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  1. #31
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Snakes grow at different rates (depending on temps & available food & genetics, etc) so age doesn't say much.

    I suspect he should be eating adult mice, not hoppers att, btw. And sources don't go by the same exact description (or body wts) when describing a size, so it's possible your hoppers are on the small side, & 2 really isn't enough. Some snakes will accept multiple rodents at one meal, others won't; apparently yours doesn't mind, but before you "stuff him to excess", you should WEIGH BOTH your snake AND the prey you're feeding him. We all have better things to do than to keep guessing. And kindly look at the posted chart, please.

    FYI- about switching to rats- rats & mice smell and taste differently- some snakes love both, some are picky & don't wish to switch without a battle, so I wouldn't use up all your mice when you try a rat for the first time, until you get his opinion on it.

    Without seeing your snake, AND without knowing his weight, it's impossible for us to know IF your snake is underweight or over, etc.

    Has he ever been fed live prey? IF so you might want to have a vet check his stool for parasites*, just in case that's what's bothering him. (*They are transmitted via live prey, not frozen-thawed.)

    Frankly I haven't the foggiest notion what you meant by "sausage" or "salami"? But maybe this will help you:

    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  3. #32
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    Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    To weigh a snake, you cannot expect them to sit on a scale. You put them in a container of some kind that they cannot get out of, & weigh them IN that, then weigh the container ALONE and SUBTRACT that weight from the first weight you got of the snake in the container. That will be the weight of the snake. Maybe you're not feeding him enough... And there's no "law" that says it can't be more than one thing making a snake restless, either.

    Here's a chart (found under BP Husbandry on this forum):

    I prefer using a snake bag hanging from a pair of angling scales






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    Last edited by Zincubus; 10-18-2021 at 04:57 PM.




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    Nephil (10-19-2021)

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    Re: Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Snakes grow at different rates (depending on temps & available food & genetics, etc) so age doesn't say much.

    I suspect he should be eating adult mice, not hoppers att, btw. And sources don't go by the same exact description (or body wts) when describing a size, so it's possible your hoppers are on the small side, & 2 really isn't enough. Some snakes will accept multiple rodents at one meal, others won't; apparently yours doesn't mind, but before you "stuff him to excess", you should WEIGH BOTH your snake AND the prey you're feeding him. We all have better things to do than to keep guessing. And kindly look at the posted chart, please.

    FYI- about switching to rats- rats & mice smell and taste differently- some snakes love both, some are picky & don't wish to switch without a battle, so I wouldn't use up all your mice when you try a rat for the first time, until you get his opinion on it.

    Without seeing your snake, AND without knowing his weight, it's impossible for us to know IF your snake is underweight or over, etc.

    Has he ever been fed live prey? IF so you might want to have a vet check his stool for parasites*, just in case that's what's bothering him. (*They are transmitted via live prey, not frozen-thawed.)

    Frankly I haven't the foggiest notion what you meant by "sausage" or "salami"? But maybe this will help you:

    I don't want to stress him out more with handling, but i am going to show an old pic of how he was before after gaining some weight. He stayed about the same width, and on the hopper mice pocket it's written that they weight from 7 to 12 grams. Some indeed look fatter, some thinner, but i try to get him the ones that look bigger. But i will repeat that ordering hopper mice was my mistake, since i thought they were the right size for him, so i try to give him more than one. Also by sausage and salami i meant that he's long and probably with not enough fat (like a sausage) meanwhile ball pythons from what i understood should be long, but also "fat" (like a salami) haha. But tbh the examples of weight pic you sent now makes me doubt if he's underweight or not, i feel really confused so i think it's better to just weight him. I'll do that after he calms down (if that won't be too long of a wait for) and try to offer him 2 hopper mice as usual today. Also no idea if he ever ate live mice, all i know the shop was force feeding him thawed mouse pinkies since they probably don't know much bout snakes and thought that he still has to "learn" to eat without help, like a bird.


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    Last edited by Nephil; 10-19-2021 at 01:54 AM.

  6. #34
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    Re: Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Nephil View Post
    ... Also no idea if he ever ate live mice, all i know the shop was force feeding him thawed mouse pinkies since they probably don't know much bout snakes and thought that he still has to "learn" to eat without help, like a bird...
    Yikes, he had a awful start with that shop- pinkies are too small for even a hatchling BP & force-feeding is best avoided. He does look a bit thin in above photo, but hard it's to gauge well from just one photo, & at that angle & distance. Either way, understand that hatchling BPs (& other kinds of snakes too) can often look at least 'somewhat thin' because they grow incrementally longer, so they keep eating but don't appear to have gained any bulk (ie. width).

    Also, remember that snakes are "designed" to be adaptable & even to grow slowly with meals that may vary a lot in the wild- the best thing for you to do is keep him eating realistically-sized prey on a regular basis. It would be nice to have a weight on him, to better judge what the best size prey for him is right now, but not if weighing him will cause stress that puts him off eating. What I'm saying is there's no "emergency" here- he's still new & settling in- so do what you can to keep him comfortable (as evidenced by him eating) without scaring him. I know that when you're new to keeping snakes, everything seems like a big deal, but it all get easier for both you & your pet...in time. Neither his size or his meals need to precisely match a chart, no matter how much it may seem that way at times here.

    Charts are only there to help guide you. When you weigh a snake, OR when you compare their shape to a chart, it matters a lot if they just ate & haven't defecated, versus when they're "empty", or also if they're stressed -many snakes hold in a deep breath & appear to be bigger, or better fed, than when they've relaxed.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  7. #35
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    Re: Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Yikes, he had a awful start with that shop- pinkies are too small for even a hatchling BP & force-feeding is best avoided. He does look a bit thin in above photo, but hard it's to gauge well from just one photo, & at that angle & distance. Either way, understand that hatchling BPs (& other kinds of snakes too) can often look at least 'somewhat thin' because they grow incrementally longer, so they keep eating but don't appear to have gained any bulk (ie. width).

    Also, remember that snakes are "designed" to be adaptable & even to grow slowly with meals that may vary a lot in the wild- the best thing for you to do is keep him eating realistically-sized prey on a regular basis. It would be nice to have a weight on him, to better judge what the best size prey for him is right now, but not if weighing him will cause stress that puts him off eating. What I'm saying is there's no "emergency" here- he's still new & settling in- so do what you can to keep him comfortable (as evidenced by him eating) without scaring him. I know that when you're new to keeping snakes, everything seems like a big deal, but it all get easier for both you & your pet...in time. Neither his size or his meals need to precisely match a chart, no matter how much it may seem that way at times here.

    Charts are only there to help guide you. When you weigh a snake, OR when you compare their shape to a chart, it matters a lot if they just ate & haven't defecated, versus when they're "empty", or also if they're stressed -many snakes hold in a deep breath & appear to be bigger, or better fed, than when they've relaxed.
    About growing in length.. Thinking about it he does seem to grow longer and fast like a weed haha, dunno if I'm just imagining things. Also about his escapey behaviour.. Yesterday he seemed to calm down after trying to escape a bit in the morning, but then he settled back into his stone cave. Thinking about it.. That moment i saw the digital hygro/thermometer show the air temp at 25 C, while before it was at 23. Yesterday i opened the lid to boost the tub's humidity and he peeked out like he was observing what i was doing, but after i done what i had to do he was out of his cave, but for a short while. Not long ago today i opened the lid again to boost the humidity and change the water in his water bowl, and now he is out trying to escape again. Looking again at the hygro-thermometer the air temp lowered from 24 to 22, since the warmth got out. So i was thinking.. Maybe it's the kinda low air temp that bothers him? The ground temps are okay, it's just the air temp that gets a bit low, but after covering the tub w a big towel it seems to keep the warmth better.
    Last edited by Nephil; 10-20-2021 at 10:31 AM.

  8. #36
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    Re: Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Nephil View Post
    About growing in length.. Thinking about it he does seem to grow longer and fast like a weed haha, dunno if I'm just imagining things. Also about his escapey behaviour.. Yesterday he seemed to calm down after trying to escape a bit in the morning, but then he settled back into his stone cave. Thinking about it.. That moment i saw the digital hygro/thermometer show the air temp at 25 C, while before it was at 23. Yesterday i opened the lid to boost the tub's humidity and he peeked out like he was observing what i was doing, but after i done what i had to do he was out of his cave, but for a short while. Not long ago today i opened the lid again to boost the humidity and change the water in his water bowl, and now he is out trying to escape again. Looking again at the hygro-thermometer the air temp lowered from 24 to 22, since the warmth got out. So i was thinking.. Maybe it's the kinda low air temp that bothers him? The ground temps are okay, it's just the air temp that gets a bit low, but after covering the tub w a big towel it seems to keep the warmth better.
    Okay, let me post an update before sleep, writing in this forum kinda gives me a sense of security haha. Today he was trying to escape for a long time again, and he restarted to do the same after offering him the mouse not long ago (i didn't try yesterday cause he was calm all day and night after many days of stress so i wanted to leave him alone and de-stress him a bit, since he also didn't give hunger signs like he would before). I now doubt it's actually the air temp being the problem since even at 25 he still tries to escape again for some reason. I offered him a warm thawed hopper mouse, and he didn't seem to care at all and just started to slither to the escaping direction, which is really saddening to me since he was always a very good eater (i did expect his refusal though). The hide box should come tomorrow, and i will see how it'll go. Feeling sorry for my lil guy.
    Last edited by Nephil; 10-20-2021 at 04:33 PM.

  9. #37
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    How often are you offering food? I know you're trying to be good to him, but actually, offering too frequently may stress a snake. Don't offer more than once a week- at least- or longer.

    And right now, if you're waiting for a new hide, give him a few days after he has it so he has time to feel comfortable & safe- okay? Remember, most BPs prefer to ambush their prey from a safe vantage point, like the doorway of their hide (& at night), & NOT when they're roaming around their home. And with snakes, it usually helps to wait until they're really acting hungry & look ready to grab prey before you offer- like when they're peeking out of their hide at night.

    Try not to worry, this should get easier, even with a fussy little BP. Sleep well...
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  10. #38
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    Re: Help, ball python trying to escape

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    How often are you offering food? I know you're trying to be good to him, but actually, offering too frequently may stress a snake. Don't offer more than once a week- at least- or longer.

    And right now, if you're waiting for a new hide, give him a few days after he has it so he has time to feel comfortable & safe- okay? Remember, most BPs prefer to ambush their prey from a safe vantage point, like the doorway of their hide (& at night), & NOT when they're roaming around their home. And with snakes, it usually helps to wait until they're really acting hungry & look ready to grab prey before you offer- like when they're peeking out of their hide at night.

    Try not to worry, this should get easier, even with a fussy little BP. Sleep well...
    I apologise if i confused you, but i meant that i didn't try to feed him on his feeding day (before yesterday) cause he finally looked calm and i wanted to keep him the peace without me disrupting it. So i tried to feed him yesterday (i feed him every 5 days but i waited 6 this time) and he cared only about his chance to get out of his tub. I noticed his escape attempts became shorter and he rests in the cave longer, don't know if he's weak to continue being as eager as before or if he's just giving up. But if he's giving up, i surely do give him motivation to get out again when i open up the tub haha. Also i wanted to add that i wait 5 days to feed him even after refusal. If he finally calms down and feels secure again i expect him to be extra alert when his feeding day comes again, just like he did after shedding. The longer he waits the more jumpy he gets, that's why i rather feed him every 5 instead of 7 days heh.

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