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Old 08-01-13, 12:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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OH Rats.

So, now that I have 5 snakes and am planning to get a few more down the road, I have noticed the expense in feeding my little monsters. LOL.

I was wondering if any one here has a lot of experience breeding rats and if it is really worth it. I have briefly read some on this and some people say the cost of raising rats is almost expensive as buying one.

And A side note, how long does it take a rat to grow from a pinky to around 100 grams ?
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Old 08-01-13, 01:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

For five snakes I would just buy frozen feeders in bulk. I do it all the time and I have even more than you do.

I don't want the smell or the additional upkeep so I pay, I believe reasonable, price for someone else to do it for me.

If you go this route. Don't look for just the cheapest. You want quality feeders. What goes into them goes into your snakes.
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Old 08-01-13, 01:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

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Originally Posted by Aaron_S View Post
For five snakes I would just buy frozen feeders in bulk. I do it all the time and I have even more than you do.

I don't want the smell or the additional upkeep so I pay, I believe reasonable, price for someone else to do it for me.

If you go this route. Don't look for just the cheapest. You want quality feeders. What goes into them goes into your snakes.
I tend to agree with you 100%, I was just wondering if there was a big margin.
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Old 08-01-13, 02:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

I've got 5 snakes. I breed rats and mice and sell the extra, you will never breed exactly what you need. Lol. With what I make from selling the extra, I feed my snakes for free.
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Old 08-01-13, 03:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

I don't like rats they smell even when clean. go frozen
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Old 08-01-13, 03:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

I tried breeding my own rats but didn't last long. Take a look a "near North rodents" website.
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Old 08-01-13, 05:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

I've been breeding rats for my snakes for about 4-5 years now. I keep them outside the house, so the smell really isn't that bad, even at the time I clean their bedding (usually every 3 months, or sooner if they're being extra messy). Before they were in a shed, and now they're by the fence with plastic over the top, and hopefully when I can move out they'll be in another building. If you buy pellets in bulk, the cost of feeding isn't bad at all. They can also eat scraps like carrots, bell peppers (the ones I have go CRAZY for them, they'll take a finger in their excitement lol), basically any fruit or veggie, and cooked meats. I got two 50lb bags of pellets for $30. One of those bags lasts me almost a year for 5 rats, even if I were to give them as much as they'll eat. The only problem I've run into is always having breeder females. The males are common, but no one wants to get rid of their females, so right now I've got one little girl and I'm waiting for her to get old enough to breed. Ideally, I'd want two more. When I had two females to one male, each of the females had, on average, 10-12 babies a litter. 9 was the smallest litter I've ever had in the three generations I've raised, and 16 was the largest litter. They are weaned at 4-5 weeks old, and the female can become pregnant immediately after birth. Usually, after two or three litters I take the male out and give the females some time off. This keeps the size of the babies, and the number of the babies, up (at least in my experience). Unfortunately, my old females died at the beginning of winter from old age (they were around 2.5 years old), so I'm not able to breed until the one female grows up, at least. It takes them about 2-3 months to get to 100 grams. It may not be worth it for just my two snakes, but when I'm breeding, I have food stocked up for the snakes at all times, and at $15 (or $30 when it's not on sale) a year for rat food at the place I get their food, it's sooooo much cheaper.
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Old 08-01-13, 06:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

We used to breed rats and with only 8-18 snakes to feed depending on when you're talking about, we had as many as 650 rats and 150+ mice at our peak. Of course we produced way more rats and mice than what we needed to feed our snakes so we sold the excess and that supported the hobby and we had a little extra $ after it was all said and done.
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Old 08-01-13, 06:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

I've only got 2 snakes at the moment and I keep a colony of rats. It probably would be easier for me to buy rats weekly/as needed, but I like keeping them. I find them incredibly fascinating AND it's so much fun breeding them. I used to have a pure albino colony that started by accident (bought 10 rats, ended up with 40). About two months ago, I got two males to add some color to the bunch. A black hooded and a champagne hooded.
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Old 08-01-13, 10:15 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigsnakegirl785 View Post
I've been breeding rats for my snakes for about 4-5 years now. I keep them outside the house, so the smell really isn't that bad, even at the time I clean their bedding (usually every 3 months, or sooner if they're being extra messy). Before they were in a shed, and now they're by the fence with plastic over the top, and hopefully when I can move out they'll be in another building. If you buy pellets in bulk, the cost of feeding isn't bad at all. They can also eat scraps like carrots, bell peppers (the ones I have go CRAZY for them, they'll take a finger in their excitement lol), basically any fruit or veggie, and cooked meats. I got two 50lb bags of pellets for $30. One of those bags lasts me almost a year for 5 rats, even if I were to give them as much as they'll eat. The only problem I've run into is always having breeder females. The males are common, but no one wants to get rid of their females, so right now I've got one little girl and I'm waiting for her to get old enough to breed. Ideally, I'd want two more. When I had two females to one male, each of the females had, on average, 10-12 babies a litter. 9 was the smallest litter I've ever had in the three generations I've raised, and 16 was the largest litter. They are weaned at 4-5 weeks old, and the female can become pregnant immediately after birth. Usually, after two or three litters I take the male out and give the females some time off. This keeps the size of the babies, and the number of the babies, up (at least in my experience). Unfortunately, my old females died at the beginning of winter from old age (they were around 2.5 years old), so I'm not able to breed until the one female grows up, at least. It takes them about 2-3 months to get to 100 grams. It may not be worth it for just my two snakes, but when I'm breeding, I have food stocked up for the snakes at all times, and at $15 (or $30 when it's not on sale) a year for rat food at the place I get their food, it's sooooo much cheaper.
You want breeder females?

I believe it's called "Layne Labs". Top of the line rats. They are a tad pricey but oh so worth it.
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Old 08-02-13, 12:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron_S View Post
You want breeder females?

I believe it's called "Layne Labs". Top of the line rats. They are a tad pricey but oh so worth it.
How would I go about getting some girls from them? Is calling them, or e-mailing them more effective? On their website, they only offer frozen. And what would be the shipping cost for live rats from their CA address to my NC address? If it's too far out there, I won't be able to afford it for awhile.
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Old 08-02-13, 12:56 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigsnakegirl785 View Post
How would I go about getting some girls from them? Is calling them, or e-mailing them more effective? On their website, they only offer frozen. And what would be the shipping cost for live rats from their CA address to my NC address? If it's too far out there, I won't be able to afford it for awhile.
Call and ask.

Live rats were bought a long time ago so no idea on how they work now.
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Old 08-02-13, 01:55 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

Awesome guys, thanks for the info.
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Old 08-02-13, 02:16 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

i buy frozen rat pups from near north rodents. 50 for $64.00. they are just south of orillia. i pick them up when i go down to orillia.
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Old 08-02-13, 02:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: OH Rats.

i buy rat pups from near north rodents. 50 for $64.00. i pick them up when i go down to orillia.
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