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  1. #21
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Quote Originally Posted by Homebody View Post
    ...Don't trust the locks that came with the tub. They aren't designed to keep in captive animals. I used these.
    Or just a box of binder clips from the office supply store. They come in various sizes- very handy for SO many things.


    Last edited by Bogertophis; 06-04-2022 at 06:07 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  3. #22
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Quote Originally Posted by Homebody View Post
    Feel free to drop the breeder's name. These posts are read by hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people. You can help others in the community find a quality breeder and, at the same time, reward that breeder with more business.
    Awesome, I didn't know the forum's policy on promoting breeders. His name is Dan and his store on MorphMarket is called Balls of DNA (BODNA). Great guy, great snakes.


    And yea, as far as securing the lid, I put a couple of spring clips on the long edges as well, I didn't leave them on for the photo op though, lol.

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  5. #23
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryptic View Post
    Awesome, I didn't know the forum's policy on promoting breeders. His name is Dan and his store on MorphMarket is called Balls of DNA (BODNA). Great guy, great snakes.


    And yea, as far as securing the lid, I put a couple of spring clips on the long edges as well, I didn't leave them on for the photo op though, lol.
    Word of mouth is very helpful so others find those sources proven great to do business with. What you cannot do is post links to them, as that's considered advertising & violates our rules. TKS-

    14. No advertising outside of designated area without Administrator approval. “Designated area” is the For Sale/Trade/Adoption/Wanted Forum, and is free for our members limited use. All goods, services, or animals advertised in these spaces must be the property of and in possession of the member posting. Administrators reserve the right to pull any ads deemed to fall outside of our Family Friendly parameters or that may constitute a legal liability for the site. Rules for Advertising

    (the above is from the FAQ upper left-
    https://ball-pythons.net/forums/faq.php)
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 06-05-2022 at 12:01 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  7. #24
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    Quick update:

    So it's been a couple of months and my BP seems to be doing very well. I've made a lot of changes. A couple weeks after I got him, my wife was visiting some friends and the husband had an Exoterra 36x18x12 terrarium he had gotten for free and planned to use the glass for a project. When he heard about my snake, he offered it to us instead. My wife took it because she hated the idea of the snake being in a plastic tub and thought it needed a better "home" even though she's not really otherwise interested in my new pet, haha.

    This was great because I was having issues with the tub. Humidity was perfect with paper towels, but when I switched to Reptichip, I put it in too damp, and humidity was extremely difficult to drop. I had to scoop out loads of the hydrated husk and mix in a lot of the dry stuff over a couple days to bring it down. The heat mat also didn't do a very good job of creating a warm surface attached to the bottom of it. I had to really crank up the thermostat to get it warm.

    I moved him to the Exoterra and the heat mat works great now, keeping the spot it's stuck to about 1-2 degrees below the thermostat's setting. I used all-weather foil tape to block the mesh screen on top allowing only 2 thin lengthwise slits as opening and it retains humidity very well without seeming too stuffy. If I over-mist or wet the substrate and spike the humidity, simply running my AC for a day will get the humidity back where I want it.

    Speaking of temps, my office actually has maintained decent temperatures naturally in the summer, I think. Most days, the temperature rises to a max of between 88-90 degrees. At night, it drops to a minimum of between 80-84 degrees. On days that are especially hot, I'll run the AC at 77 degrees on eco mode and it keeps it around 84 during the day. He spends most of his time in the unheated side, but I'll occasionally find him in the heated hide right after feeding. I've been keeping humidities in the low 60s to high 70s. I mist every few days and it slowly drops from a peak of the high 70s and mist again when it drops to the low 60s. If I need to run the AC, I mist a few spritzes in the morning and again at night after I turn it off. With the AC running all day, the humidity will drop into to the mid 50s by the time I get home.

    The exception to spending most of his time in the unheated hide was when he shed. He shed once so far and from when he first went into blue til he finished, he spent the entire time in the warm hide. He had a perfect shed no stuck skin at all and it was one continuous piece with a little turd deposited next to it. I didn't even try to feed him during the process and placed a chunk of damp sphagnum moss in his hide that I re-moistened every day.

    Following a tip in Reptifiles, I've been intentionally feeding him erratically. Instead of a fixed schedule, I've been feeding him at different intervals. One week I may feed him a medium adult mouse on Tuesday and a small mouse on Friday and wait 7 days to feed him again. Another week I may feed him a small rat then wait 10 days before feeding him again. Regardless, of how often I feed him, I weigh the rodents to ensure his prey average just about 15% of his bodyweight per week. He's currently about 28" long and just about 295g.

    So far I'm still feeding live. He hunts his prey very aggressively every time. I'll pick up a rodent on my way home from work. I like to wait until the snake is awake and out about in his enclosure to feed (dusk or later). So I house the rodent in a small plastic tub with paper towel, a water bowl, and mix of food morsels like whole grain bread, lettuce, carrot, a blueberry, etc. I do my best to make sure the rodent is well-fed, hydrated and comfortable. Besides just caring for the prey animal's humane treatment, I also believe it's much safer for my snake if its prey is relaxed, calm, and curious when I place it in the tank. I don't hold the rodent in tongs to feed it. I place it in the terrarium and let it roam until my snake strikes, which has happened every time as soon as he notices it and either stalks within range or the rodent wanders within range of him. At that point, if I can't see the rodent's mouth immediately after the strike, I'll adjust the pair to where I can, and if the mouth is anywhere near my snake, I'll put part of the tongs in the rodent's mouth for it to bite down on for the few seconds until it stops moving.

    I was waiting to switch to frozen until I had a mini-freezer, but I just found out my local reptile store also sells individual frozen rodents. Great guys. They told me from the start that if my snake ever skips a live meal, I can bring it back for full credit on the next one. I discussed frozen/thawed with them today, and they said if he doesn't take a thawed rodent, they'll give me a discount on a live one the next day. With all that worked out, I plan to offer him a thawed feeder next week using Zincubus' hairdryer method. If I was a betting man, I'd bet the transition won't be any trouble at all.

    Here's a pic of him in his enclosure. He has 3 hides, a cork log for enrichment, and a couple of vines. When he's not tucked into one of the black hide boxes, he seems to prefer being elevated, climbing the vines or hanging out on the log. He completely ignores the blue hide bowl, so I'll soon be replacing it with a humidity box to see if he makes use of that.

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  9. #25
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    You're doing extremely well with him! And I agree with your wife about housing snakes in plastic tubs, so that was GREAT luck getting the Exoterra.

    I'm glad you'll be trying a f/t rodent for him soon- I've done the same thing when I've needed to feed live- stood ready with my tongs to "assist" for safety. You're lucky to have such a helpful local reptile store for feeders too- another win! You've done your homework so well on caring for this snake, it's very hard to think of you as a beginner. Way to go! And nice to get an update.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  11. #26
    BPnet Veteran Homebody's Avatar
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryptic View Post
    Quick update...He completely ignores the blue hide bowl, so I'll soon be replacing it with a humidity box to see if he makes use of that.
    Quick update?! Can't wait to read your long detailed updates. I'll need my pipe and slippers.

    All kidding aside, that's all great news. You're doing a great job. I'll just say don't give up on the blue bowl hide so quickly. My Children's python ignored his sky hide for the first month, maybe two. Now, he uses it all the time. Changing up your enclosure is a good thing. It keeps snakes stimulated, but don't do it too often. It takes them a while to fully appreciate the enclosure as it is.

    Oh! And start a progression thread for him where you can post periodic updates. It's a convenient and organized way to share with the community how he's getting along.
    Last edited by Homebody; 08-03-2022 at 09:01 AM.
    1.0 Normal Ball Python (2019 - 2021)
    1.0 Normal Children's Python (2022 - present)

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  13. #27
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Hahaha, Homebody, I swear it started as a quick update til it became a novel. As far as the progression thread, will do. I'm actually building a 4x2x2 PVC enclosure for him. I have the materials and put together the walls, but it won't be finished and ready for probably a few months. When I finish it and he settles in, I'll kick off the progression thread with its features and how I built it. Interestingly, that'll leave my Exoterra empty. I'm already looking into the possibility of picking up something to put in there next summer. Probably a Hognosed Snake or a Rosy Boa. I really want a Children's Python or Woma, but I would rather have a bigger enclosure for either of those, so either would have to wait.

    Bogertophis, thanks a lot. Resources like this forum, YouTube, Reptifiles, etc. really make it a lot easier than it was back in the day, when Remembering the two very short-lived Red-eared Sliders I had as a kid is a big motivator to do things as best I can.

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  15. #28
    BPnet Veteran Homebody's Avatar
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    Re: Preparing for my First Snake

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryptic View Post
    Resources like this forum, YouTube, Reptifiles, etc. really make it a lot easier than it was back in the day, when Remembering the two very short-lived Red-eared Sliders I had as a kid is a big motivator to do things as best I can.
    I understand. When I was a kid, I asked my parents for a snake. I got a pair of green anoles. I sorry to say that my, essentially unguided, care fell woefully short of these poor critters' needs, so they did not survive very long.
    Last edited by Homebody; 08-03-2022 at 10:28 PM.
    1.0 Normal Ball Python (2019 - 2021)
    1.0 Normal Children's Python (2022 - present)

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  17. #29
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    I think most of us have had some unfortunate experiences when we were starting out, & especially back when so much less information was known about caring for these animals.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  19. #30
    BPnet Royalty Zincubus's Avatar
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    Preparing for my First Snake

    Royal / Ball Python every time

    Just make sure you get a good eater / feeder and you are good to go !!

    They all look gorgeous, loads of colour choices. Fabulous to handle plus they will sleep on your lap when you watch telly

    Put some branches in the vivarium and they will climb around them each evening

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Last edited by Zincubus; 08-05-2022 at 02:21 PM.




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