I’m curious if there are any benefits of feeding chicks or ducklings to my ball pythons, retic and rainbow boa. I have found a local breeder who breeds feeder rodents, chicks, rabbits, hamsters and Guinea pigs. I’d love to mix up their diets between rodents, chicks and ducklings for them as well as rabbits and guinea pigs for the retic when she gets up to size. Are chicks/ducklings healthy and are there any benefits or downside to feeding them?
I used to feed chicks to a few of my ball pythons. If you can actually get them to take them, they are a terrific additional food source to provide.
For retics, I highly suggest feeding chicks. When I had mainlands, I would feed chicks, rats and very small rabbits. Once my Super Dwarfs are up to size I will feed them chicks as well. Being able to offer as many different types of food is highly beneficial. For retics, it’s a way to offer them a chance to use their brain in a different way, and even Hartle recommends it as a way of enrichment. Plus a retic will eat anything so it makes it easy to offer many different prey items.
Now for downsides of feeding chicks, I’m not aware of any. But of course you’re going to want to make sure wherever you source them from have healthy feeders, like you would for any other feeder really.
Perfect thank you so much!!
I forgot to mention.
When I was successful feeding chicks to balls, they were always wet. I thaw my feeders out in hot water, and usually pat them dry with a paper towel. For chicks, I found that if I dry them, the balls for some reason wouldn’t take them. Maybe 1 did but If I remember correctly I was only successful when the chick was literally dripping water. Don’t know why this worked but it did.
i will for sure take that into account!
One of my corn snakes actually prefers chicks too mice.
i know someone and their ball python refused everything and they tried a chick and now thats all shes eaten for 2 years
Diversity in diet is always advantageous. Avian meals have significantly less fat to them and the feathers provide a bit more “roughage” than rodents
appreciate the insight!