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  1. #1
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    Question newbie with bp feeding questions

    new BP mom here, heís a juvie male whoís been taking f/t mice since his third meal, and his breeder never had a problem with feeding him. he arrived last week and i waited a couple of days before trying to feed him because i knew if he was stressed he probably wouldnít eat. so on thursday i thawed a mouse, tried to give it to him, and he looked at it but didnít seem interested, so i threw it out.

    today i tried again, i realized i probably didnít get the mouse warm enough (it was thawed and at room temp but probably not warm enough to seem interesting) so i got it to what felt like a good temp and tried again. i also kinda crouched down so i wasnít looming over the cage, and he constricted, (VERY enthusiastically, the mouse kinda leaked) and seemed to be interested but then left it. it couldíve been because i walked by while he was on it but i donít think so because i left the room immediately after he grabbed it and didnít come back for 15ish minutes, and when i did come back he did seem startled but he also seemed like he was losing interest before iíd even come in.

    what do i do? iím planning to wait two days and then try feeding him around dusk instead of the middle of the day, but what else should i do? i know heís not gonna starve if he skips a week or two but i donít want him to turn into a picky eater, especially because i live in a rural town and itíd be really hard to get live mice.

    heís in a large tub right now because the glass terrarium i kept trying to order kept arriving shattered so this is my solution for while heís small, and the sides are see-through so maybe i need to paint the sides or something? i donít know though, please send advice.

  2. #2
    BPnet Lifer Zincubus's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    Quote Originally Posted by klevert View Post
    new BP mom here, heís a juvie male whoís been taking f/t mice since his third meal, and his breeder never had a problem with feeding him. he arrived last week and i waited a couple of days before trying to feed him because i knew if he was stressed he probably wouldnít eat. so on thursday i thawed a mouse, tried to give it to him, and he looked at it but didnít seem interested, so i threw it out.

    today i tried again, i realized i probably didnít get the mouse warm enough (it was thawed and at room temp but probably not warm enough to seem interesting) so i got it to what felt like a good temp and tried again. i also kinda crouched down so i wasnít looming over the cage, and he constricted, (VERY enthusiastically, the mouse kinda leaked) and seemed to be interested but then left it. it couldíve been because i walked by while he was on it but i donít think so because i left the room immediately after he grabbed it and didnít come back for 15ish minutes, and when i did come back he did seem startled but he also seemed like he was losing interest before iíd even come in.

    what do i do? iím planning to wait two days and then try feeding him around dusk instead of the middle of the day, but what else should i do? i know heís not gonna starve if he skips a week or two but i donít want him to turn into a picky eater, especially because i live in a rural town and itíd be really hard to get live mice.

    heís in a large tub right now because the glass terrarium i kept trying to order kept arriving shattered so this is my solution for while heís small, and the sides are see-through so maybe i need to paint the sides or something? i donít know though, please send advice.
    Certainly cover three of the sides .. Iíll let the others make any other relevant suggestions ..

    As regards the next feeding .. I would leave it for a week after the last try ..

    Thaw the mouse during the day , near the tub ... then in the evening - in dim or low lighting and when snakey is under a hide ... give the mouse a good blast with a hairdryer and IMMEDIATELY dangle it in front of the hide entrance... if it strikes and misses or even just shows interest then give it another hot blast and offer again INSTANTLY whilst itís still warm..


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro




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  4. #3
    BPnet Veteran Craiga 01453's Avatar
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    Yeah, definitely wait until night to feed since BPs are nocturnal.

    You also don't want to offer too often. It actually stresses the snake leading to more refusals. You want to wait at least five days between offering, but seven will likely be more successful.

    What size prey are you feeding?
    What are your enclosure temps?
    Do you have a temp gun? If so you can use that to temp the mouse. (A great tool to have for many reasons). You want the mouse to be somewhere in the 95-100į range when offering.
    ...life is beautiful...

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  6. #4
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    The hairdryer part Zincubus brought up cannot be overstated. Ball pythons have heat-detecting pits (those holes that line the upper lips) so you want the mouse to be nice and warm when offering. It'll help with encouraging the snake to eat as it will look more alive due to appearing to have body heat.

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  8. #5
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    I've also found on the young ones that if I use a dark tub they settle in a bit more quickly. Hefty brand makes a 18qt locking lid in an opaque grey. The only light that comes through is through the air holes in the front.

    Wait a week on trying again. Once they settle in, and you find your rhythm with them all will smooth out.

  9. #6
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    update: i tried again two days ago, waited til evening, let the mouse thaw in warm water, then blasted with a hairdryer. he didnít immediately take it, so I took it back and blasted it again, until I noticed him out looking for it. offered again and he constricted it in a couple of seconds, I put the lid on and left the room, when I came back 10 to 15 minutes later it was gone 👍🏼

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  11. #7
    BPnet Lifer Zincubus's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    Quote Originally Posted by klevert View Post
    update: i tried again two days ago, waited til evening, let the mouse thaw in warm water, then blasted with a hairdryer. he didnít immediately take it, so I took it back and blasted it again, until I noticed him out looking for it. offered again and he constricted it in a couple of seconds, I put the lid on and left the room, when I came back 10 to 15 minutes later it was gone
    Excellent news !!!!


    I know some others use warm water to thaw but surely that washes away the rodent aroma ... bearing in mind that some people swear by wiping the bedding of hamsters or gerbils over the mouse to encourage a strike .


    Iím know for a fact that warming with a hairdryer then offering IMMEDIATELY whilst itís still warm works wonderfully well with many Royals ... some just take a few REHEATS to get their juices going


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro




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  13. #8
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Zincubus View Post
    Excellent news !!!!


    I know some others use warm water to thaw but surely that washes away the rodent aroma ... bearing in mind that some people swear by wiping the bedding of hamsters or gerbils over the mouse to encourage a strike .


    Iím know for a fact that warming with a hairdryer then offering IMMEDIATELY whilst itís still warm works wonderfully well with many Royals ... some just take a few REHEATS to get their juices going


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    What I do (after letting the mouse thaw at room temperature for a couple hours) is put it in a little ziplock bag before putting it in the warm water about about 15 minutes and then the hairdryer treatment for the "final touch" as it were. That way it's warmed thoroughly without potentially washing away scent. Though considering pythons utilize infrared sensory for prey, part of me wonders if it's not as big a deal if prey is missing some scent compared to other snakes. Then again considering the countless stories of difficulty regarding BPs switching from mice to rats they probably do put a significant value on smell regardless?

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  15. #9
    BPnet Lifer Zincubus's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Snagrio View Post
    What I do (after letting the mouse thaw at room temperature for a couple hours) is put it in a little ziplock bag before putting it in the warm water about about 15 minutes and then the hairdryer treatment for the "final touch" as it were. That way it's warmed thoroughly without potentially washing away scent. Though considering pythons utilize infrared sensory for prey, part of me wonders if it's not as big a deal if prey is missing some scent compared to other snakes. Then again considering the countless stories of difficulty regarding BPs switching from mice to rats they probably do put a significant value on smell regardless?
    Yeah ... for some fussy / reluctant feeders heating up their Ďfoodí is definitely the holy grail

    The Ďsmellí aspect also seems to play a part .. . I mean their tongues pick up on Ďsmellsí if you thaw in the reptile room , then thereís the people who swear by wiping rodent bedding all over the mouse/rat and others who claim Ďbrainingí the mouse /rat is the key .




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  16. #10
    BPnet Veteran Craiga 01453's Avatar
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    Re: newbie with bp feeding questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Zincubus View Post
    Yeah ... for some fussy / reluctant feeders heating up their Ďfoodí is definitely the holy grail

    The Ďsmellí aspect also seems to play a part .. . I mean their tongues pick up on Ďsmellsí if you thaw in the reptile room , then thereís the people who swear by wiping rodent bedding all over the mouse/rat and others who claim Ďbrainingí the mouse /rat is the key .




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    In all my years in the hobby I JUST heard of braining actually working for the first time fairly recently. I hear so many people saying they've tried braining with no luck. I don't even know why people still bother. Although in fairness it's usually those who are unprepared and didn't do their own proper research prior to bringing their snake home.

    I've used Zinc's hairdryer method in the past and...IT WORKS.

    I am however one who feeds wet prey. All of my snakes take it wet, so I figure the added hydration can't hurt.
    That being said, if any future snakes I bring in refuse wet on the first few tries I'll be using Zinc's method for that particular animal hoping it does the trick (and confident it will).

    Any which way, do whatever works best for you and your animals.
    ...life is beautiful...

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    1.0 Borneo Short Tail Python - Juice
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