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Old 05-15-19, 08:06 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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Originally Posted by Gorgon View Post
MDT -- thank you immensely for being so quick and thorough in your replies: definitely much appreciated! Understood about leaving the mouse out overnight being ok -- and yeah I'm pretty confident in my ability to tell if she's losing weight. Still, I might buy the scale just to be sure. I do currently attempt feedings weekly so I'm already on the 7-8 day schedule.

Four days after I first got her -- and this is the strange thing -- she ate 3 F/T mouse pinks right off the bat. So that's the frustrating thing: I *know* she can do it! (Apparently, she just has to get hungry enough.) But yes, true about the rat issue: the latest word from the breeder (just last night) was that I should be starting her on rat pinks, so good call on that. Thank you also for the compliment for her: she's a looker, right?

Also, very true on the level of the prey thing: I find she strikes far more often if the mouse is close to the ground as opposed to dangling in the air. A bit more on what my breeder recommended last night: he suggested I get a 24oz deli cup, put the snake in there, close the perforated lid, and lay the prey on top of the lid. He said this is because he'd like to see the feeding space minimized and she'll also be smelling the rat this whole time, hopefully making her all the more hungry.

Do you have any thoughts on this?
You're welcome.

I have never used a trick like that before. However, it's not a bad idea to thaw the rat near the enclosure. I leave my frozen items out in the snake area and they are all hungry and hunting by the time it's thawed out.
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Old 05-15-19, 11:30 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Cool -- thank you for that confirmation, Aaron_S. And thank you for being a kickass moderator and approving my earlier posts with a quickness. I appreciate everyone's help on here more than words.
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Old 05-15-19, 03:01 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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Cool -- thank you for that confirmation, Aaron_S. And thank you for being a kickass moderator and approving my earlier posts with a quickness. I appreciate everyone's help on here more than words.
I appreciate the compliment but I am NOT the mod who approves all the posts lol. I can't be bothered and someone else does it. I do the banning/warnings/etc.
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Old 06-07-19, 04:45 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Yikes -- sorry for the long delay, Aaron_S and sorry for mistaking you for the post-approval guy. I've truly appreciated all the help I've gotten here; it means a great deal.

So, again, thank you everyone. Some updates, however: I waited until 5/26 but then I gave in and fed her 3 live hoppers. The interesting thing was that she started with the first the same way she's been dumb striking the F/Ts: as if she wasn't sure of the thing before her and just kind of wanted it to go away. Hence, this reaffirmed what some of you have been saying, that she just needs to get in the groove, realize the F/T is edible prey, and then go for it. (She ate the successive 2 live ones immediately.)

Then I tried feeding her a rat pup a week ago and, of course, she didn't go for it since I've now reaffirmed her predilection for live. I did the heat lamp thaw for the pup with it on the lid of her small feeding tub and then also tried feeding her in her enclosure and then left it in there overnight. (She didn’t take it.)

I also got a digital scale as per your recommendations. She weighed 135g before the live feeding and then 152g after. I'm assuming that what I need to do is weigh her after her next shed and *then* see if she starts dropping weight. I'm thinking as long as she's not dropping weight, I can keep attempting the F/T feedings starting off with trying it in her enclosure -- and then if she doesn't do it there, try the feeding tub. (In other words, the reverse of what I did a week ago.) Does this sound like the right way to go?

I'm sorry this is so long but I’m just trying to be as detailed as possible. It's been 1 month and 21 days since she last shed and she doesn't yet seem to be going into another. Hence, my pressing question for right now is: do I go ahead with a few more live just to get her over the hump of her next shed and then, after that, do strictly F/T attempts while closely monitoring her weight?

Again, I really appreciate the help I've gotten so far and I'm definitely impressed some of you have dared read all (or at least most) of what I've written. You should have seen how this morning started off: I was handling her a bit and she's so vivacious and sprightly. You can just tell that she feels good -- and to me I have no greater responsibility than to keep her feeling this way.
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Old 06-10-19, 12:12 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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Originally Posted by Gorgon View Post
Yikes -- sorry for the long delay, Aaron_S and sorry for mistaking you for the post-approval guy. I've truly appreciated all the help I've gotten here; it means a great deal.

So, again, thank you everyone. Some updates, however: I waited until 5/26 but then I gave in and fed her 3 live hoppers. The interesting thing was that she started with the first the same way she's been dumb striking the F/Ts: as if she wasn't sure of the thing before her and just kind of wanted it to go away. Hence, this reaffirmed what some of you have been saying, that she just needs to get in the groove, realize the F/T is edible prey, and then go for it. (She ate the successive 2 live ones immediately.)

Then I tried feeding her a rat pup a week ago and, of course, she didn't go for it since I've now reaffirmed her predilection for live. I did the heat lamp thaw for the pup with it on the lid of her small feeding tub and then also tried feeding her in her enclosure and then left it in there overnight. (She didnít take it.)

I also got a digital scale as per your recommendations. She weighed 135g before the live feeding and then 152g after. I'm assuming that what I need to do is weigh her after her next shed and *then* see if she starts dropping weight. I'm thinking as long as she's not dropping weight, I can keep attempting the F/T feedings starting off with trying it in her enclosure -- and then if she doesn't do it there, try the feeding tub. (In other words, the reverse of what I did a week ago.) Does this sound like the right way to go?

I'm sorry this is so long but Iím just trying to be as detailed as possible. It's been 1 month and 21 days since she last shed and she doesn't yet seem to be going into another. Hence, my pressing question for right now is: do I go ahead with a few more live just to get her over the hump of her next shed and then, after that, do strictly F/T attempts while closely monitoring her weight?

Again, I really appreciate the help I've gotten so far and I'm definitely impressed some of you have dared read all (or at least most) of what I've written. You should have seen how this morning started off: I was handling her a bit and she's so vivacious and sprightly. You can just tell that she feels good -- and to me I have no greater responsibility than to keep her feeling this way.
I'd do that. i'd offer a few live meals and then offer a F/T meal again. Sometimes it takes a bit.
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Old 06-10-19, 03:13 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Thank you Aaron. I appreciate it, man.
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Old 06-12-19, 04:05 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

And for my Dumerils Boa and my Anthill/Pygmy Python...it never worked. My patience did have an end, and I've still got them, but they just won't take f/t.



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I'd do that. i'd offer a few live meals and then offer a F/T meal again. Sometimes it takes a bit.
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Old 06-12-19, 05:41 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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And for my Dumerils Boa and my Anthill/Pygmy Python...it never worked. My patience did have an end, and I've still got them, but they just won't take f/t.
That's a trip, Scubadiver59. I hope that's not the case for me because I really don't enjoy this process, that poor mouse *definitely* doesn't enjoy the process, and it's dangerous for my girl even though I monitor the feeding hyperclose. I mean, I know they do this all the time in the wild but snakes also often get bit in the wild and (more than) occasionally die in the wild. Did either your Boa or Python (or both) start to lose weight before you resumed feeding?

Last edited by Gorgon; 06-12-19 at 05:53 PM..
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Old 06-12-19, 07:43 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Not so much my juvenile Dumerils but my Anthill did. I've tried off and on, going months w/o feeding, but to no avail. Maybe I'm just too softhearted...

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That's a trip, Scubadiver59. I hope that's not the case for me because I really don't enjoy this process, that poor mouse *definitely* doesn't enjoy the process, and it's dangerous for my girl even though I monitor the feeding hyperclose. I mean, I know they do this all the time in the wild but snakes also often get bit in the wild and (more than) occasionally die in the wild. Did either your Boa or Python (or both) start to lose weight before you resumed feeding?
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Old 06-13-19, 07:39 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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Not so much my juvenile Dumerils but my Anthill did. I've tried off and on, going months w/o feeding, but to no avail. Maybe I'm just too softhearted...
Believe me, I hear you Scubadiver59, so I'm going to approach this very methodically: I'm going to feed her live in a couple days to get her over this next shed. And then after the shed/poop, I'm going to take her weight with the super-precise digital scale like I've been doing every week now. And then I'm absolutely not going to feed her live again until the first sign of her losing weight. Up until that point, all I'm going to do is attempt F/T feedings.

She ate F/T right when I first got her after her trip from California 4 1/2 months ago, so I *know* she can do it. Plus, I figure I'm helping her by doing this -- not hurting her -- since, as noted, she can easily get bit during a live feeding.

So, that's the plan.

Side note: people are always saying how "terribly cruel" live feedings for constrictors are, but [1] they don't seem to recognize that this happens in the wild all the time, and [2] a live feeding is very risky for the snake as well since they are indeed quite vulnerable during the constriction process.

Venomous snakes have it easy.
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Old 06-13-19, 08:14 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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Originally Posted by Gorgon View Post
Believe me, I hear you Scubadiver59, so I'm going to approach this very methodically: I'm going to feed her live in a couple days to get her over this next shed. And then after the shed/poop, I'm going to take her weight with the super-precise digital scale like I've been doing every week now. And then I'm absolutely not going to feed her live again until the first sign of her losing weight. Up until that point, all I'm going to do is attempt F/T feedings.

She ate F/T right when I first got her after her trip from California 4 1/2 months ago, so I *know* she can do it. Plus, I figure I'm helping her by doing this -- not hurting her -- since, as noted, she can easily get bit during a live feeding.

So, that's the plan.

Side note: people are always saying how "terribly cruel" live feedings for constrictors are, but [1] they don't seem to recognize that this happens in the wild all the time, and [2] a live feeding is very risky for the snake as well since they are indeed quite vulnerable during the constriction process.

Venomous snakes have it easy.
I wouldn't worry about minor weight loss. I'd be looking at like 15 - 20% weight loss before I began to worry.
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Old 06-13-19, 09:41 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

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I wouldn't worry about minor weight loss. I'd be looking at like 15 - 20% weight loss before I began to worry.
Oh cool. Ok understood & thank you for that, Aaron!
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Old 06-14-19, 04:09 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

I also wanted to clarify my closing statement earlier. Venomous snakes don't have it easy. No snake has it easy. But venomous serpents do seem to have it perhaps a bit easier than constrictors.
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Old 08-06-19, 09:57 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Hey there guys -- it's me again. Looking for a bit more help with the ongoing feeding issue(s) but I'll try to be brief.

So she's now a year old and weighs just 165g. She last shed June 26 and it was a good one: almost a single piece. Right after the shed, she weighed 174g. She has not eaten since and I've only been offering her F/T. I've been closely weighing her every week and so the 6 weighings since that shed have gone like this:

6/29 - 174g
7/6 - 169g
7/13 - 169g
7/20 - 165g
7/27 - 165g
8/3 - 165g

So I've been told I need not worry unless she starts to lose 15% - 20% of her body weight. So if we say 82.5% of 174g, then that's 144g. Hence, it's good she's nowhere near that: she still has 20g to go before I start worrying. Also, last check 3 days ago she was still strong and feisty as ever and looked great.

F/T feeding methods I've tried:

[1] In small opaque tub (about 1'≥) where I lift off the lid completely and attempt the feed: she's eaten live that way before but never F/T (just does dumb striking)

[2] In large opaque tub (about 2.5'≥) where I just partially unconver the lid and hang the prey down with forceps: she ate 3 F/T pinkies that way on 2/2 right when I first got her (she was shipped to me overnight) and though she strikes more confidently there than in the small tub, it's still mostly just dumb striking

[3] Straight in her enclosure: she doesn't seem to like this either, more dumb striking. I also leave the prey in her enclosure overnight. Needless to say, she's never gone for this either.

[4] In a (relatively) small deli cup: no go here at all too

* When I've tried feeding her outside her enclosure, I've kept a couple F/Ts at the top to keep the scent around

* I've tried feeding a range of prey sizes whenever I've attempted feedings: from pinkes to hoppers to rat pups. She seems to prefer the hoppers the most but only marginally

* I've tried 2 methods of thawing: one under a heat lamp for about an hour (being very careful not to overheat) the plastic bag/hot water method. No preference indicated as of yet.

I did make the mistake of attempting feedings every week there for about a month and a half, completely forgetting this was a bad idea. I guess I was just desperate to have her eat, but still -- I realize I shouldn't have done this.

Hence, thus begins the 5 questions I have for you guys:

[1] I last tried to feed her 7/27, so should I try again 8/10 or wait how much longer?

[2] For those 2 weeks she was at 169g and the 3 (so far) she's been at 165g, how is it possible she didn't lose *any* weight over those durations? My digital scale is very accurate and seems to work fine.

[3] Every time I've seen a professional feed a snake (especially a python), they just have those pull-out plastic drawers that they open a bit and then feed using forceps. So since she seems to give the best response when I open the lid just a little on the tub, I bought these opaque (black) plastic drawers that are sized about 1.75'≥ and that slide out just like I see professionals use. Granted, when I see professionals attempt a feeding, those snakes actually *live* in those drawers. But I'm thinking if I give her about an hour in there before feeding, she might quickly grow used to the environment and then be ready to feed. Does this sound like a good plan?

[4] I have a guy with a lot of reptile experience with whom I work closely at a local pet store and he said he'd be glad to attempt a feeding or even do an assist. I know I should only resort to this if my girl loses 20% of her weight, but could an assist-feed put her on the track of eating F/T?

[5] Since I've seen a couple people mention this before, is it really true that some snakes may just never go for F/T -- and may starve themselves because of this?

Sorry for the lack of brevity, but I've tried to be as detailed as possible. I really feel badly about all the reading I'm asking you guys to do so please just let me know if I can summarize any parts thereof. Thank you all again in advance for your help.

[ ** I define "dumb striking" as strikes seemingly intended only to remove the offending prey from the snake's immediate area -- not to consume the prey. In other words, strikes apparently meant to frighten without intent to actually constrict. ]

Last edited by Gorgon; 08-06-19 at 10:13 PM..
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Old 08-07-19, 09:45 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Re: Jungle Carpet Python: Transitioning From Live To Frozen/Thawed

Hey there, I'm kinda late to the party, but felt it was important to chime in here.

Your feeding attempts are all over the place. Different locations, different techniques, different prey. You need to strive for consistency. Right now all the variances are stressing your snake.

You're never going to get anywhere that way. You need to be consistent with your offerings.

Whichever prey item the animal was eating before you brought it home will be your best bet - at least to get started. You can always upsize or transition from there. But getting her eating is obviously priority.

FEED INSIDE THE ENCLOSURE!!!!!!

Using seperate feeding tubs is old school and proven COUNTER PRODUCTIVE over time. There is literally ZERO benefit to feeding in a seperate feeding tub.

Feeding tubs:
A) increase the odds the snake refuses it's meal. Moving the animal = stress. Stress = refusal
B) increase the chances of the snake regurgitating it's meal. Moving the snake after eating = stress. Stress = regurge.
C) increase your chances of being tagged. Snakes remain in feed mode for upwards of 24 hours after eating.

Now, think forward. IF the snake were to accept in a seperate feeding tub....are you really going to want to be moving an 8 foot snake before and after each feeding?

Snakes become creatures of habit. So IF you get her eating in a seperate feeding tub as a juvenile, that may be VERY difficult to break once the animal has some size on her.

That sliding drawer idea is a great way of thinking outside the box, but unfortunately it would have the opposite affect.

At this point, stick to basics. Keep it very simple. Focus on husbandry, no handling the snake at all until it is eating consistently. I highly recommend waiting until the snake has eaten 3 consecutive meals without refusal. If there's a refusal the clock restarts. You don't need to weigh weekly. You'll be able to tell if the snake is losing considerable weight visually.

I can't stress enough, feed inside the enclosure. Keep it simple. Be consistent.
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