Since my last aquatic snake thread was getting a bit full
I thought I start a new one with this latest update... As promised ages ago... I would post my Javan Wart Snake once it stabilized... Phew...
Upon receiving it, it was riddled with white spot sores which often occurs when the animal is significantly stressed.
Close up of the head... showing some of the old white sores which are effectively gone in previous pic
I treated the water with the prescribed medication which seemed to be effective, but after doing some research, I realized I had to augment this by rethinking the setup.... After many trials this ultimately worked.
One aspect of this is to ensure that the snake is provided with an effective hide that gives it a sufficient sense of security.
They are very shy retiring animals and when not provided with the above-mentioned, will often appear somewhat depressed and forlorn.
However I didn't really like the idea of using those PVC pipes hot-glued under a hide box to emulate the tangle roots of its natural habitat, so I balanced this with doing whatever I could to improve the water quality. This was invariably tricky considering the snake's complicating diet.
Close of the head while it was flicking its evidently very long tongue (not apparent in photo)
After experimenting with various food options, I realized that WC adults of this size will only take, walking catfish or other fish species devoid of scales. The result is their inclination to annoying foul the water when they defecate... and clog the filter.... pew...
so the final measure I resorted to was to have an over hanging outbox filter which removes the debris from the standing body of water, and add a pair of climbing perch which voraciously gobbles up any matter which the snake leaves behind.
They also occasionally pick off parasites or flakes of dead skin off the snake in a manner which doesn't seem to bother the snake and leaves it with a relatively decent skin condition.
The keeled scales are rough in texture and is used by the snake to get an effective grip on its slippery prey which it wraps around and rapidly engulfs like putting on a sock. Its prey sometimes still periodically struggles in its gut... gasp...
The skin is also loosely attached which gives it the appearence of a elongated paperbag.
This gives the snake a fluid degree of maneuverability in the water but its absence of ventral scales renders it virtually helpless on land. Thus I'm not too concerned about fitting a lid as the snake has been observed to have no desire to leave the water... He will raise his head to the point that only his nostrils penetrate the surface to breathe. He occasionally scales the aquarium corner and pops his head right up to the top but sensing that there is no other body of water around, readily submerges where i prefer him to be... albeit daring on my part untill I can figure a way of constructing a secure lid that accommodates the essential outbox filter and the light....
Another aspect that helps maintain water quality are the floating water plants which makes the lighting system rather important. The lights are turned on and off adhering to a standard 12 hour cycle (unautomated).
After all these elements came together, the snake's previously depressed and boring disposition altered dramatically. Before he would curl up in the back corner, but has since then been observed confidently creeping around the bottom of his tank even when the lights are on; a behavior this species usually only indulges in almost total darkness.
After I rearranged my inverts to be outside the third 'bedroom' of my apartment, it is now officially the snake room.
Yes that cobra is getting big... I downsized (traded) my immense retic for two smaller ones and put the albino (which is now collossal) in the care of one of the other share-owners who is also taking care of Nabau (my giant retic). Both snakes in his care are now eating whole chickens (shrug).
This is the latest installment of my Enhydris communal tank; a secondary water cave to the right.
Still looking for appropriate log pieces to augment this section.
Lastly some latest shots from my crown jewel... Slithering waters log Oct 2009