How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

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RobertH
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How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by RobertH » May 10th, 2011, 3:39 pm

Hi there,

I usually post only on the CA forum, but was recently given a glossy snake (about 30" long) that a friend had picked up on the road. Well, so far, she has refused to take live mice, including quite small ones.

I read that at least generally glossies eat both lizards and rodents. But perhaps what this means is that some glossies eat only lizards, and others only rodents. I don't know.

In any event, I am going to assume for the time being that my glossy is primarily a lizard eater. My question to you is how I can best get her to eat live mice. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

Robert

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monklet
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by monklet » May 10th, 2011, 3:43 pm

Do stuff like get a lizard and freeze it. Then you can use it for scenting the mice. Easier with f/t but if you put in in a small container with a live mouse for a while (thawed) it may pick up enough scent. Maybe even put a lizard (live or f/t whichever works) with the mouse. Once the snake turns on to eating it may go for the mouse. Keep 'em small to begin with.

Just some thoughts. You have to be creative. A lot of folks think that the lizards saliva is especially attractive. You might also brain the mouse.

I've barely ever done this with a lizard eater but many have. I would think someone more experienced with that might respond.

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monklet
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by monklet » May 10th, 2011, 3:44 pm

PM Jim Bass (Hellihooks) ...he probably knows some good techniques.

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Scott Waters
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Scott Waters » May 10th, 2011, 3:48 pm

"I usually post only on the CA forum" Why only there? Just curious.

Good luck with the glossy. I've heard they can go either way when it comes to rodents in captivity. Some will, some won't. What does it look like?

Scott

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herpseeker1978
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by herpseeker1978 » May 10th, 2011, 4:47 pm

Take a piece of lizard shed and put a small drop of water on its head and then put the skin on it, this is easier with f/t, if you can't get it to eat you can always take it back to where it was found and release it. You can also take a lizard tail that has fallen off and rub the blood on the mouse's head and that should help, you can also freeze the tail and then reuse it later.

Josh

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geckoguy747
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by geckoguy747 » May 10th, 2011, 4:49 pm

i used to work with a donated wild-caught glossy at the zoo. i got it eating live pinkies right away, then eventually frozen/thawed. i started offering fuzzy to hopper sized frozen/thawed, but then it started refusing food altogether. during the no eating period i tried scenting with no luck, but eventually, after a couple months, it started accepting live fuzzies/hoppers here and there. it never went back to frozen/thawed though. even at the time that i left the zoo each feeding was hit or miss.
if you haven't tried frozen/thawed pinks yet i'd suggest giving that a try. for some reason that seems to work even better than live pinkies. i've even used frozen/thawed pinkies to get 5ft plus snakes to eat.
josh

RobertH
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by RobertH » May 11th, 2011, 9:21 am

Thanks, everyone, that is very helpful. So, I'll wait a bit and then try some live pinkies next.

The main issue I have with scenting, aside from the mess, is that I need to catch and then kill lizards to do that - but then I might as well feed lizards to the glossy directly.

Scott: I didn't mean to imply that the CA forum was to the only worthwhile forum to post on, for me or anyone else, if that's how your read my intro. All of the forums are great, I just don't have the time to get involved in more than one. And since I happen to live and herp in CA, that's where I post. But I have on occasion chimed in on other forums, e.g., the NAFHA main forum, and will continue to do so.

What does the glossy look like? Although the person who found her thinks she's a desert glossy (based on where she's found - in the desert), she actually looks much more like a California glossy, with a light brown background. Based on the specific location where she was found, she might also be an intergrade, I am not sure. Is there a sure-fire way to distinguish the two ssp.? Sorry, I don't have a picture handy at the moment. We'll take some soon and then post them.

Thanks again!

Robert

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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by hellihooks » May 11th, 2011, 4:38 pm

monklet wrote:PM Jim Bass (Hellihooks) ...he probably knows some good techniques.
for catching lizards, maybe... :roll: I don't fuss too much with switching snakes over... they eat pinkies, Great. if not... i go noose some lizards. I can generally noose a dozen an hr, but if you know how/where... you can flip/pick way better than noosing. My record is 38 lizards in 21 min (2 species, 25 bag limit each), and 72 lizards, 6 frogs, (and stopped to photograph a HL,) in 40 min, by my son and I. I have a lot of snakes that like lizards... :roll: :lol: :lol: jim

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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Verhoodled » May 11th, 2011, 11:13 pm

Washing f/t mice with soap helps in the scenting process. I've used unscented soap, Ivory bar soap, and generic dishwashing soap to get stubborn feeders to take mice with moderate success with glossies. Some required additonal lizard scenting. Ridding the mice of the scent of fecal matter and whatnot that sometimes comes in bags of bulk frozen rodents may be the trick. Maybe the resulting off-odors deter some would-be feeders.

One of my lyres seems particularly picky about this point, refusing an unwashed mouse, but devouring the same mouse one shampoo, rinse and dry later. But maybe he just prefers a well-groomed meal. ;)

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Scott Waters
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Scott Waters » May 11th, 2011, 11:57 pm

RobertH wrote:Scott: I didn't mean to imply that the CA forum was to the only worthwhile forum to post on, for me or anyone else, if that's how your read my intro. All of the forums are great, I just don't have the time to get involved in more than one. And since I happen to live and herp in CA, that's where I post. But I have on occasion chimed in on other forums, e.g., the NAFHA main forum, and will continue to do so.
No, that's not why I asked or how I took it. I was just curious, that's all.

Let us know how that glossy does!

take care,
scott

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Jeff Lemm
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Jeff Lemm » May 17th, 2011, 9:24 am

My glossies all take mice - even from day one. How warm do you have it? Mine are 85-87 on the hot side.

RobertH
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by RobertH » May 17th, 2011, 9:57 am

Hmm, good point. The temp is more like in the upper 70's on the warm side. The reason I have the temp fairly low is that our other snake, a corn snake, doesn't like temps warmer than that. In fact, she spends 99% of her time on the cool side (lower 70's during the day when the house is heated, lower-mid sixties at night), but eats like a world champion. ANother snake we had, a gopher, was the same way. But a glossy snake is of course not a corn snake or a goper snake.

So, what I'll do is turn up the heat by using a stronger basking bulb and then feed the glossy a pinky to see what happens.

Thanks for your input, Jeff.

Robert

Paul White
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Paul White » May 17th, 2011, 10:19 am

You're not keeping the glossy with the corn are you??

RobertH
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by RobertH » May 17th, 2011, 2:34 pm

No, Paul, I am not. I was simply making inferences, more like conjectures, from the temperature preferences of the corn to possible temperature preferences of the glossy.

Since then, I have installed a higher-wattage basking bulb raising the temperature to the mid-80's and so far the glossy seems to like it. Hopefully, that will do the trick. A live pinky is waiting for her in the corner of her tank. So far, she's shown no reaction. But sooner or later, she should at least notice her ... and then ... well, we'll see.

Here, finally, are some pictures of the glossy:

Image

Image

At least to my eyes, she's a handsome snake.

Robert

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Kent VanSooy
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Kent VanSooy » May 18th, 2011, 11:34 am

Robert, I've always found glossys to be reasonably good mouse eaters. You might try sneaking a mouse into her enclosure when it's dark. If she's out prowling, put the mouse in her hidebox, then when she wanders back in, she may well find it irresistible.

Me, I love my longnose snakes, and get them going on mice without too much trouble.

Paul White
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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by Paul White » May 18th, 2011, 12:32 pm

Longnoses are on my list, if I ever find some where I can collect them...I want to put together 2.4 of them and try to breed them. They're astonishingly pretty, reasonbly sized, seem like they should be OK as far as care goes.

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Re: How to get a glossy snake to eat mice

Post by herper79 » May 18th, 2011, 9:11 pm

I used to get eastern hogs on mice, so a glossy should be no prob. Like others have said, wash the mouse with baby shampoo and rinse well, and dry. KEEP a lizard for scenting purposes. I used to keep a tree frog for scenting. Then Rub the lizard over the mouse and offer it to your snake in a separate container or bag. If that does not work I sometimes use the bait and switch method. Scent the mouse and have the snake chase the lizard and then pull the lizard and add the mouse right before the snake seems like its gonna go for the lizard.
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