So, I am currently expecting to have 14 - 16 adult Ball Pythons and so the question of breeding my own rodents (rats primarily) is on my mind. I cannot seem to find any information on how much people tend to save by doing this. Obviously, it’s going to vary from each person according to various factors (e.g. whole purchasing of supplies, location, temperatures, etc). However, I would still appreciate it if some of you would give me some idea as to how much you save by breeding your own rats. If you could break down the cost per rat (by weight) and also reference your rat breeding numbers to give me some idea. I just want some idea as to what the cost of breeding rats is once you break even on the initial investment (so don’t factor that in).
Thanks in advance!
There was a recent thread on here with a lot of information you should read. It was called breeding feeders I will try to link but haven’t done that before so if it doesn’t work just search for breeding feeders. Hope it helps you! Breeding feeders
Currently I have 16 BPs, 2 Boa Constrictors, 3 Corn Snakes and 5 Sand Boas. When they were smaller feeding on a weekly basis it was costing me well over 150 a week. I don’t remember exactly cost per rat but it ranged from 5-10 each plus a couple bucks per mouse for my Sand Boas and Corn Snakes. I stared a small colony of rats 2:1 to see the off set in cost. I worked my way up to 9 colonies 3:1 so far. I produce more then I need and want it that way so I wont have to go back and end up ever needing to buy more to supplement.
A bag of Mazrui seems to last about 2 weeks or more it depends on how many babies are in there eating too. It runs me about 30-32 from our local feed store for a 50lb bag. I spend about 6 on bedding every week. I would say I spend an average of 75 a month on care and upkeep. I keep enough to feed a few smalls and grow out some to large. I take any extras I have which are weaned and smalls to a local mom and pop pet shop and sell them at wholesale anywhere from 20-40 rats a week, and get about 2-3 for them depending on their size. So on average I would say I get about 70 a week. So 280 a month minus expenses I take home about 205 a month. And I have mice colony of 10:1 I will have a mouse or two get old enough to sell for a dollar or so.
I say 20-40rats a week because sometimes I get litters 12+ and other times around 6. or one week I’ll take more smaller ones and have less bigger one the following week.
You can make way more selling directly to people and I have tried to sell the rats that way but not many people want to buy from a nobody they have never heard of before. So I sell em to the pet shop and they end up still buying my rats just for more then what I would have charged.
Now after researching more on rats I have read that they can get bored and need things to do, and even though they have each other to play with I still like to offer things to chew on and play with and treats from time to time. Which are only a couple bucks and seem to last forever.
Also another benefit and money saver is if you feed live you can always put them back instead of throwing them out. Or even fresh kill can be frozen and tried again later.
I think I averaged about 175ish to build each rack and I built 2 vs. paing 250 plus for one. They are not expensive to care for but do require you to stay on top of things. If there is little to no babies I can change out the bedding once a week but a full tub sometimes requires a few times a week. The pet shop has 5:1 I believe and they have to clean tubs every 2-3 days because they have way more going on. Which is one of the reasons I keep my colonies a little smaller.
Sorry if I’m all over the place but hope this helps. I will post a picture later of my racks if that helps. The pet shop let me take photos and looked online to make my own. they have been supper helpful on any questions I’ve had and got me started on my colonies. I would say I’ve been breeding them now for about a year and a half or so with no issues.
Thanks! Very helpful information.