HELP! Getting our darwin python hatchling to feed.

Discussion in 'General Reptile Discussion' started by Ian Gibbs, Mar 16, 2019 at 2:15 PM.

  1. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    Hi. we are having all sorts of problems getting our albino darwin python hatchling to feed.
    Got her just before xmas. at that point we were told she had sed twice and eaten 4 times.
    since then she just won't feed. when ever we try she just runs away.

    we have tried day & night feedings. in smaller tubs to her permanent tank. we put her in a small round container with pinky and left her for 2 hours, she just went to sleep. If i lay the pinkie in her coils she just ignores it. we have worked on getting the food heat up to 40 deg. we have torn the head of the pinky for added scent.
    So far we had her force fed on the 6th Jan 3 x fresh born mice & 19th Feb she had pinky rat and 2 fresh born mice.
    She still shows no interest to food.
    On a side note, she is super placid. cant piss her off enough to strike and has never bitten. just chills.
    Does anyone have a 100% fool proof way to get her to feed on her own? I would love to know it.
    Cheers
    111 Zizzi.jpg
     
  2. Bl69aze

    Bl69aze Very Well-Known Member

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    Hatchling darwin pythons can easily take hopper or even weaner mice from birth, perhaps she isn't interested in pinkies.

    whats her enclosure temps at? hot and cool side?
     
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  3. chloe.j.f

    chloe.j.f Not so new Member

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    Messaged you


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  4. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    cuts of at 33 degs
    holds at 32
     
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  5. Bl69aze

    Bl69aze Very Well-Known Member

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    heat mat? how are you measuring the temps?
     
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  6. chloe.j.f

    chloe.j.f Not so new Member

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    Hey! What heat source do you use? Also don’t move to feed it’s pointless and stressful. Your best bet right now is setting up a simple tub set up with a heat mat under 1/4 of the tub on 34, use a simple substrate like paper towel and heaps of small hides, having a small python in a big enclosure can cause stress and it could be why it isn’t feeding, albino Darwin’s are also known for being picky so you may have to chose a different prey :)


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  7. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    heat mat at one end, heat lamp at same side through top. thermo is top corner
    --- Automatic Post Merged, Mar 16, 2019 at 3:48 PM, Original Post Date: Mar 16, 2019 at 3:47 PM ---
    should we look at rats?
    --- Automatic Post Merged, Mar 16, 2019 at 3:49 PM ---
    Its hard to get suppliers around here. pet shops are about all that is available.
     
  8. Bl69aze

    Bl69aze Very Well-Known Member

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    you only need 1 or the other :) as long as they are reaching the desired temps

    as for feed size, i'd recommend weaner/hopper mice

    where do you live? im sure there are plenty of suppliers, that if arent local, would ship for a fraction of the cost of pet shops ;p
     
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  9. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    Heat mat wasn't quite getting the tem up so we added the lamp. both cut off at 33.
     
  10. chloe.j.f

    chloe.j.f Not so new Member

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    What about your cold end? How are you reading temps


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  11. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    not :) only have one thermo
     
  12. chloe.j.f

    chloe.j.f Not so new Member

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    You should get a thermometer gun, $12 on eBay.


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  13. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    sorry forgot I had gun. 31 at top 29 at water bowl
     
  14. chloe.j.f

    chloe.j.f Not so new Member

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    Can you send a picture of the full enclosure


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  15. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    IMG20190316163802.jpg IMG20190316163808.jpg IMG20190316163841.jpg IMG20190316163834.jpg IMG20190316163854.jpg

    IMG20190316163818.jpg
     
  16. Yellowtail

    Yellowtail Subscriber Subscriber

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    Unfortunately the situation is now complicated by the force feeding and mix of mice/rats, it does not know what food tastes or smells like.
    First it must feel secure and not be defensive, is it relaxed in it's environment. Moving it to another tub to feed is a no no and will just stress it. You have to have the temperatures right, it should at 33c, the pythons temp not the cage so you need an IR thermometer, the cool area can be 26c but the python must have the right body temp or it will not feed. Assuming it was a few weeks old when you got it it is now more than 4 months old and certainly should not be fed pinky anything. Mine eat large fuzzy mice from the first feed and they have a significant smell and texture that the python recognises as prey, at it's age it should be on at least large hoppers or weaner mice but it may be undersized. Not sure why it was force fed but now it probably has bad memories of the taste and smell of things forced down its throat.
    You need to get all of the above right and leave it alone for a period then when it is relaxed and starts to show signs of prowling at night for food try introducing a fuzzy mouse with as little disruption as possible. It may be confused as to the smells so thawing a fuzzy mouse with a rat may help. As a last resort I have assist fed rats tails to difficult feeders immediately followed by a fuzzy mouse thawed with the rats tail but never in 15 years of breeding hundreds of albino Darwins have I had to force feed one.
     
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  17. Sdaji

    Sdaji Almost Legendary

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    Pink mice are too small for a carpet, even for a first feed. Pink rats are usually about the right size, or a fuzzy mouse. It's normal for them not to be interested in small pink mice, and it's not worth really worth bothering with them.

    Your description of the temperatures is a bit vague. You should have a comfortable place on the ground where the snake can sit at around 32 degrees at all times. Spotlights/basking lamps for hatchlings are generally not a great idea, and if they're forced to use that sort of heat to be warm enough they're probably going to feel unhappy, unsafe, and unwilling to take the risk of feeding. If you really want to have a basking lamp and climbing branches as well that's not necessarily a problem as long as you have the basic floor heat taken care of. Some snakes won't care and will happily feed as long as they can get up to temperature in any way, some will even feed if they can't get up to temperature (which will cause problems possibly including killing them), but many will refuse to eat. It sounds like your heat mat isn't strong enough, and that's only going to be an increasing problem as the weather gets cooler. Getting the temperatures right is the single most important task as a reptile keeper.
     
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  18. Bl69aze

    Bl69aze Very Well-Known Member

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    I'd recommend getting a very very snug fit hide.
     
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  19. Sdaji

    Sdaji Almost Legendary

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    Is that a thermostat probe dangling above the skull near the ceiling?
     
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  20. Ian Gibbs

    Ian Gibbs Not so new Member

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    We dont change tubs to feed. just have tried different scenarios. She is showing at 31.5 deg. she prowles at night. I will try to find hopper mice on the coast, not easy.
     

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