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Breeding Hamsters
Facts Table:

- Puberty: Male 6-8 weeks (90 g), Female 6-8 weeks (90-100g)

- Oestrous cycle 4 days. The stage of the cycle can be determined by the tenacity and opacity of vaginal discharge. The discharge is thick and opaque at the time of and after ovulation.

- Oestrus 6-10 hours (night). Heat generally begins approximately 1-2 hours after dusk on the third day of the oestrous cycle and ovulation is completed 6-10 hours after onset of psychic oestrus. The female should be placed in the cage with the male at the beginning of the dark cycle. If the female is receptive she will quickly assume a lordotic position with hindlegs spread and tail erect. If copulation does not occur within 5 minutes or if the female becomes aggressive, she is removed. If copulation occurs, the pair can be left together until such time as the female shows no further interest in mating, or shows aggressive behaviour toward the male. Males (Syrian) should not be left with females for prolonged periods, as fighting and injury may occur.

- Gestation 15-18 days. A copulation plug will be visible for a few hours after copulation.

- Litter size 4-12 pups

- Birth weight 2-3 g

- Weaning 21 days (35-40g). Oestrous cycle will not resume for the mother until a few days after her young are weaned. Young from different litters can usually be housed together until 42 days of age.

- Optimum breeding life: Females 14 months, Males up to 18 months, but fertility and chances of mating success decline after this.

Read the detailed description for more information.

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