Discussion in 'Common/Red Tail Boa' started by bleachii, May 10, 2008.
Fantastic story, Brian!
Do you know what we need now - to be totally happy - ..? Pictures !
thats funny and so so true!
Forgot my manners!
Looks Great, Brian !
Thanks for posting those
Good pics. Thank you. Nice looking snake. I still think you have a keeper!
Thanks JMM and KC....
Yes..I agree...we have a keeper. We are going to attempt to feed him this weekend...it will be two weeks since arrival and 2.5 weeks since he last ate. Certainly it should be worth a shot.
I have noticed a few things I thought I would share and appreciate any thoughts. When we first got the snake I noticed after the lights went out at night the first few nights he was not active. Certainly there was activity sometime during the night but not early. After the first few days I noticed he would come out pretty soon after lights out. Seemed to be used to his new surroundings.
We had him outside with us on Sun for pics, helped him shed with a nice bath, sun bathing, etc. I believe we overdid his outside adventure time. That evening I noticed he did not come out to explore as early as he had the past few nights. I think we wore him out! All the activity, probably some stress, etc he was not used to it. I was a bit concerned at first because he was not acting in a fashion similar to the past 3-4 days. But he acted much like the first few days we got him.
Anyhow...no alarm or anything...just studying his behavioral tendencies and thought they were interesting. I wonder if a snake doesn't get out much and becomes a tank potato...and then they get out and get lots of exercise all of a sudden...do they feel tired or stressed....or fatigued? And then decide...whew....'I'm tired...think I'll lay around and get up to wander a bit later tonight'.
My daughter checks on him every day after school. Writes down his temperature, humidity, time of day, etc. Funny thing is that she just started to learn to read a thermometer in school this past week. Last week she started reading the thermometer and humidity from Sampson's enclosure...so now Sampson is educational!
I think that's awesome! Anything to keep them interested in learning. I wonder the same thing sbout my snake regarding activity. But she keeps being fine for all my stressing about what I consider "irregular behavior". I think, however, if they were wild, they would stretch out in the sun, eat every now and again, and pretty much be potatoes. It's a good life. Eat, hang out, rest. Hmmmm.
Another update. Monday or Tuesday I checked on our new boa to find he had shed. Interesting that when we picked him up a few weeks ago he looked to be having shedding issues. We helped him a week later by soaking him in warm water for a bit and gently rubbing his body to take of the flaking skin. A few days after that he got the cloudy look and then another few days later he shed. I have not checked for 'eyes' on the skin yet as I just read about it. However, he looks to have had a very nice shed.
Today I decided was going to be his first feeding since we acquired him a few weeks ago. Purchased a frozen medium rat this morning and placed the closed bag/rat into a tupper ware container and placed it outside. Early evening I got everything ready which meant newspaper in the bottom of a larger plastic storage container. Got the rat tongs ready. Prepped the rat by adding a bit of hot water to the tupper ware with the rat in the bag....just to be sure the rat was nice and warm.
Since he was curled up in a ball in the corner of his cage with his neck coiled back I decided to use the towel method to get him out. The past few nights he really had the look of a snake out hunting so I was being careful. No incidents getting him into his feeding box. Setup the kids to watch and read them the riot act about being quiet and just watching.
Used the tongs to place the rat in front of his head and he took him within a few seconds. He then proceeded to strangle the dead rat for about 5 minutes. Eventually he started eating and the process went rather quickly. There is now a nice lump in his belly so I believe it was a good size for him.
The nerve racking part was getting him out of the feeding box. I actually decided to leave him in there for a while because he still looked like he was in feeding mode. After a while I used the towel method to pick him up and immediately place him into his enclosure with heat lamp ready. He appears to be very content now and I can honestly say that I am happy his first feeding went without incident so far.
Just thought you might like to know.
That's great! The towel method is really an effective way of avoiding getting bit and not stressing out the snake too much.
I'm glad he ate for you so quickly. They are often hungry after a shed.
Also if you feed him a big rat, don't be surprised if he goes into a shedding phase again soon after. It's a sign that he's growing.
My BP usually goes into shed immediately after a good-sized rat.
I'm glad to hear that your daughter is keeping such good care records for Sampson. It really makes the owning experience more interesting. After he defecates, you can weigh him (put him in a pillowcase and on a scale) and then keep records on how he's growing. If he sheds in one piece, you can measure the skin length then subtract about 15% to get the approximate true length. Or you can take a string and try to run it along is back, then measure the length of the string.
Keeping good records really keep the hobby interesting and will be helpful if you ever have a problem and need to take him to a vet.
Sounds like great advice Blackjack! Thank you very much for the info...I'll put together a log which will be a great way for my daughter and I to keep track of his progress and growth patterns.
With the towel....I use the same towel each time and I place it in there near him so he can first check it out. He doesn't seem to mind it and most of the time he comes up to the towel to check it out.
There are definitely times when I would not put my hand in there though....last night he really looked awnry and I believe he was still in hunting/feeding mode well after the event. When I came near his enclosure he knew I was there and if I didn't know any better I would say he was stalking me! We had a little conversation about the whole hunting thing but I don't think he was listening very well.
I'll tell you one thing...he has seemed very alert since eating. Definitely different behaviorally than what I am used to seeing. Maybe it's also due to the shed..guess time will tell as I get more used to his behavior around certain events.
Been a while but thought I should post an update. Sampson continues to do very well and has moved from medium f/t rats to large f/t rats. He has now taken the large size twice over the past month. He has also shed a few times and has been nothing but friendly when not in feeding mode. When in feeding mode it's a completely different story.
I have learned to leave him alone after eating for a few hours. Once I see him hiding under the newspaper I know his feeding instinct is 'fading'. I can then take him out of the feeding container and place him back into his enclosure. One time I went to check on him a bit too early and he was quick to watch me approach the container and strike...got my attention that's for sure!
His eyes are cloudy today so although this is feeding weekend it looks like it will be pushed off until he goes through his shedding process again. How long do you guys wait to feed after shedding? I'm sure they are quite hungry afterwards.
I just wait till the next scheduled feeding day. That keeps everything on track.
Glad to hear things are going so well.
I usually feed one or two days after the shed, because I know they'll be hungry. But if you like to keep things on a strict schedule, just wait till your usual feeding night.
I'm glad to hear Sampson is doing well. Congrats!!
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