Care Sheet for Retics

Here you will find information regarding care for your reptiles. These are member contributions.

Care Sheet for Retics

Postby Tagged » Fri Nov 23, 2012 12:33 pm

Hi guys

Please don't bite my head off if there is one but I have searched the forum and have not found a care sheet on Retics?

Can anyone help out?

Want to find out about what lighting is best, do they need a basking globe, uv light etc ?
Whats the best ambient temp for them day and night, summer and winter ?
Are Juvs/adults semi arboreal?
Is it best to supply them with a water bowl/tub to soak in ?

Thanks !
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Re: Care Sheet for Retics

Postby Bushviper » Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:38 pm

I wish I could publish everything here but look in December's Ultimate exotic magazine.

I can at least add this bit.

Retics do not require large cages. The largest breeding female that I know of is Medusa who is 23 feet ( 7 metres) and she lives in a cage of 2.4 metres by 90cm by 90 cm. In the wild, retics (especially females) do not move around and one was recorded under a house with 3 sheddings around her. Retics are not like Burmese pythons and dont grow as bulky, especially the males. A snake in a small cage does not have a "territory" where in a large cage they do and then become more "defensive" which hurts. Tubs are the most convenient for growing retics but make sure they are the see through type of tubs.

The cage must be waterproof because there is no other snake that can produce as much fluid urates as a retic. They can fill a water bowl to overflowing and it smells very strongly. This cage has to be cleaned more than once a week. Substrates that work well are newspaper, cardboard, carpet and even aspen (not pine) shavings.

Heating must be a large enough area of the snake to coil over completely. The hot spot should be around 30 degrees during the day with a cold side that at night goes down to 22 degrees. Keep those temps all year around however you can drop the night temps of the hot spot during "winter. They dont have much of a winter. Avoid UV lights and basking lights. Large water bowls are appreciated which they love to soak in, mess in and then turn over.

Babies will sometimes make use of hide boxes. This can also make them more defensive so dont use it when they are past the baby stage.

Retics have to be tap trained or it will hurt. This entails tapping on the glass or box before feeding. When you do not want to feed then just open the cage and rub a paper towel roll or hook stick or something on their heads till you see they have accepted you are not going to feed them. They learn quickly!! This is great for people who tap on your cages because you then tell them they can just open the cage and know they will get nailed. Retics can be fed virtually every day. In the wild they take small prey regularly although I only feed once a week.

Retics have bigger teeth than most other pythons and do a chainsaw type bite if upset or think its food. You will bleed and with a big snake will possibly need surgery.

Some retics have a habit of "pushing". They will force their heads into a corner and just keep pushing even if they split their top lip. Males do it around breeding time and often snakes that want a bigger cage do this too. The split lip will recover however in severe cases they have a permanent "fang face" which looks nasty. Males will reach sexual maturity very early (was fertile at 8 months in the case of one Anthrax male) and then they are hell to work with. They will suddenly see you as another male contender and will attack you badly. Learn to read retic body language!! If he starts pushing at you with his body or rushing you then treat him like you would a venomous snake for the next month or two. Never ever keep two male retics together. They will probably fight to the death and the survivor rarely recovers anyway. Females can also decide to just kill the male. They have to be kept alone if their cage and observed closely as breeding time.

These are just a few basics. Feel free to ask any other questions.

Retics are not for beginners or for someone who thinks they can dominate a snake. These snakes are far more intelligent than most other snakes and you need to learn to read their signals they give before an accident happens.
It is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

Those who are afraid to ask are ashamed of learning.
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Re: Care Sheet for Retics

Postby Tagged » Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:41 pm

Thanks BV.

That's what I call a reply!
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