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  1. #11
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    How young would you breed a female?
    I believe 18 is the legal age.. a bit young for me though...Probably Ok for you...

    Males can go at 18 months, but I wouldn't hold your breath for it to happen. Females your best off waiting till their are 3 or older on BCI..
    Ed Lilley
    www.constrictorsnw.com

    Check my available snakes at this link:
    http://www.reptileinsider.com/classi...panamared.html

    I rejoined facebook... I don't feel good about it...



    [/I]

  2. #12
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    Nov 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShadowAceD View Post
    Out of curiosity, how often are you feeding her?
    About once every 10 days, sometimes it's been a day or two longer than that if my local supplier is out of rats when I stop in. I don't try to power feed anything which is why I'm just shocked at her growth compared to another female I've had since she was a baby.
    www.everythingboa.com

  3. #13
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    Aug 2012
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    Personally, I disagree with a lot of people on this topic. Everybody uses the general rule of 3.5-4 years old for breeding a female, which I am against. Everybody says "it's for the long term health of the animal."

    I say.... prove it. Show statistics showing that a female thats bred at 2.5 years old dies earlier or has health complications.

    Im not saying ALL 2.5 year old females qualify, I look for certain things. I usually want my girls 15lbs or better, but fat is no good, I want them to have a good muscle tone to them, with almost the "loaf of bread" shape.

    We all know that each animal is different. You can raise 2 boas in tubs right next to eachother, on the exact same feeding schedule, and 1 may blow up quickly while the other grows slowly. So I dont think it's fair to treat them all the same when it comes to breeding.

    Last year (fall 2012), I bred 3 females that were 2009 girls, being 2.5 years old. All 3 bred successfully, giving litters of 22, 23, and 29, with very low slug ratios. The litter of 23 had ZERO slugs. The babies were full term and healthy, with great size. The mothers all did spectacular as well, put weight on quickly and were easily breedable again this past year, which I did not do because I was short males.

    This year, I bred 2 females that were 2010 girls. One of them dropped babies last week, 18 babies and 1 slug. The other female is yet to drop....

    My point is, why not breed them at 2.5 years if they have the proper body composition? Argue about health if you want, but nobody can really prove that this has adverse health affects. You think these boas dont breed at 2.5 years in the wild? Males don't just avoid them because "she's too young" (even if she says shes 18). If the size/muscle mass is there, I say go for it. Young females have done me EXTREMELY well, 4 for 4 in the last 12 months, going to be 5 for 5 in a few weeks.

  4. #14
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    Feb 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Antonucci View Post
    I say.... prove it. Show statistics showing that a female thats bred at 2.5 years old dies earlier or has health complications.
    The evidence IS actually out there which is why most have gravitated towards 3.5 years + for BCI. Is it published in a reputable, peer reviewed scientific journal? No. But neither is data showing breeding at 18 or 30 months is safe either.

    However, it's been put on forums NUMEROUS times and with forums, most don't share their failures so if you're seeing it decently often, you can assume it's happening FAR more often and most are just keeping their mouths shut. I've had this conversation with a lot of people (especially about BCC) - you rarely hear about people losing animals and/or regurges - but it happens! Especially if you keep a larger number of animals. And really, there are a LOT of people not sharing when it comes to keeping BCC. They have sick animals, dying/dead animals and they just don't share it.

    So, back to the point, if there are people sharing that their females who were bred at 30 months are dying at 5-8 years old (which is enough for me not to do it), then there are certainly many more who are hiding that fact because of the fear of repercussions from the general buying public - and also a lot who aren't bright enough to catch on to the fact that their impatience directly caused the death of their boa. Or, they just don't care. They got her to produce 2-3 litters before she died and besides, she was just a stepping stone to a prettier more intensely colored/patterned morph and she's been replaced - and it's too much of a hassle to sell a drab looking, over the hill, fat-ring-having, low desire (het) morph. Sad, but many people think it's easier just to have them die early than to "deal with them" for life.

    I'm not AT ALL implying that you fit in that category Tony. But those people ABSOLUTELY DO EXIST. I've met them, talked to them, seen their collections. These are people I don't associate with anymore.

    jb

  5. #15
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    Nov 2007
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    Tulsa, OK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonboas View Post
    I read somewhere that you could breed a female at 1.5 years old but that just seemed young.
    I would love to know where you read that. Likely on the internet from one of the webs "experts". That is crazy and extremely disturbing. I saw someone post a message a few days ago about why they were seeing so many slugs in litters, or simple reproductive failures. This is exactly what I replied. Too young, desperation to breed something/anything to be able to call yourself "a breeder", complete lack of respect for your animals health. Disgraceful. If you remember where you read that, please post.

    Warren
    Dr Warren Booth/USARK director

  6. #16
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    Sep 2007
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    I was trying to quote a part of what JB said but my computer is acting up and it’s idling for many minutes. So I will just say I agree with what he said.

    This is known whether we choose to admit it or not. A breeder female passing away in 5 years after giving a number of litters is a welcome convenience based on what JB stated above. It’s too early to make a determination on Mr. Antonucci hypothesis that his modus operandi presents no consequence. Generally speaking over the years some breeders have spoken openly how this practice that Tony has embarked upon has not worked best for the animals in the long term. I would agree that there are many factors that may have contributed to Tony’s success rate that others before him fell short on; thereby allowing the general consensus to be widely held that Tony’s approach negatively impacts the snakes’ longevity.

    I believe Tony to be an exception. It seems to be working very well for him and if it does then hey that’s awesome! However, I’ve spoken to and read about a few breeders who’ve tried it and it didn’t work. Many breeders have lost their animals by doing this. So to err on the side of caution a consensus was accepted that more maturity was necessary for the health of the animals. That’s all it is. It's not a rule or scientifically based. It’s just an anecdotal consensus that some of have accepted to err on the side of caution to keep out animals alive longer. The yield of the first harvest has taken a back seat to the potential shorter life span of our animals.


    Perhaps if everyone had their snakes in Tony’s house under his care and expertise them the general consensus would change. But for now we all maintain our animals differently and most breeders' conditions don’t yield the success rate that Tony's snakeroom does. At the same time we would all like to follow-up with Tony in four years on these breeders from last season to find out how they are doing before I make a decision on what’s better for the animals. For now I will say that I personally like to err on the side of caution. It just allows me to sleep better. There is no science behind it.
    Alex Burgos

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Antonucci View Post
    I say.... prove it. Show statistics showing that a female thats bred at 2.5 years old dies earlier or has health complications.
    I hope to be putting out the scientific data for that within the next three years. Preliminary data supports premature aging, incredible stress on internal organ systems, and physiological breakdown. Remember that when you feed your Boa many of its organs increase in size between 50 and 150% (including the heart). On a regular feeding cycle, and not regular as in weekly for adult boas, this is perfectly healthy. When power fed to get animals up to breeding size early, this produces enormous strain on internal organ systems, which leads to early senescence of these organs. We are also combining this study with a similar study looking at reproductive maturity in male boids. The results might shock many of those that attempt to breed males at 17 months or earlier.

    Warren
    Dr Warren Booth/USARK director

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Antonucci View Post
    You think these boas dont breed at 2.5 years in the wild? Males don't just avoid them because "she's too young" (even if she says shes 18). If the size/muscle mass is there, I say go for it.
    2.5 year old females in the wild are not the same size as 2.5 year old females in captivity. We massively overfeed our animals, and that is something we cannot argue. We do not consider the feast/famine cycles that exist in most Bci inhabited areas. Our work on wild populations, tracking animals essentially from birth onward puts animals that are 3 years old in the wild comparable in size to a yearling or just over in captivity. Do they breed? We have no evidence to say no, however based on our work with Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes, and Copperheads, we know the males will sometimes breed sexually immature females (based on field observations of radio-tracked animals and the detection of sperm in the cloaca, however these females do not ovulate. Instead, they appear to store this sperm for later reproductive events, when they are of sufficient body weight, muscle mass, etc. In one of our EDB rattlesnakes, this was 5.5 years later.

    Warren
    Dr Warren Booth/USARK director

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warren_Booth View Post
    Preliminary data supports premature aging, incredible stress on internal organ systems, and physiological breakdown. Remember that when you feed your Boa many of its organs increase in size between 50 and 150% (including the heart). When power fed to get animals up to breeding size early, this produces enormous strain on internal organ systems, which leads to early senescence of these organs.
    I stand corrected, there's the (preliminary) science.

    Quote Originally Posted by Warren_Booth View Post
    2.5 year old females in the wild are not the same size as 2.5 year old females in captivity. We massively overfeed our animals, and that is something we cannot argue. We do not consider the feast/famine cycles that exist in most Bci inhabited areas. Our work on wild populations, tracking animals essentially from birth onward puts animals that are 3 years old in the wild comparable in size to a yearling or just over in captivity.
    Yup!

    So, as Alex said, it may work in Tony's house so far, but for the rest of us, it's better to wait.

    jb

  10. #20
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    Broussard, LA with my wife Kayla and our "zoo". LOL
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    IMO
    BCI female 3 1/2
    BCI male 2 1/2

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