So I’m kinda new to baby colubrids, I have 2 male Prairie kingsnakes that were rescued from a building early winter. One was found in the ceiling, the other crawling down the hallway. One is super friendly but the other is vicious and tries to bite anything that moves. I plan on releasing that one outside the building he was found in once I know he won’t freeze. The other I’m debating on keeping and getting a female or two since I only saw just a couple on here.
My question is how fast/slow do they grow? One was 8g and the other 12g when I got them 4 and 2 months ago respectively. They are now 12g and 16g respectively. They eat f/t pinkies every week unless in shed. Is that normal growth or are they slow? (Is winter playing a part in it?)
Photo tax lol
Growth varies from one individual to another what you really want with Colubrids (which have a fast metabolism) is to feed them every 3 to 5 days because not only do they have a high metabolism but the prey being fed is basically insignificant at this stage being a sack of water and fat (no hair, no bone, not much flesh).
Once they start eating more miningful preys is when you can start decrising feedind.
Keep in mind like with many species weight is a num er and overall health and body shape should be the main focus.
Ok, I didn’t know that. I’ll bump them up then, is there other things I could feed them that would be better than just pinkies or just diversity in general? (Pinkies are pretty expensive for the size but I can do it)
Do you have anything you could use for a size comparison? Looking at your pictures they look much to large to be only eating pinkies, but you also might have tiny wrists . As a frame of reference, these Great Plains ratsnakes (in V-15 tubs) are both easily taking F/T small mice.
I do have tiny wrists . I’ll put a quarter by them here in a few lol
The smaller one next to a US quarter.
Him again next to his average pinky mouse
My own experience is with corns but I do have a black king who is about the same size. Will say that the one pictured by the quarter could be moved up to pinky rats. I always get my guys on rats asap. If you have any worries you can make it a “sausage” and cut off the limbs to make it easier to go down. The mid body length seems right for a pinky rat.
And if you don’t feel comfortable with that then see if she will take multiple pinky mice. Usually I get my young corns to eat multiple pinkies as soon as they seem to gulp down one.
I have been told you can dunk the butt of the food item in calcium powder but have yet to see a need as long as I have steadily growing snakes.
I have gotten him to take 2 pinkies before when the other didn’t eat, problem is that they don’t eat off tongs. I have to leave it in there overnight or for an hour or so after lights on. I don’t have pinky rats rn, but I can do 2 pinky mice if he wants. I am going to bump them to 2x a week and see what that does. They have both shed at least twice since I got them so I know they are growing, and they also have a good body condition for their size. Slim, no spine showing, no dehydration, kinda a D shape in the middle
For the one that is eating consistently and you are wanting to keep, there’s nothing wrong with leaving food in tub for a while. I take “problem feeders” out and put them in small containers with the food item. Sometimes it takes hours for them to eat, sometimes they start in as soon as they are in it.
If you are gonna feed pinky mice then feed two or even three pinkies every 5 days. Get them up to size quick to accept something that’s more substantial then back off as Stewart said. I’d still suggest trying to swap to rats eventually (just more to them even younger) but if you can’t there is no problem with mice.
@bluefeathurs I’d recommend sticking to mice (more protein/muscle for the size) and bumping up to small fuzzy/crawler size and feeding every 5 days.
I’m thinking about putting the friendliest one in a rack so I can get to him easier and so I can check on him better and feeding him every Saturday and Wednesday. It’s kinda hard to check on him and make sure he eats in his exoterra. It’s a 12x12x12 so it’s plenty room for him, he just blends in really well
Our Black king is in an Exo and we are gonna move him to a tank that opens from the top (and gives more room and options for climbing, hiding, ect). Getting to him has been difficult in the Exo… I think those tanks just aren’t ideal for snakes so much as they are for like chameleons and such.
Oh yeah, I’m not sure why they made the 12 because it’s hard to do anything with it. It’s so small and kinda awkward to do things with but oh well lol