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Young Florida Kingsnake Hiding

Discussion in 'Kingsnakes' started by MariusJTR, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. MariusJTR

    MariusJTR New Member

    Alright, I know there are always plenty of these posts going around but I need some reassurance from some fellow snake owners.
    This is my second florida kingsnake to own, but I got my first one when he was already a year old and didn't have to go through his youth. I now have a 3-4 month old florida (brooks) king. I have had her just over a month. She is about 14 inches long and is in a 18" by 24" tank filled with 4 hides and plenty of plant cover. As it is a bit of a large tank for her size, I made sure she had plenty of hiding spots. The issue is, one of her hides, her favorite, is the All Living Things Bogwood from petsmart. The tip of the branch is hollowed out and inaccessible to humans, but an ideal place for a small snake to hide out.
    For a while it didn't matter that she'd hide up there, because after the first week of having her she would come out regularly at night to explore. She is a hardy eater who would accept a pinkie twice a week and then return to the hollowed tip. But now I haven't laid eyes on her since last Sunday. She ate the monday right after that but she didn't come retrieve the pinky during the day, instead took it at night when no one was around. I will also mention that she arrived with a fresh shed in her shipping container and hasn't shed since then. My first instinct is to assume that she is hiding out while she's blue and wont come out until she is ready to shed. However, I have no way to even see if she truly is in the log (let alone blue), and I recently found the mesh wiring was very slightly separating from the lid top, and a very stubborn small snake could have forced herself through to escape (it was tight enough it would be a very ridiculous and poky process, but plausible). Granted, the opening on the top was very inaccessible to her given her activity patterns around the tank. It was in the middle of the tank right over a short wine branch in there. I have never seen her climb on the branch or even want to, and she would have had to use it to reach that high.
    I offered her food again yesterday and the pinky did not disappear during the night. I have also set up a time lapse camera the past two nights to get a look at her, and she hasn't come out either night. So... am I freaking out? Is my snake still in there or has she escaped? I'm really hoping I'm just being an overstressed parent but the thought of a missing snake sucks, especially with how small she is.
    I specifically went out and got the 4th hide yesterday so that when I see her, I can take the bogwood out until she is too big to wedge herself in there. The new hide also provides a nice tight space so she can feel safe (the other 2 are a bit roomier), I didn't want to remove the bogwood without providing another proper security.
    And other tank info in case you need it, warm side of tank peaks at 90 degrees, cool side is 74. Night temps are warm side at 80-85 degrees with the coldest point on the cool side being 68 degrees. The tip of the bogwood she is in is located in the middle range of the temp gradient. Humidity is generally around 40-55.
     
  2. MariusJTR

    MariusJTR New Member

    Update: got a wire hanger and bent it (so as to not be pointy), and slid it up into the hollow tip of the branch. Didn't feel any soft tissue. Just to be extra sure, I got a saw and started cutting the plastic at the highest point that I could see up the branch, as to be sure I didn't harm a hiding snake. Ended up chipping a big piece off then breaking the tip off by hand. No snake. She must have gotten out the edging. No idea how long she has been out. Last time she was for sure in the tank was last Monday (6/20/16) when she ate her last pinkie.

    Have been combing the apartment and no dice so far. A lot has happened in a week. Worried she was taken out with the recycling. I now have her tank open and on the floor with a pinky inside and heat lamp and pad on. Cranking the AC up to cool the place down. Any other suggestions would also be welcome.
     
  3. toddnbecka

    toddnbecka Well Established Member

    Last Friday I discovered my young carpet python had squeezed out under the screen top on her tank. She had been fed the previous Sunday, so she was on the hungry side of the week. I put 2 mice into a 10 gallon tank with a screen top on it and set that in the middle of a table, turnd off the lights, and came back upstairs. (All my snakes are in the basement, with way too many places for MIA's to hide...) About 2 hours later I went back down and found her just starting across the table toward the tank of mice.
    Several of my Domincan red mountain boas have also gotten loose at various times, and they were almost always found at night when they're normally active. One notable exception, one nearly adult female was found in an aquarium a short distace from her enclosure, wrapped around a powerhead having a warm soak while a handful of ramshorn snails gave her a spa treatment.
     

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