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  1. #1
    Registered User femmefalconer's Avatar
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    Building vs. Ovulation

    Hi everyone,

    I have a 2000g female that’s never been bred before this season who I paired 3 times with a male (1200g that’s proven). I saw locks each time. She spent a decent amount of time on the cool side of the enclosure, but for the past few weeks she has been spending more time on the warm side and has also been off food for about 4 weeks.

    She did have a “lump” mid-section around that same time (a month ago) and I was wondering if this was evidence of her continuing to build her follicles. It’s clearly not an ovulation, but it’s been hard for me to tell given that my adults are currently in PVC cages with hides and not in the rack.

    I saw a video that recommended continuing to pair your female until you see an ovulation happen. Having not paired her again in any of March, I decided to put them together tonight and see what happens. So I guess I have a few questions:

    1. Does this “lump” in the pic from a month ago just look like building? That swelling is gone now. It’s possible I missed an ovulation since she may have been in her hides.




    2. At what point do you consider the fact that she may have just absorbed her follicles? This is my biggest concern.

    3. Would a female that’s already ovulated refuse further copulation from the male?

    4. If she does ovulate and I see it, would you recommend taking out the hot hide in exchange for something better suited for her laying eggs? She would definitely need more room than her Zilla rock lair, lol.

    Thanks so much in advance and your patience with my novice questions.


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  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran nikkubus's Avatar
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    It's a little hard to tell without seeing the whole rear section of her. If it was right before she went on fast, it could just be her digested meal really pressing the follicles out. Given the timing of her fast, I'm inclined to think there is a strong possibility it's that vs ovy, as mine will usually go into fast for weeks before ovy, but I wouldn't completely dismiss it either. See how this pairing goes and if you don't get a lock this time, it very well could be ovy.
    7.22 BP 1.4 corn 1.1 SD retic 0.1 hognose

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  4. #3
    BPnet Veteran Lord Sorril's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Quote Originally Posted by femmefalconer View Post
    I saw a video that recommended continuing to pair your female until you see an ovulation happen.
    I recommend you continue to pair your male with your female until you see eggs-or you don't.
    My method is one week on/one week off. I try to facilitate one week of breeding time/female/month.
    A lot of people are devastated when their ball python doesn't lay eggs in a particular year: Stay calm and try to have fun!
    Last edited by Lord Sorril; 04-25-2022 at 09:16 PM.
    *.* TNTC

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  6. #4
    Registered User femmefalconer's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Thank you guys for your valuable input!

    After 24 hours I was able to catch them in the act and they’re currently locked up again. Since these guys are in cages and not in my rack, I always remove the hides and extra decor:



    So is it safe to say there’s still a possibility for an ovulation from her? Would she have refused the male otherwise? I’ll definitely be checking closely and will pair her again in a month unless I see something. She’s been off feed for about 5 weeks. Male is eating voraciously.


    Also, is there a type of hide I could use on the warm side that would be more acceptable for egg laying?

    Thanks again everybody!


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  7. #5
    BPnet Senior Member Albert Clark's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Warmth seeking coupled with inappetance in a ball female python that has locked several times in the past with a male are grounds to presume she’s gravid. A “lump” visibly can be the thickening that generally comes post ovulation. A ovulation, if you catch it, is unmistakable and is a pretty extra large swelling of the mid body. Just “building” typically refers to the maturation of the follicles and can be palpated but is for the most part not going to cause a swelling of the reproductive tract like a ovulation. Being egg bound however will surely show a heaviness and rounded appearance with some spinal prominence and tail inversion.
    Last edited by Albert Clark; 04-26-2022 at 11:11 AM.
    Stay in peace and not pieces.

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  9. #6
    BPnet Senior Member Albert Clark's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Actually not egg bound! Rather “full of eggs” that haven’t been laid as of yet and still gravid.” Egg bound “ being a emergency is not the correct presentation I was trying to get across. Thanks for the help.
    Last edited by Albert Clark; 04-26-2022 at 12:22 PM.
    Stay in peace and not pieces.

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  11. #7
    Registered User femmefalconer's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Albert Clark View Post
    Warmth seeking coupled with inappetance in a ball female python that has locked several times in the past with a male are grounds to presume she’s gravid. A “lump” visibly can be the thickening that generally comes post ovulation. A ovulation, if you catch it, is unmistakable and is a pretty extra large swelling of the mid body. Just “building” typically refers to the maturation of the follicles and can be palpated but is for the most part not going to cause a swelling of the reproductive tract like a ovulation. Being egg bound however will surely show a heaviness and rounded appearance with some spinal prominence and tail inversion.
    Thanks so much. So if I assume she is gravid already, would she still have copulated with the male again like she did last night?


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  13. #8
    BPnet Senior Member Albert Clark's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Quote Originally Posted by femmefalconer View Post
    Thanks so much. So if I assume she is gravid already, would she still have copulated with the male again like she did last night?


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    Yes, I believe so because remember it’s the male that uses his spurs to stimulate the female and she is mostly responsive to that and the domination behavior. I just had two females lay eggs last night and one week ago they were both receptive to the males and locked with them. Also, you are correct that the building process can show “ lumpy” areas along the body of a female as well as some swelling but not like a ovulation though. Good luck and continue pairing them. On 3 days and off 3 days. If she’s off food that is telling.
    Last edited by Albert Clark; 04-27-2022 at 08:16 AM.
    Stay in peace and not pieces.

  14. #9
    Registered User femmefalconer's Avatar
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    Re: Building vs. Ovulation

    Well unfortunately I don’t think she’s going to go this year. I haven’t seen an ovulation and when offered a medium rat yesterday she ate it, so it appears she’s back on food.

    It’s sad for my first breeding attempt but oh well. Better luck next year I guess.


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    Sorry, but I think that nature "knows when the time is right" better than we do. Be patient...you'll get there.
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