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  1. #1
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    New ball wonít eat

    So I have 2 ball pythons ones a large female who is fine, this male pied I got is a juvenile. 297 grams.

    Iíve tried feeding 3 times and each he just not seems interested.

    Iíve tried a rat pup a small weened rat, and one of those African soft furs which are apparently they crave. He doesnít even tongue flick at them.

    Iíve caught him cruising around his enclosure tongue flicking looking around but he just not interested.

    Temps are hot side 30c ambient down to 24, hot spot of 32c, humidity constant 56 percent.

    He has a hide on warm spot 1 in middle and one cool. And lots of foliage.

    This his is third week now of not interest.

    Any advise. (I donít feed outside the enclosure)


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  2. #2
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    Time is your friend. Don't offer prey every week. Since he's new an you tried for three weeks, give him three weeks off. Then try, if he refuses try again in two weeks. Rinse an repeat as needed.

    What was the breeder feeding him? Did you leave the prey in over night?

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Did you ASK what he was raised on? If mice, hey, rats smell & taste different. Some snakes care, others don't. And live or pre-killed or f/t? Makes a HUGE difference.

    Are you handling this snake at all? How often are you trying to feed?
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  4. #4
    BPnet Veteran Snow Balls's Avatar
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Have you tried both live and FT?


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  5. #5
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Snow Balls View Post
    Have you tried both live and FT?


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    If I recall, the OP is in the UK, & as I understand it, feeding live there is made very difficult until it's a last resort. Not ideal for BPs (or hatchling snakes of many species) that's for sure.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  6. #6
    BPnet Veteran Snow Balls's Avatar
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    If I recall, the OP is in the UK, & as I understand it, feeding live there is made very difficult until it's a last resort. Not ideal for BPs (or hatchling snakes of many species) that's for sure.
    Gotcha, Iím pretty sure itís illegal there right? Rules are meant to be broken though! Just my 2 cents lol


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  7. #7
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Snow Balls View Post
    Gotcha, I’m pretty sure it’s illegal there right? Rules are meant to be broken though! Just my 2 cents lol


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    Yes, & if I remember right, they have to get a vet's okay that it's essential, or something like that? It's lousy & not very realistic. Snakes live by instincts, not human morals, & many snakes need the right inspiration for a while to learn to feed properly. (I've bred & raised my share.) While I prefer not to feed live, it can take a varying amount of time to teach a snake to accept pre-killed prey, & some never do.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 10-22-2021 at 10:44 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to Bogertophis For This Useful Post:

    Snow Balls (10-22-2021)

  9. #8
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Yes, & if I remember right, they have to get a vet's okay that it's essential, or something like that? It's lousy & not very realistic. Snakes live by instincts, not human morals, & many snakes need the right inspiration for a while to learn to feed properly. (I've bred & raised my share.) While I prefer not to feed live, it can take a varying amount of time to teach a snake to accept pre-killed prey, & some never do.
    Thatís how I feel, I feed the bulk of my collection FT but some animals just prefer live and will never take frozen. So I feed those snakes live, sometimes you just have to listen to your animals


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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Did you ASK what he was raised on? If mice, hey, rats smell & taste different. Some snakes care, others don't. And live or pre-killed or f/t? Makes a HUGE difference.

    Are you handling this snake at all? How often are you trying to feed?
    Once a week, I havnt been handling unless I have to and these been only removal from viv for cleaning. Canít use live here only frozen thawed.

    I went and bought a couple of different species, I will try a regular mouse next.

    Also Iíve been offering once per 7 days.


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  11. #10
    Registered User Bleh's Avatar
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    Re: New ball wonít eat

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamiekerk View Post
    Iíve tried a rat pup a small weened rat, and one of those African soft furs which are apparently they crave. He doesnít even tongue flick at them.
    Sounds like he's just getting used to his new surroundings. My preferred method is to offer fortnightly for a while, and if there's still no joy, try multies (African soft fur) for a while.

    As an example, when I brought my BEL home, roughly the same size as your boy, I offered her small weaners fortnightly without success for two months. I then switched to offering her multies of equivalent size (e.g a small multi is roughly the same size as a small weaner) so the scent is different.
    The idea is multies are native to their origins so they're triggered to feed more readily. I've also read about people getting success with gerbils which is meant to be irresistible for them, but I've never got that far.

    I've never needed to get past the multi stage. Once they take one multi, I'll follow that up with another two or three over the weeks before switching back to normal rats. Don't be surprised of they snub the first normal as they'll usually take the second the next feed!

    Good luck.


    Quote Originally Posted by Snow Balls View Post
    Gotcha, Iím pretty sure itís illegal there right? Rules are meant to be broken though! Just my 2 cents lol
    It is 'meant to be' illegal, but I'm also aware of where I can source live feeders if my level of desperation gets to that stage. Gratefully, it never has!

    It's more a 'who you know' sort of scenario. For example, I couldn't walk in to just any reptile shop who stock frozen food and walk out with a live feeder, as they don't know me from Adam. But where you are familiar to others who may have considerably larger collections, where they may breed their own feeders, then its very much possible!
    I'll probably forget by the time you've read this...

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