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Behavior General topics or questions concerning the way your cornsnake may be acting.

HELP! IMPORTANT!!! issues...white sided rat snakes....
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Old 11-15-2005, 09:35 PM   #1
Question HELP! IMPORTANT!!! issues...white sided rat snakes....

I am sorry about putting this here I know it's not exactly corn related but I need to know if a white sided rat snake is typically mean natured?

I know that Texas rat snakes are kind of tempermental but do the other species of ratsnakes usually act the same way...

The reason I am asking is because I purchased a trio of white sided ratsnakes and when I got them today the male charged out of the bag at me with mouth gaping... he really meant business--
they were a bit larger than I has expected, If they were smaller I could have dealt with it... I've never actually been afraid of a snake but these guys have me a bit un-nerved!

The people I got them from never said anything about them being aggressive and the photos they sent me showed them holding them in various poses...
can this just be caused by shipping stress???

I emailed the folks but they havent responded yet...

any ideas? PLEASE?!?!?!?!
Old 11-15-2005, 11:47 PM   #2
LOL...mine definitely tend to be a bit more aggressive than corns. With regular handling, though, they calm down pretty good.
Old 11-16-2005, 12:15 AM   #3
I sure hope so....sheeeesh this guy is horrible!
I haven't even given the two girls a chance yet...
I got a firm hold on them and stuck them straight in their tubs....
I just wasn't expecting a 2 1/2 foot snake and much less one that was going to take a grab for my face!

guess Im gonna have to get me some elbo lenght gloves and just have at it with this fella and show him who's boss

Old 11-16-2005, 12:35 AM   #4
Dont handle them roughly or restrain them (unless nessicary most often for health reasons). When you do that your giving them that negitive experiance of being handled and if anything is going to make their temprement when being handled even worse. What you do need to do though is be consistant and gentle. I wouldnt wear gloves (although I have heard that by wearing latex gloves you can help stop the habit of biting because they taste terrible), but you could get a snake hook to use to lift it out of the enclosure. When holding them try not to grab them, go from under them and lift as it may help reduce the amount of bites. Also remember that they just spent 12 hours in a dark contianer that was probably thrown around a bit; I've had a snake refuse to eat for a month after being shipped (a retic nontheless, if anyone knows about their monsterous appitites), so it can easily cause them to revert back to their instictual behavior untill they feel safe. Just take it gentle and make it consistant, they should do fine. What kind of white sided rats did you get? It could quite possible be white sided Texes rats, which would explain a lot about their behavior.
Old 11-16-2005, 08:11 AM   #5
Thank You Guys...

I am going to be patient... Im like you, I hope it was the stress from shipping... although, that thing coming at my face like that really set me back.

I have them all settled in now and they are resting, Im not going to do anything with them for a few days (that was enough excitement for awhile)... I dont think latex gloves would deter this guy -- OMG, I opened that bag and all i seen was mouth charging me, it was all I could do to keep from dropping it on the floor. It is actually a bit funny now that I think about it but *whoa* thats not something i want to happen often!

Im not sure what kind they are -- The folks just called them Licorice rat snakes...
just my luck that means "TEXAS" rat snake.... LOL

anyways... i guess i will make do...
I can handle a 200lb dog but a 1b snake has me stumped -- go figure
Old 11-16-2005, 08:20 AM   #6
Black rats typically (note I said typically lol) are a bit more spirited than corn snakes. I have an adult female who can be very intimidating when she wants to be, but it's all bluff. She was a biter as a baby tho. We would call her "Thumbalina", due to her favorite target being whosever thumb was attached to the hand that held her.
Old 11-16-2005, 09:38 AM   #7
A licorice is a black rat snake. They get quite a bit bigger than corns do, by the way. They are wonderful snakes, and like Chris said, most of their attitude is a bluff. I have a pair of adult black rats that I got from Carol and they intimidate me a bit. They are very food oriented and are looking for food every time I open their cages. I've gotten to where I simply reach in and pick them up very quickly so they don't have the chance to think I am food.

Here's my list of black rats:
1.1 whitesides, 1.1 albino whitesides, 0.1 "normal" het whiteside, 1.1 "normal" (They are from Dwight Good's dark line and do not have much white on them.), and 1.1 Brindles.

Other rat snakes I have:
1.1 albino yellow rats, 0.1 leucistic Texas rat, 1.1 White Oak phase gray rats.

I think that's all of them. I am at work and am trying to remember without looking at my list.
Old 11-16-2005, 11:15 AM   #8
More then likely it was mainly just due to shipping; they due tend to be a little more opinionated then corns and often the first thing they see is your face. Most usually arnt a solid face striker though, and if it is at least right now your arm lentgh is greater then its strike so you shouldnt have to worry about that. You really cant judge a snake buy the first time you hold it, a lot of thoughts are going through their heads. I bet in a short time they will realise that it really isnt so bad and stop protesting, although I can see them doing things just to spite you.
Old 11-16-2005, 11:20 AM   #9
Originally Posted by CornCrazy
A licorice is a black rat snake.
LeeAnn your's looks like a whitesided black rat to me also. The whitesided trait also turns up in Everglades rat snakes, where they are called "Ghost 'glades".

Whitesided black rats were first discovered (as the story goes) from a w/c black rat that was found in MD. I don't remember if was developed out of normal looking parents or an actual whitesided was found, but the man who first worked with them and introduced them into the hobby was George Miskimmon.
Old 11-16-2005, 01:51 PM   #10

I can walk past his tub now without him musking and lunging so I am leaning more towards shipping stress than to evil-ness...

I will give him some time to get use to things and then try it again...

Terri that is quite a list of rats you have there...
I wish I would have known that *before*
-- I have 1.1 albino black rat... 1.2 leucistic Texas rat... and the 1.2 white sided... OHHH and a lt-wc black rat that was given to me about 8 months ago...

I am thinking of getting a pair of the albino whitesided, are yours of breeding age yet?

again THANKS for all the advice...
I soooooo hope they calm down soon !

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