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  • [General Care] One says one another says different??

    Hello

    I recently brought a 7 year old 4-5ft red tail boa from a family member, i have been after this snake for a few years now.

    But it came to my concern that things may not be right as i visited the shop to by a mat stat and some food.

    My problem is that now im being told completely different things by more then one person and im now worried to which i should be doing/buying.

    So if you wouldn't mind answering some questions for me please.

    Firstly, i have been told to feed the snake one medium sized rat a week yet someone else told me to feed the snake once every two weeks. I ain't to bothered about getting the full size out of my snake (infact its at round the perfect size to what i would like now) so feeding it once every two weeks sounds like a good idea to me but i don't want to under feed the snake or make him hungry? Up to yet my family have been feeding it once every week. which should i opt for?

    2, I have handled the snake once about 2-3 years ago and often looked into its encloser. My family told me not to handle it until after 2 days to give it time to settle in, others have told me a week and someone else said 1 month. Which is best?

    3, The important one, as far as i can tell my family have keep this snake in a 4x2x2ft encloser with one heat mat under aspron thats all under its log cave for 7 years. The heat mat is controlled by a mat stat. Now the shop i brought my mat stat from (as family had more then one encloser controlled by there stat) said using heat mats thats designed to go into the encloser is bad for the snake as can burn him and it will not get the encloser up to temp. Now all the advice i have had im confident the encloser air at the middle point should read around 29 degress's (so the hot end should be about 32 and the cold end around 26) at the minute its reading 20 degress which concerns me loads. Family say its fine he will control his own temp and just stay on the mat untill it gets to hot then move out to cool down. one other site said using a mat like this is fine yet others say to use a heat lamp. Now i want the best for the snake and want him out and about not just hiding trying to keep warm all the time, so what should i now do?

    4, I plan to build the snake a larger encloser but i have had mixed advice. Family say making it out of redwood will be fine but to varnish the inside, one site say using redwood at all is bad for the snake and the shop says its fine but don't varnish the inside. Any advice on materials would be great?

    Thank you in advance for any advice and help.
    Alan

    PS the snake is called bowman

  • #2
    Re: One says one another says different??

    (1)A snake of that age should eat at least one large rat a week.A medium seems small to me.
    (2) The general rule is to give 48hrs after feeding to handle your boa's.If it is a larger prey more time well be needed. If the prey has left a swell in the belly after 48hrs then give it more time before handling.
    (3) If the heat pad is controlled by a thermostat then it should be fine as it will keep the temperture a the desired temp and wont get to hot. One without a controller could be dangerous for sure.
    (4) Use melamine or just buy a Boaphileplastics cage.
    Hope that helps a little

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: One says one another says different??

      It seems Todd pretty much covered it all. But one thing that I kindly disagree with is the feeding intervals. At that size and age of your snake, if you only feed him once every two weeks of the appropiatelly sized rat it will be just fine. Appropriate size rat being no larger than the biggest girth of your snake and should leave a small lump.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: One says one another says different??

        Yes thank you.

        How long until i should handle him after the move? he moved two days ago which is the bit im getting different advice with the 2days 1 week 1 month.

        Is the tank temp to low at 18-20 degress cel?

        Alan

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: One says one another says different??

          Sorry, 18-20C is like 64-68F right??
          If so, then yes that is too low, the temp should be somewhere between 79-82F ambiant and 89-92F basking area.

          About the move, I have also heard mixed opinions and have never had to move any of my snakes. But I give mine 1 week to adjust when i first get them. Some people say as long as a month, but one week seems to work with me.
          Last edited by cwaybrown; 11-30-2009, 03:39 PM. Reason: clarification

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: One says one another says different??

            Originally posted by cwaybrown View Post
            It seems Todd pretty much covered it all. But one thing that I kindly disagree with is the feeding intervals. At that size and age of your snake, if you only feed him once every two weeks of the appropiatelly sized rat it will be just fine. Appropriate size rat being no larger than the biggest girth of your snake and should leave a small lump.

            Hi thank you

            Do you think its wise for me to feed the snake very 2 weeks?

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: One says one another says different??

              Originally posted by cwaybrown View Post
              It seems Todd pretty much covered it all. But one thing that I kindly disagree with is the feeding intervals. At that size and age of your snake, if you only feed him once every two weeks of the appropiatelly sized rat it will be just fine. Appropriate size rat being no larger than the biggest girth of your snake and should leave a small lump.
              Ditto on the 2 weeks and size of prey and you sound kinda new to this which is not a bad thing by any means but there is something else you should really practice, are you ready, DO NOT feed the snake live prey or you will just be asking for Vet bills at least never leave live prey with your snake unatended or your snake may become the prey
              Good Luck and Congrads
              Harmon

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: One says one another says different??

                Originally posted by H_Moss View Post
                Ditto on the 2 weeks and size of prey and you sound kinda new to this which is not a bad thing by any means but there is something else you should really practice, are you ready, DO NOT feed the snake live prey or you will just be asking for Vet bills at least never leave live prey with your snake unatended or your snake may become the prey
                Good Luck and Congrads
                Harmon
                I second the no live prey!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: One says one another says different??

                  Originally posted by cwaybrown View Post
                  Sorry, 18-20C is like 64-68F right??
                  If so, then yes that is too low, the temp should be somewhere between 79-82F ambiant and 89-92F basking area.

                  About the move, I have also heard mixed opinions and have never had to move any of my snakes. But I give mine 1 week to adjust when i first get them. Some people say as long as a month, but one week seems to work with me.
                  Hi thank you

                  Yes 64-68F thought so, the heat mat obviously isn't heating up the tank, the pre owner says it takes time for it to get up to temp but i dont see how when the stat is turning off the heat mat every 5 mins.

                  I take it when you have moved snakes they was yours before the move?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: One says one another says different??

                    You'll never get a single anwser on the handling issue. Some say a few days or a week on average, some say two. It depends a lot on how you recieved it too. For example, I bought a new snake at store and handled him right away without any issues. I also recieved an 8 foot boa from a friend 2 years ago who could not keep up with the demands of the snake and I handled it right away after getting it too, even though I never saw it before.

                    There are some snakes I'm getting shipped in, and I do not plan to handle them at all for atleast 3 days but I'm aiming for a week (minus getting them in enclosure). I think it really depends on the snake and the stress moving it might have caused. I'm sure some won't agree with handling right away but I've never had a problem doing that regardless of the size.

                    I would also say at 7 years old 4-5 foot seems small to me. It should be on large rats at the least. If you want to do 2 weeks vs 1 I don't see a problem as long as the food is the right size. Like someone mentioned you should see a lump, and if not, you need to take it up one level or double the dosage of the smaller one at the very least.

                    For your temps a good baseline should be 80-82F (26.6-27.7 C) and the basking areas should be around 86-90 F (28-32C)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: One says one another says different??

                      Originally posted by The Gun View Post
                      I take it when you have moved snakes they was yours before the move?
                      Correct, and i've never had a problem with a week for adjustment. But if i'm wrong than someone on here will correct me.

                      And as for the temp problem, what type of enclosure do you currently have Bowman in??

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: One says one another says different??

                        Originally posted by H_Moss View Post
                        Ditto on the 2 weeks and size of prey and you sound kinda new to this which is not a bad thing by any means but there is something else you should really practice, are you ready, DO NOT feed the snake live prey or you will just be asking for Vet bills at least never leave live prey with your snake unatended or your snake may become the prey
                        Good Luck and Congrads
                        Harmon

                        Hi thank you.

                        Yes im new, this is my first snake and thought with family guiding me but the more advice and more reading i do the more i get worried its not been treated how it should have (via lack of knowledge not as an act of evil).

                        Live pray is something i don't think its had oftern, i already have froozen rats ready i was also told not to go near the snake before getting the sent of its pray off me or it will mistake me for its food

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: One says one another says different??

                          You should post some pics of Bowman when you can.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: One says one another says different??

                            RedTailBoas Presents the Ultimate Boa Care Guide!

                            Click on this link,it is a care guide that will answer alot of your questions.
                            Harmon

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: One says one another says different??

                              Originally posted by cwaybrown View Post
                              Correct, and i've never had a problem with a week for adjustment. But if i'm wrong than someone on here will correct me.

                              And as for the temp problem, what type of enclosure do you currently have Bowman in??

                              So as it was moved to become mine i better leave it longer then a week?? it was a well handled snake by the pre owner.

                              Its a 4x2x2ft melamine encloser with glass font (sliding BUT LOCKED) with a 8" top mesh vent to the right

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