Friday, January 16, 2009

I told you Stew was a girl

I love it when I'm right.

More than a year ago, Stew was acting a little sluggish and not eating, and I thought she might be "egg-bound." I did some internet reading and learned that you can help female iguanas lay their eggs by creating an egg box. If they are unable to lay the eggs, they can die.

I filled Isis' first carrier (which she had long ago outgrown) with playground sand and duct-taped all the openings but one entry point and put the enormously heavy thing in Stew's habitat. I think maybe she went in it once, but she didn't lay any eggs, and after a while she seemed back to normal, so I put the sand-filled carrier out in the shed.

A month or so ago, I noticed Stew was hardly eating, and her poops were unusually dry (too much info?). Thinking she might be dehydrated, I started spritzing her regularly. Iguanas don't really drink water, they absorb moisture through the air and get it from their food.

For a few weeks now, she's been crazy active. We hear her scrambling all around in her habitat, and she's even ventured to the second and first floors. (We built ramps, but she mostly just hangs out on the top floor all the time).

And then this morning, when I went to feed her, I discovered 17 or so eggs rolling around in there with her. She did kind of bunch up the newspaper, so maybe that was sort of a nest, but apparently she didn't need sandy substrate or a dark place to lay her eggs.

I'm so pleased, because I feel like this is a sign of good health. (I hope I haven't just jinxed myself right before I'm going to leave town for a few days and won't be able to keep an eye on her.) The eggs of course are infertile, as she's never known the love of a male iguana.

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