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 Ball Python Food Choices?

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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 12:09 am

Hey everyone. I have been having some trouble getting my ball python to eat. She hasn't eaten since December and she is a baby. I talked to someone and they said to try to feed her an African Soft Furred Rat. Is that right? A gerbil looked like the same thing. Is it? Does anyone know of a food I could try that is live. I have tried normal rats and mice and the cage is properly set up as the breeder I bought the snake from said. Can anyone help? Thanks.
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Dementeddogz
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 3:06 am

I would advise against soft furs unless its last resort. Once they get started some wont go back to rats easily.


How old is the snake?
How many grams?
Do you know if or what she was eating before you got her?
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 8:31 am

Do you know where I could buy soft furs?
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Dementeddogz
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 2:10 pm

Not off hand in your area. I saw someone not long ago selling up that way on facebook. Just remember they are not legal in virginia.
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 2:19 pm

Oh. Okay, thanks.
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Focal
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Sun Mar 30, 2014 3:27 pm

Gerbils have been known to be an alternative feeder. Personally, I wouldn't try it for not really any specific reason. When I have a difficult eater, I just wait it out and have always been fine *knock on wood*. I have a couple that only decide to eat 4-10 times a year. Sometimes they will go months without eating, slay several in a month and then go back off for another couple months. It's frustrating but the nature of the beast sometimes.
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bcr229
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:50 pm

I would think that gerbils would be too pricey as a feeder? Plus aren't they pretty nasty?

I get ASF's from a breeder in Martinsburg, WV as I have one male who is stuck on them. I don't know of anyone closer to northern VA who sells them.

What is your BP's setup like? Tank or tub, temperature range and hot spot temp, humidity, substrate, etc?
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ClarkeReptiles
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Mar 31, 2014 2:35 pm

I breed them in small numbers for my collection. I feed my ball pythons asfs, mice, and rats. So far, I haven't had any snakes take to only one. I may feed asfs for a few weeks and then switch to mice. Whichever I happen to have more of at the time. My snakes switch easily. I would stick with whatever you have a regular supply of.
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:08 pm

I have a big 40gal tank. On one side I have a UTH and the middle I have a lamp. The normal temp in the cage is 80 degrees and the humidity is 40-60%. I mist the cage 2 times a day. I keep one hide on top of the UTH, another in the middle, and one on the cool side by her water bowl. I usually keep her on a substrate called critters crumble but i am going to switch it to what my other snakes are on which is shredded aspen.
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ClarkeReptiles
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Mar 31, 2014 9:00 pm

How old is the snake and how big?
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Mar 31, 2014 9:17 pm

She was born in August of 2013. She probably weighs about 200 grams. I am guessing on the weight from what videos say.
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ClarkeReptiles
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:50 pm

A 40 gallon tank is too large for a ball python that size. He should be housed in a 10 gallon. That May account for his feeding issues. They get stressed out if they feel too exposed. Even if you have hides the space itself can be too much. Something that helped my friend with her ball python was taping black paper around three sides of the tank to help the snake feel more enclosed. Ball pythons like small, dark, cramped spaces.
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bcr229
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Tue Apr 01, 2014 5:52 pm

ClarkeReptiles wrote:
A 40 gallon tank is too large for a ball python that size. He should be housed in a 10 gallon. That May account for his feeding issues. They get stressed out if they feel too exposed. Even if you have hides the space itself can be too much. Something that helped my friend with her ball python was taping black paper around three sides of the tank to help the snake feel more enclosed. Ball pythons like small, dark, cramped spaces.
This. Also, what kind of hides are you using? A lot of people start out with the half-logs, but those aren't really good for a BP since they're open on both ends.
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Tue Apr 01, 2014 10:20 pm

I only have one with a half log and the other 2 only have 2 holes to get in from. I will ask my dad and see if he will get me maybe a 20gal. A 10 looks WAY to small.
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ClarkeReptiles
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:15 pm

It may seem small but it really isn't. Again, ball pythons like extremely small spaces. Many people who keep ball pythons, keep them in rack systems. These tubs seem very small to most people and some even consider it cruel, but it is best for the animal. Ball pythons are used to living in cramped rodent burrows and such in the wild. They only venture out for food, and even this activity is stressful for them because it leaves them vulnerable. A ball python would much rather be confined in the dark. I actually have a female ball python that when I first got  her (probably around 1000g), would NOT eat unless she was in the equivalent of a 16qt tub.

That's this...16 1/8" x23 3/4" x 6" (measurements of a 32qt iris tub)...cut in HALF lengthwise (so roughly 8 inches wide and almost 24 inches long). To compare this, a 10g is 20" long x 10" wide x 12" tall, so not much different. The 10 gallon is just a little taller and less long. At first, I felt so bad because she looked so cramped. It wasn't until I realized that moving her to something bigger stressed her out and she liked the confined space of the tub. She was comfortable and pounded food like crazy once I realized this. Now that she's older and bigger I have been able to move her up to a 28qt tub. So she was 1000g living in something only slightly longer than a 10 gallon tank, and she was 5x the size of your ball python.

My largest girl, weighing close to 2000g is in a 28qt and she does wonderfully (as evidence of her size)

A 20g tank is the largest I would ever consider putting a ball python of 200g in. And only if it was filled with proper hides, lots of cover, and was blacked out on three sides (back and sides of tank).
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:52 pm

Thanks for the help I will try all that you said.
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neeckow123
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:58 pm

Do you use 28qt tubs for breeding? I am thinking you breed ball pythons.
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ClarkeReptiles
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:03 pm

I keep some as pets and breed others. All of my adults are in 28qts. I also keep subadults and my smaller snakes in divided 32qts (so essentially 16qt) and in my hatchling rack (6qt tubs).

Whether you are keeping a ball python as a pet or breeding, you still want them to be comfortable. If you wish to display your snake, a tank is okay, but you have to make sure the tank is small enough and contains a lot of hiding spots and cover.
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Running_Elk
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:40 pm

There are soft furs in Richmond. At least one local pet store sells them.

I mean, this is the same store that sold me deer mice as "field mice x domestic mice hybrids", which isn't even a thing. Illegal. But regardless of legality I've seen soft furs for sale.
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ichopz
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:06 pm

fin& feather sells soft furs.. they high as **** too
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Running_Elk
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PostSubject: Re: Ball Python Food Choices?   Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:59 pm

That's the store.

I found deer mice there too.
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