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Old 11-06-17, 07:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Sep-2017
Posts: 14
Talking Cryptic Basking Questions

I was reading through some forums and saw some interesting Info on Cryptic basking by @TRD , And I was wondering how one would provide this kind of arrangement. Is it possible that I could see some pictures of how people set up their tanks to allow for this type of basking? (So that the snake is comfortable and preforms this action)

Sorry for any weird wording I wasn't really sure how to ask this question.

Originally Posted by TRD View Post
Also, I like to add to this that my kingsnakes are active during daytime, they bask and thermoregulate constantly.

The thing with kingsnakes is that they are small, they have no real defenses against predation (f.e. venom, or size for that matter). They will not bask/thermoregulate normally in a typical kingsnake terrarium where there's too much open space and no cover.

If you make your basking site covered, like f.e. putting fine branches overhead, leaves & etc. around, they will utilize it properly. They will not openly bask, that is not their nature. This behavior is called cryptic basking and is employed by many of the smaller colubrids as safety precaution.

I wish one day they purge the internet of the 10+ year old information being copy-pasted as current .. :\ I fell for that same trap too, I changed all my understanding in the last year, I now have a bunch of snakes that are active during the day being a snake, and not just hiding until lights-off.
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Old 11-07-17, 12:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec-2015
Posts: 2,217
Re: Cryptic Basking Questions

Simply provide lots of cover from branches and and plants (artificial or real) and lots of ground cover - leaf litter, *very* dried pine needles etc.
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Old 11-07-17, 03:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec-2016
Posts: 716
Re: Cryptic Basking Questions

I basically stuff the vivariums full of plants.

Cryptic basking is basically a lot of stuff at or around the basking site that the snake can use.. particularly overhead, so it feels covered, but it still allows heat/UV light to penetrate. Imagine sun shining on a tree and on the floor below you'd find patches of shadow and sunlight. Many snakes and reptiles utilize this basking behavior to avoid predation.

F.e. this is from my MBK who either lays right under that plant all out, or throws out a hoop to utilize the UV and heat light. There are more spots like that throughout the vivarium. The only time he's 100% hiding is when he goes in shed.. if he's not then he's basking in the day continuously.

Edit: forgot to mention... if you wish to keep plants under a heat lamp that would at short range easily cross 60C surface temps on the leaves of it, all you need to add is ventilation. I use CPU fans on a controller to provide a soft breeze and plenty of water and the plants will do just fine.

Another edit: of course enough cover should be provided throughout the vivarium. Not just the basking site.

Last edited by TRD; 11-07-17 at 03:24 PM..
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