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  1. #1
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    Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Hi, I have a ball python that stopped eating when she turned 1. It has been 6 months since then and she has not eaten anything.
    I feed her frozen rats and have tried going down a size but that didnt work.
    She had an infection at some point which might have had something to do with it but I sorted it out and shes fine but still not eating.
    I think it might have something to do with the tempurature because i am using a heat mat and I think a light or radiator may be better and the humidity might be bad since she had a bad shed as well.
    I am starting to get a bit worried because i dont think yearlings should go this long without eating, any replies will be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
    Telling it like it is! Stewart_Reptiles's Avatar
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    First it depends on the size of the animal at a year when it went into fasting mode.

    So details on that would help.

    Other details would be about infection what are you talking about here.

    Second describe your husbandry to me, cage size, hides, temps how you measure them etc.

    How do you feed, what do you offer, how do you offer.
    Deborah Stewart

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewart_Reptiles View Post
    First it depends on the size of the animal at a year when it went into fasting mode.

    So details on that would help.

    Other details would be about infection what are you talking about here.

    Second describe your husbandry to me, cage size, hides, temps how you measure them etc.

    How do you feed, what do you offer, how do you offer.
    thx for responding!
    She was about 700 grams when she stopped eating and now she is 583 grams. She never skipped out on eating before this.
    I took her to the vet and they said they didnt know what infection it was, the scales on the belly when rough and sortof flaky a bit like scale rot but they said it wasnt that.
    Cage is 35 inches lenghth, 15 inches width and 14 inches high. She has 2 hides, one on the colder end and one on the warmer end.
    I'm measuring the tempurature with some tempurature probes about 1cm from the bottom and it reads 24 to 26.5 degrees celcius on the hot end and 23 to 24.5 on the cold end.
    I feel this might be hot enough but im not sure if it's different with a heat mat or not
    thanks

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    Telling it like it is! Stewart_Reptiles's Avatar
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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Grilluq View Post
    thx for responding!
    She was about 700 grams when she stopped eating and now she is 583 grams. She never skipped out on eating before this.
    I took her to the vet and they said they didnt know what infection it was, the scales on the belly when rough and sortof flaky a bit like scale rot but they said it wasnt that.
    Cage is 35 inches lenghth, 15 inches width and 14 inches high. She has 2 hides, one on the colder end and one on the warmer end.
    I'm measuring the tempurature with some tempurature probes about 1cm from the bottom and it reads 24 to 26.5 degrees celcius on the hot end and 23 to 24.5 on the cold end.
    I feel this might be hot enough but im not sure if it's different with a heat mat or not
    thanks
    Those temperature are way off if they have always been this way I am surprised you never ended up with a regurgitation.

    2 things I would do is address those temps 26 degrees should be the temps on your cool side not the hot one and your hot side should be at 31 degrees, next I would downsize her to a 20 gallons tank.
    Last edited by Stewart_Reptiles; 06-19-2020 at 11:18 AM.
    Deborah Stewart

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewart_Reptiles View Post
    Those temperature are way off if they have always been this way I am surprised you never ended up with a regurgitation.

    2 things I would do is address those temps 26 degrees should be the temps on your cool side not the hot one and your hot side should be at 31 degrees, next I would downsize her to a 20 gallons tank.
    What are you using to control the heat mat temps? Your hot side temps are way too low as Stewart has said. They rely on heat to properly digest their meals. How’s your humidity as well? Ideally, it should be between 60-65%.

    After fixing temps, and still not eating, then as mentioned, you should downsize the enclosure. I would actually try putting your snake in a plastic bin/tub for a while. When finding the right size tub, the length of the bin should not be much bigger than the length of your snake. And the sum of the length and width should not be smaller than the length of your snake either. Something in between would be ideal. The smaller enclosure will help your snake to feel more secure. I suggest the tub because it’ll be easier to maintain humidity, and is a good temporary until your snake starts eating again.

    Make sure you have hot side temps between 28-32 degrees(no more than that). And humidity between 65-70% for the meantime. Feed late at night and look for signs of your bp waiting for food. You might catch them sticking their head out of their hide, and just staying very still. That would be a good time to introduce food. Before you feed I would suggest thawing out the rat next to their enclosure. That way they can get a smell of the rat, which will hopefully put them in ‘food’ mode prior to you feeding them. Also cover up the enclosure as much as you can. Only open it up to do your daily check, and reduce handling to a minimum.

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Faith.luu View Post
    What are you using to control the heat mat temps? Your hot side temps are way too low as Stewart has said. They rely on heat to properly digest their meals. How’s your humidity as well? Ideally, it should be between 60-65%.

    After fixing temps, and still not eating, then as mentioned, you should downsize the enclosure. I would actually try putting your snake in a plastic bin/tub for a while. When finding the right size tub, the length of the bin should not be much bigger than the length of your snake. And the sum of the length and width should not be smaller than the length of your snake either. Something in between would be ideal. The smaller enclosure will help your snake to feel more secure. I suggest the tub because it’ll be easier to maintain humidity, and is a good temporary until your snake starts eating again.

    Make sure you have hot side temps between 28-32 degrees(no more than that). And humidity between 65-70% for the meantime. Feed late at night and look for signs of your bp waiting for food. You might catch them sticking their head out of their hide, and just staying very still. That would be a good time to introduce food. Before you feed I would suggest thawing out the rat next to their enclosure. That way they can get a smell of the rat, which will hopefully put them in ‘food’ mode prior to you feeding them. Also cover up the enclosure as much as you can. Only open it up to do your daily check, and reduce handling to a minimum.
    Thanks for the advice!
    I have a smaller tub I can use for now and im currently working on the tempurature issue.
    im using a thermostat to control the tempurature, but the problem is even at the highest temp on it it still says it isnt hot enough so i think i may get a radiator for the tank instead.
    I dont have anything to detect humidity but i keep the water bowl on the hotter side so it isnt too dry
    Last edited by Grilluq; 06-19-2020 at 08:29 PM.

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Grilluq View Post
    Thanks for the advice!
    I have a smaller tub I can use for now and im currently working on the tempurature issue.
    im using a thermostat to control the tempurature, but the problem is even at the highest temp on it it still says it isnt hot enough so i think i may get a radiator for the tank instead.
    I dont have anything to detect humidity but i keep the water bowl on the hotter side so it isnt too dry
    It could be that your mat is defective, or your controller is defective. What type of heat mat do you use? Same with your temp controller. And where do you place your probe?

    You definitely need to use something to check humidity, that’s really important. If it’s going to take you a few days to get a hydrometer then I would suggest building a humidity box asap. If you can’t find something to use like sphagnum moss, a a slightly damp towel in a container will do, just change the towel every 5 or so days to prevent bacteria growth.

    If your natural humidity is higher like in the 50-70% based on where you live, then I wouldn’t be as concerned, but finding something to check should still be priority. If you’re living in a place that has lower humidity like 40 or even 30 then I would be concerned, especially since you have your snake in a glass enclosure. Its definitely a lot harder to keep humidity up in a glass cage compared to a plastic tub.

    Humidity is really important to prevent your bp from respiratory issues. Too low humidity for a certain duration makes it hard for them to breathe and could even cause their lung to collapse. And if it’s too high it can cause RI’s. So this could also be another reason why your snake isn’t eating.

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    May i ask the dimensions of the heat mat ??

    There are some that are just about 8” x 5” or even smaller at 7” by 4” .

    Those will struggle to get and keep the temps suitable for a Royal / Ball python.

    Anyways WHEN you’ve got temps at the correct levels than please try the hairdryer method of feeding .. I can send you details if you wish .

    They need the correct temps especially the warm end to aid digestion.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro




  10. #9
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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Grilluq View Post
    thx for responding!
    She was about 700 grams when she stopped eating and now she is 583 grams. She never skipped out on eating before this.
    I took her to the vet and they said they didnt know what infection it was, the scales on the belly when rough and sortof flaky a bit like scale rot but they said it wasnt that.
    Cage is 35 inches lenghth, 15 inches width and 14 inches high. She has 2 hides, one on the colder end and one on the warmer end.
    I'm measuring the tempurature with some tempurature probes about 1cm from the bottom and it reads 24 to 26.5 degrees celcius on the hot end and 23 to 24.5 on the cold end.
    I feel this might be hot enough but im not sure if it's different with a heat mat or not
    thanks
    Wow! Just an FYI your hot side should be around 30-33c. Mine rests around 31 and the cool side shouldn't drop below 25, 24 at the absolute lowest!

    Sort this out and hopefully your snake will feel more comfortable.

    Edit: whoops sorry I can see now you've already been given this advice. But I had the same problem when I got mine. My CHE was only getting up to 28 so I just had to end up getting a higher wattage. Good luck!

    Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
    Last edited by Absololol; 06-23-2020 at 06:43 AM.

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    Re: Yearling Ball Python Not Eating

    Quote Originally Posted by Grilluq View Post
    Hi, I have a ball python that stopped eating when she turned 1. It has been 6 months since then and she has not eaten anything.
    I feed her frozen rats and have tried going down a size but that didnt work.
    She had an infection at some point which might have had something to do with it but I sorted it out and shes fine but still not eating.
    I think it might have something to do with the tempurature because i am using a heat mat and I think a light or radiator may be better and the humidity might be bad since she had a bad shed as well.
    I am starting to get a bit worried because i dont think yearlings should go this long without eating, any replies will be greatly appreciated
    She finally ate!
    Thank you for all your help

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