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Old 10-10-18, 03:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Live prey issues

So I have a 10 going on 11 year old Male ball python, he will only eat live feeders. I'm the third owner, as the two previous owners could not get him to switch over to F.T or F.K so they chose to re-home due to difficulties getting a steady feeder supply.

I've never had any issues or concerns until I fed him yesterday, i feed him in his tank so that's how he's always been fed i always start by giving him fresh water and doing a quick tank check. Then I will place the rat in his tank in front of him so he can line up a good strike and has room to constrict his prey, I then always stay and observe until he's got the prey down or at least is far enough along to know he's not going to have any issues.

This last feeding however I realized that tho I'm watching to make sure he's safe, I have no idea what to do if something goes wrong. All seemed to be normal until he started to uncoil himself and it looked as tho the dead rat had bitten into the snake before he died and stayed latched on. Instantly I was in a panic as I had no idea what to do, thankfully before I could make up my mind the snake reached down and removed the prey and it seems the rat didn't manage to actually sink in his teeth because there was no visible damage aside from a small mark on the scales no scratch or cut.

All this said what should be done if God forbid something like this happens and the prey is actually latched onto the snake. I assume removal is the most obvious course but is there a way to do so minimizing stress and injury to the animal?
And is there any way to reduce the risk of this happening aside from the obvious of switching over as that seems to be less than possible, maybe holding the prey with tongs until the snake constricts would lower the chances?
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