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 #2142729


Tommama
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 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

Hello - we would really be grateful if anyone could give us advice on what to do - we found a 3 1/2 feet Gopher snake, it is beautiful, friendly and loved - we have it in a 20 gallon w. heat pad/cold area for 5 days; on the second day it ate a pinkie, but it was handled withing 36 hours (we should have known better) and regurgitated it...we have left two more pinkies in the tank but it has shown no interest in eating...what should we do? remove the remaining live pinkies? introduce a hopper? wait a few more days ?....thanks very much for you advice. Much appreciated.



04/22/10  11:43pm

 #2142802


Greatballzofire
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  Message To: Tommama   In reference to Message Id: 2142729


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

At 3 and a half feet it appears you have found an adult. Adults don’t always adjust that well to captivity. That said, I’d wait at least a week to ten days before offering a smaller meal to the snake again. After feeding it do not disturb it under any circumstances. Allow it to go under the hide on the warm side of the cage and digest in peace. When you do feed it offer small meals. Pituophis are prone to regurge if fed too large of items.

Also you may want to give it a bigger cage. I have my big Pacific gopher in a 2 x 3 x4 ft cage. Gopher snakes are more active than many other types of snakes and need room to stretch out in.



04/23/10  10:38am

 #2142803


Greatballzofire
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  Message To: Greatballzofire   In reference to Message Id: 2142802


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

I meant to say 2x 2 x 4 ft cage, not 2x 3 x 4. Stupid typos!


My most recent acquisition Ruiza, found this spring.


My cb Pacific Gonzo.
Gopher snakes make good pets, although one does have to take care to not feed them too big of meals even though they will eat just about anything presented to them.



04/23/10  10:49am

 #2142814


Tommama
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  Message To: Greatballzofire   In reference to Message Id: 2142803


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

thanks for your advice on the feeding...I’ll remove those two little pinkies (which have nuzzled up against our big guy) and reintroduce them in a week. That is gorgeous snake you have, interesting coloring...is it wild? if so were you able to eventually get it to eat? You are right about wild adult snakes being sensitive eaters - my hope is that if we leave ours alone for the next 10 days (which we have for the past 3 days (no handling) that it will adjust to its surroundings, then as you advise I’ll reintroduce pinkies. I’m concerned about it starving...I’ve heard on some blogs that if you rub the pinkies in fish juice it could increase the snakes interest...any other helpful tips are always appreciated. Many thanks for you help.



04/23/10  11:58am

 #2142978


Greatballzofire
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  Message To: Tommama   In reference to Message Id: 2142814


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

The first snake in my other post is the wild one. She ate a couple days after being found. The one on my arm is my cb Gonzo. She hardly ever refuses a meal.
My other wc gopher, Gomez:


Ate the same day I brought her home.
I have a cb 08 female that has not eaten since December. She has not lost weight and so I am not worried about her. Snakes can go a long time without eating. Her brother has the exact same conditions and broke his winter fast a couple months ago. A recent photo of the brother and sister; she is the one on top of the Glad tub:


She looks just fine.

When they go on self imposed seasonal fasts it seems to do no harm. The harm is if they want to eat but get into a cycle of chronic regurgitation.

Be sure your snake has at least two good hides and plenty of substrate to burrow in. She will also appreciate a moist sphagnum moss hide, like the container in the brother -sister photo.



04/24/10  11:21am

 #2143620


Tommama
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  Message To: Greatballzofire   In reference to Message Id: 2142978


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

Hello there again...many thanks for your good advice...I have a increased the size of the cage; added a moist hide; and more substrate; removed the uneaten pinkies; waited 7 days to touch the snake and before retroducing food, and this time it was recommended because of his size that we give him a hopper...you can guess where this is headed...so it’s been 24 hours and we left him alone, the hopper has been killed, but lies there uneaten; it was not regurgitated (it’s fur is dry, no slim, no digestive juices)...the snake seems content to coil on the warm side, do you know if this is typical of Gophers ie. kills the food, then doesn’t eat it ( he did that with the last pinkie) or do you think he might eat it later (which he never did last time) ? The other thing I was hoping to ask you is whether I should take this as a positive sign that at least our snake recognizes the prey and kills it, rather than just ignoring it...ie. if he can kill it, them perhaps one of these times he’ll eat it? I look on with envy at the photos of your beauties munching down on those pinkies...there’s nothing more gratifying that feeding your babes...even when they are snakes!! Many thanks in advance for all you good advice..:-)



04/26/10  08:16pm

 #2143697


Greatballzofire
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  Message To: Tommama   In reference to Message Id: 2143620


 Need Advice on How to Feed Wild Gopher Snake?

A thing you can try is next time you feed him put a paper towel tube in the cage, and put the mouse in the tube. If you are feeding a live mouse the mouse most likely will hide out in the tube. This will look more natural to the snake, as these snakes usually prey upon rodents in tunnels and burrows. A big wild caught snake may take longer to adjust to captivity than a little youngster. If he doesn’t eat after a couple of months I’d consider letting him go where you found him.

Thanks for the nice comments on my babies. This may sound rather twisted, but one of my greatest pleasures with keeping snakes is feeding them! LOL!



04/27/10  10:09am

 #2143900


Concolor1
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  Message To: Greatballzofire   In reference to Message Id: 2143697


 Ah, I See You Found This Forum By Yourself . . .

I just posted a reply on feeding wild gophers over on the "Snakes in General" forum, and I did suggest visiting this place in particular (Hi, GBOF; I’ve been elsewhere occupied on the web; no snake breeding this year since I still have two corn hatchlings left over from last year. Good news is I got a new digital camera to replace the one the thieves got).

Anyway, I don’t have anything to add except I noted over there I was about to feed my W/C gopher, and the nearly full-grown mouse is already half eaten as I type this. And more often than not, this snake has refused f/t prey even though it took one right after I brought it home...Well, right after it shed; it had literally eaten something tennis ball size, possibly a gopher or a fledging of some sort when I caught it . . . At this point it’s a thoroughly mellow snake, much better behaved than my Texas Bull...

I don’t think anybody here will yell at you for keeping a wild snake (just don’t do it all that often), and I found some good advice and support. Somebody also mentioned trying some chicken broth on a f/t fuzzy, and mostly I would just make sure your guy isn’t stressed...



04/28/10  03:57am

 #2143944


Greatballzofire
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  Message To: Concolor1   In reference to Message Id: 2143900


 Ah, I See You Found This Forum By Yourself . . .

Hi, Concolor1, thanks for reminding me about the Snakes in General forum. And since you have a new camera, how about some pics?

A side note; the captive bred 08 sister who had not eaten since December, well, I got tired of waiting for her to commence feeding (her brother had started up a couple of months ago) so I got a newborn live pink, put the snake in my lap wrapped in a towel, gently pried her mouth open with a flat blunt toothpick (one of those Stimudent things) and inserted the pink into her mouth and quick removed the toothpick from her open jaws. She swallowed the pink immediately. I am hoping this will jump start her feeding response. She was quite willing to eat the pink once it was in her mouth. In a few days I will offer her more pinks but am hoping she will eat them in a normal fashion.

This is in no way meant to be advice to Tommama on feeding his big wild caught snake. That would just totally stress out that snake. Its more a tale to point out how different snakes can be even amongst the same species.



04/28/10  10:17am


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