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  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran Charles8088's Avatar
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    Is it worth breeding for not too many snakes?

    Maybe this is too generic of a question...

    But, how many snakes should one have, to make it cost-efficient to raise your own feeder mice? I only have 2 snakes, with a third maybe coming in a few months. I'm sure I'd save money breeding my own mice, but with a small collection I'm sure the amount I'd save is probably not worth the trouble... being that its so easy to go to a show, buy about 50-100 feeders at about 50 cents each, and throw them in the freezer.
    0.1.0 Mexican Black Kingsnake (Tynee)
    0.1.0 BEL Ball Python (Luna)
    0.0.6 Hermit Crabs <--- my son's

    - Woma Python
    - Boa BCI
    - Russian Rat Snake
    - Eastern Indigo
    - Black Milk Snake
    - False Water Cobra
    - Thai Bamboo Rat Snake
    - Western Hognose
    - Rhino Rat Snake
    - Kenyan Sand Boa

  2. #2
    Registered User Roux's Avatar
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    Re: Is it worth breeding for not too many snakes?

    I have seen people suggest 10ish+ snakes to consider breeding feeders.
    Everone has different variables that might make them decide to do it with more or less snakes.
    Some people do it because they enjoy mice and rats, and want to do it for fun.
    Not sure if this is a useful answer lol. If it based on money, just add up your costs for each option and you will know what will work for you. Breeding has initial start up costs but imo pays itself off.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

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  4. #3
    BPnet Senior Member EL-Ziggy's Avatar
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    Re: Is it worth breeding for not too many snakes?

    I have (8) snakes and I don't see any advantages to breeding my own feeders. The time, space and energy just aren't worth it imo. Not to mention the fact that I don't really like rodents. I spend about $600 annually to fed all my snakes f/t. That's only about 6.25 per month/per snake. How much coin is there to be saved?
    Last edited by EL-Ziggy; 02-08-2018 at 05:28 PM.
    3.2 Carpet Pythons, 1.1 Bullsnakes
    1.0 Olive Python 1.0 Scrub Python,
    1.0 BI, 0.1 BO,

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    Charles8088 (02-08-2018),Craiga 01453 (02-08-2018),Ronniex2 (02-09-2018),Roux (02-08-2018)

  6. #4
    BPnet Veteran 67temp's Avatar
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    As roux said there are a bunch of variables that will determine if it's worth it for you.

    The first being the price you can get frozen feeders for and availability. Some people don't know any better and will happily pay full retail price from places like petco. Others are use to buying online and just paying the shipping. You mentioned you have local shows and can get frozen cheap. Some people don't have the local show option.

    Second consideration is to plan what size feeders you may need in the future to feed your herp. Obviously you don't need 100 frozen pinkies for a snake that will be moving up to fuzzies in the next month. With breeding you can retain the feeders till they are the size that you need.

    Another consideration is initial investment in getting set up for feeder breeding. One person might be able to scrounge together most of the required things like water bottles, caging, and even the feeders for free. While the next person might want to go out and buy all new stuff from the pet store. Yet another person might decide to build a rack system for their feeders.

    The deciding factor for me was when the number of snakes got to a point that you could keep a happy ratio of mice to snakes. What I mean by that is you don't need a colony of 1.3 feeders for one snake. That one snake will never be able to keep up unless you euthanize/freeze them. A 1.1 colony of feeders for 4 snakes would be putting a lot of stress on the female since she will be in constant production but the time between births you will still be buying frozen feeders. I'd consider the happy ratio of having enough snakes that can eat a litter of feeders a week, and having enough feeder colonies to be able to produce a litter almost every week or two. That's kind of where that number 10 comes into play (estimated average litter size to feed each week). The more snakes and feeders you have the more wiggle room you have incase you get to heavy on the feeders you can slow production of feeders or feed off some of the feeder/breeders.

    Some people also just like having control over what they feed to their snake.
    Silent Hill Reptiles and Rodents

    SD reticulated pythons, 1.3 Carpet pythons
    13.20 Corn snakes, 1.1 cali kings, 1.1 black house snakes, 1.1 trans-pecos, 1.1 northern pines, 1.1 Japanese rat
    5.1 Balls, 1.0 orange Halloween ATB, 1.0 bci

  7. #5
    Telling it like it is! Stewart_Reptiles's Avatar
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    I started breeding when I reached 10 snakes, of course I knew it was gonna become a necessary evil back then since I also intended to breed snakes.

    It's worth it but it is work, you are in control of the quality, you always have the perfect size feeder never have to worry about shortage.

    Now would I do it for 2 snakes, no I would not I would have the snake on F/T and by bulk a year worth at the time.
    Deborah Stewart

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    Ronniex2 (02-09-2018)

  9. #6
    BPnet Senior Member artgecko's Avatar
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    IMO, the time is the big factor. Do you have free time to clean tubs each week (at least 1x a week), check water and food daily? You would need tubs for each m/f colony to breed and holding tubs for m and f, so that can add up to a lot of time spent cleaning and maintaining quickly.

    I'd also look into the setup cost, like others said. Price all the equipment, tubs, or racks, and look for a local food source.. either mazuri, harland teklad, or the dog food some use from tractor supply (doggy bag I think). Also consider a CO2 euthanizing setup as well. Mine cost about $40 for all the pieces (tub, coiled remote hose, and CO2 canister for paintball). Even if you plan on feeding live, you would need some means to euthanize extra feeders to freeze or rats that have health issues that are too large to feed off, etc.

    I have 12 snakes. I plan on breeding in about 2 years and will probably look at setting up to breed feeders again at that point. I was breeding on a very small scale last year, but hated the time it too to maintain them and the odor... If I had a shed for them, I might still be breeding, but seeing as they were in my house, I was too sensitive to the smell.

    I buy my feeders in bulk online and typically get about 6 months worth at a time. For me, the cost is worth it right now, but in the future that may change as my numbers grow and I get hatchlings that will only take live as their first meal.
    Currently keeping:
    1.0 BCA 1.0 BCI
    1.0 CA BCI 1.1 BCLs
    0.1 BRB 1.2 KSBs
    1.0 Carpet 0.5 BPs
    0.2 cresteds 1.2 gargs
    1.0 Leachie 0.0.1 BTS

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