Thread: Boa feeding
View Single Post
Old 09-22-18, 02:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
bigsnakegirl785's Avatar
Join Date: Aug-2011
Location: Waynesville
Age: 25
Posts: 3,870
Re: Boa feeding

Originally Posted by phenyx View Post
So, if I understand what you're saying, just because a snake is capable of taking a larger meal, doesn't necessarily mean they *should* be given the larger meal? I know their metabolisms are different but I just transitioned my 3'-ish, 430 gram BP from large mice to weaned rats every 9-10 days. I though that was appropriate but now I'm worried that I switched her too soon and am overfeeding her. Just when I think I've got this down something comes up I get all confused again.
Exactly what I'm saying!

I do want to add, most of my advice is coming from the assumption this is how the snake will eat every/most meals. I am not against giving a snake a large meal, so long as:

1) an appropriate amount of feeding days are skipped, or a reasonable amount of time is added between meals

2) that meal size is rare

I often help my boas along when they're between prey sizes by offering the larger size meal, then giving their normal-sized meal a few times before offering another large meal. Usually they put on enough size by the second time I offer the next size meal again. Even just a single large meal really jump starts their growth.

I feed my boa constrictors 10-14 days from birth. By the time they're eating smalls, I go 2-3 weeks. This is just personal preference. There is a lot of freedom in how you feed.

Your's is a bp, and their weight to length ratio is much different. My 3.5' bp is 1,200-1,400 grams depending on how well he eats. In my care, I give him a single small rat every 2 weeks. My 3.5' boas on the other hand are only about 400-500 grams. My boas don't reach/exceed 1,000 grams until they're about 4.5'. My 4' sunglow is still below 900 grams.

Boas also have lower metabolisms than bps, so don't compare them.

Originally Posted by TroyL View Post
I have always had BP. This is actually my first boa. I know when I was feeding her adult mice she was eating like every 10 days. So I switched to rats.. I always thought like with BP if they can swallow it they were good to go. I will cut back my feeding to every 3 weeks. Once She gets the entire meal digested which I feel she should have by today I will get her weighed to see exactly how much she is. Is there a % of body weight you use to figure out how big her meal should be then?
I do not feed based off weight, I feed based off girth.

For my meal sizes, that averages out to about 6-8% for babies, and 2-6% for adults. I try to max out at 10-11%, as that starts to leave a distended bulge.

A rat 10% the weight of an adult boa is bigger proportionate to girth than a rat/mouse 10% the weight of a baby boa. A mouse 10% of hatchling boa's girth might leave only a small bump. As the boa gets bigger, a meal 10% makes a bigger and bigger bump. I fed my 7' female a rat about 8-11% of her weight (8% at her original 13.5 lbs, 11% at my guesstimated weight of 10 lbs), to get her ready for winter feeding, and it left such a large bulge she looked gravid.
0.0.1 ball python Bud - 3.3 BI Cloud, sunglow Nymeria, ghost Tirel, anery motley Crona, ghost Howl, jungle Dominika - 2.0 garter snake eastern Demigod, checkered Draco - 0.1 retic Riverrun - RIP (Guin, Morzan, Sanji, and Homura - BRBs)
bigsnakegirl785 is offline