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Lesser siren eggs

This is a discussion on Lesser siren eggs within the Large Aquatic Salamanders (Hellbenders/Cryptobranchids, Necturus, Siren, etc.) forums, part of the Species, Genus & Family Discussions category; I was out looking at my sirens tonight, and saw one of the animals had some really fresh bite marks ...

Large Aquatic Salamanders (Hellbenders/Cryptobranchids, Necturus, Siren, etc.) This topic covers Cryptobranchids like the hellbender and Asian giant salamanders, as well as sirens, mud puppies, and amphiumas.

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Old 16th March 2012   #1 (permalink)
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Default Lesser siren eggs

I was out looking at my sirens tonight, and saw one of the animals had some really fresh bite marks on her back. I was pretty happy, since I figured they would probably be breeding again this year. I little while later, I was looking around to see if I could see any of the sirens, and I noticed a little white thing in the roots of some water hyacinth. When I went to look closer, I found this:

Click the image to open in full size.

It's a really bad picture; I don't usually take good photos in the dark, and my good flashlight is dead, but it's an egg. Hopefully it's fertile, but it looks good, as far as I can tell in the dark.

I went to look around in the plants nearby and saw one of the larger sirens swim off. Looking closely, I found a bunch more eggs in one of the hyacinths. None of the photos turned out, so I'll have to try again when it's light out tomorrow, but there looked to be quite a few.

I came back a bit later after seeing the eggs, and got these two shots of the mother guarding them:

Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.

They're in outdoor enclosures, so it's not as cool as breeding them indoors, but it was still pretty exciting; I didn't think I'd be able to find any eggs if they bred for me. Anyhow, just thought I'd share. I'll try to get a shot of the eggs tomorrow.



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Old 16th March 2012   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Great news, Peter! Do you have any photos of the whole enclosure?

I have apair indoors, but I didn't cool them this winter as they were still maturing. The male has taken on huge temporal muscles, still, so I hope that next Spring I may be lucky. Does anyone know how cool they need to get to breed? Mine are the larger subpsecies (at least, judgiung by their size).

Cheers

Chris



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Old 16th March 2012   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Congrats Peter!



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Old 16th March 2012   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Very cool Peter, I hope they are all good ones. You produce great Sirens!!



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Old 16th March 2012   #5 (permalink)
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Congratulations!



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Old 17th March 2012   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

I'm having trouble getting pictures of the eggs or any water shots, so this is the best I've been able to do:

Click the image to open in full size.

The female hangs pretty closely to the eggs; she was resting on the bottom near them when I went out earlier (photos didn't turn out). It isn't the animal with a cut back, though; I got a good look at her, and her back isn't scarred. So there might be another nest somewhere.

Click the image to open in full size.

That's their setup; just a 500 gallon (~2000 L) swimming pool. The bottom is full of various leaves and debris, along with dead organic matter from the water hyacinths. All those plants on top died when it froze over this winter, but some are sprouting green growth now.

I don't know how cool they need to be to breed. I've bred dwarf sirens inside with just a few degree difference, and it's not that much of a difference in climate. Mine get full outside temperatures, though. It might be a space issue, rather than a temperature one, but I can't provide anything to support that idea. Maybe they're not properly able to fertilize the eggs in a smaller area.



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Old 17th March 2012   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Thanks for the photos. What max and min temps do you get in your neck of the woods? I'm wondering if outdoors enclosures would work in the NW of the UK...

C



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Old 17th March 2012   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

I feel like fainting....Siren lacerina...in huge outdoor enclosures...breeding...arf...
Some day....some daaaaay.....*falls to his knees* sooooome daaaaaaaaay!!

Congratulations Peter



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Old 17th March 2012   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Ummm...*Siren intermedia*....

C



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Old 17th March 2012   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

xDDDD Sorry. Stupid mistake. I blame the fever..i didnīt even get the spelling of my mistake right :P



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Old 17th March 2012   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Wicked! I'm really curious about the temperatures.



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Old 17th March 2012   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

In the winter, the ponds freeze over during the coldest parts, though they sometimes thaw out in the day; one year I had over a foot of ice on the pond and that stuck around for a long time. During the summer, air temperatures get into the 100s, though water temperatures are probably high 80s toward the bottom. I don't see them much, then, but they tolerate it really well. I don't think you really need to worry about temperatures with sirens; just don't let them freeze solid, and provide some shade if necessary.



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Old 18th March 2012   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

It looks really amazing congradulations!



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Old 18th March 2012   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Hmmmm I might buy myself a paddling pool! Do you have any sort of lid?

C



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Last edited by froggy; 18th March 2012 at 09:20. Reason: correction
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Old 18th March 2012   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

I was going to make these little ponds , but i fell into a problem, how do you get predators to not attack them??I have racoons where i live!



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Old 20th March 2012   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Very cool. Are all of those pools for lesser sirens? You have quite the operation! My siren is still doing great, has grown a fair bit. I've an opportunity to setup a stock tank pond at my parent's place this spring, am gonna see if I can acquire some dwarf sirens for breeding.



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Old 22nd March 2012   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

I don't have any lids. I don't have much for predators; there are raccoons in the area, but not many. All I've seen have been a few DOR raccoons once or twice, and I've never seen any in the immediate area; there are outdoor dogs all around my place which would discourage them. The depth of the water is a deterrent, too; they would have to climb into the pools, which are all at least 15 inches high, and then he'd be in over a foot of water and possibly unable to get out. Overall, they're just not good hunting areas for raccoons. I worry occasionally, but there really isn't a realistic way to build proper lids.

That said, I would eventually like to make a large, semi-aquatic outdoor enclosure some day, if I can ever afford it; create a screen wall in all six directions over a chunk of land, and then bury a pool so that it's at ground level, and basically have a pond and a land section; this would definitely need a lid, for escape and for predators (cats, dogs,raccoons).

I only have one pool for lesser sirens. The others are for Daphnia (2), A. talpoideum, one, soon to be two greater sirens, some Ambystoma larvae, dwarf sirens (with a pair of peninsular newts; eventually they'll get their own pool), and then I have a pool for axolotl larvae. I just set up two more pools, and one will probably be for Taricha larvae, and another for some dwarf waterdogs; I think they'll breed like the sirens had, if they have enough time. I'll need a few more pools when I can get them; I'd like one for the juvenile sirens, and I want to start working with Notos a bit more.

My basement has turned out not the be suitable for salamanders due to constant problems, so I'm basically limited to what I can keep in these outdoor pools, or upstairs, where there isn't much room. And the pools give me something to look at at night; it's fun to see the diversity of animals, though I'd like to improve it when I can.



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Old 30th March 2012   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

The sirens are starting to hatch now, thought I'd share a picture of a larva. Assuming I found the eggs close to when they were laid (which is likely; I had been watching and checking the plants, especially in that area), the incubation time was two weeks. It looks like she laid some for a few days in a row, as most aren't ready to hatch yet. I'm guessing the eggs hatched a bit early, but the ones that have are doing fine, and I'll see when the bulk of the eggs hatch to get a more accurate estimate of incubation time.

I removed the eggs from the pool over a week ago, and this doesn't seem to have had any negative effects on the eggs going bad. Even the couple eggs I removed two weeks ago are still developing okay, so that's nice to know, for future reference. The eggs are in a 200 gallon swimming pool, so it'll be neat to watch them once they start looking like sirens.

Click the image to open in full size.



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Old 30th March 2012   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

Cool, the salamanders don't ever escape?



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Old 1st April 2012   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: Lesser siren eggs

That would be my worry too, a curious siren making a fatal walk around the pool...

Great news with the larvae! You are lucky to be up close and personal with them!



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