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Ball python feeding, ok in enclosure?

Discussion in 'Ball Pythons' started by replover, Apr 11, 2006.

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  1. replover

    replover Elite Member

    Is it ok to feed a ball python in its enclosure? I have read that it is optional to have a separate feedbox, as long as you don't have particulate substrates. However, others say that if you feed in the enclosure it will bite at anything that goes into the enclosure like your hands when you are cleaning or trying to handle it. Others yet say "yeah right" they hardly eat at all. So what is it?

    If a separate feeding box is needed, what are the requirements and size specifications?
     
  2. Lyn

    Lyn Elite Member

    I always feed my snakes in seperate containers ....definitely for the reason that every time you touch the cover or door to the cage, they will think food is there. And could possibly bite. I would highly suggest a seperate container...it doesnt have to be elegant...a sweater box of some sort with some holes in it....they easily get used to being moved for feeding....better all the way around. Lyn
     
  3. venus

    venus Founding Member

    I think its best not to feed in the enclosure for several reasons. You dont want the snake to associate everytime you open the tank that you are going to feed him/her, and your hand wont be associated with food. Also depending on the substrate you use, some of it could get into the snakes mouth cause damage to his mouth or his insides.
     
  4. mshrmheadcharge

    mshrmheadcharge Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

    I always feed my snakes inseperate enclosures also
     
  5. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Anthony a lot depends on the attitude of the snake. If its docile you might get away with feeding in the tank. If its not its gonna nail you! Only time will tell. The main problem I have seen with people getting bitten by snakes when they feed in the tank is there gets to be a time when the only time they interact with the snake is to feed it. Therefore it associates the opening of the cage with food. If you handle it regularly on a daily basis other than just to feed it the chances of it mistaking your hand for prey are greatly reduced.
     
  6. replover

    replover Elite Member

    Merlin, I would love to handle the snakes everyday but being fed once a week and not handling them for 2 - 3 days after for digestion means there is only 4 days left in the week, is this ok?

    Also, I know there is some technique when lifting it back into the enclosure after feeding in a separate box so it doesn't puke it back out. You supposed to hold it by the lump that the mouse created??

    The feeding box can be not heated provided room temp is reasonable around 60 - 70 degrees, right? What if they don't eat yet? How long till I take it back and feed it again next week?
     
  7. mshrmheadcharge

    mshrmheadcharge Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

    After libi (boa) eats i support her whole body when putting her back in the cage not justthe lump :)
     
  8. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Leaving them for 2 days after feeding is sufficient. This leaves plenty of time for handling,

    There is really no special technique. Just pick the snake up and return it to the enclosure. It is better to support the entire body, not the lump.

    In my experience if they don't take it in 5-10 minutes then they aren't interested. Some people will just leave the DEAD mouse in there over night but again if they don't eat readily they probably won't eat this time around.
     
  9. replover

    replover Elite Member

    Ok 5 - 10 mins. May I ask how big the feeding box should be as compared to the enclosure? Should it be a big size for easy eating or will that freak it out and make it difficult for it to find the mouse because its busy exploring the new "place"?
     
  10. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    If the snake is hungry there will be no exploring of the new place. It will target the mouse and zero in on it. The size of the feeding enclosure is not that important. But you don't need anything near the size of the normal enclosure. If you are feeding live (NOT RECOMMENDED!) you will need a larger enclosure since there will be a fight going on. With prekilled or F/T there is not as much room necessary.
     
  11. aiden_punx

    aiden_punx Elite Member

    when i am done feeding my boa i place her feeding box back into the tank so she can get out when she is ready...
     
  12. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    LOL! Thats fine for a hatchling but what are you going to do when the snake is 8ft long?
     
  13. aiden_punx

    aiden_punx Elite Member

    we shall have to see when we get there won't we
     
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