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Old 03-15-18, 08:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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New boa questions

Hi folks, here with a few questions on a boa I got a little over a month ago. This is by no means my first snake but it is my first boa so I'd like to make sure I'm doing things right. I'm active on some other reptile forums and recognize a few names here and there.

He's a Hog Island boa, born in 2017 in June if I remember correctly. The breeder said he was on hoppers and small mice but that he was ready to move up to regular adult mice which is what I've been feeding him. He defecated the second or third day I had him but didn't again until I gave him a short soak this weekend which was about 4 weeks later. Should I be concerned about this? He also has eaten his mouse backwards four out of the five times he's been fed in my care but I don't think there's much I can do about that.

My main concern was his body condition. He seems a bit on the skinny side to me with some "loose" looking areas especially on his neck and midsection. Anyone have any opinions? I can take better pictures if needed. My scale broke so I can't weigh him but he's about 30 inches in length.





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Old 03-17-18, 05:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Looks fine to me, Boa's aren't chubby by any means, they're suppose to be quite slim and muscular and have an almost square body shape.
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Old 03-21-18, 06:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

He isn't skinny. Loose skin isn't indicative of body tone, since boas store the vast majority of their fat in fat deposits in their body cavity (towards the tail). If fat is being stored under their skin, they're likely already obese - this is why scale separation can be a sign of obesity.

Loose skin, if anything, is more indicative of dehydration, but your boa doesn't appear to have any overly loose skin beyond what I'd expect of a healthy boa. They can also get a bit jowly during shed. XD



He actually looks like a pretty nice girthy young boa, while they're that young they don't have a mature muscle structure, so they'll appear skinnier when comparing to an older or adult boa. Give him a year or two, and he should bulk up.

As far as defecation, a lot of boas seem to like to hold onto their poops. Some of my boas will poop after every meal, but most hold in at least 2 meals before going. My sunglow tends to hold in 3-4 meals at a time, so it can be a couple of months in between defecations.
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Old 03-21-18, 12:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

CRank up your humidity, make sure your temps are right....75-95 degrees always have a hot spot...spray cage down once a day or every other with WARM water...if youd like i can show you my feeding regimen that works for ALL Boids.....if hes 30" hes probbaly about 100 grams or so and needs an adult mouse right now or rat pup equivelent in siz of a mouse adult. Its important to know his weight then I can help you lots!
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Old 03-21-18, 07:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Thanks for the replies!

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Originally Posted by BallBuster7653 View Post
CRank up your humidity, make sure your temps are right....75-95 degrees always have a hot spot...spray cage down once a day or every other with WARM water...if youd like i can show you my feeding regimen that works for ALL Boids.....if hes 30" hes probbaly about 100 grams or so and needs an adult mouse right now or rat pup equivelent in siz of a mouse adult. Its important to know his weight then I can help you lots!
Like I said I don't currently have a scale but I'm working on that. He has a hot spot provided by a thermostat regulated UTH until my PVC cage comes in next month, and he eats adult mice currently. I've been reading a lot of "feed 10/15% of the animals weight" and if he's about 100 grams then what I'm feeding should actually be a little too much for weekly feedings. I'll have to get a new scale this week and weigh both the boa and the mice to be sure.

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Old 03-22-18, 12:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

It seems that he was constipated. Make sure you provide him always with fresh water to drink. And eating the prey backwards is not good at all because it will be difficult for him in the future to eat larger prey backwards. What you can do is try feeding him live, let him kill the prey and sniff it and search for the head.
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Old 03-22-18, 03:37 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

He's a cute little guy! Doesn't sound like you have anything to worry about. He doesn't look especially skinny to me; just small. But it is a small species. As for eating his mice backwards - he'll be fine. It's just a derpy young snake figuring out his way in a wide, wide world

Congrats on your first boa!
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Old 03-22-18, 11:16 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

great new addition,looks nice and normal to me.
as already said youngsters can be a bit ambitious with the way they snatch there food and will take any way possible,they soon learn to turn it round if they have not caught it face first
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Old 03-22-18, 02:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Ready my post on main page for specifics on the math of feeding. Sorry it’s very poorly written but any? Ask me. Beautiful boa!!! I’m jelly.
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Old 03-22-18, 03:14 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Thanks!
Turns out hes 199 grams on the dot so the 20 gram mice im feeding should be fine. I think if I notice too much weight gain I'll up him to consistent feedings every 10 or more days, right now its anywhere from 7 to 10 days.
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Old 03-23-18, 01:24 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwerty3159 View Post
Thanks!
Turns out hes 199 grams on the dot so the 20 gram mice im feeding should be fine. I think if I notice too much weight gain I'll up him to consistent feedings every 10 or more days, right now its anywhere from 7 to 10 days.
You're going to want to feed meals that are roughly equal to the snake's girth that leaves little to no bulge after eating, 10-15% like BallBuster is mentioning is actually a rather aggressive feeding schedule that I'd consider power feeding. I don't feed my boas based off of weight, but their meals do normally happen to sit at 6-8%, and I feed that every 10-14 days for boas up to 2 years, after that it's 3 weeks, and then adults get fed every 4-5 weeks (their meal sizes also sit closer to 2-6% of weight, on average). 10% is a good max, but go much above that, and it's way too much food to be feeding at one time when feeding on a weekly schedule, and isn't enough food if you were to space the feedings out far enough for them to properly digest the larger mass of those meals. This is why I generally go for a mid-range meal size, or vary feeder sizes and feeding frequency.
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Old 04-05-18, 08:04 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: New boa questions

Queryu3159 hownold is your boa and how much does he weigh as well as length I know exactly what you can do. Just need that info. And species
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