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  1. #1
    Registered User Shayne's Avatar
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    Too Much Appetite??

    So, Monty is almost 9 months old, weighs approx. 391 grams and is eating 2 adult mice (42-48 grams total) every 6-7 days. Typically, 2 days after feeding, when I walk into the room after dark, heís cocked, locked & ready to rock. Iíve determined itís not due to stress because as soon as I open the cage and he realizes Iím not there to feed, he almost immediately relaxes. I can just reach in and pick him up without a hint of aggression.

    So, is there such a thing as BPís wanting to eat TOO much? Iíve been conditioned from day 1 that theyíre notorious for being picky eaters, going on strike, etc, which is probably why Iím a bit confused.


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  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran craigafrechette's Avatar
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    I've heard of them remaining in "feed mode" for up to 48 hours after eating. I've never observed quite that long with my snakes, though. So I can't definitively say that's what you're seeing, but I suppose it could be...
    ...life is beautiful...

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  4. #3
    Registered User pretends2bnormal's Avatar
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    In my opinion, no such thing as wanting too much food. The only issue is if they are offered too much food to be healthy.

    I had a banana male I got as a 3 month old last year do exactly that with wanting food way early, or any time. He would and often still does it any day of the week. Whether that is 2 days after eating, the day before eating, the morning after he was fed, and even 30 minutes after eating where he went to hide and digest, then popped out when I walked by with someone else's meal. Needless to say, he is still a fantastic eater at 1.5 years old and over 1,000g. I think he has only refused once in December after he hit 1,000g, we had a cold snap, and he was in shed simultaneously; thought he might try fasting, but grabbed food next feeding without issue.

    I am guessing he is just really wired in to the ambush predator instinct, I think. Never pass up a meal, it may be your last for a while and all that. I always just fed him appropriately sized prey weekly and he swapped from the breeder feeding live to his first meal with me as F/T without issue and from mice to rats a few weeks later.

    He's also my only BP that will strike a room temp rat; found that out when I opened the tub to scent it better as I heated the rat with a hair dryer near it and he lunged out and almost got me. I put the rat between us to stop a second try for my hand and he took a few seconds to verify it was food and snagged it at about 75 degrees and wet.

    I've got another hatchling this year that is shaping up to be a similarly enthusiastic feeder; ironically another male.

    Pics for the fun of it.




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  6. #4
    Registered User Shayne's Avatar
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    Quote Originally Posted by craigafrechette View Post
    I've heard of them remaining in "feed mode" for up to 48 hours after eating. I've never observed quite that long with my snakes, though. So I can't definitively say that's what you're seeing, but I suppose it could be...

    Interesting. Wasn't aware of the "feed mode" but it does make sense. Also, he usually does this 7 days a week now. lol He'll come out and literally put his nose against the glass and follow my hand until he realizes I don't have anything, almost like a dog begging for a treat.

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  8. #5
    Registered User Shayne's Avatar
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    Quote Originally Posted by pretends2bnormal View Post
    In my opinion, no such thing as wanting too much food. The only issue is if they are offered too much food to be healthy.

    I had a banana male I got as a 3 month old last year do exactly that with wanting food way early, or any time. He would and often still does it any day of the week. Whether that is 2 days after eating, the day before eating, the morning after he was fed, and even 30 minutes after eating where he went to hide and digest, then popped out when I walked by with someone else's meal. Needless to say, he is still a fantastic eater at 1.5 years old and over 1,000g. I think he has only refused once in December after he hit 1,000g, we had a cold snap, and he was in shed simultaneously; thought he might try fasting, but grabbed food next feeding without issue.

    I am guessing he is just really wired in to the ambush predator instinct, I think. Never pass up a meal, it may be your last for a while and all that. I always just fed him appropriately sized prey weekly and he swapped from the breeder feeding live to his first meal with me as F/T without issue and from mice to rats a few weeks later.

    He's also my only BP that will strike a room temp rat; found that out when I opened the tub to scent it better as I heated the rat with a hair dryer near it and he lunged out and almost got me. I put the rat between us to stop a second try for my hand and he took a few seconds to verify it was food and snagged it at about 75 degrees and wet.

    I've got another hatchling this year that is shaping up to be a similarly enthusiastic feeder; ironically another male.

    Pics for the fun of it.




    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    Ahh yes, so I'm not the only one. Good to know. You've just explained my experience. Monty has struck a room temp. meal before, as well. I'm thinking he's probably staying in "predator instinct" (as you've said), and he's just very opportunistic. <counting my blessings> Hoping he'll be just like yours, always wanting. BTW, your boys are beautiful!

    Thanks for taking the time to explain your experience, as it helped.

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  10. #6
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Interesting. Wasn't aware of the "feed mode" but it does make sense. Also, he usually does this 7 days a week now. lol He'll come out and literally put his nose against the glass and follow my hand until he realizes I don't have anything, almost like a dog begging for a treat.
    I would just say "enjoy it while it lasts". When we talk about BPs being fussy eaters, it's not usually the youngsters, unless they're being stressed by over-handling
    or by being re-homed and fearful.

    If yours is digesting well & isn't looking obese or bloated, I'd say he's just a normal young ball python that's growing fast under optimal conditions, & you must be doing
    something right, eh?

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  12. #7
    Registered User Shayne's Avatar
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    I would just say "enjoy it while it lasts". When we talk about BPs being fussy eaters, it's not usually the youngsters, unless they're being stressed by over-handling
    or by being re-homed and fearful.

    If yours is digesting well & isn't looking obese or bloated, I'd say he's just a normal young ball python that's growing fast under optimal conditions, & you must be doing
    something right, eh?
    Thanks! I'll take it.

    I am a bit of an over-protective 'dad'. lol Seeing my boy thrive just.....makes me happy, so I wanna make sure I'm giving him his best life. Thanks to y'all, I'm steadily learning every day. You guys rock!

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  14. #8
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    My BP is the same way. I fed him last night and he was in hunting mode tonight when I changed his water. I can reach in and get him but if I offered a rat he would take it, no question. He stays like that at least 2 days, relaxes a few days, then he goes into hunting mode again on the 6th day.

    I think itís linked to feeding him prey that is to small. He should be eating small rats but Iím feeding a surplus of weaned rats that I ordered last fall. I always underestimate what he can take as a meal. In your case, I would try converting him to rat pups and then in a few months go to weaned rats. One feeding is MUCH more convenient than 2 mice and it will be easy to convert him if he is always hungry like mine.

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  16. #9
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    Shayne, at least it shouldn't be difficult when you want to switch yours to f/t rat pups.

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  18. #10
    Registered User Shayne's Avatar
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    Re: Too Much Appetite??

    Quote Originally Posted by SVT Wylde View Post
    My BP is the same way. I fed him last night and he was in hunting mode tonight when I changed his water. I can reach in and get him but if I offered a rat he would take it, no question. He stays like that at least 2 days, relaxes a few days, then he goes into hunting mode again on the 6th day.

    I think itís linked to feeding him prey that is to small. He should be eating small rats but Iím feeding a surplus of weaned rats that I ordered last fall. I always underestimate what he can take as a meal. In your case, I would try converting him to rat pups and then in a few months go to weaned rats. One feeding is MUCH more convenient than 2 mice and it will be easy to convert him if he is always hungry like mine.
    Makes sense. Iím feeding on the Ďsmallí side too. Could easily be whatís going on.

    Thanks for the insight! Itís much appreciated.


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