mexican king snake not eating

Discussion in 'Other Colubrids' started by Laura Reynolds, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. Hi I'm new and have what I think is a problem with our baby snake. Its is roughly 6mo. old. He has been eating f/t pinkies but hasn't ate a thing since 11-30-11. I only started to keep a 'record' of his eating and shed habits in nov./11. since we got him in sept./11 he was eating a pinky about every 4 days, the went to two pinky every 4-5 days. On 11-30-11 he ate 2 again and now hasn't ate since....
    He is in a 65 gal long tank, aspen (shredded) bedding, some logs, water dish. The ambiant air temp is probably 65-70 degrees depending on the temp outside. To add he has had 2 complete sheds since we got him in sept. all one piece. on 11-9-11 he was roughly 35grams and 17 3/4 inches long... He moves all about and hides. He has had 4 'soaks'. I have cleaned several droppings when feeding although nothing since Not eating. He hasn't shed since nov. either... Any clue whats going on? should I be doing providing something I'm not? Any thoughts would be appreciated.....Thanks
     
  2. Cammy

    Cammy Administrator Staff Member

    Do you have any kind of heat source on the cage at all, and are you measuring the temperatures inside his cage or are you just relying on house temps? 65-70 degrees is waaayy too cold for a kingsnake to live in for any extended period of time. He should have a regularly monitored temperature gradient ranging from 70-75 on the cool end and 85-88 on the warm end. Remember to use an accurate digital thermometer with probe or temp gun, and not just a stick on thermometer. (They are pretty inaccurate and only give you a vague reading of air temperature rather than a precise surface temperature.) If you don't have any supplemental heat for his enclosure, definitely pick something up ASAP. Heat tape or an under tank heater (UTH) are your best options, although heat lamps are fine as well (although a bit more of a bother and not ideal for nocturnal species). Maintaining proper temperatures is vital to your snakes growth and digestive functions. My guess is that he was at the threshold temperature (where he could just barely function properly) before the cold weather kicked in, and has now had to slow down his metabolic rate to comply with the drop in temps from winter coming. Hopefully you should see his appetite and growth/shedding frequency increase once you get the temperatures up.
     
  3. He does have an uth
    should there be more to keep the one side warmer?
     
  4. I have a digital prob therm that i use to test inside the tank.
     
  5. I cannot believe i didn't add those two important facts the first time....sorry....Im working on my Bearded Dragon also, seems I've been sitting here too long filling out info sheets....
     
  6. And He only sometimes uses the hide that is on that side of the tank he def. prefers the hide on the cool side.... he is always under the one on the cool side. Any idea why???
     
  7. I need more time to learn the site....he Does have a uth, He is more often in the hide on the cool side of the tank though, not under the one where the uth is located. WHY????? And i use a digit probe therm. so the temps are in the tank not the air outside it. He is housed in the basement thought and the ambiant air is btw 65-70. He was eating like a champ I've no idea what happened......?????very confused
     
  8. Cammy

    Cammy Administrator Staff Member

    Lol, take your time getting used to the site. I'm sure it's been confusing with us changing things around the past few days. =P

    So I'm a little confused...what is the digital thermometer inside the tank actually reading at right now?
     
  9. ME TOO ok so form the cold side or the warm side. I dont leave it in the tank/s all the time just check them periodically...
     
  10. I meant FROM
    shall i get the temp of the cold side w/o the uth or the side With the uth????
     
  11. Cammy

    Cammy Administrator Staff Member

    If you can tell me both temperatures that would be great. Remember to give the thermometer a few minutes to actually get up to what the temperatures are actually at. =) In the future, it's best to have the thermometer in there at all times, that way you don't have to worry about waiting ten minutes every time you want to check the temperature. Or, you could pick up a temp gun, which will give you an instant reading of the surface temperature.
     
  12. yep your right - and ok I will get the temps at both ends.. I REALLY appreciate your help !!!!!
     
  13. Cammy

    Cammy Administrator Staff Member

    No problem! That's what we're here for. =D
     
  14. ok now I'm getting the temp of 78.7 Right on top of uth !!!! obviously it isn't warm enough , so now howto raise the temp consistantly without light at night???? and without over heating?????
     
  15. and a 65.5 on the cold side.. the ONLY heat source at this moment is the uth on one side of the tank and No light. Any ideas on fixing this problem????
     
  16. and the uth heat pad is exo-terra dessert small. would a larger pad raise the temps enough or should i get another heat source???
     
  17. StikyPaws312

    StikyPaws312 Moderator Staff Member

    If it's just the small size UTH in a 65 gallon tank you should really be getting the appropriately sized UTH.... (Much larger). I find it odd that he stays in the cool side hide though? If you physically switch the cool side hide to the warm side and the warm wise hide to the cool side I wonder if he would follow his "favorite hide" to the warm side....? The higher temps up their metabolism and might up his feeding response...
     
  18. Ok I will get a bigger one..... thanks for all the help everyone!!!
     
  19. Cammy

    Cammy Administrator Staff Member

    Yeah, that's pretty chilly, especially if that's the warm side. Definitely look into either getting a bigger heat pad or using some heat lights in conjunction with the heat pad. If you go with lights, you'll probably want to get either a red or blue night bulb to avoid stressing the snake with bright white light. There are also things like heat tape and heat cable that you could use instead of the heat pad. Lots of options, I know, but don't be overwhelmed. =)

    To avoid overheating, I'd pick up a rheostat so you can preset the temperatures you want the devices to maintain. Unfortunately you may have to fiddle with the setup a little before you get the temperatures just right, espcecially if you are having to use multiple heat sources.
     

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