at Sat Jun 12 14:11:17 2010 [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by BlueKing ]
Hi. I've read your post and I have kept Indigo's as pets for close to 10 years (Easterns and Texans). I'm no total expert, but I have some experience to share that may help you:
First of all, it seems that your friend is doing a lot of things right already, but consider this:
Feed her twice a week and see if she eats twice a week...(Indigos Do have a slightly higher metabolism than some of the other snakes, espcially the young ones). Sometimes feeding them a little more will also help calm them down. It's just like some humans that that don't eat enough (more restless and cranky until their bellies are full).
If ,(and only if), she has an aggressive feeding response (usually indicated by her lunging at you WITHOUT any type of warning as soon as you stick your hand in the cage), you may consider placing her in a different container first (on feeding days), then feeding her. After feeding her, put her back in her regular cage. Do that all the time (if you go that route).That way she will not associate a hand going into her regular cage as food!
You may also want to put her in a room where she can be more exposed to people just walking past her cage all the time. Eventually she will realize that seeing people coming near her cage is no longer a threat. It takes some time, a few months up to a year (be patient), but it should work. My female Eastern Indigo was also a little skittish when she was younger, but she's calmed down a lot since then. (She may have also been nervous because she can probably smell the larger male nearby, in another cage, which could be perceived as a threat to her due to his larger size and the fact that Indigos will eat their own kind in the wild if there is a size difference) My male on the other hand has always been calm and fearless, even when he was just a hatch-ling. But what I think has helped a lot (for my female), is that she is in the living room where people walk past her cage all the time. I believe if you keep a young Indigo in a separate room where exposure to humans is less common, it will naturally take even longer for them to calm down (even more so if it is a very dark room - Indigos are primarily diurnal and need to have some light during the day).
I also think you should stay clear of that breeder in western PA....He sure is ignorant to this species of snake!
Let me know if you have any more questions.....
Here's a pic of my niece who's never held a snake before until that day (with my male Indigo when he was younger at around 5 foot. He's over seven feet now.)
"I am an expert on everything, but I know so little and have so much to learn!" -Carsten "Zee" Zoldy-
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