FaunaClassifieds - View Single Post - Getting Rhino ratsnakes to eat
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Old 02-12-2018, 12:13 PM   #7
pjkohn
I've kept rhinos for a few years and have had some troublesome babies as well. Including hatchlings I received has f/t pink feeders. Some of them are bulletproof right from the get go, others require a little bit more patience. And that's the key, patience. They have a hardy, tolerant species that can do well in a very simple set up. So if they're in the comfortable room temp range and they have reasonable humidity, you really don't have to worry about dialing in temperature and humidity too precisely. In fact, I found that the more I kept changing things up and playing with their environment, the longer it delayed the process, because they were never able to settle in.
When trying to get these guys to eat, it's not a species you want to disturb too frequently. Give them 4 or 5 days between feeding attempts. Even the little tiny guys can go a long time without eating and be just fine, as long as you don't overly stress them. If they don't take the pink on their own out of the water bowl, I've always had the best luck off tongs. Ideally, try to catch them at a time when they're outside of their hide. Your approach with the tongs should be slow and calm. Try just offering it up in front of them and let them smell it. Then, gently try to illicit a strike response out of them by gently nudging them on the sides with the pink's nose. Be careful not to bump them so hard or often that you cause them to flee. Usually once they go into a flee mode, they won't have interest in eating for the day.
Try to keep the pink lined up so that when they do strike the nose goes directly into the back of their mouth. If they get a good hold, they'll likely sit there with it for a while. At this point, you want to be patient again. Let them just decide what they want to do with what's in their mouth. Don't move it around to get them to pull tighter, they'll just let go. If you're able, sometimes it helps to slowly, gently let go of the pink and take a step back. Don't try to close the cage, just stay close enough to keep an eye on them. With any luck they'll decide to start eating the pink.

There's my best advice I've had luck with. Good luck!