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    Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    Hello everyone, Iím new to reddit so bear with me, but I just needed some input. I have a 5 year old ball python that I recovered from a family who take poor care of him, and I currently remodeled his tank to be more suitable for a ball python, by giving him a UTH and better humidity and such. He has a 40 gallon breeder as I am in the process of building him a 4x2x2 enclosure, his humidity is about 65%, basking temp of 89-91 degrees, two hides and some long sticks for enrichment, and cypress mulch as a substrate. For ambient temps, heís at about 86 on the warm side, and 80 on the cool. He still is roaming around nonstop and not going into his hides, and has been doing this for 3 days. Why is this? I feel his husbandry is good, Iím wondering if maybe for 5 years he got so used to being in cold, low humidity conditions.

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    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Look at it from his viewpoint: he's scared! His entire world just changed to a place he doesn't recognize (no matter how nice or suitable it is) so he's confused & trying to find familiar territory.

    Be patient, give him time to settle in. You say he's 5 years old, so it's even more disruptive to him than if he was a hatchling that just changed hands. Snakes learn their way around in the wild- otherwise they don't survive- they're more at risk from predators & unfavorable weather if they can't find their safe places quickly & reliably. It might have helped somewhat to have raised his temperatures more gradually, but at this point, you might as well stay the course. I hope he does well for you, I've taken in my share of snakes needing help too.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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    65% is touch on the high end but I don't think that would be doing it. Do you have females around? This time of year my males are all acting like that, in the evening especially because they smell all the females in season.

    Could simply be that the changes make him feel like he isn't at home and he is confused and trying to find his home. If he was kept for 5 years a certain way, and you went and changed where his basking spot is, what type of substrate he has, removed some of his old smells, etc it is probably pretty jarring to him. In the long run, the changes are going to probably help him a lot, but in the short term might be pretty overwhelming and he just needs some time to get used to it.

    Was the 40g what he was already in or is that an upgrade from what he had before?
    7.22 BP 1.4 corn 1.1 SD retic 0.1 hognose

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    Re: Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    The 40 gallon is what I was given to him in, what do you think I should have the humidity at? I covered some of the screen with aluminum foil and plexiglass so I can take some off to tone it down some. Also, I do not have any females around.
    Last edited by ryleyb; 01-20-2021 at 01:39 AM.

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    Humidity about 50-60% unless he's in shed, then a little bump up can help. You're not far off & even nature isn't that consistent either.
    I don't think his restless behavior has anything to do with the humidity anyway.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 01-20-2021 at 02:12 AM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
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    Re: Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    Oh thatís good to hear, luckily with a glass tank and screen lid reducing the humidity is the easy part

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    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    For sure. I hope he settles down before too long, but you can imagine waking up in another house with none of your stuff and not knowing where you are, right? With no one to ask...I'd be weirded out too.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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    Re: Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    He hasnít eaten for a couple months and as of right now he only eats live, which iíve offered to him about a week and a half ago in his original set up and I offered it to him today, no luck. Letís just hope he gets settled down soon. Some days I do see him in his warm hide for just a little bit of time.

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    Re: Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    Quote Originally Posted by ryleyb View Post
    He hasnít eaten for a couple months and as of right now he only eats live, which iíve offered to him about a week and a half ago in his original set up and I offered it to him today, no luck. Letís just hope he gets settled down soon. Some days I do see him in his warm hide for just a little bit of time.
    How long have you had him? Is his weight currently good? When you first get a snake from any source, & especially if it's an adult, it's best not to offer food for at least a week or 2, because at first, they'll be too nervous to accept, or if they do, they might regurgitate it, & that's worse than if they didn't eat at all. (Because then you need to wait a couple weeks before offering food again, to give them time to replenish their digestive enzymes- otherwise they can regurgitate again, & that's a health risk & best avoided.)

    Offering too frequently may get more refusals too- it adds to their stress, because they're basically shy. For an adult snake, offering about every 2 weeks is fine. This time of year, many BPs go on a fast anyway.

    HOW you offer makes all the difference: Wait until evening, dim the lights- BPs are ambush predators, meaning they wait from a hiding place for clueless prey to walk near enough to grab. Never try to feed a snake that's roaming their enclosure, they instinctively avoid feeding in the open & likely to refuse. (In the wild, other predators may catch them while they're distracted with feeding.) Wait for them to be peeking out of their hide in the evening hours...that's usually your signal that they're thinking about prey.

    While we favor feeding dead prey (safer for the snake & more humane for the prey), it's better to feed a new snake what they're used to eating at first, & after they've accepted a few meals with you (once they've "settled in"), then work on changing to either fresh-killed or frozen-thawed prey. We can help you when you come to that point, many tips will improve your success.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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    Re: Ball Python Active and Trying to get out all Day

    I’ve had him for about a little over a month now, I left everything in his enclosure the same when I first got him for a couple weeks just to let him stay settled in his familiar home and then offered to feed him. After he refused, I let him be for a few days and then redid his tank, which was almost a week ago. I believe he is on a fast for the winter but sometimes when he is in his hide he’ll actually sleep with his head poked out, I’m not sure if that’d mean he’s hungry or not. Also, is it far fetched for him to prefer a certain color and gender of rat? From what I was told by the previous owner, he’ll only really eat white rats with brown spots, I’m not sure if that’s true or coincidence. Also, he was always fed in a feeding tub, should I keep doing that or try from inside his enclosure from now on? I also have not had a chance to weigh him, but I’m starting to see a tiny tiny bit of his vertebrae on his back so I’m really hoping he’ll eat soon.
    Last edited by ryleyb; 01-20-2021 at 03:08 AM.

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