Are Ball Pythons Semi-Arboreal? (Video)

https://youtu.be/fYpIk2pKOxE

Interesting video. Thought everyone should watch it.

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Oh boy your not here to make friends are you lol…but the video doest make some point and he sites his sources. I definitely think its worth a deeper look, not to just be dismissed cause its hard to hear.

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I think we are all adult enough to discuss this in a appropriate manner :crossed_fingers:

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I believe @t_h_wyman has discussed this before and dispelled this whole theory.

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Oh this video again, lol. Oh boy…

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My two cents for what it’s worth because there is much smarter people on here. This video has 7k views so it not exactly breaking news. In today’s YouTube and Facebook era everyone is an expert on everything. That’s not to say that we don’t find out later things we thought were right turn out to be wrong. But seems to be a sudden influx of reptile experts dispelling everything with minimal evidence or study. Last time I checked ball pythons were living under ground not in trees. Any snake given a perch is likely to climb on it and explore it.

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This video does make a few great points but also a lot of bad points like how there were many pythons living in burrows in farmlands and that’s how they were easily caught, they wouldn’t be living there if they were starving and couldn’t find any food there.
Also how there were tracks coming from the burrow, even in the wild ball pythons don’t sit in a burrow for their whole life, they will leave it every once in a while for mating, traveling or finding food if they can’t catch it just from their burrow.
They also failed to prove that pythons continuously went back in trees often, a python going and climbing in a tree a few days out of a year doesn’t mean that they’re semi-arboreal. Does anyone who keeps their snakes in large tanks with climbing areas want to chime in on this and mention how often pythons actually climb in the perches?
I also think that it might be an animals rights propaganda because they unnecessarily brought in how laws state that animals should have suitable enclosures and keeping them in racks is unethical which doesn’t support their claim that ball pythons are semi-arboreal.
Hopefully we can have a good discussion about this video.

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This statement is on point right here! Please realize that there are animals rights groups that want to take away our rights to keep any snake in general.

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3/4 of mine will climb and explore if given the opportunity. I’ve seen them all perched up on their branches quite often. 1 of them has done his best GTP impression several times and ate while perched. The last one is a total homebody and doesn’t like to leave his house at all. Except when he’s hungry. I’m not advocating that they are semi-arboreal. Just stating my personal experience.

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While this may be the case keep in mind they are in captivity which is not there natural environment. I think what snakes do in the wild is the true indicator of there nature.

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I keep my male Pied in an Animal Plastics t8 enclosure, not exactly the largest but larger than normal.
I have a few perches in there and he will climb on them, but definitely not as described in a that video. I’d say I see him up there maybe once a month, at most. Who knows when I’m asleep and the lights are off what he does lol.

I think this is an important statement and very true. Everyone seems to be an expert on Youtube, and honestly there are few I find to actually be on point and give out correct information. Sure some do better than others, but in general I wouldn’t pay a penny for their thoughts. Sorry not trying to be rude that’s just how I see it.

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I only touched briefly on it here: Enrichment versus minimalist

I tried to have a rational conversation with him about this on a FB post but he refused to even listen to the point of pushing blatantly contradictory arguments…

He also blatantly misrepresents the conclusions of those sources.

I have read the paper in question and nowhere in the paper does the author claim that ball pythons are semi-arboreal. What is stated in the paper is that, based on his study of ball pythons within a specific biome-type (a forested area in the case of this study), males are more likely to exhibit arboreal behaviour than females.

The individual behind that video takes the paper, disregards vitally important factors like the actual physiology of these animals and the limited scope of environment that was studied, and then manipulates the conclusion of the paper to conflate what was actually found.

As an analogy of what the paper is saying - If I make the statement that, when discussing football in Baltimore, men are more likely than women to be Ravens fans. I come to this conclusion because 1) Statistically, men are likely than women to prefer football and 2) In Baltimore, the football team is the Ravens so there will be hometown pride. A very logical and coherent argument

Using that same analogy, the person responsible for this video took the statement of “when discussing football in Baltimore, men are more likely than women to be Ravens fans” and conflated it to “Everyone in the US is a Ravens fan”

Ball pythons, when presented with some type of climbable surface, will certainly make opportunistic use of it, especially when it comes to acquisition of prey. However, it is only an opportunistic behaviour, it is not a fundamental lifestyle behaviour that you find in a species that is verifiable semi-arboreal

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This was going to be my point! But Dr Wyman is much better at making it lol. I’m in :100: agreement with Travis on this.

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I agree… Climbing a tree doesn’t mean semiaboral. Ball pythons move and are built different than a semi arboreal snake like a carpet python, Anyone can easily see the difference.

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One would think… And yet, this YT video exists :face_with_raised_eyebrow: :roll_eyes:

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Great way to sum it up. Especially a young animal fighting for survival of course they’re going to be more likely to “risk it” and go for say a bird’s nest or whatever they can find up there but to make a survival instinct seem like…like a recreational preference is just totally ridiculous.

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I have yet to read these sources site, will taking a deeper look tonight.

Turth be told this was before coffee thought i made public. Ment nothing by it other than he sited his sources. Which you never see. For the record I rack my snakes. I didn’t say the guy was right nor did I say he was wrong. I just said its worth looking into, to which I will be.

As for the second part of my comment …I would like to thank you all for proving my point, I appreciate your cooperation.

It would seem the same virus that has infected so many other social media sites has made it way to the morph market forum. So I bid a fine farewell and adieu. May you all lead blessed lives, should you be fit to do so.

If that’s what you got from Travis’ as always detailed analysis then…I think you missed one or two points.

Good luck out there!

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To sum this up I think this is what most of us agree with.
Do ball pythons climb and will they climb and eat things in trees, yes. Is it a major part of their behavior and just because they do, does that mean they’re semi-arboreal, no. Does this video provide arguments that are valid but overly exaggerated to make keepers look like abusers because they keep them in racks, yes.

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I don’t think anyone is trying to claim that ball pythons are semi-arboreal or should be classified as semi-arboreal, because that doesn’t fit. What I do believe is that people advocate for providing climbing opportunities for them in captivity rather than just pushing them off as a purely terrestrial species. I keep my ball pythons in racks but I take them out frequently for enrichment, and almost all of them go straight for climbing opportunities when offered. We know that climbing helps many snakes, ball pythons included, build and retain muscle tone - which is undoubtedly nothing but good for them. I’m very much a naturalistic keeper and will always advocate for providing these animals with as much enrichment as we can, climbing included. They can survive without climbing opportunities (just like they can survive without UVB) but everything scientific we have points to both UVB and climbing being beneficial to them. Just food for thought.

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