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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've had a clutch of 13 eggs from a black ratsnake, and at least 8 of them are, in some way or another, deformed.

The male has bred in the past without problems, but it was a first for the female. The deformalities vary from snake to snake. Some have a slightly kinked spine, some have huge heads, with a big lump (like Rocky from the Cher movie, Mask). The worst of them have a hard time moving in the normal, snakey way, and have adapted the 'sidewinder-type movement'

Everything was done correctly - female being of age, size, weight, and health. There were no problems with incubation, as the other 50 odd snakes in the same incubator hatched without problems.

They all feed, and have had no problems pooing or shedding. Besides the (extreme, in some cases) deforalities, they appear to all be healthy.

I'm guessing it's genetic (female side), so breeding her again is out of the question.

Has anyone had anything simular happen?
 

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Oh no im sorry for you bad luck it's such a shame when you get deformities. It does sound like it's genetic disorder from the female =[ are you going to take them to be euthinized?

Haven't had it myself but i do have a BCI with a serious kink he's ok though manages ok with little meals twice a week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
are you going to take them to be euthinized?
I've been considering it, but it's not an easy choice. Yes, they're deformed, but, for a snake, they all seem happy enough.

Obviously I cannot sell them, so the options I have are pretty limited. Excluding euthinizing them, I could either keep them, or give them away. Problem is, no matter weather theyre healthy or not, no one really wants a deformed snake.
 

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This is true yeah, but there are always people willing to help and take on a deformed snake if it's able to eat and live ok i got mine when i brought a BRB the guy also didn't want to sell the boa because of the kink so i was happy to give him a good chance, i guess getting them to feed and it being ok is the biggest challenge although i do know when mine grows i face having to have him put to sleep if it gets a lot worse for him.
 

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the problem you have here is that snakes as we all know are so good at hiding pain or discomfort etc, they will often carry on eating etc because its a case of survival.
so you need to ask, how do you know they are not really in pain.?

Personally if you cant make the decision i would take them to a reptile vet and get a professional opinion on them.

Me i would probably euthanise them even tho it would be hard.

your damned if you do or damned if you dont but i would err on the side of an animal not having to suffer anything unnecessarily
 

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without sounding like a motorway rubbernecker ,
do you have any pictures to show the extent of the deformities ?
most of us probably have seen deformed snakes somewhere down the line , but what you describe sounds a tad further removed from the norm .
i would have guessed at temps / spikes in temps during incubation but if everything else has come out fine then its got to be genetic ,
not forced to be the just female though , could be both parents carry a faulty gene but its only manifested when both come together ?
 

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iv had it with corns years ago most of the deformitys were helmet head as we called it, swelling from behind the eyes to the back of the skull. as far as I'm aware their all still living and doing well 7+ years on, no different from a 100% healthy corn. my gen pool was getting a bit limited and after introducing new blood it never happend again.
 

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o gosh what a horrible situation to be in :(
i'm sorry thats happened, i understand this decision must be hard for you to make :\ it's a tough one and i myself don't know what to suggest other then good luck with them and i'm sorry for this to happen :(.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
without sounding like a motorway rubbernecker ,
do you have any pictures to show the extent of the deformities ?
most of us probably have seen deformed snakes somewhere down the line , but what you describe sounds a tad further removed from the norm .
i would have guessed at temps / spikes in temps during incubation but if everything else has come out fine then its got to be genetic ,
not forced to be the just female though , could be both parents carry a faulty gene but its only manifested when both come together ?
I'd rather put up videos, as pics would only show half of their problems. Not sure on how to go about doing that though.
 
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I'd rather put up videos, as pics would only show half of their problems. Not sure on how to go about doing that though.
probably right but i wouldnt have a clue :blush:
i suprise myself that i know how to turn the laptop on tbh
 

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You can upload videos to photobucket and then post using the link.

Me personally I would look at the extent of how bad they are, some "deformed" animals go on to lead long and "normal" lifes, I would personally see how it goes with regards to feeding etc.
There is people that will take on deformed snakes as pets, I have done so with lizards (and a couple) in the past.

It is purely down to you though, I would maybe speak to a reptile vet, see what they think.
Are 100% sure though that nothing happened during incubation ?
 

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If they are moving in a non normal way, have major twists/kinks, have lumpy spines, id be worried. I had a hatchling with a bad kink this year, its a shame but he was pts as it could of been causing him pain, and it could of got worse over time. Imo if its not a small kink id have them pts.
Have to agree with Jen, small kinks snakes can normally live fine with, but if it is affecting how they move etc then yes i would pts.
 

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I've actually had that happen a few times and its proved to be gentic in a line of Lav corns which I pulled from breeding yet it also seems a tiny drop in incubation temps can sometimes lead to this problem as it did here last year and this was only in a few late colubrid eggs but was due to a power cut in the area overnight sadly we lost most eggs and a few which hatched did have the same issues I have one lav with a kink and one with the bump on its head :( both move and eat normally in fact bumpus is one of my best eaters hold back hatchling wise :)

Its amazing nature can be so cruel yet 5 royal eggs which don't normally tolerate a few degress drop all hatched out normal and 100% perfect.

I'm sure you'll find homes I used to run a sanctuary for sick and disabled and you'd be surprised how many older non breeders reside here and have lived normal lives lumps bumps and all one of my best ever feeders is a very kinked bumble bee royal no good for any kind of breedig but I'm very attached to the little thing :)

Best of luck with them what ever you decide :)
 

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Have to agree with Jen, small kinks snakes can normally live fine with, but if it is affecting how they move etc then yes i would pts.
You still feel like a git though, poor little snakes.

OP im sure you will make your choice based on the best interests of the snakes. Im sorry its happened to you, I know how horrid it is to see deformed babies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You can upload videos to photobucket and then post using the link.

Me personally I would look at the extent of how bad they are, some "deformed" animals go on to lead long and "normal" lifes, I would personally see how it goes with regards to feeding etc.
There is people that will take on deformed snakes as pets, I have done so with lizards (and a couple) in the past.

It is purely down to you though, I would maybe speak to a reptile vet, see what they think.
Are 100% sure though that nothing happened during incubation ?
Incubation went as normal. The were many other clutches in the same incubator, and they all came out normal. I know it's possible that I misseed the problem, but I doubt an incubation issue would only affect the one clutch.

I'm going to have to have another good look at them, and try to decide if theyre quality of life will be worth keeping them alive. If it is, then I will keep a couple myself, and the rest will be given away.
 
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Incubation went as normal. The were many other clutches in the same incubator, and they all came out normal. I know it's possible that I misseed the problem, but I doubt an incubation issue would only affect the one clutch.

I'm going to have to have another good look at them, and try to decide if theyre quality of life will be worth keeping them alive. If it is, then I will keep a couple myself, and the rest will be given away.
I hope it all goes ok, I know it is not a easy choice to make x
 

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Actually its surprising what a couple of degrees missed drop can do to some clutches of eggs in 27 years and thousands of babies later I've seen things happen I would not have believed possible in such a narrow margin.
 
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