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Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

South African snakes commonly known as non-venomous, including the Natal rock python (Python natalensis).

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Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

Postby ObscureSnake » Sat Jun 20, 2015 11:02 pm

Hello,

I was wondering if there were any people out there successfully working with species of the Mehelya/Gonionotophis? What care requirements do these snakes thrive under? I know that in the wild they mainly feed on reptiles, but I've heard they can occasionally be switched over to feeding on rodents. Has anyone found this to be true, and what procedures have proved useful in implementing this switch? I see Mehelya appear here regularly, though not often. I believe most of what show up here in USA are Mehelya poensis.

Note: I've including both genera here because, although Gonionotophis seems to be widely accepted as the currently valid generic epithet, the majority of the information I've been able to find still has them listed under the name Mehelya. At any rate, there is no mistaking what snakes I am inquiring about.

Thanks!

Thomas
Species Currently Kept:
Ball Python (Python regius)
Children's/Spotted Python (Antaresia childreni X maculosa)
Western Ratsnake (Pantherophis obsoletus)
Forest Girdled Lizard (Cordylus tropidosternum)
Crested Geckos (Correlophus ciliatus)
Schneider's Skinks (Eumeces schneideri)
Ringed Salamander (Ambystoma annulatum)
Western Slimy Salamander (Plethodon albagula)
Barred Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium)
White's Tree Frogs (Litoria caerulea)
Chacoan Horned Frog (Ceratophrys cranwelli)
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ObscureSnake
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Re: Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

Postby Westley Price » Sat Jun 20, 2015 11:13 pm

Hi Thomas

G. capensis is actually very well established here in RSA and they are bred quite regularly. Most of the CB stock are quite easily persuaded to accept rodents, but WC are a bit more difficult. I would think that using shed skin from other snakes to "wrap" feeders would be quite successful.

I have kept wild caught G. vernayi and capensis very successfully feeding them on toads without any hassles whatsoever. Both species became so tame that they would accept prey items from my fingers.

From what I have noted from WC, it that they are incredibly shy and require sufficient hiding spots to feel comfortable. I simply kept mine on newspaper with 2-3 hides per enclosure and a small waterbowl. Cant say I ever had issues.

From what I have read, the bulk of the Goniotophis species available in the US and Europe are exported from West Africa and are parasite-ridden, so I assume it would be key to get them treated very soon after purchase.

Good luck.
"I am dying by inches from not having anybody to talk to about insects." - Charles Darwin
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Westley Price
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Location: South Africa

Re: Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

Postby ObscureSnake » Thu Jun 25, 2015 3:46 am

Thank you for the reply, Westley Price!

I wish these snakes were established here in the US. I have an ample supply of shed snake skin from my captives, and I have access to liquid skink scent. I'm hoping next year that'll I'l be able to acquire some Gonionotophis.

Is there a parasite treatment that you would recommend for new WC specimens?

Thanks!

Thomas
Species Currently Kept:
Ball Python (Python regius)
Children's/Spotted Python (Antaresia childreni X maculosa)
Western Ratsnake (Pantherophis obsoletus)
Forest Girdled Lizard (Cordylus tropidosternum)
Crested Geckos (Correlophus ciliatus)
Schneider's Skinks (Eumeces schneideri)
Ringed Salamander (Ambystoma annulatum)
Western Slimy Salamander (Plethodon albagula)
Barred Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium)
White's Tree Frogs (Litoria caerulea)
Chacoan Horned Frog (Ceratophrys cranwelli)
User avatar
ObscureSnake
SA Reptiles Member
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2015 1:38 am

Re: Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

Postby Westley Price » Sat Jul 04, 2015 7:03 pm

I doubt that you will have the same products in the US as us here in Africa, but Panacur works well as a general parasite flush, but just be careful of dosages.

I have had a few mates lose snakes due to overdosing.

Good luck
"I am dying by inches from not having anybody to talk to about insects." - Charles Darwin
User avatar
Westley Price
Forum gatekeeper
 
Posts: 4013
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 8:25 am
Location: South Africa

Re: Mehelya (AKA Gonionotophis) Captive Care?

Postby ObscureSnake » Sat Jul 04, 2015 9:06 pm

Thanks! I know we have Panacur here. I work in an animal shelter, and we use Panacur to treat parasitic infestations in dogs and cats. If I'm able to acquire some Gonionotophis, I might give that a go.

Cheers,
Thomas
Species Currently Kept:
Ball Python (Python regius)
Children's/Spotted Python (Antaresia childreni X maculosa)
Western Ratsnake (Pantherophis obsoletus)
Forest Girdled Lizard (Cordylus tropidosternum)
Crested Geckos (Correlophus ciliatus)
Schneider's Skinks (Eumeces schneideri)
Ringed Salamander (Ambystoma annulatum)
Western Slimy Salamander (Plethodon albagula)
Barred Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma mavortium)
White's Tree Frogs (Litoria caerulea)
Chacoan Horned Frog (Ceratophrys cranwelli)
User avatar
ObscureSnake
SA Reptiles Member
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2015 1:38 am


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