Wednesday, January 20, 2010

You wanna breed Ball Pythons? Well, Listen up...

So, you wanna breed Ball Pythons, eh?
You have the drive, the passion, the energy and the will to make it happen.

But you need more than that to make it really work for you.

Are you in it to make the snakes, or make the money?
Do you want the most awesome collection on the planet, or do you want the cash rollin' in?

Here's the main thing about breeding ball pythons..

It's about both for most people, including myself.
Yeah, I really love my ball pythons, but I also love the money it brings in.

But with that comes the other people who are only into it for the money. Its very hard to do business with someone who undercuts the prices of the animals you work very hard for just because they are looking to make a quick buck.

So what to do in that situation? Well, produce what you love, and know that you may be holding on to those animals for a few months or more.

Should that matter? No. You should be prepared for that and be ready to house more animals than you intend to keep. Such is the life of a breeder.

What do you need to know as an up and coming breeder?

Customer service is key, and being a good person is a huge thing in this industry. Your reputation should speak for itself, so that people can and will trust you. And, of course, with that, you should be trustworthy!

And I know I've mentioned it before, but buying snakes from reputable people, people you can count on and trust is KEY in this industry. You are representing animals, especially hets, and you NEED to know that what you have is what you have.

Well, now that you know how to act, here we come around to the snakes themselves.

They are easy animals to care for and own, great pets, but here are a few pointers I want to make sure anyone out there who owns a Ball Python knows:

~Have a trustworthy reputable REPTILE specializing veterinarian. I cannot stress this enough. Baytril is great, but it is not the cure-all save-all that some veterinarians tout.

~Know that having patience is a huge virtue in this business. Things will NOT go to plan, and if they do, enjoy it while it lasts, cause it doesn't happen often.

~DO NOT count on a male to breed the first year you have him. If you do, you are bound for disappointment. It may happen, but as I said in the previous point, enjoy it while it lasts, cause the next male you have your heart set on may make you crazy.

~DO NOT count on a female to breed at 1500grams. Weight is only one of many factors about breeding females that you need to take into account. 3 years is a safe bet, as well as 1500 grams, but there are those females that that 10 years to get to 1500 grams, so... again, back to the second point I brought up, have patience.

~Buying adult animals to breed the next year is a crap shoot. There are no guarantees that the females or even the males are going to be in shape enough to be put through the ringer of the breeding season.

~Know that no matter how prepared you think you are, there will be problems you are not ready for, issues that will come up that will throw you for a loop, and craziness that can come from anywhere. Expect the unexpected, and try and be ready for it!

So all in all, it really is a lot of fun. Just know that things happen, and those things that turn you upside down make life more interesting!

Enjoy it, and if you don't, then maybe this isn't the hobby for you. Lives are on the line, and make sure to care for each one of them.

Love it, live it, enjoy it, and know that it is a greatly rewarding hobby if you do it the right way.

And don't forget, have a great day, my friends!!!


Royal Morphz said...

Loved it, has to be in the top 5 best blogs you have ever done. Heather you are an inspiration.


Krystal said...

Woo! Thank you!

Especially thank you for not going over the same things most people go over when asked this question. I was really bummed when I read Kevin's The Complete Ball Python and realized that almost all of it consisted of stuff I already know.

I'm kinda nervous about doing this because the python care/breeding/etc. I already have a good handle on, and almost all of the business-related stuff seems common sense to me. I feel like I must be missing something! It seems it should be more complicated than that....

But really, as you say, it is more complicated than I think because things rarely go according to plan, and Murphy likes to stick his law in the most inconvenient places.

It's wonderful to hear from breeders about their experiences and things they did or did not expect.

And yes, patience is the big thing I need to work on.... Hee hee.

Thank you!!!!

Jackie M. said...

Is it SAFE to breed a two year old if she's passed the 1500 gram mark? I have a 2007 and a 2008 who will both be at 1500+ next winter. But especially with the 2008, is it safer to wait?

Jackie M. said...

What would be swell, though, is if my snakes could pay for their own meals. THAT would be AWESOME.