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Thread: Getting WC baby garters to eat

  1. #11
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Then you have yourself the most interesting valley garter snake I have ever seen. Thamnophis sirtalis fitchi. If you catch a few more, keep them separate for a month or so at least. Please. Cross contamination goes both ways. Even if the ones you have are fine, what if the ones you catch end up killing that exquisite looking specimen you pictured? Just be careful.

  2. #12
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    No that's a really great point. I might go herping today and see what I can find, but if I catch anything of interest I'll use one of my spare tanks for it.

    As for colour.. I'm excited to see how it turns out! He's been getting more and more colour everyday. I'd also caught one with a very blue hue to it (I wondered if it was a blue phase puget), that my cousin ended up keeping for a day or two and then releasing, so there seems to be a good variety of colours at the location I'd visited.

  3. #13
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Very, very cool. Happy herping. I hope you find something awesome. It's cool when people get enthusiastic about animals, and it looks like you caught the bug. I don't know how old you are, or if you'll get the reference but, once you find a real life shiny, you are hooked.lol (Pokemon reference).

  4. #14
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Haha definitely got that one.. 29 year old ultra nerd over here

    So, a bit random but it looks as though my little guy was missing this morning.. unless he's underground. The odds of him escaping are slim - his tank is on a fairly secure lockdown. My roommate is wondering, could it be possible that the bigger one ate him? He doesn't look full, so I'm thinking probably not, but what are the odds of something like that happening? The size difference between them wasn't huge, but definitely one is bigger than the other two. Is cannibalism common when one is larger than the other?

  5. #15
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    No. Well...not in that particular species. If one of them ate him they would look huge. Or more likely, be dead. I seriously don't think that would happen, unless they were fighting over food. He is probably hiding. But...they are escape artists. If they can fit up to their eyes out of something, they can escape. I'd guess hiding though. Hopefully. Or, check the ledges around the rim of the tank if you haven't. They get wet and the water adhesion let's them shimmy up the corner of the tank. If not, idk. Some babies do like to burrow in substrate occasionally.

  6. #16
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Good to know! In that case, he either escaped, is hiding, or died hiding and I'll find him later lol.

    I ended up catching another, but there is a small sore on it that has me concerned about parasites/disease... What do you think, release?IMG_20200918_163110.jpg

    Also, when do you think it's okay for me to start handling the little guys?

  7. #17
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    As for the new snake, it's probably just a skin infection. But it could be a bad, bad, bad, very bad one. Nowadays there's a super fungus called Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola that causes something called snake fungal disease. It's very bad. It kills 80-90% of rattlesnakes who get it, and it's driven populations to extinction. Luckily it only kills about 40% of garter snakes in my experience. From this photo it's hard to say if it is or isn't that. Look it up and compare the pics you find with the snake. I was part of a team a few years back researching it, and I hope to god it isn't SFD. If it is, don't release the snake. If you have a garage or something far away from your snake room, buy a tub and keep it there. If it dies, bury or burn it. We don't want it spreading more than it has. If it is, bleach or alcohol your hands and don't touch your babies tonight. (Bleach or alcohol. Not both. Together they produce chloroform).Or feed them. Nothing. And if it isn't, I'd still keep it out of the snake room. And still wash up well. If it is SFD and that's all the worse it has it, it'll likely shed out of it in a few sheds. And handling your babies, I just sent that very answer to one of my customers.lol I'll copy and paste.
    Albert Clark likes this.

  8. #18
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Is it bad to handle them a lot?
    "Nah. I mean, don't go extreme.lol At first, take it slow. They'll be a bit stressed after shipping. Give them a couple days to adjust and then gradually ramp up the time. So, maybe 3 days after you get them hold them for 5 minutes or so, then put them back and feed them. Then a week after maybe hold them a bit longer. After a month or so they should be used to you. Like any new relationship, it's better for both parties to take it slow."

  9. #19
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    Also, most baby garters need a moving target to elicit a feeding response. Certainly going from wild to captive is a stressor on the babies in general. Established sub adult and adults will adapt easier. Try using tongs to hold the food item and kinda wiggle it from side to side close to the baby garters head and mouth. Donít be too aggressive in the wiggling because that will probably just make him want to hide.
    Elisabeth83 likes this.
    Stay in peace and not pieces.

  10. #20
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    Re: Getting WC baby garters to eat

    So it appears as though my babies adapted easier than I thought.. they'll happily take worms that I drop in front of them. The issue is the new sub adult/adult that I have.. He just doesn't seem to want to eat for me. No interest in worms or tilapia - he'll actually flee from the worms if dropped in nearby. Any ideas? When should I consider force feeding?

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