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  • [Feeding-General] Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

    I am fairly new to boas and want to make sure I am feeding a correct size prey on a good schedule. I bought a bcc off a member here this summer, I believe he was born early 2013. He's about 5.5 feet long and around six pounds. He was being fed m/l rats from layne labs so I have given similar sized rats every two-three weeks. Also looking for thoughts on whether I should stick to rats only or feed a variety, I do have access to whole prey quail and now rabbits. Pic from this summer and about a month ago. Thanks in advance for any advice given!




  • #2
    Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

    Best thing to do is feed food which is as thick as he is at his thickest. I believe a medium rat should be fine, but it is kinda hard to tell thickness without side by side comparisons. I think you're feeding on a good schedule because he looks healthy. Not skinny and not fat.

    I personally don't like the idea of feeding poultry because I think it makes them think raw poultry is for them. My ex fed both her ball and boa chicks for a little while and they showed more interest in my hands than I was comfortable with even after I finished washing my hands from cooking chicken.

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    • #3
      Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

      What a gorgeous BCC you have, he's off the charts handsome! As far as feeding, whatever you have been doing is working, he's in great shape. Some people feed a variety of prey items. Personally I only feed rats because that's what I have access to. The choice is entirely up to you.
      http://berkeleyknebel.wix.com/mississippimorphs

      Photo credit:Eddie Ard .....Banner Credit:Big PaPa Ernest

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      • #4
        Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

        I am a big fan of giving my boas a varied diet. I've quail as a change for years now. It can kick start a reluctant feeder. Rabbits are pretty useless to you until your boa gets very large. They're not as good for them at the size your boa could eat now.

        But there's no real need to do it. They'll be just fine eating rats their whole lives.


        -Sean in NoCal
        “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
        -Teddy Roosevelt.

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        • #5
          Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

          Thanks for all the great advice, I will keep doing what I'm doing then. I want him around for a long time and as healthy as he can be.

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          • #6
            Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

            If you can get rabbits the same weight as the rats are feeding now, you may want to start offering one every few months to get your new guy used to the idea that they are food. The rabbits will look small compared to the rats since they have thicker bones and more muscle than fat. Go by weight not width of the prey; a medium rat is equivalent a 4 oz rabbit, a large rat will be a 6 oz rabbit. My source is a local breeder so I can get rabbits from kits to adults.

            I have two boa females who were on rats for years until they got up to eating jumbos, and as a result now they just won't touch a rabbit. IMO jumbo rats have too much fat for them, but these ladies will sniff all over the rabbit and then ignore it. I wish I'd offered a young rabbit to them back when they were younger and hungry enough to hit anything that smelled like food, so they wouldn't be stuck on rats now.

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            • #7
              Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

              I've got a new rabbit source and have asked her if she can cull me small ones, currently she breeds for dog/cat food so the smallest she had on hand were almost double his current meals.

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              • #8
                Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                Rabbits are really good for larger females. It could be argued that a younger rabbit can be worse than a large rat because the younger rabbit is less developed than the rat. But a young (slightly older) rabbit is much better than an old rat which is starting to deteriorate. Thus the argument of a small rabbit over a "jumbo rat". Because your guy is a male, he shouldn't really be getting to the point where he needs food that large.

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                • #9
                  Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                  Originally posted by acephantom903 View Post
                  Rabbits are really good for larger females. It could be argued that a younger rabbit can be worse than a large rat because the younger rabbit is less developed than the rat. But a young (slightly older) rabbit is much better than an old rat which is starting to deteriorate. Thus the argument of a small rabbit over a "jumbo rat". Because your guy is a male, he shouldn't really be getting to the point where he needs food that large.
                  Yeah, that's why I suggested feeding a rabbit once every few months as opposed to a steady diet.

                  Also meat rabbit breeds have a lot more - well, meat - on them than the ones bred specifically for pets and shows.

                  Since the OP asked about quail... I've never fed them, but have read from the people who have that while the snakes usually eat them just fine, they can cause some really nasty bowel movements.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                    Originally posted by bcr_229 View Post
                    I've never fed them, but have read from the people who have that while the snakes usually eat them just fine, they can cause some really nasty bowel movements.
                    I've never had a bad poop from quail.


                    -Sean in NoCal
                    “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
                    -Teddy Roosevelt.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                      Originally posted by Pandorasdad View Post
                      I've never had a bad poop from quail.
                      I think they mean the smell.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                        Originally posted by acephantom903 View Post
                        I think they mean the smell.
                        LOL Yes this!

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                        • #13
                          Re: Looking for advice on prey size/feeding schedule.

                          Originally posted by acephantom903 View Post
                          I think they mean the smell.
                          Not really any worse than a 7 foot plus boa's poops already do.


                          -Sean in NoCal
                          “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
                          -Teddy Roosevelt.

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