Egglayingbox

Females become very restless and refuse food shortly before laying. Disa didn't eat for over a week before she laid. Have an "egglayingbox" or a "Nestingbox" ready. You can't always feel the eggs in a gravid female, especially a girl with good size and bulky fat pads on her belly. Even if she isn't ready to lay, there's no harm in a nesting box being ready anyway.

I bought a big plastic box (with a lid), then I cut a big hole in the side. I put duct tape around the edges of the hole so Disa wouldn't hurt herself when she was climbing in and out. The box must be big enough for the female to move around. Some females prefers a lid - some don't.

Then I made a moist mix of unfertilized potting soil, vermiculite and washed play-sand. The mix shouldn't be to wet - and not too dry. It shall hold together when the female dig but shouldn't be soggy.


Egglayingbox. Photo  Gunilla 2002

It is a bit difficult to know exactly when to put the box in with the female. Disa started to get "restless" about 10 days before she laid her eggs, but every female is different. It is better to put the box in "too soon" than too late.

If the female doesn't have a good place to lay her eggs she can "hold on" to her eggs and get "eggbound". That is a quite serious condition so make sure she has somewhere to lay her eggs.

At first Disa didn't like the box I provided for her. When she laid the first clutch I noticed her strange behavior and put her in the box. She started digging immediately and then laid her eggs in the hole. When she laid the second clutch I didn't notice anything until she laid 20 eggs in the middle of the cage in the rabbit pellets (I used to have that as a substrate).

Some females are very picky where they want to lay their eggs and some aren't. Some dig "tunnels", some digs holes and some choose a very different spot. A friend's' female laid her eggs under the bathroom carpet...! That isn't such a good idea - the eggs didn't make it. So watch your female closely when it is time for her to lie.



Egglayingbox. Photo  Gunilla 2002
Disa on top of the egglaying box - she didn't want to go inside.




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