When acquiring a new snake or reptile in general, the smart and responsible thing to do is to have all equipment set up for your new household addition well in advance of the actual animal's arrival. I did this with our ball pythons. I got their enclosures ready, ran the thermostat so I could watch temps and humidity (I'm an obsessive beast with a laser thermometer), and by the time we brought the little guys home a couple weeks after we'd purchased them I knew their setups were running smoothly. I was able to put them in their little bins with barely a second thought. The system ran itself.
I didn't do that with our boa. Consistency is apparently not my strong suit.
We weren't really planning on another snake quite yet. I knew I wanted either a boa constrictor or a Dumerils boa, and although I adore how Dumerils look (they are gorgeous!) I had some concerns about their reported issues converting to frozen/thawed food. I also thought it would be kind of mean to expect them to take f/t while simultaneously being tormented by the scent of our rather lively pet rats a few rooms down.
So I was resigned to sticking with just our sand boas and ball pythons for a couple more years at least, or at most adding a hognose snake and perhaps a corn snake or king snake... or milk snake (they're all still on the list!). But when I ran across our new addition I just couldn't resist.
See the little guy in there? No? Your eyesight hasn't failed, this is how we usually see his tank too. He's actually camped out in the little black "hide" box on the right-hand side, and to all intents and purposes he seems fine, but it's making me nuts. I haven't gotten his temperatures and humidity to suit me yet (although I've got a thermostat for his light that should help out some because having it off more should leave additional humidity in the cage and I'm tweaking as I go) so the fact that he's still not really making much of an appearance has me rather concerned that it's something I've caused... which isn't entirely out of the question.
He's just so young, hasn't eaten for me yet -- his breeder assures me he took frozen from the get-go, and like an idiot I tried to feed him last Thursday (I know better -- I know not to feed for at least 7 days after acquisition and should have waited for Sunday or even next Thursday but I listened to Choreboy who's busy anthropomorphizing the hell out of our reptiles and saying the boa needs to "feel" as if he's part of the family *facepalm*)... he was having none of it.
So, yeah. Stressed, that'd be me. Possibly the snake, too. Prayerfully not.
I'm hopeful that the improvements I'm making to his environment (and him finishing his shed, whenever that blessed day arrives) will have him feeling much more himself... and much more hungry.
I'll keep y'all posted.
*Yes, I'm still managing to keep everything neatly compartmentalized. Pet rats live in the Gum Zombie's room and are adorable little snuggly, smelly fuzzballs. Snake food enters the house already in a frozen state, and I'm having continued success in mostly convincing myself the snakes' dinners are just mutant chickens. If we end up with a snake that requires live food I totally get that it happens in the wild, but I'm too much of a mushpot to deal. So if I can't convince it otherwise I'm going to have to bust my butt to find it a new home, which will suck... but not as much as being an idiot and starving my snake would.
Edited to add: Okay, if it's not a rat it appears I'm not too much of a mushpot. He's eaten, and that's all I'm saying on the matter. Now to convince him that f/t offerings are, indeed food.
Sunday, June 9, 2013
Introducing my very own baby boa :) He's a little boy (very little... only for now), has eaten 2x according to his breeder, and has a little kink in his tail. He's absolutely perfect for us.
Name to be forthcoming. I'm leaning toward George...