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  • Eating habits

    Ive determined that I just have a picky eater. My snake has a 55 gallon tank kept at 92 degrees (basking area). I mist him everyday. As far as I know the only thing I do that you guys dont approve of is feed stunned live prey instead of prekilled frozen. ANYWAYS, u guys have heard all this before. But more importantly as much as I am pissed about buying rats he doesnt eat, im really worried about his health. Also this is his growth years and Im afraid that its going to effect his growth as an adult. I dont want to powerfeed but at the rate im going ( 3 rats in 3 months ) he may not make 5 foot! PLEASE help!

  • #2
    Re: Eating habits

    First off some questions for you......
    How/Where are you measuring your temps?
    (92° is too hot for your boa and it could be hotter/colder if using one of those cheap thermometers from the pet shop)

    What is the acutal humidity readings in the enclosure?
    (Even though you mist daily the levels may be too low)

    Have you tried to offer frozen/thawed?
    (Maybe it will eat that)

    Are you feeding in the enclosure or in a feeding tub?
    (Sometimes snakes dont feel "secure" in the clear plastic tubs)

    What kind of substrate are you using?

    Have you provided enough hides for the snake so that it can feel safe and secure?
    (At a minumum one on the hot side and one on the cool side.)

    PS: If your snake does not take the pre-killed with in an hour or so after it being offered you can freeze it and save it for the next feeding.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Eating habits

      Where does your snake spend most of it's time in the cage ? What are the emps at that area also ?
      How old/size is the snake right now ?
      How long have you had the snake ?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Eating habits

        Where does your snake spend most of it's time in the cage ? What are the emps at that area also ?
        How old/size is the snake right now ?
        How long have you had the snake ?

        He spends most his time in the basking side of the cage.....the temps are uppger eighties lower 90's. my snake is probably about 21 months old.....and about 4 foot....ive had him 3 months!

        PS.....i bought another rat for him to eat in which died also.
        Hes been spending to much time in his water bowl, im getting sick of seeing him in there!~

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Eating habits

          Don't worry about him staying in his water dish all the time. I have three boa's who would rather be in the water dish then in the hide or anywhere else for that matter. You may want to check your humidity levels and make sure they are alright. But don't get too annoyed with him being in the water all they time. If he feels safer there, then let him be. My humidity levels are always between 50% and 60%, I have hides on both sides of the tank and they are still in the water dish. That's just were they feel most comfortable. Just let them be.

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          • #6
            Re: Eating habits

            im so pissed........this snake pisses me off and is about the sorriest pet ever. im seriously considering getting a burmese or getting completely out of snakes altogether....i even bought a new rat today...ive been going through this since i bought him and im almost over it altogether.

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            • #7
              Re: Eating habits

              I know the feeling but keep in mind that your snake is 4 feet long so it has eaten in the past. How are you trying to feed the snake? You said three rats in three months does that mean he has eaten three rats for you? Are you feed the right size pray? Buy three or four rats from the pet store and freeze them if your tired of going and getting more rats.


              Josh

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              • #8
                Re: Eating habits

                Snake Freak: There is obviously something going on with your setup or your snake. Once you get all the settings right and the setup comfortable for your snake the rest will all fall into place.
                Cover these things again.....
                How/Where are you measuring your temps?
                (88° max on the hot side. Measured one inch above the substrate. The cool side should be about 5° cooler.) If the hot side is at 92° that may be why the snake is always in the water bowl. It may be trying to cool off.

                What is the acutal humidity readings in the enclosure?

                Are you feeding in the enclosure or in a feeding tub?
                (Sometimes snakes dont feel "secure" in the clear plastic tubs)

                What kind of substrate are you using?

                Have you provided enough hides for the snake so that it can feel safe and secure?

                Once you get the temps and humidity right, give the snake plenty of places to hide and feel secure you may also want to try leaving your snake alone. Dont handle it for a week keep handling to a minimum, only touching the snake to clean the cage or waterbowl. After a week the snake may take the food. Have some patientce and everything will work out.

                Where are you?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Eating habits

                  Hey Freak,

                  You said you have had this snake for only 3 monthes and it has eaten for you about once a month. This is normal behavior for winter time feeding. My boa went 3 monthes without eating at all. Be patient, that appetite should catch up as things warm up outside. Also, if your snake is spending most of its time in the water dish, you may want to inspect for mites. My boa would constantly be in the dish when I had a mite problem. Got rid of the mites and she stays out of it more often now. Hope this helps...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Eating habits

                    Just stay calm. If you get upset at the snake, He will sense in and probably be scared to let it's guard down and eat. :'( Just be patient and like mltc78 said, he will eat when he's comfortable and feels secure. Plus During this time, eating habits may go down. Just offer him a rat every couple of weeks, sooner or later he'll take it. Plus if he is not taking food, don't offer it to him all the time. Spread the offerings further apart, maybe every 2-3 weeks. As long as he is not losing a lot of weight and is still relatively active, he should be fine. Patience is the key!!!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Eating habits

                      Definently ,BE PATIENT,
                      How long since he ate last ?
                      Are you feeding in a seperate enclosure ?

                      You might try covering his feeding cage , be sure it is up to 82*F ,or a little more .
                      You might also try slightly smaller rats , it has worked for me.
                      Just don't get too bend out over it , as long as he is in good health he will be eating again soon.
                      good luck , and have fun.
                      later
                      Dan

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Eating habits

                        Hey you guys, thanks for your responses and help. You guys are great. Well, its not that Im not a patient person but its nurve rackin, i mean Im use to having a pet and be worried about getting it food or id feel bad for not feeding it and he reminds me of a little kid who waiste their food!~ Welll......as far as my husbandry goes...I think im about flawless. I'll give u all the info I can so u can picture the setup. I have him in a 55 gallon setup, his substrate is assorted....I have some of the pet store stuff, but I wanted to add to the feel of him being an exotic animal so I put a good sized rock in there....some gravel, and some like flower bed type mulch consisting of the shrubs and stick like things and not so much the dirt. I did this to add to his cages appearance but If you guys say I Should go with the normal pet store substrate ill do so. I think its safe to say for the most part its about 1 inch thick as well. His eating can range from the mid 80's lower 90s in the basking area and mid seventies and lower 80s in the cool area...depending on the positioning of the heat lamp its' self. Im not sure about exact humidity level but im sure its fine because....I mist him regulary, he spends a fair amount of time, and I put him in the tub prolly about once or twice a week. ( bath tub ) The heat bulb its self is the reptile glow ( i think its something like that ) 100 watt bulb. ( pet store said 150 may be to to hott for a 55 gallon, i took his word for it ) The only problem I think he may have is that he may have a small mite problem but it doesnt seem to be anything to be overly worried about. I put him in the tub and dry him off to help with the mite problem in hopes the water takes them off of him. I may take him to the vet if i think it gets to bad or something to really and truly be overally concerned bout.

                        Well then........
                        He ate yesterday which was tuesday, I had the rat in his cage and the rats that I have are live and i shake them up pretty good before putting in but it seems not to be that needed for most of them have been really tame rats and havent even attempted to bite him. I seen one rat try to bite him one time but he took the rat out before it could even think about it...and one bit him but didnt even leave a mark. Anyways the somewhat humorous thing about it is that I had the rat in his cage for a good while without showing any interest at all in the rat and the rat himself prolly thought he was a new pet or something cause the last time i seen him he was sleeping in the corner and bathing himself. Well I stepped outside and didnt take the rat out cause i didnt think he would eat it anyway or didnt really fear him hurting my snake. Well i was out there about 10-20 minutes, come back in the rats gone and the snakes in his usual corner where i can I see his bulge....as if nothing happened. Needless to say I was happy he ate! but the thing is.....im sure he will be an *** the next time i try feed too...hes only ate on a weekly schedule twice...and that was 2 consecutive thursdays, since then....its been anyones guess!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Eating habits

                          Dude,  get rid of the dirt, sticks, and crap
                          disinfect the cage and everything in it and use provent o mite
                          use aspen bedding or newspaper
                          DON'T feed the snake live rats
                          buy frozen...  www.cajunmice.com
                          read every post in this forum
                          listen to Lori

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Eating habits

                            Have you not read or listened to a single thing anyone has recommended to you on this site or in this thread??????? :-/ :-/

                            DO NOT feed live to your snake. At an absolute minimum feed pre-killed but even better frozen/thawed. If you dont want to listen to any advice here and insist on feeding live DO NOT leave a live rat in the cage with your snake unattended. In the time it takes you to blink and eye that rat could have killed your snake.... or when you snake constricted the rat the rat could have gnawed a whole in the side of your snake faster than you could imagine.

                            Next.... MITES ARE A BIG DEAL! You need to get rid of them immediately! Go to the store today and get some Provent-a-mite, Black Knight, or Sawyers Tick Spray. Read the information here on getting rid of mites or check the care sheet section at http://www.redtailboa.net for some more information.


                            Oh and here are some pics.... post these on the wall above your cage so you can see them the next time you think about feeding live.
                            This one was taken in by "ravnos" as a rescue.....

                            This one was submitted by someone named shy4574 to redtailboa.net.....


                            Here is some more reading for ya....
                            http://www.reptilehaven.net/modules....&pageid=32

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Eating habits

                              OK.. One thing you said sticks out REALLY FAR for me here.....

                              The only problem I think he may have is that he may have a small mite problem but it doesnt seem to be anything to be overly worried about.

                              That covers TWO of your problems that you are having with your snake from what i have seen posted here by you.

                              1. There is a health issue going on with your snake that NEEDS/REQUIRES your IMMEDIATE attention to eradicate/resolve it.

                              2. Your snake's feeding issues. they are actually multi-faceted from what can be seen in your posting here on the issues.

                              In order to get your snake to the point that you quite obviously would like to see going on with it..There are a few things you need to do..

                              1. Get rid of ALL of the mites !

                              2. Get the snake feeding in a safe / healthy / secure manner for it.

                              Basically what you need to do is the following for your snake....

                              The Cage...

                              REMOVE EVERYTHING from the snakes cage. Clean the cage THOROUGHLY using a bleach / water mix [ I use straight bleach and have for years here though] A mix will do fine though.] Make sure that EVERY lil crevice and the cover also is done..inside AND out. Here's one of my pages info in an
                              in-depth directive for cleaning the cage when mites are present....
                              CLEAN THE CAGE. Remove ALL items from inside the cage. I use 100% BLEACH to clean my cages. NOTE: BLEACH IS NON-TOXIC ONCE IT IS COMPLETELY DRY. First rinse the cage with HOT water to rinse it out. Next use 100% BLEACH to clean the cage, making sure that you get ALL the little crevices clean also, then rinse with HOT water again. I repeat this 2-3 times. Once you have cleaned the cage with bleach use paper towels to help dry it. Use each paper towel for one swipe in the tank, then grab a new paper towel. Let the tank air dry completely now. You may use thebleach to clean the items in your cage depending what you had in there. Waterbowls can be cleaned using bleach, BUT THEY MUST BE 100% DRY BEFORE YOU PLACE DRINKING WATER IN THEM FOR YOUR SNAKE.I rinse them out before using for drinking water after they dry also. Set up your snake's cage now with the bare minimum of items in it. I only place the waterbowl, hide [ if absolutely neccessary] back into the cage. Also use newspaper, papertowel or white butcherblock paper for a substrate at this time. By using such for substrate you will be able to tell if your snake still has mites. I continue to use such for about 4 weeks after treatment before using any other type of substrate in this cage again.

                              Eradicate the mites....

                              There are multiple methods for doing this.. Just soaking the snake in water like you have said you are doing is NOT one of them that is tried and true and results in eradication of the mites. Basically the methods I have np reccomending and have utilized are the following ones....

                              **Mineral OIL [ It MUST be removed from the snake. Most people do NOT follow this step and then think that the oil is causing problems for their snake when it goes and sheds out in one scale at a time type sheds. If the oil is removed from the snake, then this does NOT happen at all] Here's directions for using this method on one of my pages.... http://www.koalaskritters.net/caresheetsmites.html

                              **Sawyers spray : Here's my pages relative to this one..[Note : The can is now a shiny purple one. Change in marketing is all. It is also now labeled as an insect spray, not just tick spray.]
                              http://www.koalaskritters.net/sawyersuse.html

                              **Provent a Mite : Used the same way as the Sawyers is used.

                              Here's a page that compares the Sawyers and the Provent a Mite.....
                              http://www.koalaskritters.net/sawyersvspam.html

                              Some others also use the product called Black Knight. I do NOT use it and I also do NOT reccomend using it either. Also another method is the use of a chemical referred to as Vapona. Some people reccomend this one.. I have found that it is usually NOT used by people in the correct manner and their snakes become ill etc from them doing such , snakes dieing in some cases even. So I never reccomend people to use this method at all due to such.

                              Question for ya.. What is that pet store cubstrate that you are using in your snake's cage ? It isn't the reptibark by any chance is it ??

                              Once you have accomplished the above with your snake and it's cage...You will be ready to get the snake established on a regular feeding schedule also at that time. Start with glancing through this page...http://www.koalaskritters.net/livefeeding.html

                              Just because you have fed your snake live previously, does NOT mean that your snake is safe when doing such and you should continue with this practice in your feeding husbandry :-/ You have stated that your snake has been bitten previously also. That alone could relate to a snake going onto a feeding schedule like you have described for your snake. Doesn't matter that the snake wasn't harmed actually by the rodent, it is the fact that the rodent tried that matters to the snake. That alone can make the snake feel unsecure and refuse to feed. Thereby choosing security over eating. Your snake should not have to make such a choice at all. It should be eating and feel secure at all times in / under your care. It will accomplish such by what you do or do not do / provide for it. best venue is to go f/k or f/t for your snake in it's feedings. By f/k I am refering to DEAD prey , NOT stunned prey.

                              Also please note that mites can cause health problems for your snake..including up to death of the snake. So mites are NOT a thing to not worry about at all either like you stated. If you do NOT eradicate them, they will cause harm to your snake..at some point.

                              You also need to get yourself a hygrometer so that you KNOW what the humidity is in the snake's cage too.
                              If your snake continues to soak in the water bowl AFTER the mites are gone / eradicated..then you also need to bring that basking temp down some for the snake as well. Doing that and if the snake ceases to soaki all the time, then that would be your clue that your snake thinks it's temps are too much on the high side and need to come down some for it.






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