on the Xrays, you can see waste material at the tail end, so clearly things are moving through: AND I found a small fresh stool the other day when I cleaned out the terrarium.
    Talyn is more than double the size (length and girth) of my friend's best breeding BRB female, so I have no doubt that she is in good enough shape to handle a pregnancy. I feel that, fertilized or not, her body will know how to deal with the eggs.
    It would be devastating to me to induce labour and then find that there were neonates inside the eggs.
    I just told the vet something along the lines of "don't call me, I'll call you" (or not!) and took my X-rays and left.
    It's all up to Talyn now. I'm going to give her the best conditions possible and try not to disturb her any more than necessary for the next 4 months.... we'll see.
    I've read that she should be offered a "small prey item" every now and then, but not to expect her to take it. (Anyone have an idea what constitutes "small"?) She usually eats anything from a 170-250 gram rat. I was considering offering her one of Monty's 45g rats. Do you think that's too big?
    Thanks again!

    PS Rachel, good luck with Bonnie: I really hope she's gravid and we'll both be proud grandmothers showing off baby pics in spring!! :D
  11. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Well, I have to agree your vet needs changing!!:p Ovulating females will re-absorb infertile eggs, so I don't feel that oxytocin should ever be used in a case like this. The only time I would administer oxytocin is in an egg-bound snake, that is one that has laid some eggs but has become egg-bound throughout the birth, or one that is unable to pass the eggs - it is quite obvious in these circumstances.

    Good luck with Talyn and keep us updated on how she goes on.. I really do hope Q has spread his genes somewhere back along the line:p

    Re. the food - yes, you can offer small food items occasionally throughout the pregnancy, though, if she is gravid, she will be unlikely to accept them. One of Monty's rats is fine - I would say anything up to half the size of the food items you normally feed. Gravid females will eat less, or usually stop feeding altogether, as the babies grow and take up more room. If she refuses the next couple of feeds I would cease to attempt to feed her for now and give her the time to either have babies or reabsorb eggs.
  12. Rich

    Rich Administrator Staff Member Premium Member


    Thats great Andrea! The xrays are wonderful! Thank you for sharing.

    I wanna see xrays of your snakes belly now Rachel! :D Good luck!
  13. Dominick

    Dominick Founding Member

    Great pic Andrea, thanks for sharing them with us! And good luck with the eggs.
  14. Lyn'sSteve

    Lyn'sSteve Elite Member

    That is way too COOL!!

  15. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    I just hope that if the eggs are fertilized that blasting them with the radiation of the X-ray didn't cause any serious damage!
    Just a reminder to anyone who might be misled by the term "eggs": Talyn is a boa and live-bearing, so these eggs have soft, waxy shells. She will keep them in her body until the babies are full-term, then give birth.
    So I won't be incubating any eggs here. It's all up to Talyn.

    Thanks for the reassurance about the oxytocin Rachel. I too doubt that Talyn is egg-bound, and trust that she can deal with the eggs. (My vet also said that if the eggs didn't pass, I'd have to consider surgical removal: basically slicing more than half her length open! (I said that just wasn't going to happen.)
    So -- fortunately I just heard of a vet who just moved into our area and specializes in reptile medicine. I'll be calling him in the future!
    Thanks also for the advice on the rat-size. I'll offer her one tonight and see if she takes it. She hasn't eaten anything since the 26th of December.

    I'll let you know! :D
  16. Brittone05

    Brittone05 Elite Member

    Awww - I so hope that Talyn does well with her 'eggs'. I am not a snake person nor do I know anything about breeding herps as that is a section I have never gone into (yet!) but I wish you both (blackjack and Bitis) tonnes of luck with your snakes - I now patiently await lovely pics of little biddy baby snakes ;)
  17. Disturbedcries87

    Disturbedcries87 Elite Member

    wow very happy for you both.


    long time no talk been busy with work and school over here so havnt been that active. But had to stop by and say congrats! neat photos and hope all goes well
  18. Amber

    Amber Elite Member

    Awwww I'm hoping for baby snakes... maybe someday her babies will end up over here and for sale! :)
  19. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member


    Talyn ate a small F/T rat (68g) last night. I injected it beforehand with extra water and after she ate it, I saw her come out to drink. She's been hiding so much -- day and night -- that I've worried about her not getting enough fluids. So I was happy to see her drink.

    Whether she is gravid or not still seems anyone's guess at this point. I've shown her X-ray pics to Rainbow boa breeders all over the internet. Some have said they are definitely follicles, others said they could be fertilized or unfertilized eggs.

    I guess only time will tell. Boy Tom Petty wasn't kidding when he sang "The Waiting is the Hardest Part" :)

    Here's a nice close-up of my big girl:
  20. Moshpitrockchick

    Moshpitrockchick Subscribed User Premium Member

    Beautiful! I love rainbow boas...and I love tom petty...but now I have to go get the greatest hits CD so I can listen to it!
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