Behavioral patterns in certain monitors....

Discussion in 'Australian Snakes' started by Ranga, Jun 3, 2013.

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  1. Ranga

    Ranga Active Member

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    I am only fairly new to the whole monitor side of things so basically I just wanted some personal opinions on some monitors, so if you can tell me anything about either of the 4 below that would be great...

    I have basic knowledge from what you read on the net but that doesn't account for the thousands that keep them and are probably nothing like the stereotype. I'm basically just wanting to know how aggressive can each be, is one more prone to snapping than others, which is best to be handled, which do you find more Intruiging to watch...

    the 4 monitors that I'm looking at atm (with intentions on a Lacey down the track) are
    1- sand monitor
    2- Rosenberg monitor
    3- spencers monitor
    4- yellow spotted monitor

    so from what I've read they all basically grow to the same size, require similar housing, and are relatively same prices?
     
  2. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 Guest

    The monitors you have listed all grow to a substantial size, not a lot short of a lace monitor over all. If you genuinely feel you need some learning experience with monitors, there are several species of medium size that would be more suitable to cut your teeth on. Ackies are a great starter monitor – hardy, active and attractive animals, although limited in size. Black-headed and Tree Monitors are somewhat larger and are even more arboreal than lace monitors but share their share swiftness and responses to things like food.

    It is important to recognise that an adult Lace Monitor is a potentially dangerous animal. Their recurved teeth with serrated edges are designed for cutting with great efficiency. The quadrate bone linking the lower and upper jaws is capable of a considerable degree of movement back and forwards that enables the top jaw to be in contact along its full length before the strong muscles bite down on the prey. The muscular biting action is followed by a tearing action facilitated by the strong neck muscles, readily shredding all soft tissue and smaller bones in the process. Repeated bites in the same area will severe more solid bones.

    In summary, these are animals that can inflict a very nasty wound in a short time if allowed the opportunity. It only requires one careless mistake on behalf of the keeper to be left with a permanent injury. Forgot to wash your hands and opened the cage smelling of rat etc. With some standard protocols this need never happen.

    Blue
     
  3. Ranga

    Ranga Active Member

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    I am aware the monitors listed are of the larger type. I have kept numerous smaller lizards and snakes and have the handling abilities just have not yet been able to put them to use. I also understand how severe a bite can be...

    its just I've heard the Rosenberg and panoptes are more fiesty than the spencers or goulds which are unlikely to bite if handled correctly?
     
  4. Coppersimon

    Coppersimon Well-Known Member

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    My first monitor was a blackhead he was a nice little guy but we didn't click. I know it sounds funny but I'm a believer that you need to click with your animals if you are going to keep them. Anyway I kept him for six months and decide that he wasn't for me. I then bought an adult male sandy who was a breeder so hadn't been handled much but was still a ok to handle. Major down side to monitors are they are even more addictive then other reptiles. Imo you do need to start with something like an ackie or a blackhead because you really don't understand the power of a monitor until you've owned one for a while. They all really deserve a high level of respect.
     
  5. Ranga

    Ranga Active Member

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    I deffinetly won't be starting with something smaller. I don't see the point in getting an animal merely to gain experience especially if you have no want for that animal. I'd much rather get one I like and watch it grow. Rather than selling a blackheaded down the track because I now have "hands on experience"....
     
  6. Stevo2

    Stevo2 Well-Known Member

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    So get a lacie and be done with it.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
  7. Blinky

    Blinky Not so new Member

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    These people are only trying to help bud, I was once like you myself actually with the same attitude, if you are going for a bigger monitor, start with the spencers ( hatchy ). GENERALLY less inclined to bite then a panoptes or varius, nice colours, big ( more fat then length if you get me ), good to watch. But be prepared as they do huff and puff quite abit. TBH monitors are not handling animals, I leave that to blueys / beardies etc.
     
  8. Ranga

    Ranga Active Member

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    I'm sorry if it came across as I had attitude, I was at work so had to type fast and to the point. I appreciate all the help and input. And yeh the spencers was what I have been thinking to...

    Thanks again everyone
     
  9. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

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    I think when I am ready for a monitor that a Spencers will be my choice as a really like the look of them and they have the attitude that I am after. In my opinion I would look at getting the one you really want and prepare yourself really well.
     
  10. Skeptic

    Skeptic Well-Known Member

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    I've only got one monitor and haven't had it for all that long. I didn't want a small one either so went for the Gouldii. He hates being handled, but that's cool. I'm happy to watch :) Maybe when he's a bit bigger he'll settle down.
     
  11. Ranga

    Ranga Active Member

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    Yeh from what I've heard spencers are great monitors, don't often bite (although do tail whip and hiss alot) but have heard of them being great handlers.

    I spose my mind is made up. A spencers it is...
     
  12. Simon_Archibald

    Simon_Archibald Very Well-Known Member

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    I've kept 9 species of monitors, different sizes from Long tailed Rick Monitors (V kingorum) up to Lace Monitors (V varius). My first was a reasonably sized Sand monitor, second was a Spencer's and the addiction took hold. I successfully bred 3 of these species, while some species I only kept as juvies and some I could not breed (Spencer's female tore the male apart when they were introduced for mating!!!)

    I don't think there's any need to start small. As long as you understand the principles of handling and the capabilities of what the animals can do with their bodies, you should be able to approach them the right way.

    My experience is similar to what you've said. Spencer's and sand monitors are less bitey in my opinion although they put on a huge bluff, hissing, whipping, crapping and all the rest. My male rosenbergi had an incredible feeding response and would bite if ever given the chance.

    My male Lace monitors (full grown boys) were far more relaxed than my 2 females. The girls were a force to be reckoned with if they were in a bad mood.

    In my opinion, if you have the room and the know how, get yourself a yearling/sub adult Lace Monitor and grow your skills as the animal grows.

    Nobody gets these things perfect to start with and anyone who claims otherwise is pulling your leg. I really don't know what benefit buying a small monitor gives you. Saying "get an ackie to get used to it" is the same as saying get a bearded dragon to get used to holding a Lace Monitor.

    Final point, I never bought any of my monitors as 'handling' animals. Some do take to it, most don't. They're much more interesting to keep and watch when you leave them be. Over-handling can also lead to stress and other problems, in my experience particularly with Sand Monitors who would refuse food or regurgitate it when stressed.
     
  13. Blinky

    Blinky Not so new Member

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    Monitors are not for handling , if you want an animal to handle get a beardie or bluey, I am sorry I just do not want you to misunderstand what owning a monitor is all about man + the dangers associated with the bigger ones.
     
  14. ReptilianHybrid

    ReptilianHybrid Not so new Member

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    It is all about how you handle them iv already tamed a spencers monitor to be handled in 2 weeks and its 3 months old when theyr apparently untouchable at this age, check out my video Unusual Taming my spencers monitor - YouTube
     
  15. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

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    Any luck with the monitor mate? Love to see some pictures if you have it.
     
  16. Blinky

    Blinky Not so new Member

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    That is not taming, that monitor is visibly cold but yesh each monitor is different and you can get very calm ones at early ages.
     
  17. ReptilianHybrid

    ReptilianHybrid Not so new Member

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    firstly he was still warm hed been out for 5 mins 30 in the room temp and his paver that was still 50 from the heat lamp plus the sun in the window anyway, he is just that calm now, second its not my only way of taming i treat him to warm baths with a toothbrush scrub because hes shedding etc if it makes them used to they'r environment and bigger things moving around them after time they see its no threat and even come towards you out of interest how isnt that a part of taming??.He wasnt a very calm one that you speak of either when i first got him hed hiss and ark up even if i walked up to his tank, now he'l just walk onto my hand in his enclosure if i want to pick him up..tank is 50 hot end 28 cool end got his own burrow he dug too
     
  18. crocodile_dan

    crocodile_dan Well-Known Member

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    The conditioning techniques you're describing are desensitization and habituation. Whilst they are valid methods of conditioning various animals/individuals, a two week period is not a significant enough period to make any claims about it's behavioural influence at all.

    Your methods may indeed be successful, but any claims at this time are unsubstantial. Personally I believe you have rushed your program and I would have shaped the desired behaviour using successive approximations instead of your method that may compromise the welfare of the animal by exposing it to a greater magnitude of stimulus, which at that age and recent acquisition stress will be present (in certain situations stress can be positive but not here in this scenario).

    Monitors do respond well to conditioning (especially operant conditioning) as evident by several institutions around the world. I do keep monitors, I haven't made any calculated effort to condition them but I have conditioning experience with other species.
     
  19. ReptilianHybrid

    ReptilianHybrid Not so new Member

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    Thanks that is what im talking about, i know about stressed animals and this monitor shows no signs he eats is active doesnt even hide in his hole would rather investigate me.i would back off i he was. This type of training has worked form my pet fox, dragons, sleepy lizards and bredli, a child could play with them all day
     
  20. ReptilianHybrid

    ReptilianHybrid Not so new Member

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    Sorry forgot to mention i learned animal husbandry in alice springs for 16 months plus 2 years on a cattle station and my cousin is a herp keeper at the zoo ...im not a newbie with animals
     
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