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Old 01-05-16, 01:57 PM   #16
ManSlaughter33
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

Just a question, Have you tried rats? same size as the mice your feeding?
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Old 01-05-16, 06:05 PM   #17
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

Tried that too, when she didn't eat it after 4 hours I had an alarm set and took it out. I didn't want her to get food poisoning or something.
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Old 01-05-16, 11:47 PM   #18
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

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Originally Posted by SavannahPolson View Post
Tried that too, when she didn't eat it after 4 hours I had an alarm set and took it out. I didn't want her to get food poisoning or something.
You can leave it in there as long as 8-12 hours. Much more than that, and then it starts to bloat. The real problems come when a mouse/rat has been thawed out and re-frozen too many times, cooked, when it's rotten and smells really bad, or when the feeder source is known to have diseases. Leaving it out for a few hours shouldn't cause any harm.

I'd also start trying to get your snake to eat in the enclosure, it's a good habit to have.


What do you do when you try feeding in the enclosure? Do you wave it around and wait for the snake to come for it on its own? Or do you search for the snake and wave it by its face? Or something else?

How big are the meals? How big are the bulges after she eats, and how long does it take for the bulge to go away?

Is she showing any signs of illness? Regurgitation, weird stools, any signs of an RI?

What are your temps at, and how are you measuring them? How is her day/night cycle provided?
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Old 01-06-16, 10:58 AM   #19
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

The mice are weaned mice, but my guy calls them hoppers, no clue why, other than for confusion. I haven't tried rats, I usually tried to tease her to come out of her house and if she didn't I'd leave the mouse. That was at night. A few weeks ago she passed an usual, partially digested mouse stool. I made a post about it. I talked to my boss, who owns over 20 snakes, as well as the breeder. We had lost electricity that week so she was being kept warm in a plastic tub in the kitchen, because I have a propane heater in there. During the period without electricity, her little box stayed around 75 degrees, which I know is a little low, but that's the best we could do under the circumstances. He explained that is she wasn't warm enough she couldn't digest it properly and that was why she passed it looking the way it was. Under normal, like right now, circumstances her tank is at about 85-95% humidity, when the humidifier is running, its higher. Day time temps, provided by UVA daytime light & uth, are 74-75 cool end and 80-81 warm end. At night I turn off the light and they drop a little, 77-78 warm and 72-73 cool. To measure temps and humidity I have 2 sets of thermometers & hydrometers, as well as a infrared temp gun. I didn't know about the 8-12 hour thing. I always thought of it like if groceries are left out too long. She isn't showing any signs of illnesses. She's alert when let out of her tank, she enjoys slithering through her water at night, her scales look good, and she is passing regular stools. She has a couple of hides, access to fresh water, and things to rub on when she sheds. The breeder also explained that he starts all his babies out on live mice. I'll link a picture to her mouse bump. I'm not sure if I have a good one from this feed though.
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Old 01-06-16, 11:04 AM   #20
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

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Old 01-06-16, 11:44 PM   #21
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

The mouse in the last photo is a bit large, so she may not be hungry. You should aim for 1-1.5x the girth, and it should leave only a small bulge that disappears after 24-48 hours once swallowed. I personally feed even smaller than that, as I'm more of a conservative feeder. My BRB isn't a 3' chub, but from what I've seen he's at a good average size for his age (3' yearlings aren't as common from what I've seen, these guys grow almost as slowly as boa constrictors).

I would especially err on the smaller side if you continue to feed live. The smaller the mouse/rat is, the easier the snake can dispatch it, and the easier it is to kill the less likely the snake is to become injured.

How long has it been since the underdigested stool? Has she passed any normal stools since then?

Snakes are carnivores, they've got stronger stomachs than we do. Just make sure you don't feed rodents that have an overly strong smell or appear off in any other way. If they're thawed/refrozen too many times, they can go bad. I refreeze rodents ONCE if they've been sitting out less than an hour, but I don't freeze them twice and I immediately throw out any rodents that smell really strong or have clear fur when thawed out in water. I also never refreeze pinkies since they have no fur and are so tiny.
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Old 01-07-16, 11:20 AM   #22
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

If FT is the best method for you, don't give up on it. My BRBs will eat just about anything, but there is a lot in the timing and mode they are in when feeding. Usually if I handle them at all before offering food, they will not take it as they are not in their feeding mode. I have the most success by just uncovering them from their hide (often they are under the water dish) and just dangling the food by some tongs above them. They'll usually take it right away. If not, I set it down just a couple inches or two away and leave them alone for a couple hours. It'll be gone when I get back. Sometimes if they aren't in the mood to eat, I just have to spend a few minutes dangling the food in front of them and let it brush up against the front of their mouth a few times. This sometimes kicks them into feeding mode and they'll take it.

I would stick to smaller food as well. My BRBs are a little smaller than yours and I just switched them from fuzzy mice to pinky rats. I still mostly offer them live as it's easy for me to get, but I have FT as well if I don't have time to get to the farm for live.

Good luck!
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Old 01-08-16, 12:50 PM   #23
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Re: Keeping a couple of feeder mice

The mouse bump was gone after a day. She has had 2-3 normal stools since the weird one. She took the mouse down like it was no problem & was hunting for another, which she didn't get, when she was done with that one. I usually got to college up there so during the school year picking live ones up isn't a problem.
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