Shed...

Shed...

Postby Hellemar » Wed Aug 09, 2006 10:09 pm

hi...


I forgot to tell/ask you...


The day before yesterday, my female Naja siamensis was shedding her skin, so after she had shed, I offered her a fat rat (about 350 gram) and off course she eat it, but after 5-10 minutes, she was sniffing around in her enclosure like a horny bull and when she came to her sheded skin, she sniffed at it for maybe 2 minutes and then she started to eat it...
Have you ever heard about that behaviour before and do you have any idéa why she ate her skin ?

Here are some pics of it...

Image

Image

She just ate maybe 20-30 cm of her skin and on the second pic you can see that she has been fed already...


I know that some geckos eat ther skin but I have never heard of an asian cobra eating her skin...



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Postby Zeek » Wed Aug 09, 2006 11:03 pm

Don't feel left out I have a brown House snake that always eats his shedding I got no clue way he does that :?:
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Postby Hellemar » Wed Aug 09, 2006 11:42 pm

Hi...


I have an idea, just a very crazy one, but still an idea...

My female is kept in the same enclosure as the male... The male has shown interests of mating this summer, but she has decided to be like Madonna - like a virgin... But now, after she shed, it might can be as easy as she is feeling a little horny, but she doesn´t want any other females competing for the male so that´s why she ate the shed - she tought that it was another female...

As I said - an crazy idea, but I see no reason for her to eat her shed...

But I don´t now... This idea is most likely wrong... Mayby my cobra and your BHS just have seen a leopardgecko eating it skin and imitate just to screw with our minds...



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Postby arcadies » Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:34 am

thats weird, also nice that u have pics, maybe you should contact a suddied herp and ask?
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Postby Bushbaby » Thu Aug 10, 2006 8:45 am

No idea why she would eat her shedding. Maybe she's hoping to have her poop giftwrapped. hee hee

Do other snakes make up part of their natural diet? BV had a snake which after hibernation would not eat until it had a snake, then it would eat rats or mice, whatever it was feeding on. Maybe it's similar??
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Postby Sean » Thu Aug 10, 2006 9:29 am

Very strange, so much to learn about reptiles so little time.
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Postby bugs » Thu Aug 10, 2006 12:10 pm

greetings Hellemar! Think there is a very simple explanation for your cobra's behavior. All cobras are oppertunistic cannibals and its possible that she was still hungry, found the shedding, mistook it for another snake and ate it. I have seen this happen with my naja nigricollis woodi an naja nigricollis ningricita.
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Postby Hellemar » Thu Aug 10, 2006 6:59 pm

Hi...


I thought of cannibalism too, but she had already been eating a huge rat just before... But as you said - maybe she thought it was a small snake... :-?



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Postby Pythonodipsas » Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:37 pm

WOW Hellemar - absolutely fascinating with nice pics to illustrate. I have never seen or heard of it, except that some people feed King Cobras a snake shedding stuffed with rodents.
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Postby drummer » Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:44 pm

wow i would never have thought of that... cool plan
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Postby phobos » Fri Aug 11, 2006 3:46 am

Very interesting...great post!

Here's my 2 cents: Maybe she was lacking some nutrient(s) that the shedding was a good source of? Craving for keratin??

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Postby Jonte_rm » Sat Aug 12, 2006 1:53 am

Nice Hellemar...

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Postby arcadies » Sat Aug 12, 2006 3:01 am

is there anyway to find out for certain, why she ate her shed? i googled it, but nothing came up :( there no "kathy loves" for Naja?
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Postby Hellemar » Sat Aug 12, 2006 3:02 pm

Hi...


Yes, it really is strange behavior eating her shed... Lack of nutrients... Hmm... Maybe... I will try feed her with rats next time to and see if same things happens and then I´ll try chicken again (it´s been a while now)...

There are so many thoughts of why she ate her shed and I´m thinking of it all the time, but I want to know for sure why she ate it - if it is lack of nutrients I must arrange a better plan of feeding more different kind of prey items - not only once in a while...
Maybe I´ll try feed her with fish... Has anyone tried that to Naja siamensis ?



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Postby Bushviper » Sat Aug 12, 2006 4:21 pm

I have seen this with a few species and there does not seen to be a reason for it except that snakes will often feed on anything once the mouth is full of the taste of their last meal. Thats how you convince a snake that eats mice to take rats is by slipping on in while she is busy because the taste of mouse is still in her mouth.

I would not change the food at all. Chicks are not as healthy so stick with rats. Fish can be a problem because of bacteria that they carry and frozen ones loose nutrition. Cleaning up after a snake that has eaten fish is not recommended because the smell is awful.
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