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Archiv 2004


Schildkröten im Fokus, Bergheim 1 (2): 19-29

Gerrit Hofstra

Die erfolgreiche Vermehrung der Spinnenschildkröte
(Pyxis arachnoides arachnoides)

Successful breeding of the Spider tortoise
(Pyxis arachnoides arachnoides)



Abstract

Pyxis arachnoides is a small attractive tortoise from Madagascar. The species is considered „vulnerable“ because of habitat destruction, and hunting gathering for both food and pet-trade. Three subspecies have been described.
This article describes the successful captive care and breeding of this species. The animals are kept in a small group consisting of 2 males and 1 female in a 110 × 80 terrarium. They are kept with a dry, relatively cold winter and a slightly moist warmer summer. This climate is consistent with the conditions in their home range (Tulear), but 6 months out of synchrony.
The animals are herbivorous and fed a diet of mainly dandelion green parts and flowers, and plantain. The drinking water that is provided contains additional vitamins.
Typically 4 eggs per year are laid in 4 clutches with a period of 1 month between the clutches. The eggs are incubated for 2 months at 27-32.5 °C (12/12 h) in an open dish on vermiculite:water (weight ratio of 1:2), then 2 months at 20-26 °C (12/12 h), then back to the incubator in a closed dish on vermiculite: water (weight ratio 1:1).
Of the 8 eggs produced by the female 7 hatched under the conditions described.

Key words

Testudines, Testudinidae, captive breeding, artificial incubation

Author

Gerrit Hofstra
E-Mail: hofmil@xs4all.nl

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