Hey everyone, was just wondering about the above question! At the moment I’m feeding every 5 days but plan to switch to every 7 at like 500g. I will stop this immediately if it is harmful to him, but when I first got him he was a bit skinny and that’s just kinda what I stuck with. Thank you for any answers!
No not power feeding, as long as it is appropriately sized prey items. Just keep a eye on his overall appearance and adjust as needed. They grow so fast over the first year! Also be aware that the snake itself might have a say in it, by not eating every single time food is offered. Ball pythons love to do this!
I personally think it’s pretty excessive and would try to space it out more.
It can really depend on the feeder size. If it’s a large meal, then yes. Appropriate or even slightly smaller sized? Not really… but something to monitor.
Some babies are voracious and will accept every 5 days. Some are better every 7-10.
Regardless, you need to be monitoring your little one’s body weight and habits.
As an adult, unless it’s a female coming up on breeding season, I feel every 5 days is definetly too much. Sometimes I throw a mouse to my females during breeding seasons on top of the usual size rats as a treat every few days, not the same large rat every 5 days.
Can you post a picture of the snake?
I personally think every 5 days is not a good choice. You will find some out there that do it and I would bet most of them are doing it because they breed and want them get to size faster. This is also a very old thought pattern to feed this often. Over time and observation, I think you will find most agree in weekly and even 2 week, (as they get a little older).
It is also very possible that every 5 days might be training it to want it that often, not that it actually does want it.
A picture to see how it looks will tell if it is being over fed. (not that it is your fault or that it can’t be corrected)
If feeding smaller size, then 5 days would not be to much. But still best to feed what it needs weekly (or longer depending on age and what it wants).
Here is a good post made by Wilbanks that talks about what you plan on doing. Interesting read.
Hello! Thanks so much for your response In that case… I’ll switch it to every 7 days then, if that’s okay? I’ll post a picture as soon as I’m able to here! I just felt a little bad because he’d eat every day if I let him so when he searches around at night like 2/3 days after feeding, I figured 5 was appropriate, but that seems wrong now. I do close to 15% of his weight.
Oh wow that is interesting! I’m not a breeder though so I definitely wouldn’t do this. (’:
Yeah I feed him 10%-15% of his weight each time, I don’t stuff him or anything. I guess I was mostly just worried cause he came in kinda skinny, and since this is my first ball python (was used to colubrids before) It’s hard to tell when they’re fat hahah.
Yeah once he’s filled out a bit then I would slow it down a bit. 10% isn’t bad while he’s growing but 15 can lead to him being a sausage instead of a noodle.
A couple of my voracious males slowed down from the every 5 days to the 7-10 once they hit around 500-600 grams. Maybe use that as a benchmark to re-evaluate the feedings?
I’ve seen this image as the most common repost on body condition if it helps!
Understood. I’ll slow it down in that case, to every 7ish days since the weaned rats i just got for him are also kind of on the big end. Thank you for the feedback! I feel like hes probably in the overweight category.
Here is a picture. 20221026-183430 — ImgBB
yeah, he’s kind of a chunk. 15% of their weight every 5 days is an absurd amount of food, if you’re going to feed that heavy scale back to every 7-10 days
I see that infographic around a lot and while it’s a helpful reference I think it should be taken with a grain of salt. Definitely never want to see any of my snakes go above the “overweight” profile, but I’d also never want to go below “good.” My breeding females I tend to shoot toward the “overweight” shape side, and males toward the “good” shape.
If speed of growth or preparing a female to bulk for breeding isn’t relevant for you you can’t really go wrong with feeding every 7 days until 600 grams or so, and can even switch to every 14 days after that. Assuming you watch their figure and up the feeding if it drops below “good.”
Will do. Thanks for the insight!
Yeahh even with this it’s kind of hard for me to tell. I know they say look at the tail or neck, but idk what I’m looking at for the neck because it doesnt look different and his tail is often a bit swollen cause he holds his poop forever and afterwards its fine. But im definitely not a breeder so this is good advice! Thank you!
I would say she is over weight. Definitely cut back to min 7 days, but personally I would be doing every 2 weeks (unless you are breeding).
I found that 10% of the body weight was to much. Even though most was eating, it became a problem later and they started to not feed. Some for a few months. Then I went to 2 week feeding and smaller then the snakes thickest part, for rat size. They will tend to grow a little slower, but eat regularly (even though yours is eating good now, it can go on strike).
They can go long stretches without eating, so switching to 2 week feeding is not a big deal to them.
Understood. Thank you for the insight! He’s about 300 grams, would a 40-45g rat every 7-10 days be okay?
If you want to go by weight, then 30g would be 10%. I stopped going by numbers and going by size. I still feel that 45g is to much for 10 days. If you are having a hard time convincing yourself not to feed as often or smaller size, dot feel bad, we all feel that way when we first cut back. Currently it is over weight, so skipping a few meals and cutting back on size will not harm it. (it is a tough fight within you when you have to do it. After I did, I felt much better after seeing they was doing good and not skipping meals any more. I know then I made the right choice). This is thought to do, but much easier then wondering why it won’t eat for months because it is eating to much in one meal.
Oh definitely do not shoot for this ideal on a breeding female
I mainly use it as a reference for pet animals not breeders. I too want my gals to be a bit on the chonk side for their fasting periods and not be a rail after egglaying. Breeding males I do want a little extra just in case but not much.
But for an animal not going through the cycle then it’s just better to keep them at a lighter weight and that ref can help since so many BPs tend to be kept overweight.