Reptilinks, have you tried them, what did you think?

So I’ve used reptilinks before a couple times over the past few years and since I just recieved my latest order I thought I’d see if anyone else here has tried them out and what their experiences were. The last time I ordered them I had a completely different collection of animals and most were willing to take them with minimal effort on my part. At that time my collection was largely bull snakes, pine snakes, and pythons of various kinds. Like I’m sure many of you have, I changed directions slightly and now I have mostly boas, and an assortment of colubrids. I decided to make another order and see if I could get my lyre snakes to show some interest in the quail links to add a little variety to their diet since in the wild they would not be eating nearly so many rodents. I figured if I could get them taking quail I’d order some iguana links next time.
For those of you unaware, reptillinks are basically little sausages made specifically for your reptiles and designed to be easily swallowed whole. You can choose from a variety of prey such as quail, chicken, frog, rabbit, venison, guinea fowl, iguana, insects, and fruits and veggies. In most cases you can choose a single food item or a combination of food items, and they are made from whole ground prey including bones and hair. I believe the only thing they leave out are a little of the waste when cleaning the gut and the beaks from the birds.
Anyhow, so far the lyre snakes haven’t shown any interest in the links, but I still have a couple tricks up my sleeve to get them to take them. 3/4 of the gopher/corn hybrids took to them almost immediately. and the California king I have who would rather bite first and not ask questions at all was an easy sell. I also got some omni-blend links which are insects, greens, and rabbit for my plated lizard and he/she didn’t hesitate at all. I will say that they aren’t the most economic way to feed but they give me a way to provide variety I otherwise could not. So like I said, I’m curious what your experience has been?

Also if anyone is worried about the minimum order of $75 maybe try what I do. I put the word out to a local reptile group I help manage and a small group of us combined our order. I simply had them send me the money after I totalled everything up and I placed the order. After it came in they all came and picked up their stuff off my porch (social distancing). Bonus to this was that the order was big enough to qualify for free shipping.

p.s. I checked with admin about the video, they said as long as it’s not an animal being eaten it’s fine, and since this is no different really than a video of someone eating a hamburger… also I forgot to put the link to the site for more information go to www.reptilinks.com

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I have thought about trying them on and off over the years, I’ve heard strong opinions one way or the other about them. I still haven’t personally tried them yet. I’m most interested in the frog ones and if they work well with non and picky eater Hognose. This is the first year that I’m breeding Westerns, so even more interested to hear if anyone has experience with that.

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I did try a quail link with my western and he had no interest, but he won’t even take a rat. He will only eat mice.

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If only I could eat a burger that proportionally large @thebeardedherper :joy::joy:

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touche’ @thecrawdfather

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Just got a new Tri colored hog. I have thought about getting these as a staple for him if he turns out to be a finicky eater (though breeder assured me he’s been eating f/t mice since day one). Does anyone have any experience offering these to hogs?

And in general how do you offer these to snakes? I’ve never even really heard or looked into them before. All new to me.

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personally I offer it to them like a normal feeder to start. Some snakes will take them right away. The two in the video backed away at first and I just followed them with it keeping it infront of them; once they bit it and hung on for a second that was all they needed to confirm that it was indeed food lol. You can also try train feeding which they have videos of on the website. I added the link above in the OP. They also have some stuff for scenting feeders. Frog juice, lizard juice, etc.

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I have heard great feedbacks over the years, if I only had one or two pets I could see it, but I have a few animals and always have a freezer full of feeders and live one on hands as well (which is pretty much necessary for me)

One day if I really have a stubborn hognose I might give it a try but so far scenting as worked well.

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I know, I could read their site, but can anyone give me a quick answer? - What are the casings made from?

Has anyone tried these with ball pythons?

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Quick answers first and then I will go in to details after:

I have three westerns and all of them take links with ease.
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Collagen casing for large links. Small links are held together with a gelatinized matrix
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I have never actually tried to feed these to my entire collection but I have I have a couple garbage disposal balls that will take these.
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For some I feed off forceps, for some I just put the link on a small paper plate in the enclosure, and for one of my species I do something a bit unique (more on that below).
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Now, a more detailed answer:

I have been using links in some form or other for the past five or six years. Like Beard, I liked the option of an alternative food source but my reason was because I keep a bunch of species that do not naturally eat rodents and I feel it is healthier to feed them items closer to what they evolved to eat. My current list of species that I feed links to includes:

Blackhead python
Centralian/Bredli python
Green tree python
Rhamphiophis
Oligodon
alterna
Western hognose

All of the links I feed are the bird/iguana/frog-based ones. I do not use rabbit but that is, as I mentioned above, due to evolutionary prey preferences and not because I do not trust the rabbit ones (I am certain that the rabbit ones would be great for species that eat rodent/mammals). I alternate between different types regularly, basically I open a pack and feed it off and then switch to a different prey-type for the next pack I open. I also have fruit/veggie or egg mixed in to random packs. Regimen is different for each species:

-For my blackhead, she pretty much gets only links unless I have a F/T rat that does not get eaten. On random occasions I will also toss in a few chicken chicks. She feeds off a plate placed in her cage.

-For my bredli, my adult male gets one mouse or quail chick for every three links. He takes off forceps. I have a recently acquired baby that has not taken links yet but I will continue to work to convert her over to the same schedule.

-My chondro is a bit of a pisser with links. She only takes about one in every six offered, which equates to about once every three months

-The Rhamphiophis are vicious little monsters. I offer each animal a link and a button quail chick on a plate. They readily devour both and sometimes fight each other for the other’s food.

-Oligodon are an interesting genus that have evolved to feed largely on the eggs of other reptiles. My link schedule for them is designed to try and emulate an egg with an embryo inside of it. Every other feeding, April through June, I cut the top off a quail egg and insert a microlink. All other feedings are just the quail egg.

-alterna I feed similarly to the Rhamphiophis, I offer each animal a link and a button quail chick on a plate. Sometimes they eat the link and not the quail, sometimes they eat the quail and not the chick, sometimes they eat both

-The western hognose basically eat just links. Occasionally one of the females gets picky and wants a hopper mouse but without fail she flips back to links on the next feeding.

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@t_h_wyman thanks for the info. I’m hoping my Tri colored hog will just eat for me without issue. But if he does I’ll have a backup.

Can these be bought in bulk frozen with sizes appropriate for smaller snakes? Do you have to cut them to size? I’m just looking for all the info someone who’s used them can give.

@meerkatlyndz It’s all on their website their sizes, nutritional value comparative to whole prey items, etc. I was just browsing. I’d have to know more about them all I have is BPs no one in the hobby seems to do much with “treats” or a variety diet with them so idk that it makes any sense for me to experiment with them.

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@thecrawdfather

Experiment! If you can buy small amounts you might find something your BP will like as a treat. Have heard of people giving chicks to their pythons in general as an every once and a while. I think the reason people are wary of doing much with balls is cause they can be picky? So like once you get them eating what you want them to you don’t wanna disrupt that.

@meerkatlyndz I’m thinking about it…just hate to throw $75 away…I don’t have any other “backup” animals that would eat them if my bps don’t

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That’s a good excuse to get another snake! :joy::joy::joy:

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@bluefeathurs Everything is a good excuse to get another snake isn’t it :joy:
I’m somewhat intrigued. Doesn’t seem to be many people out there who have tried it.

If there’s no added benefit that is documented or good results others have had I don’t see enough reason to do it.

Also for what it’s worth their #s they use in their promo material, or used to use, that compare the nutrients in feeder rodents to their links are waaayyyy off. Causes a bit of doubt.

Yes, you can buy them just like you buy frozen rodents. I have twenty-odd packs of various sizes ranging from microlinks up to the 100g size

Sizes can be found here:

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For anyone interested, her is my bredli taking his link last night. He will not need to eat for the rest of the month
Totoro1
Totoro2

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I just made a order of the iguana one for my woma pythons, i am trying to move away from feeding them rats and mice. I am wondering how hard it was to get your blackhead to transition to the links. If your black heads are anything like my woma python they are crazy nuts when it comes to feeding, it is there any issue with them breaking open the link?