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Lamb 24th July 2015 11:04

Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
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Hello all!

A side project during my PhD research involves courtship and dusky salamanders. Last summer I was fortunate enough to have courtship trials result in 2 clutches of eggs, one of which was eaten by the mom. This summer I've had 2 more clutches, the first eaten by mom, and the second (pictured below) found just a few days ago. Hopefully my other still-gravid females will oviposit soon! And hopefully this new mom wont turn on her clutch (fingers crossed)!

I can count 15 eggs, but the clutch is a grape-like cluster, so there are more in there. Females this summer have been kept in a room that has varied between 70 and 76 degrees F. Each is kept individually in a lidded, shoe box size tupperware with a shallow, sand substrate, some loose sphagnum moss, and one or two pieces of cover (either bark or a flat rock). They are fed small crickets at least once per week, with occasional dusting.

Lamb 26th July 2015 15:14

Re: Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
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At least some of them are fertilized! Looks like the beginnings of nerulation 4 days later, and I still see just as many eggs. With this much confirmed, I'm leaving mom and eggs alone for a good while (and hoping that today's photo session wasn't too much for her).

Neotenic_Jaymes 26th July 2015 15:18

Re: Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
Good to see! Keep us updated.

Lamb 9th August 2015 14:51

Re: Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
1 Attachment(s)
The eggs are still developing, though one (darker one towards the center) has gone fungal. Mom is still attending them. Prior to taking the photo she had extended her body such that her head was close to the edge of the cover object so that she could nab a cricket, which happened to take her farther from the clutch. The water level is higher ATM than it was in previous pictures. I need to work on lighting so that the next photos aren't so dark.

Neotenic_Jaymes 9th August 2015 22:38

Re: Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
There's some development in the eggs!

Lamb 17th August 2015 11:29

Re: Spotted dusky (D. conanti) eggs
1 Attachment(s)
Unfortunately, it appears that more of the eggs succumbed to fungi. When I checked on the clutch a few days ago I found 6 eggs, only a few of which had developing embryos. Here you can see that the embryos were beginning to develop pigment.

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