Question? Feeding to offen!

I have a Banana that I picked up from a PetSupply+ around 6 weeks ago. He was super skinny and well you all have heard the horror stories about petshop ball python treatment. He is super sweet and shows no aggression at all and has never balled up.

For the first 2 weeks he wouldn’t eat. So after another week. I did a mild assist feed (just put the rat fuzzy between his lips) he took it fine. 3 days later after a poop and a shed. I noticed him very active and searching around. I picked him up and held him with no issues for about 30min and put him back in his tub. He continued searching around with what seemed to be a mission. No way he can be hungry but I tried. He grabbed it normally and gobbled it up. This has continued for the past few week. He wants to eat every 3-4 days. When I got him he was 120g and now he is 165g. Last 2 feeding I have moved him up to rat pups. He is not big enough for weaned yet.

Should I keep follow the signs he is giving or should I cut him off to every 5 days.

I’m honestly just happy he is putting on weight but he still seems skinny. All my other guys were rocks at his age and didn’t eat every week. I have a female a month younger that is 4" shorter and weighs in at 180g and she only wants to eat every 10 days.

Please note: he poops 2-3 days after each feeding. So its digesting fine, so it seems at least.

Aprox DOB: 10/2020
Current Weight: 165g
Length: 24"
Eating: every 3-4 days Pup Rats

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That seems odd that he poops that often. Normally BPs don’t poop that often, and even some colubrids don’t poop that often. Usually when my snakes pass food that quickly I would be afraid of some form of infection or parasites, as it usually points to diarrhea in snakes. Can we get some pictures of him to see how his body condition is? I don’t recommend feeding that much that often, as malnourished animals should be fed up to weight slowly as to not stress their bodies.

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Snakes poop normally 7-10+ days after eating. If you are feeding him every couple of days, then yes, you would see poop every couple of days, that is just the rats you fed a week ago. I would cut back the feeding to 5 day cycle until he is 200g then go to once a week at that point. Some of my BPs will be actively roaming their enclosures 2-3 days after eating. Doesn’t mean they are hungry, but maybe like to burn off some of those calories :man_shrugging: I’ve noticed that ones that do roam tend to stay leaner then the ones that just sit on their hot spot all the time.


I agree with reducing to 1 appropriate size prey item every 5-7days. What are your temps? Is there a good hotspot and gradient? Could be trying to regulate. If all that checks out you might just have a cruiser, some snakes are just more active.


Snakes are opportunistic feeders. In the wild, prey does not show up every 3 or 5 or 7 days like clockwork so evolution has hardwired their brains to take prey when it is encountered since another opportunity might not come again for a long time. Naturally, this behaviour will vary some from animal to animal, but you will find that it is very common. Especially with younger animals that have an added imperative to eat more and grow faster so they are not seen as a tasty little snack.

If you want to continue feeding at that pace you can, but you will run the risk of obesity in the long-term

FWIW, I feed all my balls, even hatchings, at most once every two weeks


Thank you for everyones feedback. I honestly don’t know if this snake is a cruizer, a pig or just afraid of not seeing food again. I think I’m going to try for every 5 days (as long as he wants his food) until he is at a weight im happy with for his age and length. Im hoping for 225g by the end of March. If we can hit that goal I will be happy and move him to every 7 days.

It’s good that you have a goal in mind and are keeping weight records but I wouldn’t worry as much about a specific 225 by 3/31. Just feed 1 item the size of the thickest part of his body once 5-7 days and he’ll be great. Especially with BPs if you get hung up on too many little things you’ll go nuts. They’re notorious for going off food for extended periods for what will seem like no reason at all. I’ve had females get to 2k grams in 2 yrs and others have taken 4-5yrs to get to 1600. At some point do to age/weight/season it’ll happen. Sometimes you have to change things up, offer smaller or live vs ft or mice vs rats. Just make sure your husbandry is correct and offer 1x/wk your snake will take care of the rest.
But never power feed any reptile! They will get obese or stress their system and most certainly shorten life expectancy.


I ordered a BP a couple weeks ago, but weather conditions and shipping complications,
I just received my female Ball Python this week. The guy said He fed her a rat fuzzy every weekend.
I have some rat babies that are 3 weeks and 2 days old. Would they be too big to feed her now?
She (BP) was at 220 grams when He put her on MM. I haven’t weighed her since I got Her.
I read that if the rat is about the same size as the snake at her largest point in her belly She could eat it and be ok. Is this correct?

Yes snakes largest area of girth should be equivalent to an appropriately sized food item

So the 3 week old babies that I have should be ok ?
I will get a weight on my BP today.

It depends, are they about the same girth of the thickest part of your snakes body?

I will have to get her out and see. Wish I had thought about it before I put Her in the tub the other day.
She was pretty stressed out, Spider’s don’t do well when shipped. Well mine didn’t. I was worried.
If She comes out on Her own I will have one of the rat pups in my hand and see how it measures up.
Don’t want to really get Her out too soon after getting Her settled. I have some frozen mice that are smaller. I am not too confident in myself feeding them, afraid I won’t get them un frozen properly.
My other BP won’t eat frozen thawed. He was always fed live rats or mice. I tried it once, but it was a pain in the behind.

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So I got her out and weighed her today. She is 324 grams. The rat is about the same size as her belly. Might be a hair bigger. What do you think Lumpy?
Should I try and see if she will eat it or not?

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Yes, I believe that it would be fine to feed her that rat pup if it is slightly bigger. If you know anything about my story with Kai, when I got him they told me I should be feed him hoppers, little did I know that they were feeding him pinkies and I purchased a live hopper. He did eat it and suffered no ill side effects except a large food bump which then I started to feed fuzzies because I realized when I put the live hopper in that it was slightly bigger than his girth.

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Her little head is so much smaller than Her body. They kind of look funny when they are that little.
My first baby/juvenile ball python. Tiberius was an adult when I got him. He has been on one of His not eating strikes and I offered him one of the pups, He kept watching it and sniffed of it and backed away again. I try once a week. He still refuses to eat. I’m trying to get a supplement ordered. They are out of it. Will be glad when they get some of it in, I would like to try it and see if it will make him hungry and eat.

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I have gone to once every 2 weeks for mine as well since I moved in December. Going very well!