The Reptile House

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Click HERE to email John & Brooke

zeus2.jpg (24745 bytes)This is Zeus - the California King Snake.  Zeus is John's first snake and was much smaller when he became part of the Kadolph Family.  He now measures about 4' and eats two fully-grown mice every week if we let him.  He likes to be held when he isn't about to shed his skin, and enjoys hiding in your clothing.  Zeus is a "constrictor" which means that he has no big fangs or poison.  He kills his food by striking at it very quickly and wrapping his body around it tight enough to stop it from breathing.  Once he knows it's dead, he lets go and slowly gets his mouth around it to eat it whole.   It looks really funny when he only has a tail and two back legs sticking out of his mouth!!  He might look a bit scary to those of you who don't like snakes, but he's a big sook really.  In the wild, King Snakes will eat other snakes and reptiles.   They will also shake their tails like a Rattlesnake when they feel threatened.

Click on these thumbnails to see larger photographs of Zeus:

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***  Zeus has a new tank!!  ***

We made it out of an old console television set from the 70's.  A full web page on it's construction will be coming soon.

isaac.jpg (22618 bytes)This is Isaac the Garter Snake (R.I.P.).  Garter Snakes are very common in Texas and can be found in grassy areas especially nearby water.  They eat live food like crickets and small feeder fish called "tuffies".  Garter Snakes aren't very large at all.  Isaac fit very nicely in the palm of a child's hand.  They don't usually bite - their teeth are very tiny.  Garter Snakes don't use their bodies to constrict their food.  They just latch onto it head-first and swallow it quickly.   Isaac needed a large water bowl to swim in.  We would put his fish in the bowl and he would swim around in there and catch them one by one.  Unfortunately, Isaac came to grief when he ate a fish that was just too big for him.  There was nothing we could do for poor Isaac.  Once a snake has swallowed two thirds of it's prey, it's near impossible for it to spit it back out - even when it knows it's too big.  Isaac passed away and is now at rest in one of our potted plants.  Rest in peace little one.


milk_banr.gif (32375 bytes)Loki is a Honduran Milk Snake.  This is not an actual photograph of Loki.. he's a very shy snake and rarely can be seen during the day.  He's just a baby at the moment.. but he might grow to almost the same size as Zeus eventually.  He eats little baby mice that don't have any fur yet.  Loki has sharp little teeth and gets pretty feisty sometimes.   John still has two of Loki's teeth stuck under his skin!  He's a very pretty snake but not really one that can be held like Zeus can.  Loki gets very nervous and moves extremely fast.  We named Loki after the "God of Mischief".   It's a very appropriate name for such mischievous snake!

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Loki checking out Brooke's Leg Loki & Brooke Loki being a wiggle Loki's House

Young Loki has grown quite a bit and has moved up to Zeus' old 20 Gallon tank.  He still has his favorite Mayan Temple house to dwell in for familiarity,  but has a bit more space to stretch out.  Loki now eats full sized adult mice.


calclio.jpg (40592 bytes)Meet Calliope & Clio! They're our  baby Ball Pythons.  The only way we can tell them apart - Calliope has a black spot within the tan stripe on the back of her neck. The same stripe on Clio has no spot. Calliope is very inquisitive.  She likes to sniff around and is frequently out exploring her tank and watching what's going on in our bedroom and out the window.  Clio is a bit more reserved and prefers to stay curled up in her hide-box where it's nice and warm.  Pythons eat fully grown mice - so do baby pythons like Calliope and Clio! They have very powerful jaws indeed.  Our girls both have a very placid nature and enjoy being held - especially together. Sometimes they're very difficult to separate.

calclio2.jpg (72927 bytes)Calliope & Clio will probably grow as large as five feet in length.  At the moment they're only a little over one foot long. With proper care, Pythons live a very long time. Hopefully these girls will still be around when the kids all graduate from College!  I'm sure they will be.




It's dinner time for Calliope & Clio!  Click on the thumbnails below to see larger versions of these images.

Sorry they're a little blurred.. the trouble with action shots!

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Calliope first....


down the hatch..


The Python Abode

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Clio's turn.. Only the feet left.. and the tail! scrumptious.. Another of the Python Abode!

~ Artemis was our third baby Ball Python.  He was brought to us by a girl who found him in her apartment complex garden.  He was very thin and frightened.  He probably hadn't eaten in weeks or even months.  He's eating well now, has put on weight and is quickly catching up to Clio and Calliope in the size department! Photos of little Artie are coming soon! He has since been adopted out to our good friends Eric and Kimberley.  They are avid reptile fans and dote on little Artie.~


This is Madonno.. yes, he was once called Madonna - but later was discovered to be male.  Madonno belongs to our friend Nigel.  She moved to a new apartment and the folk there don't take too kindly to large snakes of any kind.  Madonno is pretty old - about 14 years now.  He's very gentle and moves slowly unless he's in the bathtub with a big rat.  We will be looking after Madonno for an indefinite period.  Someday, Nigel will leave her apartment and will once again be able to have Madonno in her care.

This photo is of Madonno's skin.  This is only about two thirds of it - he managed to mash the front third entirely!  To give you an idea of Madonno's size, our dining table is about 7' long.


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This is Sydney.  He's a Bearded Dragon also known as Pogona Vitticeps (Latin).    I adopted Sydney from my work because he has a club foot and cannot be sold.  He's very cute, loves to be petted and has such an inquisitive personality.  Sydney is primarily an insectivore - he eats small crickets and mealworms.  When he grows up a bit, he'll eat more green leafy vegetables.  He's in an aquarium set up with an arid environment - dry and very warm. 

Brooke supervises Julian and Sydney while they enjoy some snuggle time.

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The Bearded Dragon Family Grows...

John called one night before he left work..  "Baby, Rudy wants me to stop in at his place on the way home so I can help him catch one of his snakes.   It got out and his dad is freaking out about it.  He needs me to help him corner it.  Shouldn't take long".  Of course.. I was all pouty about it.. no fair that he gets to go play with snakes without me!! When he returned home, he went straight to the bedroom and started removing his shoes.  I came in as I always do to give him big hugs and kisses and he simply looked at me and said.. "meet my little friend".  And now there are two!  Rudy never needed any help catching a rogue snake.. John went there purely to buy me a new Bearded Dragon as an early Christmas present and of course, as a little buddy for Syd to keep him company.  So here we have Sydney shown with his back to the camera.. and Squiddley facing. 

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Squiddley has beautiful bright yellow-orange markings and was slightly larger than Syd when John bought him home.  Now Syd has grown to the same size already and it's sometimes difficult to tell them apart.  At times we need to do a toe-count to know for sure!  Poor Syd.  They get along really well though.. and Sydney is beginning to display all the quirky little bearded dragon traits like head-bobbing and waving his arms at Squiddley.  Very cute indeed.

And Grows!!!!

Our youngest and smallest addition to the Bearded Dragon family is "Nancy".  I got suckered in to taking on another one.  She was put in with some others that were much larger and was bullied.  Her left arm is a little swollen.. but should heal with time and some TLC.  As you can see by these photos, she loves Sydney and Squiddley and they love her right back.  Between the three of them, they eat a dish of salad greens each day, about 50 mealworms a day and four dozen crickets each week.  They also like to nibble on pellet food every now and then.

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Click on the thumbnails below to see larger images.

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The new Bearded Dragon Tank.  It's a 40 Breeder tank - half glass half mesh top.

This photo shows the retaining wall (made from river stones and aquarium silicon) which separates the sand/basking side of the tank from the feeding area which is floored with reptile carpet. This reduces the risk of impaction.

The mesh side has their basking area under a zoo-med incandescent basking lamp and a UVA/UVB bulb for calcium metabolizing.

And shrinks again..

Kimberley and Eric have also taken on Squiddley for us because he was becoming very aggressive toward little Nancy.  We now have all of our dragons in separate tanks where they can live peacefully without hormones taking over.  We miss Squiddley.. but he has an exceptional home where he's very spoilt and loved.

Here are some updated photographs of Syd and Nancy

.. notice how orange Nancy (in the centre) is compared to Syd's grey colouring. In the photo on the right, Syd was displaying his manly temper.  His beard turns jet black when he's in a stinky mood.



These two precious little bundles of energy are our new hatchling Madagascan Giant Day Geckos.  One of my customers gave me a pair of eggs about.. well.. it was weeks ago.  He just said "here's a present for you.  See if they hatch".  Day Gecko eggs (unlike most reptile eggs) need to be kept dry during incubation.  Sydney's tank was the perfect hatchery for these guys.  As hatchlings, they are already the size of a small anole or house gecko.  They can reach up to 12" in length.  At the moment, they are eating Gerber peaches and bananas and flightless fruit flies.  I looked up the price for these little geckos.. anywhere from $70 - $120 USD.  That's one heck of a present!  Thanks Mike.  I'll spoil them rotten!

As yet, these guys don't have names.  Because they are far too young to be sexed, we need to come up with something that will work either way.  If anyone has any name ideas, please send them to us using the "email John and Brooke" link at the top of the page.  I'd call it a competition, but all you'd really win is the prestige!

Here are some newer photographs of the babies in their new habitat.  We're using Repti-bark for substrate, a mix of both artificial and live plants to maintain humidity and strategically slanted rocks to provide both a hiding space (as demonstrated below!) and a slope for water droplets from above to collect for drinking.  They are both eating small crickets now as well as their mushy fruit diet!  They're growing fast. forum / message boards     Herps of Texas Species / County Location List      South Texas Herpetology Association

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