Can snakes learn?

Discussion in 'General Reptile Discussion' started by LilithLeChat, Aug 10, 2018 at 2:52 PM.

  1. LilithLeChat

    LilithLeChat Not so new Member

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    Whenever I defrost a mouse for Cassie, I put it on a square of paper towel under the heat lamp until it reaches around 30-35 degrees (making sure it’s thoroughly defrosted inside and out first).
    On a few occasions, I took her out of her click clack and let her find and take the mouse by herself.
    Today is her feeding day, but she’s due to shed in next day or two, so I’m postponing the feed.
    She’s been sitting on her perch since last Sunday (when she went milky-eyed) pretty much not moving.
    Today I booked her in for a visit with a reptile vet for a general health check-up and hopefully sexing (so as of next week, Cassandra might become Castiel, lol). They suggested that if possible, I should collect a stool sample before the visit.
    I thought that the best way to collect it is to put a piece of tissue under her pooping spot, as it would be easier to see and won’t get covered in substrate. (In theory, at least)
    She was not bothered at all by me doing it, however, a few minutes after I put it in there, she became very excited and started investigating the tissue - most activity she has done in a week.
    I was wondering if she’s curious about the new addition, but she has never acted like that around anything else I put in her click clack.
    I assume that she has learned to associate white paper towel/tissue = food, even though she was fed off the paper towel only a few times, and even though this tissue didn’t smell like a mouse.
    I have also placed a wetted, *scrunched* paper towel in her click clack last time she was shedding to elevate humidity in her click clack, and another one since Sunday, but she showed no interest.

    Has anyone else observed learning behaviour in their snakes? Especially if not food-related?
     
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  2. richyboa72

    richyboa72 Active Member

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    My boas know that the tongs mean feed time ,they aren’t daft


    That’s why tap training is such a good idea, so they know when it’s feed time and not out time,
    That why I can never understand people who take snakes into a different tubs to feed and wonder why they think they being fed every time you get them out to clean etc and to still be I. Food mode to put them back in the viv


    Sent from my iPod touch using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 15, 2018 at 7:41 AM
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  3. LilithLeChat

    LilithLeChat Not so new Member

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    I got placemats for two adult Centralians to teach them it’s only food when placemats go in. Female already bit my hand and tried to strangle it because she thought it was food.
     
  4. dragonlover1

    dragonlover1 Subscriber Subscriber

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    Not quite answering LilithLeChat but I kind of agree with richyboa72 (who needs to learn better English...."and to still be I. Food mode to put them back in the viv"...seriously what does this mean?) in the tap training.My pythons know when it is feeding time because I tap on the glass with the tongs. If it's out time I use the hook to wake them up.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018 at 5:57 PM
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  5. Bl69aze

    Bl69aze Very Well-Known Member

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    tissue and paper towel stinks if u hold it close, it also has a strange feeling
     
  6. LilithLeChat

    LilithLeChat Not so new Member

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    I understood it to mean “still to be in food mode” - as in, they thought tub meant feeding, they weren’t fed, they wonder why food isn’t coming.
    I’ve seen it with one of my snakes, after I got Gamora to let go of my fist and unwrapped her off my wrist, she got quite agitated and started pacing the enclosure. She must have wondered why I took her food away lol. My fault, I was playing with the puppy and forgot to wash my hand before sticking it into enclosure.

    Tap training sounds like a good idea, I’ll start that too.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018 at 6:21 PM
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  7. richyboa72

    richyboa72 Active Member

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    Yes sorry was suppose to say still be in food mode when putting them back in the Viv,lol .
    definitely wash your hands if you have been around a pet, they have a fantastic sense of smell
    Sorry I was typing in a rush while having my breakfast,will try harder next time

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    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018 at 7:21 PM
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  8. dragonlover1

    dragonlover1 Subscriber Subscriber

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    Washing your hands is very important during the feeding process,I continually wash my hands during the heating process to make sure I don't smell like mouse.I want my snakes to concentrate on the food item not my stinky fingers.
     
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  9. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    I’m all for tap training. Saved me a lost snake once.

    He managed to pop out a vent in his enclosure (apparently it had wobbled loose when I was moving the enclosure around but I hadn’t noticed). I come home and go to check on them before feeding and he’s gone. Cue panicking. After a quick search of the room I was starting to be a bit more desperate and worried he had left the room (and the time it hadn’t been fully sealed).
    Started tapping on the floor and the bookcase in the room- little bugger popped his head out of a storage box on the bookshelf wondering where the food was at.

    He had learned to associate the tapping with food coming, and luckily he was hungry that day.

    Snakes learn so much that we see, and I bet they learn much more we don’t.
    They ‘learn’ that we’re not going to hurt them.
    They ‘learn’ to take f/t food.
    They ‘learn’ of the best places they have to warm up just right.

    My snake who got out 100% knows that vent popped for him once and he’ll always go back and push and check at it and try to work it free again. He also has learnt that the front door opens and not the other three walls.
    When he was smaller he quickly ‘learned’ my pockets were comfy places, and after the first few times he’d head for the pockets almost straight away and knew exactly where to find them.

    Snakes aren’t stupid by any means- sure they can’t mimic like a parrot or be taught to ‘sit’ or ‘come’ like a dog, but they do have their own intelligence and ability to learn and remember to them
     
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  10. Prof_Moreliarty

    Prof_Moreliarty Well-Known Member

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    slime molds have no brain and can still learn things so i imagine snakes have no problem, i have seen learning behaviour in my snakes usually related to food.
     
  11. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    I was about to say something similar, using plants as an example instead of slime mold. Compared to other reptiles like turtles, monitors and birds they have extremely limited learning abilities.
     
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  12. Pauls_Pythons

    Pauls_Pythons Power Seller Power Seller

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    Same logic can be applied to some people
     
  13. LilithLeChat

    LilithLeChat Not so new Member

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    After 10 days of being confined to her click clack (2 days after feeding, 6 days from milky eye to shed and then 2 days for next feed), Cassandra couldn’t wait to get out. As soon as I opened the lid, she shot up towards me and climbed on my hand. I think she was quite bored and knew that being taken out means going over to the fish tank and watching the fish lol!

    [​IMG]
     
  14. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    Cute pic. I wouldn't read too much into it, I have seen the exact opposite when accidentally leaving an enclosure open (in a snake proof area so completely escaping was not possible).
     
  15. dragonlover1

    dragonlover1 Subscriber Subscriber

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    I certainly wouldn't say snakes are smart but they do learn.
    Different animals have different levels of intelligence. I know for a fact that frillies are smarter than beardies.
    My frillies know to intercept bugs by going the other way around a stump whereas the beardy loses sight and gives up.
     
  16. LilithLeChat

    LilithLeChat Not so new Member

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    As long as my snakes can learn that I’m not a threat and don’t try to kill and eat my fist again lol!
    I can definitely see the difference between Cassandra, whom I handled regularly since I got her in May, and the two Bredlis that I got last weekend. They haven’t been handled much and are very wary and skittish, while Cassandra is laid back and docile.
     
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