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Thread: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

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    Forum Moderator infernalis's Avatar
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    Exclamation A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Anyone who has been here a while may recall me having no less than two incidents regarding the loss of snakes after eating (supposedly) tainted fish from the freezer section of Wal Mart.

    The purpose of this thread is to alert members that it's not an issue with Wal Mart, nor any other store.

    Pre-packaged frozen fish is all treated with a sodium compound preservative to keep it looking nice in the freezer.

    Sodium tripolyphosphate although harmless to humans is NOT normally consumed by garter snakes.

    Since I have made the decision to feed only certified chemical free organic fish to my snakes, I have not has a single loss due to feeding them cut up fish.

    Look closely on the back of your fish fillet packaging, those Tilapia/salmon fillets are most likely treated with this chemical.

    In my opinion / experience.. this stuff is far more deadly than Thiaminase.


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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Well spotted Wayne i think you have just prevented a lot of heartache.
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    Forum Moderator Stefan-A's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Sodium tripolyphosphate
    BEST INC., LIMITED

    Sodium chloride
    BEST INC., LIMITED


    It's a bit less toxic (to rats), than table salt and the amount in the fish is unknown.

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    Forum Moderator infernalis's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Without a specific study being done, one cannot be certain about retention and expulsion of this commonly used preservative in reptiles.

    I decided to look into this when I read the packaging on some frozen fish I saw at the market. Once I saw this listed on the packaging of some salmon, I then looked at the packages of Tilapia and salmon at Wal Mart and sure enough it was listed right on the back.

    Since the rainbow trout I have been buying are fresh butchered, the fillets do not contain any preservatives at all, there were only two seafood items sold there that are certified chemical free organic, the rainbow trout I buy for my garter snakes, and the raw whole shrimp I buy for my monitor lizard.

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    T. radix Ranch guidofatherof5's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Good info. to know.
    That probably explains the trouble I had years back with frozen fish.
    Steve
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    T.s. affectionado EasternGirl's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    I only buy fresh fish from the seafood counter. My motto is...if I wouldn't eat it, I won't feed it to my snakes...and I am very picky about seafood. Having had an experience with food poisoning from seafood myself...I am very careful in what I buy. I buy it fresh and I smell it...if it smells off in anyway...I take it back.
    Marnie
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    Forum Moderator infernalis's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    For the longest time it was usually recommended on this site to buy Tilapia and salmon from the frozen feeds section of the supermarket.

    The death is not pretty, the snakes convulse, flip over, bite themselves in the side, etc..

    The symptoms look just look dehydration.

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    "PM Boots For Custom Title" chris-uk's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    It may be dehydration Wayne. If the sodium causes an electrolyte imbalance and can't be excreted the chances are that it draws out water.
    Good tip, I've not used anything other than fish counter fish yet. Now I'll avoid prepacked fish and frozen fish.
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    Chris
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    Forum Moderator aSnakeLovinBabe's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    With all of the questionable keepers out there that will buy the cheapest stuff they can find, I think you'd see a LOT more issues with this if it WAS what was killing off snakes in batches. I personally still think it's got a lot to do with fish simply being contaminated with stuff as they are grown... seeing as our planet's shot to hell, I don't really buy into the whole "organic" movement as there realistically are no places untouched by human scum anymore. I've moved away from feeding fish filets because a whole prey diet is certainly a lot more ideal than filets with artificial supplements and it's not cost prohibitive anyways.
    Mother of many snakes and a beautiful baby girl! I am also a polymer clay artist!


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    Forum Moderator infernalis's Avatar
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    Re: A note concerning pre-packaged frozen fish

    Quote Originally Posted by aSnakeLovinBabe View Post
    With all of the questionable keepers out there that will buy the cheapest stuff they can find, I think you'd see a LOT more issues with this if it WAS what was killing off snakes in batches. I personally still think it's got a lot to do with fish simply being contaminated with stuff as they are grown... seeing as our planet's shot to hell, I don't really buy into the whole "organic" movement as there realistically are no places untouched by human scum anymore. I've moved away from feeding fish filets because a whole prey diet is certainly a lot more ideal than filets with artificial supplements and it's not cost prohibitive anyways.
    How many of those "questionable" keepers pay attention.

    We have had plenty of those "oh my snake just died" threads, "I don't know why"...

    I agree with the human scum statement, but I'm quite sure there are MANY unreported deaths, and many "I don't know what happened" deaths.

    Further, if the preservatives are prayed on with nozzles at the packaging plant, a dribble, a sputter or a clogged up spray nozzle suddenly clearing could (and will) deposit higher concentrations of the chemical on the fish being packaged.

    One calibration at the plant goes out of spec, and suddenly a whole batch or just a few inches of a batch of fish gets a larger dose of detergent than the rest of the line.

    Heck, after reading the material safety data sheets Stefan posted up, I'm not sure I would want to eat that fish myself.

    When many of us feed babies, we tend to chop up fish, how many of those "failure to thrive" babies actually fell victim to the chemical preservatives in the fish??

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