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  1. #1
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    Rat to snake ratio?

    I'm trying to breed rats for the first time for My 10 ball pythons. My weekly purchase is:
    2 medium
    5 weaned
    6 fuzzy

    So I've heard from a snake/rat breeder it's about 1 doe for every snake I'm still waiting on my first litters, but what are your thoughts on the snake to rat ratio? 10:10 or?

  2. #2
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    Great question but so hard to answer, because breeding rats, or any rodents, can be highly unpredictable at times. It's ALWAYS better to have too many feeders than not enough, & you can freeze or sell the surplus. You might check with a local pet store- if they'd be interested in your surplus, if (or when) it comes to that, but right when you start off breeding rodents, they can take a while to get going reliably. It's like waiting for water to boil...

    You can tip the balance in your favor for rat productivity by feeding them QUALITY food, not just the balanced rat chow, but consider supplementing their diet with things like raw kale for vitamins & minerals, & nuts for added protein. That's what I ALWAYS did when I bred rats. In fact, giving treats to your rats will also keep them socialized for when you need to clean & handle them (& steal babies, lol). Caution, even friendly rats may defend their babies with their teeth, so do be cautious, or use tongs, or distractions. Rats are smart & have their own personalities.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 11-17-2021 at 07:10 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  3. #3
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    Re: Rat to snake ratio?

    Thanks for the detailed reply!

    For food I've been doing a high protein dog food mixed with a variety bird seed. I throw in left over meats and veg for them as well.

    I just bought another 3 does for a total of 6 with a male.

  4. #4
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    Start small an see how it goes. If you can find an old school pet shop that houses both sexes together you can be ahead of the game. Buy three pregnant females.

    I raise Norway rats an ASF. With only 10 BP's I would raise ASF "if" they eat F/T. One colony of ASF at a 3/1(2 males after first litter, ie: keep one) turns into three colonies an feeders in three months. For live feeding it would be Norway rats.

    Rats grow much faster then ASF. ASF need a higher temp range. Both can be fed the same.

    Look here to make a rack:
    Building a Rat Rack (arbreptiles.com)

    Reproduction info:
    miscsigl.vp (afrma.org)

    Best part about just starting small. If it doesn't work out, time, money and space, you're out $50 tops. Sometimes ordering frozen from the big dealers just saves money.

    OK, $50 if you feed dog food ($13 Doggy Bag TSC), buy $5 TSC bedding an $8 prago rats. Did I tell you can get free rats? Check your local animal shelter for free prey. An the free local papers. Seems parents give their kids pet rats away (an snakes) for free all the time.

    Caging can be free fish tanks or the homemade rack systems. Lumber can be fund for free also, it's just harder since COVID.

    Good Luck!

  5. #5
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    Ok, you already have rats. How are you setting the breeding schedule? I run two male rats for three females at a time. I take the males out at day 19. Then the males get another three females an repeat till the first group is weaned then I give the females a week or two off. Most breeders don't give the females time off because the prime breeding year is short. I feed females off at two years an males it depends if they get fat and lazy. Young males do breed better. I've never had a male breeding after three, most are done by 30 months.

    Keep the Norway male out of the pupping cage. He will back breed the female ten minutes after birth an that will drive the females crazy. Crazy moms equals bad moms.

    Good luck!

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