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  1. #1
    Registered User MadTurtle's Avatar
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    2 hides different size?

    Just got my pastave today and he is making himself at home.. I currently have 2 hides.. 1 on the hot side and 1 on the cool side.. I have read on here that they need to be the same size but mine aren't at all.. He spent most of his first day in the hot hide, but I just noticed him out and about and he crawled into the cold hide and is currently just chilling out in there.. He doesn't seem to mind at all.. Should I just leave it the way it is or should I make the hides the same size?

  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran redshepherd's Avatar
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    The reason people say to have the hides the same type/size is so they don't have to choose which one feels more "secure", and they can choose just based on temps. But imo as long as both hides are the kind with one opening (and not the half log kind), it's likely fine! If he stops eating or something, then you can do something about it.

    0.1 Tanimbar Scrub Python "Pixie"
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  3. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to redshepherd For This Useful Post:

    Dezoruba (04-20-2017),MadTurtle (04-20-2017),Oxylepy (04-20-2017),Zincubus (04-21-2017)

  4. #3
    BPnet Veteran Oxylepy's Avatar
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    Okay so lemme explain the hides issue:

    Ball pythons hide to achieve a sense of security. In captivity we want them to thermoregulate, deciding where they are in the enclosure based on the temperature of the location.

    A ball python will choose a hide based on the level of security it offers as well as the temperature. By offering multiple hides of the same size, the snake chooses the temperature instead of the security. This leads to the correct level of thermoregulation.

    By having hides of different sizes, the snake will choose its hide based on the sense of security the hide offers as well as the temperature, which skews hiding towards the sense of security and away from the temperature.

    So, the same size is recommended. Now, realistically, the level this is important is subjective, as determined by the snake. If your snake doesn't mind it won't affect it. However many ball pythons, likely most, will mind, and will choose the location they feel the most secure.

    I hope that adequately explains both how important and how unimportant hide size is, placing you directly in the grey area in between, which is where you will find that a 5% difference isn't that much, but a 50% difference will matter a lot.

    End result, see if the snake is hiding in the most secure location, and see if it thermoregulates. Adjust your setup accordingly.
    Last edited by Oxylepy; 04-20-2017 at 08:56 PM.
    Ball Pythons 1.1 Lesser, Pastel
    1.0 Lesser Pastel, 0.0.7 mixed babies

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    MadTurtle (04-20-2017)

  6. #4
    Registered User MadTurtle's Avatar
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    I haven't tried to feed him yet but I will keep that in mind.. For the moment I am happy to see that he's used both.. the breeder I bought him from said he never misses a meal so I hope that continues

  7. #5
    Registered User MadTurtle's Avatar
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    That makes sense.. He has only been in there for about 12 hours so I will keep an eye on him.. With him only being in there for such a short period of time I am trying not to disturb him.. If it seems that he is going back and forth between both hides am I to believe that he doesn't seem to mind? And on the other hand if he now seems to only stay in one hide or the other that it could be a problem and I should make them both the same size?

  8. #6
    BPnet Veteran Oxylepy's Avatar
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    Correct on both accounts.

    If moving between hides, your snake is thermoregulating.
    If sticking to one hide, your snake has decided it feels safe in that hide, which means your snake may not be thermoregulating adequately, which could be an issue.
    If your snake is spending most of its time outside its hides and possibly moving around restlessly, it is likely stressed
    Ball Pythons 1.1 Lesser, Pastel
    1.0 Lesser Pastel, 0.0.7 mixed babies

  9. #7
    Registered User MadTurtle's Avatar
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    so far I've seen him crawling around only twice.. both times for only a minute or so.. just looks like he is checking everything out and then he goes back into a hide.. Thanks for the advice.. I will keep an eye on him and make any necessary adjustments if any..

  10. #8
    BPnet Veteran Oxylepy's Avatar
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    That's fine. What you want to avoid seeing is the snake aimlessly traveling around for hours each day. If it does, something is likely wrong.
    Ball Pythons 1.1 Lesser, Pastel
    1.0 Lesser Pastel, 0.0.7 mixed babies

  11. #9
    Registered User MadTurtle's Avatar
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    So it's night now and I came up to go bed and he's wondering all around. Moved one hide a little from what I see and was just crawling all around.. up and down the glass, laying on his log.. He did that for about 10 minutes that I saw then crawled back into his hot hide.. They like to explore at night?

  12. #10
    BPnet Veteran Oxylepy's Avatar
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    They like to hunt at night. That is their time. 10 minutes is fine, an hour may be fine. Five hours a day trying to find a way out is bad. There is a grey area in there. If your snake seems like it's trying to find a way out and spends a lot of time out of its hide, you have a problem.

    I'd give your snake a month before worrying about the behavior, though. New snakes will almost always poke around and check everything out, and that may actually be stress, until they settle down and get comfortable.

    As for hide size, you want something that they just barely fit in. If the snake's body only covers 50% of the hide, it's probably too big. If there is a lot of room over the snake, its probably too big. I've gotten around oversized hides before and they were prefect for the snake, but thats because they have little overhead space and they packed bedding around themselves until the hide was juuuust right.

    Again, the snake should settle down in time, if it doesn't, or won't eat, you will need to change something
    Ball Pythons 1.1 Lesser, Pastel
    1.0 Lesser Pastel, 0.0.7 mixed babies

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    MadTurtle (04-21-2017)

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