Diamond Python Syndrome (Need Help)

Discussion in 'Australian Snakes' started by TeaganEliza, Nov 27, 2017.

  1. TeaganEliza

    TeaganEliza New Member

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    Hi all, I'm planning on buying a Diamond Python in a couple of weeks and I need help regarding DPS prevention. Overall, I've done hours and hours of research regarding this problem yet I still can't come to a conclusion. I primarily need help with temperature, Cooling cycles.. etc etc.

    Would a basking area of 35C be adequate? The basking light would only be on for 3 hours early in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon, other than that the enclosure would be at room temperature. Should I make any adjustments to this regarding temperature and how long (daily) the basking light should remain on during different times of the year?

    Every single reptile shop owner/staff member I've spoken to say a cooling cycle isn't necessary, however literally every online article says otherwise in relevance to Diamond Pythons. I was wondering how long I should have the basking light on in winter (if at all), what temperature it should be and how long / what time I should have it turned on during the day. I would also like to know what the ambient daytime/nighttime temperature should be during winter.

    Sorry for the long post, I want my Diamond to have the longest life it possibly can.
     
  2. vampstorso

    vampstorso Very Well-Known Member

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    @cement would be great for this info
     
  3. Pauls_Pythons

    Pauls_Pythons Power Seller Power Seller

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    I have kept Diamonds for over 10 years so while I'm no expert I can say I have a fair bit of experience with them.
    In my opinion there is no such thing as DPS. It is a name that has been manifested to group a range of issues noted in Diamonds that I believe are caused due to poor husbandry. (Particularly high temperature or in heat for too many hours)
    Diamonds are a great 1st animal as their care is simple, so long as basic rules are adhered too.

    I think your basking temp & hours suggested are fine.
    I run a hot spot for around 4 hrs most days and ambient the rest of the time. (All year) Some people I know run 5 or 6 hours but there isn't much difference from that. Make sure the enclosure is big/tall and the animal can get away from the heat if it wishes.

    I brumate all my Diamonds after 1 year old. I think that keeping them eating through winter increases health risks.
     
  4. TeaganEliza

    TeaganEliza New Member

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    @Pauls_Pythons Thank you so much, that definitely makes me feel more comfortable about owning a Diamond.
     
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  5. Pauls_Pythons

    Pauls_Pythons Power Seller Power Seller

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    We have bred a couple of clutches and never had any problems with the offspring. Great starter animals in my opinion
     
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  6. jahan

    jahan Active Member

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    Follow what Pauls-Pythons said.Although I don`t keep anymore, my oldest Diamond that died last year was 18yrs old and never showed any signs of DPS and was kept as Paul said for a while then outside with a hotbox on all through winter and didn`t always use it during winter. Some days when the temp was cold 7or8deg it would still be out and about for a while before going in the hotbox to warm up. I never fed it during winter.
     
  7. cement

    cement Subscriber Subscriber APS Veteran

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    hi Casey, How you going? :)
    Yes I agree with Paul and Jahan 's info is spot on too. DPS as far as I'm concerned is probably more of a virus like OPMV or similar that kills the snake. Any snake exposed to temps over 40degrees for too long/often will have damage, but it isn't just diamonds.
    There's a lot of stuff written about keepers who put the death of their diamond down to this so called Diamond Python Syndrome, but no actual proof. And if the diamond isn't autopsied, which is now available for very reasonable price here in Australia, then the keeper could say anything killed it. I would not be worried about this "diamond python syndrome" and more concerned about the multiple types of OPMV and similarly related viruses that are now fairly common in captive snakes.
    That being said, I have been taking body temperatures of wild diamonds for years now at differing times of the year and have photos to show that even in the middle of winter they will find places whereby they can acheive body temps of over 30degrees, and they need to, to survive. Of course they don't get to 33 degrees every day in winter, but it's my point of view that they definatly need it at some type of regular interval. And i also have photographs to show that they can withstand bodytemps down as low as 4 degrees, but for how long without suffering sickness is unknown to me. it's also my point of view that as long as they get their temps back up through the day and the low temps aren't for extended periods (4-8 degrees) they will be fine. Diamonds will hunt and feed at temperatures of 17-20 degrees, and can digest meals quite normally at temps the same if not much higher. But don't be misled to thinking that they don't need heat, they certainly do, and a basking site of 33-35 degrees is perfect for a diamond, as with any python they are best off when they have a range of different temperatures so that they can move around the enclosure to regulate their own body temps as they want or need. My point of view is that they are not a weaker or more susceptible subspecies of python, just better at handling cooler temperatures.
     
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