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Dragon392

Member
Messages
34
Location
Texas
I need some help with my little guy. Male Argentine B&W. I got him in the end of September 2019, as a fresh 2019 baby. In October, he went down for brumation.

In the time I got to work with him last year, he was doing okay. He wouldn’t necessarily come to me, but he wasn’t fleeing in terror or attacking me, either.

We’ve had some interruptions to brumation. Most were just him coming up for one reason or another, but he was interrupted a couple months or so ago by a fire ant invasion that necessitated a complete move and overhaul of his enclosure. They’d somehow gotten up to him on the second floor of the house, and looked like they were trying to start a nest in his ecoearth. He was unharmed, but understandably very confused and disoriented. I moved his enclosure to the opposite side of the room, replaced the substrate with coconut husk chunks, settled him back in, and he went back down.

It seems like he may be waking up for good, now. He was up for an extended period two days ago, skipped yesterday, and has been out a lot again today. This may have been going on longer than that, but I’m working from home right now (thanks, COVID-19! /s), so I’m here to see it. I try to interact with him when I see him, but it seems like we’ve lost the progress we made before he went down. When I put my hand near him, he’ll sit still, but he starts breathing noticeably heavy, and flicking his tongue a lot. He might let me pet him for a moment, but then he’ll walk away to go under his log or into his hide until I’m gone. He also does the “if I can’t see you, you’ll go away!” eye closing thing.

Is it normal to lose some progress like this after a baby brumates? Am I doing something wrong? Could having his brumation disturbed as he did have caused some issues?

I've put a pajama shirt I wore into his hide for now, since that’s helped in the past, but what more can I do? He’s not accepting food yet either, so I haven’t been able to successfully bribe him. Feeling desperate to catch back up quickly because I’m working on his adult enclosure, and would like to get him reasonably tame before I put him in there with so many new places to hide from me.
 

Walter1

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My now adults come out grumpy. Create a new routine for him. Talk to him, return to regular temps and daylength, and don't rush handling. He should shed soon as well.
 

Dragon392

Member
Messages
34
Location
Texas
Thanks, Walter! That makes me feel better.

Funny thing, since you mention it: I never did change the temps/lights. Still not sure why he insisted on going down, in the first place—everything was the same.
 

Walter1

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Somehow he's accessing the natural daylength, some threshold of which triggers brumation. It is important that they brumate, although it gets harder to evaluate among hybrids. So, you done good.
 

Dragon392

Member
Messages
34
Location
Texas
I suppose he could be getting it from the window in the room. I thought it was only important for them to brumate if they were housed outdoors or you planned to breed them, though?
 

Walter1

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They're from a highly seasonal temperate environment. In parts of Argentina and Paraguay, they're down a full six months. It's important for their longterm health. Part of what you thought is right, though. They won't breed without the cold rest to stimulate reproduction and jf outside they quickly fall into a rythymm.
 

Dragon392

Member
Messages
34
Location
Texas
Wow, that’s good to know. Thank you!

I know they do in the wild, but even the breeder said he likely wouldn’t indoors, and that it wasn’t important for him to (since I’m only keeping him as a pet, not to breed).
 

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