Author Topic: A word from Kathy Love on Non-feeding corns.  (Read 2541 times)

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Offline SCI

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A word from Kathy Love on Non-feeding corns.
« on: January 17, 2008, 12:10:20 PM »
Getting Baby Corns to Eat

 There are lots of tricks for getting babies to eat - some are mentioned in the Manual. Feeding in a little deli cup is one of the first things to try. Some will only take live, or lizard scenting. Some want you to cut the frozen pink in half, then put both halves in the deli cup. Sometimes non feeders start feeding after bumping them around on the way to an expo. Some people have had luck dipping pinks in chicken broth, or even tuna juice, although it has not worked for me. Or washing the pinks with one soap or another, then patting dry.  Or try tease feeding as mentioned in my book. As a last resort, force feed and then brumate them until spring and see if that makes a difference.

I keep a couple of colonies of deer mice and dwarf hamsters to scent regular pinks. I just take out some of the dirtiest bedding and bury the pinks in it (loosely, so they don't suffocate) for about 10 minutes. I find that about 20 - 25% of non-feeders (where I already tried braining, heads, bodies, etc) will usually take mouse pinkies scented with another kind of rodent if you confine them overnight with it in a deli cup. Try rats, gerbils, and especially deer mice, etc, etc. You never know what might be their cue. If you don't have other rodent bedding, try your local petshop. Maybe I will start bagging it up and selling it at the shows, lol! Of course you can scent with lizard or tree frog for those who don't go for the rodent aromas. The best method for scenting is to keep an anole or frog in the freezer and cut into its belly. Smear the head of the mouse into the belly (you may have to slightly defrost the lizard first) with the gut contents - seems the best way to elicit a feeding response if a particular corn is interested in feeding on lizards or frogs.

 Don't "bother" your babies too much by trying to feed them everyday, or even every other day. That just causes them more stress. Just leave them completely alone in the best setup you can (see the Cornsnake Manual for details about temps, hide boxes, etc). Keep the babies one to a cage. And leave them alone to cause as little stress as possible. Only try to feed them every 3 or 4 days or so.

They usually won't feed until after their first shed, and you usually have a little over a month before you really have to consider force feeding, if the baby absorbed his yolk and looks healthy. Make sure they are warm and feel secure in their cage.


Try all of these things, starting with the easiest and least invasive, working your way up to the force feeding if needed.

Kathy Love

239-728-2390 (main tel. #)

239-691-4414 (backup cell #)

P. O. Box 516

Alva, Fl. 33920




Kathy Love