Meraukes are considered the longest species of Tiliqua, often exceeding 24 inches; I have both a male and a female at just a hair under 28 inches long.
Meraukes tend to be very docile, especially adults that have grown up being handled.
For some reason, Meraukes have proven difficult to breed in captivity in the US; nobody knows exactly why that is.
On my raised basking platforms, the temps generally read in excess of 105°F, with the rest of the tank ranging from mid 90’s on the warm side, to mid/upper 70’s on the cool side. Year round.
Meraukes are known for getting health issues (Mystery Illness with eye and toe inflammation among them) if humidity is not kept up.
I personally have a MistKing humidifier installed to mist each of my tanks, and therefore I have been able to keep my skinks on any type of substrate, but generally Meraukes are a breed that do not do well on the drier substrates, such as aspen.
I would highly suggest keeping humidity at a minimum of 50%, but it’s great if you can achieve higher humidity than that without keeping substrate continually soaked throughout the tank.
I do not use a hygrometer to measure humidity; as long as you inspect your skink’s eyes and feet periodically for signs of redness, swelling, and cracking, don’t see any respiratory illness symptoms, and don’t see any issues with shedding, then you can rest assured your humidity is high enough for your skink.
Gigas species of BTS are equatorial enough that they don’t experience hardly any temperature drops at any season. Therefore it has proven unnecessary to brumate Meraukes in order for them to mate or produce young.
I do not manipulate the temperatures inside the skinks’ tanks during the winter; I leave all heating elements the same. Due to my house being somewhat cooler during the winter months, the ambient temps inside the tanks generally drop around 5 degrees. My adults tend to slow down somewhat and eat a bit less voraciously, but that’s about all that changes.
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- Merauke Mama
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