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  1. #1
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    Need some advice

    Ok here is the deal my Normal male is weighing in at 498 empty. He has been powering down food since I got him in Jan going from only 120 grams to 500 around April.
    Feeding:
    1: refused
    2: small rat
    3: refused
    4: refused
    5: 2 adult mice
    6: refused
    I feed on a 5 day schedule. Everyone else has been eating fine. I mean the pastel was off for 2 weeks but he was in shed so no biggie.
    Now he is in shed himself which I fine weird. That is all he has eaten in like a month and he is in shed?
    Well on that last feeding (tonight) I just recently go myself a colony of ASF rats and go 2 extra to experiment with. Well he refused the ASF. Not live, not stunned, not dead. So now I think to myself what is his deal? After he goes through shed I am def going to get his poo tested that is for sure but other than that what should I try.
    BTW i have tried live, f/t (warmed up), leave the f/t in there overnight, make the rat bleed, ASF's. His feeding response has gone down BIG time since switching to rats. He had a killer response on f/t mice but now he is like w/e to rats. Only takes them in they are live (maybe).
    I was thinking about getting a gerbil. I heard these are like crack. Now if I do this will he addicted and not want to eat anything else?
    As far as weight wise he has been from 475-550 since early April. He seems to be more apt to eat after I poo. Then he is all good.
    Plz help.

    Also for temps and caging.
    He is in a rack system (16 wt). The temps stay 90-93 hot and 77-79 cool i the tub but lately it has been going down to 86-87 randomly for some reason. Only does it on the top and bottom shelves. it's flexwatt cut in half but hasn't done this before except for the past 3 weeks. Thermostat is a Ranco. Building a new 41 qt and it is on the way. Should be ready by next week.

  2. #2
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    Re: Need some advice

    There is a refusal in there between 2 and 3.

  3. #3
    BPnet Veteran jjmitchell's Avatar
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    Re: Need some advice

    My brother in law is having the same kind of thing with his male normally ate like a pig... he hit the 500 mark and has slowed down.... I would not worry to much, its kinda the nature of the beast. I have a few that eat every week and a few that is every other week..... Males will start to slow down and typicaly grow slower than females in my experience

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    MitsuMike (05-05-2010)

  5. #4
    BPnet Veteran tonkatoyman's Avatar
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    Re: Need some advice

    Sometimes Balls will imprint on an animal. We have snakes that will eat anything you toss in the tub, and we have snakes that will only eat ASF. For an animal to imprint means they only recognized the one type of rodent as food. In your case mice. I suggest you return to mice to see if he starts eating again. if he does, then try taking a mouse and rubbing it all over a small rat and see what happens. That gets the mouse scent on the rat and might switch him to rats.

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    MitsuMike (05-05-2010)

  7. #5
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    Re: Need some advice

    I wasn't going to feed him til he got done shedding but up until now he has NEVER refused a meal.
    I guess ill try mice again and see what happens.
    And on a side note my ASF colony blow, not a snake in the collection likes them but my brand new black hole of a snake. Guess she will just finish off the colony. haha

  8. #6
    BPnet Veteran mommanessy247's Avatar
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    Re: Need some advice

    i thought snakes hunted by heat only...i didnt know they can tell different smells from one another. hmmm thats pretty interesting.

    my current collection
    1.2 kiddos
    1.0 better half
    0.1 mojave ball python (Nyx)
    0.1 Dumerils Boa (Hemera)
    1.0 Eastern Box turtle
    3.4.? rats (? = litter coming any day now)
    0.1 dutch rabbit (Lucy)

    my "future hopefuls"
    0.0.1 pied cockatiel 0.0.1 white bellied caique 0.0.2 guinea pigs

  9. #7
    BPnet Veteran mykee's Avatar
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    Re: Need some advice

    This is a simple one;
    You have been overfeeding your ball python so much that he finally decided that since you weren't going to stop feeding him, he should take matters into his own hands (so to speak) before you kill him with food.

    I see this all the time; someone has a baby ball python who WILL eat anything so the owner (usually a dude, this matters) figures that since the animal is willing he'll just keep feeding him so he can have the biggest yearling ever seen.
    Big mistake.
    More than likely, not only are this animals kidneys in really rough shape, you've most definitely shortened his lifespan considerably and forced him to go off food because you couldn't regulate his eating.
    Please don't come back and say you don't powerfeed, because any animal that triples in weight in three months has been powerfed.

  10. #8
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    Re: Need some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by mykee View Post
    This is a simple one;
    You have been overfeeding your ball python so much that he finally decided that since you weren't going to stop feeding him, he should take matters into his own hands (so to speak) before you kill him with food.

    I see this all the time; someone has a baby ball python who WILL eat anything so the owner (usually a dude, this matters) figures that since the animal is willing he'll just keep feeding him so he can have the biggest yearling ever seen.
    Big mistake.
    More than likely, not only are this animals kidneys in really rough shape, you've most definitely shortened his lifespan considerably and forced him to go off food because you couldn't regulate his eating.
    Please don't come back and say you don't powerfeed, because any animal that triples in weight in three months has been powerfed.
    I disagree with you on this one...feeding a young snake an appropriately sized meal every 5 days, which is what the OP said he did, is NOT powerfeeding. Powerfeeding is inserting a second prey item into the snake's mouth as it finishes swallowing the first.

    If you think about it, in the wild there are periods of time when prey is abundant, followed by times when there is less food available. Snakes are designed to eat alot when its available and fast when its not. It's also normal for subadults to go off feed, and it's fairly common for temp drops to trigger this in ball pythons.

    Also, I'd stay away from gerbils. It's going to be a huge pain if the snake imprints on gerbils and since he's in no danger of starving to death there's no reason to try them. Gerbils are also much more aggressive than rats, so feeding them live is a bad idea...

  11. #9
    BPnet Veteran cinderbird's Avatar
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    Re: Need some advice

    Quote Originally Posted by mykee View Post
    More than likely, not only are this animals kidneys in really rough shape, you've most definitely shortened his lifespan considerably and forced him to go off food because you couldn't regulate his eating.
    Please don't come back and say you don't powerfeed, because any animal that triples in weight in three months has been powerfed.
    Have any actual literature that backs any of that up?

    To the OP, some useful information: These animals will mostly eat and grow at their own rate. At 500 grams an animal that becomes a little finicky is not in danger of starving itself to death. In the western hemisphere, its starting to cool down. If your little guy is sexually mature (which at 500 grams some males can be) he's probably just more interested in possible ladies than in food. Given his feeding record, offer him a mouse or two every 7-10 days and he'll let you know when he's hungry again. I've had several males do this to me, its not a big deal.

  12. #10
    Registered User NWReptiles's Avatar
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    Feel free to skip offering every other time, until he starts to take again.

    A snake that has taken himself off of food, can be intimidated by repeated offerings, and in the process his return to feeding is slowed, not quickened.

    Since he doesn't want to eat, let him take a break. He's in no danger.
    Thomas Tremain
    NorthWest Reptiles

    13.62 various morphs
    0.2 normals

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