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  1. #1
    Registered User Hydrolicious's Avatar
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    Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    I'm just curious if anybody has any personal experience with feeding a ball python anything other than mice or rats. Like small birds(even a baby chicken) or frogs or something else. It's the holiday season so I figured I could do something fun with my snake and feed him something else for once.

    My python is 3 or 4 years old, I got him when he was 1 month. He was weaned on mice, both live and frozen/thawed, and as he's grown I've increased the size and switched to rats.

    I'm not interested in trying gerbils or hamsters based on the rumors that they are addictive.

  2. #2
    Registered User Megg's Avatar
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    Re: Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    I've heard of people feeding chicks on occasion.

    Sent from my HTC One M9 using Tapatalk

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  4. #3
    bcr229's Avatar
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    I've read that in the wild they will take small birds. I haven't tried mine on chicks though.

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  6. #4
    Registered User Hydrolicious's Avatar
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    Question

    I most definitely would consider making the switch to chickens because they are cheaper and cleaner. I wouldn't have to deal with rats pooping from the store all the way to my snake's tank.

    Problem is I can only get them frozen (for $1.25!!!!!!) from my locale. I want to start with a live one or two so that my python can get a taste, smell, and feel for it's food. I'm not just going to throw a corpse in there and expect him to know what it is, lol.

    Anybody know any places that sell live chicks around the Minnesota metro area? If nothing else, there are tons of websites that stock all different breeds of chickens so I can do that - I just need to know what particular breed of chick my bro is most likely to swallow.

  7. #5
    Registered User Hydrolicious's Avatar
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    Just to clarify on my last post: moments ago I spoke with my local snake shop in depth over the phone and the guy told me about their frozen chicken supply, and that chicks ARE addictive in the same way gerbils are. On a positive note, they are so much cheaper than anything else in my area. A mouse is a few dollars; a rat is 5+ dollars depending on size; and a gerbil is like 15 bucks. For $1.25/frozen chick I can feed my python twice as much as I normally do. For my snake, estimates seem to be that 2 chicks would be the same as a small rat. $5 of frozen chicks and I can get my snake faaat lol.

  8. #6
    BPnet Veteran Jabberwocky Dragons's Avatar
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    Re: Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hydrolicious View Post
    Just to clarify on my last post: moments ago I spoke with my local snake shop in depth over the phone and the guy told me about their frozen chicken supply, and that chicks ARE addictive in the same way gerbils are. On a positive note, they are so much cheaper than anything else in my area. A mouse is a few dollars; a rat is 5+ dollars depending on size; and a gerbil is like 15 bucks. For $1.25/frozen chick I can feed my python twice as much as I normally do. For my snake, estimates seem to be that 2 chicks would be the same as a small rat. $5 of frozen chicks and I can get my snake faaat lol.
    There's a lot of problems here and you should take a step back and re-evaluate.

    -I don't understand your price comparisons. You can order frozen rats for $1.25 also...just check out any one of the hundreds of frozen rodent suppliers.

    -Chicks are not cleaner then rats. I breed rats and I breed chickens. My chickens are free range and still get fairly dirty. Chickens from a factory are cesspools of decay.

    -Finally, we know ball pythons can survive in captivity on a diet of rats or mice and thrive. While they do eat birds in the wild, birds make up just a fraction of their varied diet. You have absolutely no idea if they can thrive on a diet of solely chicks. I'm guessing they won't and this isn't a good idea.

    Getting your snake fat is not a good idea either. Work on steady body gain now with appropriate feedings of rats or mice and you'll have a healthy snake.

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  10. #7
    Don't Push My Buttons JLC's Avatar
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    I'll just add one more note to consider....and this is only something I've read from various sources, I've not ever tried it myself. Chickens/chicks make snake poop runny and very, very nasty. Doesn't necessarily mean it's "bad" for them....but the clean-up may not be worth it.
    -- Judy

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  12. #8
    BPnet Veteran DennisM's Avatar
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    Re: Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    Quote Originally Posted by JLC View Post
    I'll just add one more note to consider....and this is only something I've read from various sources, I've not ever tried it myself. Chickens/chicks make snake poop runny and very, very nasty. Doesn't necessarily mean it's "bad" for them....but the clean-up may not be worth it.
    I've heard this one a lot. My experience has been that this can be the case when feeding live chicken. I have not found this to be the case when feeding FT. I don't know why that would be. I feed FT chicken somewhat regularly to carpet and sumatran short tail pythons and I've noticed no difference in the consistency of the poop. Maybe because they still eat primarily rats/rabbits. Chicken probably makes up about 20% of their diet.

  13. #9
    Apprentice SPAM Janitor MarkS's Avatar
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    Re: Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    Quote Originally Posted by DennisM View Post
    I've heard this one a lot. My experience has been that this can be the case when feeding live chicken. I have not found this to be the case when feeding FT. I don't know why that would be.

    That's very interesting. I wonder if it's because of the bacterial load? I would imagine that live chickens contain a lot more bacteria then frozen where most of the bacteria would have been killed off by freezing.
    Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus

  14. #10
    BPnet Veteran DennisM's Avatar
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    Re: Any luck feeding a ball python something other than rodents?

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkS View Post
    That's very interesting. I wonder if it's because of the bacterial load? I would imagine that live chickens contain a lot more bacteria then frozen where most of the bacteria would have been killed off by freezing.
    I think this is a very good guess.

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