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Health Issues/Feeding Problems Anything related to general or specific health problems. Issues having to do with feeding problems or tips.

How long can my Corns go without eating?
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Old 03-28-2006, 05:21 AM   #1
Question How long can my Corns go without eating?

Hi - I'm new to this forum, and indeed new to the world of keeping Snakes.

I have 2 Corns, and both haven't eaten for a while. From the FAQ on eating problems:

Q: Is it normal for my male snake to stop eating in the Spring?
A: Absolutely. Love is in the air, and eating is not the first thing on their mind. It is very common for male snakes to go off feed for several weeks and even sometimes months during the mating season.
How long would this normally last?

Some background on my snakes:

(1) - Male. I bought him last year June and was told he was about a year old. He has always eaten completely regularly with no problems or hesitation at all.

(2) - Female (at least that's what the shop said ... I'm not convinced). She was bought right before Christmas, and was only about a month old. Again, no eating problems at all. We don't have a separate heat mat for her, so she was always placed within a smaller box sitting inside the male's box.

The male snake has not eaten for about 2 months now, and the female for about a month (I've got the exact dates written down somewhere). We wondered if keeping the two snakes close together was "distracting" them ... so moved the female out - but to no effect.

How long before I should get worried (well, I'm worried now, but ...)?


Old 03-28-2006, 02:30 PM   #2
I've heard that corns can go at least 3 months without feeding.

Have you tried scenting the food with lizards, etc? Or cutting the mice to increase the smell?
Old 03-28-2006, 10:54 PM   #3
I think your female is really a male. Probing would be the only reliable way to be sure. My male has gone off food for as long as 3 months at a time. Are they both very active? Mine spends most of his time crawling around the cage searching for women! Why don't you have heat for the female? I would think that your temps, especially in winter would get down a bit in the viv. They should always have a warm and cool side to lie on, not just after eating.
Old 03-29-2006, 07:25 AM   #4
Thanks for the responses!

+ No, I haven't tried cutting yet ... but as you both seem to suggest up to 3 months is OK, then I'll leave it for now. I checked my dates and I was correct - Flame (the small one ... a lovely red colour) ate at the end of Feb and Frosty (the big one ... white, as if you couldn't guess!) at the end of Jan. If in another couple of weeks they both still haven't eaten then I'll try this.

+ Both ARE very active ... and do spend quite a bit of time crawling around.

+ Sorry - I didn't explain myself properly. The big viv for Frosty does have a heat mat at one end ... and we put a smaller plastic viv inside the big viv for Flame to live in (just really to keep the 2 snakes apart - Frosty is much bigger than Flame and if Flame IS a girl, we don't want any babies just yet!!!). Anyway, Flame's small viv is placed half on and half off the heat mat, so she/he/it/? has a range of temperatures available. We had this arrangement for all of Dec/Jan and had no problems during this time.

Many thanks again!

Old 03-29-2006, 10:14 AM   #5
I would just offer every week or two until they start to eat. If it goes longer, I wouldn't really worry. They seem to know when the time to eat is, and will suddenly start up again. How large is the large viv you have the other one in? I'm not sure that having a possible two males able to see each other in the same viv is really a good thing. It sometimes can cause stress, especially at breeding time when they tend to combat each other if together. I would attempt to get another heat pad and put the smaller viv seperately where they can't see each other. Even though they are seperate, they can smell and see each other and this might be one of the reasons they aren't eating. For what it's worth, I have a female that I'm breeding right now who's only eaten three times since coming out of brumation and nothing in the last month. Normally females eat huge amounts of food when preparing for laying, but she won't. When I contacted Kathy Love and some others on this forum, they said that once in a while you'll have a female that will go off food like the males.
Old 04-06-2006, 01:59 PM   #6
i had a two foot cali king that escaped for nine months!when i found him he was fine,a little bit thinner than usual and he ate three fluffs in one sitting after i found should never underestimate the power of snakes!
Old 04-06-2006, 03:14 PM   #7
remember its possible he could have also found food wherever he was.. from mice to baby birds to lizards if your climate permits..
Old 04-10-2006, 08:15 AM   #8
Thanks for all the help and advice people! Just got back from a few days vacation - and both snakes still seem fine.

The larger viv is about 24" x 15" x 15" (roughly) ...

If it goes on too much longer then maybe I'll get the second heat mat and put the smaller snake upstairs - way out of sight / smell.


Old 04-10-2006, 08:23 AM   #9
Originally Posted by JimbobW
then maybe I'll buy a second heat mat

Old 05-12-2006, 07:39 AM   #10
Wonderful! Both Corns eating perfectly regularly now! Thanks to the above posters for giving me the confidence to leave things alone, and let my snakes get on with it in their own time.


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