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Weight gain & Munson Plan?

Tana Rae
02-08-2010, 02:50 AM
Hey all;
I could really use some advice. I have had Twist for about three months and have been using the Munson plan for feeding since it was suggested on this site. Each time I weigh Twist she’s between .10 – 12 grams. This has been for about a two months. There has been no weight gain and she is getting one pinkie basically every five days. I can see the difference in her length since I have had her but nothing as far as weight. I use the same container to weigh her in on my digital scales, making sure to zero it out before she goes in it. I bought a new digital scale because the one I had was so old I thought that might be part of the problem. I have thought about giving her a second pinkie to see if she’s ok with it or two every other feeding. Any thoughts? I am feeding frozen pinkies because I am, does that make a difference. The big box pet store wanted to sell me a vitamin when I first started picking people’s brains before I bought my Twist. What are some thoughts on that? So should I be worried and how long does it take for a snake to be gaining weight? From everything I can tell she’s very healthy and happy… I just had a few minutes away from the books and had some concerns. Would really appreciate any feedback and thanks everyone for helping me become a better caregiver of my corn.
Tana

bitsy
02-08-2010, 03:45 AM
They do tend to put on length before girth. You'll really see her start to fill out once she starts on fuzzies in a few months time.

Having said that, the Munson Plan is a very good starting point, but each snake will react differently to it as they will have slightly different metabolisms.

One pinkie every five days is good for most, but I'd say as your hatchling hasn't put on any weight in two months, then it might be time to bump her up to 2 pinkies at a time. Do you have a stock of pinkies, and if so, can you pick out two of the smallest ones to try it out? I wouldn't feed her any more often than five days.

As for vitamins, I only ever give them to snakes that are unwell in some way - maybe not recovering from egg-laying as fast as usual. As your lass is otherwise healthy and happy, I wouldn't bother.

Nanci
02-08-2010, 07:04 AM
Another thing to consider is that the snake generally gains about 1/3 the weight of the prey. So if you're feeding pinks that weigh 2-3 grams, it takes a very long time to gain a noticeable amount of weight. I have a scale that weighs in tenths of grams. It's so nice for babies, you can see them gaining weight, whereas with a normal scale they would appear to be staying the same. Also, poop or no poop can make a snake appear to have gained, when really it just hasn't pooped, and then at the next weighing, it will appear to have dropped.

Are you slitting the backs of the pinks? That will really, really promote growth. I'd be leery of feeding double pinks to a 12 gram snake.

Nroc
02-08-2010, 11:06 AM
I have a scale that weighs in tenths of grams. It's so nice for babies, you can see them gaining weight, whereas with a normal scale they would appear to be staying the same.

I was going to ask the OP which scale is being used.

I have a digital food scale. It works pretty well for food...as it measures 50g portions and such.

But when trying to weigh something smaller, it is a failure, especially if you want to be accurate. See, my food scale counts by 2 grams. It shows 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10...and so on... This implies that a reading of 10g could be 9g-10.9g. I assume at 11g, it rounds up to 12g, but I don't really know the internal workings of that scale.

If your scale reads down to the tenth of a gram, then your snake may in fact not be gaining any weight. However, if you have a scale similar to mine, it is useless for your current purpose. As an adult snake, a simple food scale would be sufficient...where a 2 gram discrepancy is less than 1% of the snake's weight...

Nanci
02-08-2010, 11:14 AM
Nice scale (http://www.carolinapetsupply.com/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=89&products_id=415&zenid=a7e0ba0397abd698c52fb594003a388d) for small snakes and mice!

wade
02-08-2010, 11:20 AM
Tana, how big are your pinkies. If they are really small, like 2 grams, that may not be enough. Pinkie is a vague term. I see pinkies range from 2 to 6 grams. That is a big spread for a little snake. I think I would try staying with one pinkie every 5 days but try to get bigger pinkies for a while, see if that makes a difference.

Tana Rae
02-09-2010, 12:25 PM
Hi everyone,
Thanks for all the posts. I had to get into the cupboard and look at my scale. It does not give tenths so maybe I will have to look at buying a new one; heck this one is only a couple months old, bought it after I got Twist. I think I will get a larger supply of pinkies because I can see the difference in their sizes just with the few I have. I am not trying to promote growth but if I do not see some changes over the next few weeks I may try slitting the pinkies backs. I may feed two smaller pinkies yet am leery of regurge so will probably wait for a bit. The one thing I have noticed since I have been feeding every 5 days is Twist is not as calm and starts really hunting on day four; she’s gotten use to the five day feeding. I think she’s not as calm because I do not hold her as much – giving her a couple days to digest after feeding. So here’s another question. If I start holding her the day after feeding or two days later is that a problem. We have never had regurge. I guess I will just do trial and error, start holding her in small doses two days after feed and see what happens. So I must get back to the books, college kicks my butt every day. Thanks again for all your posts they helped me work through my latest Twist issue. Have an awesome Tuesday; it’s the only one we get this week. Later.
Tana

Nanci
02-09-2010, 12:35 PM
Here is a thread including the study about slitting pinks: http://tinyurl.com/su6em

I wouldn't handle less than 48 hours after feeding. Personally, for my own _baby_ snakes, I do not handle for 72 hours after feeding.

Nroc
02-09-2010, 12:45 PM
Here is a thread including the study about slitting pinks: http://tinyurl.com/su6em

I wouldn't handle less than 48 hours after feeding. Personally, for my own _baby_ snakes, I do not handle for 72 hours after feeding.

If you are on a 5 day feeding schedule, I suppose you get a day or two at most to handle each week right? Do you ever handle on the day of feeding?

Nanci
02-09-2010, 12:57 PM
Once the snake is settled in, feeding regularly for a couple months, then I will. You don't want to stress the baby by handling and then have it refuse its meal. I'll handle subadults and adults after 48 hours; it's just the tiny babies that are more sensitive. They also need to spend their calories on growing!

This dilemma can be solved by buying more snakes...

bitsy
02-09-2010, 02:09 PM
This dilemma can be solved by buying more snakes...

Must spread more rep before... etc Nanci. Thanks for the much needed laugh!

Tana Rae
02-09-2010, 03:24 PM
thanks for the help and the link. I will try the cutting on Friday, Twists next feeding. Sure glad my baby beardie doesn't have a wait time before I hold him. he's the newest addition to the family. thanks bunches.

Nroc
02-09-2010, 09:57 PM
This dilemma can be solved by buying more snakes...

Oh, so that's how it starts...:bird: