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https://youtu.be/fYpIk2pKOxE



This is a peer reviewed video on the science of exactly why Python regius is a semi arboreal species and why racks fail to meet basic welfare requirements, video and picture evidence as well as scientific studies throughout!


Video not working for me ...

That said every Royal python I’ve ever owned loved climbing in the evenings..
All mine have branches in their vivs


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Nicely put together. However that reading from the sweeney book has a few inaccuracies as I don't think you can class the small stubby tail as prehensile.

I've been sighting those reports in previous posts when we've discussed Royals being climbers. I've always added branches where possible to my vivs, and whilst I find rack systems have their place for hatchlings , can not bring myself to house yearlings or above in them.

Now these same breeders that promote the use of rack systems as Royals spend all their time in tight spaces are pushing that "tight space" theory even more. "Yes, now there is no need to buy three more racks when you can simply cram three royals in one RUB... by using one of these "



"Because Royals love feeling secure in tight spaces".

What's needed is someone to fund a recognised herpetologist and scientist to head up a team and do a modern study. Repeating previous studies, with a larger selection sample and wider area.

Do Royals love to climb.... they sure do.

Oh and just one point that really grates on me, especially when you are presenting a somewhat scientific video or paper... please use the correct designation of "Royal Python" and not the american "Ball python"... the latin is Python Regius which translates into python royal, not Python Ballus !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Nicely put together. However that reading from the sweeney book has a few inaccuracies as I don't think you can class the small stubby tail as prehensile.

I've been sighting those reports in previous posts when we've discussed Royals being climbers. I've always added branches where possible to my vivs, and whilst I find rack systems have their place for hatchlings , can not bring myself to house yearlings or above in them.

Now these same breeders that promote the use of rack systems as Royals spend all their time in tight spaces are pushing that "tight space" theory even more. "Yes, now there is no need to buy three more racks when you can simply cram three royals in one RUB... by using one of these "

image

"Because Royals love feeling secure in tight spaces".

What's needed is someone to fund a recognised herpetologist and scientist to head up a team and do a modern study. Repeating previous studies, with a larger selection sample and wider area.

Do Royals love to climb.... they sure do.

Oh and just one point that really grates on me, especially when you are presenting a somewhat scientific video or paper... please use the correct designation of "Royal Python" and not the american "Ball python"... the latin is Python Regius which translates into python royal, not Python Ballus !!!!
I used Ball python because a shed load more people are searching for it than royal python, irritates me to do it but its a numbers game on youtube, it even has ai that listens to what you say in the video to decide what you come up in search for, so i couldnt even title it ball python and just say royal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Nicely put together. However that reading from the sweeney book has a few inaccuracies as I don't think you can class the small stubby tail as prehensile.

I've been sighting those reports in previous posts when we've discussed Royals being climbers. I've always added branches where possible to my vivs, and whilst I find rack systems have their place for hatchlings , can not bring myself to house yearlings or above in them.

Now these same breeders that promote the use of rack systems as Royals spend all their time in tight spaces are pushing that "tight space" theory even more. "Yes, now there is no need to buy three more racks when you can simply cram three royals in one RUB... by using one of these "

image

"Because Royals love feeling secure in tight spaces".

What's needed is someone to fund a recognised herpetologist and scientist to head up a team and do a modern study. Repeating previous studies, with a larger selection sample and wider area.

Do Royals love to climb.... they sure do.

Oh and just one point that really grates on me, especially when you are presenting a somewhat scientific video or paper... please use the correct designation of "Royal Python" and not the american "Ball python"... the latin is Python Regius which translates into python royal, not Python Ballus !!!!
Also my long term plans with the channel if it gets anywhere is to fund a shed load of studies
 

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I used Ball python because a shed load more people are searching for it than royal python, irritates me to do it but its a numbers game on youtube, it even has ai that listens to what you say in the video to decide what you come up in search for, so i couldnt even title it ball python and just say royal.


Royal ‘Ball’ Python :)


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I think many species are kept in less than ideal conditions, conditions which do not fully meet their requirements.

Rabbits for example are kept in tiny hutches when we know they spend their time running around in fields. Fish too have large expanses of water in which to swim should they wish so as I said, reptiles are not unique in their captive restrictions.

Each individual must decide what he or she is comfortable with.
 

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https://youtu.be/fYpIk2pKOxE

This is a peer reviewed video on the science of exactly why Python regius is a semi arboreal species and why racks fail to meet basic welfare requirements, video and picture evidence as well as scientific studies throughout!
Watched this video yesterday and yes it is interesting and for sure give as much enrichment as you can.
When i kept Royals in an ikea style rack tubs are approx 3ft x 2ft i filled them with hides/cork bark and chopped and changed it about periodically . I felt this was good enough.

I think there is a compromise.

Good work on you videos.:2thumb:
 

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Very interesting video indeed and enjoyed the articles/journals that were referenced.

I keep royals in tubs and vivs, pros and cons for both, however I tend to gauge any of my snakes “content’ness” on consistent feeding. I know for a fact some of my royals will just simply not feed when housed in a viv regardless of how easy for me it is to maintain temps and humidity in a viv and being rammed full of hides, branches etc yet stick them in a similar sized tub (such as the mentioned old IKEA tubs) and they will never miss a feed 🤷‍♂️
Is this because they have lived in tubs all their life? Possibly?

My “tub royals” are provided with hides and branches etc they just lack the height of a similar sized viv.

I just take the approach that I treat each of my animals as individuals.

Slightly off topic but I house my Angolans in vivs - I know of many people who successfully keep and breed these in tub/rack systems, but mine are very active using all levels of their vivs and feed like demons therefore I feel no need to change anything about their husbandry in my case.
 

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It could well be behavioural selection.

I used to work in pest control, and city centre House Mouse infestations were really difficult to manage. A city centre house mouse population will have been subjected to intense exposure to pest control equipment for decades. Baits and traps have to be housed in protective boxes to safeguard the general public. So for decades, the mice that will enter bait and trap boxes die and are weeded out of the gene pool until you end up with a hardcore bunch of house mice. You might get a little bait take from juveniles or catch the odd juvenile, but the adults that are breeding? Nope. Not a cat in hells chance! Those adults are box shy and so were all of their ancestors going back 20+ generations. They have been unintentionally selectively bred to exhibit different behaviour.

Royal pythons that have been bred in racks for several generations might also have been subjected to behavioural selection. Those snakes that were better adjusted and more productive in a breeder's rack system will have contributed more babies to the gene pool. Those that were less productive in a rack system will have contributed less, and were probably replaced with more productive snakes.

Captive royal pythons from a long line of rack-bred animals, might be as behaviourally divergent from wild royals as a multi-gene combo looks.
 

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It could well be behavioural selection.

I used to work in pest control, and city centre House Mouse infestations were really difficult to manage. A city centre house mouse population will have been subjected to intense exposure to pest control equipment for decades. Baits and traps have to be housed in protective boxes to safeguard the general public. So for decades, the mice that will enter bait and trap boxes die and are weeded out of the gene pool until you end up with a hardcore bunch of house mice. You might get a little bait take from juveniles or catch the odd juvenile, but the adults that are breeding? Nope. Not a cat in hells chance! Those adults are box shy and so were all of their ancestors going back 20+ generations. They have been unintentionally selectively bred to exhibit different behaviour.

Royal pythons that have been bred in racks for several generations might also have been subjected to behavioural selection. Those snakes that were better adjusted and more productive in a breeder's rack system will have contributed more babies to the gene pool. Those that were less productive in a rack system will have contributed less, and were probably replaced with more productive snakes.

Captive royal pythons from a long line of rack-bred animals, might be as behaviourally divergent from wild royals as a multi-gene combo looks.


Well I’m not really sure if that theory really stands up given every Royal I’ve ever had absolutely loved climbing around their branches in the evenings.

Hell , Corn snakes are often described as climbers but mine barely use this branches at all


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It was more in response to the comment immediately before mine, mentioning "rub royals" which will not feed well or at all unless kept in a rub.

I'm on my phone and I can't get the quotation function to work on my phone.
 

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I’d say there is definitely some logic to “justabeginner’s” theory, just because someone’s collection of royals likes to climb or happily feeds in a viv doesn’t mean everyone’s does? Like I said some of mine are happy in vivs and come feeding day are out and about searching the viv where as my “rub royals” would very very rarely be seen from out under their hides and on the very rare occasion they did feed in a viv it would be from ambushing from underneath a hide.

I care for my animals, reptilian and mammal including some 2500 livestock by observing behaviour etc and reacting appropriately. Just because a book or a latest video condemns or recommends something doesn’t mean it will or will not work for you.

A degree of common sense/stockmanship is required after the basic knowledge of how to care for any animal is obtained.
 

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It could well be behavioural selection.

I used to work in pest control, and city centre House Mouse infestations were really difficult to manage. A city centre house mouse population will have been subjected to intense exposure to pest control equipment for decades. Baits and traps have to be housed in protective boxes to safeguard the general public. So for decades, the mice that will enter bait and trap boxes die and are weeded out of the gene pool until you end up with a hardcore bunch of house mice. You might get a little bait take from juveniles or catch the odd juvenile, but the adults that are breeding? Nope. Not a cat in hells chance! Those adults are box shy and so were all of their ancestors going back 20+ generations. They have been unintentionally selectively bred to exhibit different behaviour.

Royal pythons that have been bred in racks for several generations might also have been subjected to behavioural selection. Those snakes that were better adjusted and more productive in a breeder's rack system will have contributed more babies to the gene pool. Those that were less productive in a rack system will have contributed less, and were probably replaced with more productive snakes.

Captive royal pythons from a long line of rack-bred animals, might be as behaviourally divergent from wild royals as a multi-gene combo looks.
I’d say there is definitely some logic to “justabeginner’s” theory, just because someone’s collection of royals likes to climb or happily feeds in a viv doesn’t mean everyone’s does? Like I said some of mine are happy in vivs and come feeding day are out and about searching the viv where as my “rub royals” would very very rarely be seen from out under their hides and on the very rare occasion they did feed in a viv it would be from ambushing from underneath a hide.

I care for my animals, reptilian and mammal including some 2500 livestock by observing behaviour etc and reacting appropriately. Just because a book or a latest video condemns or recommends something doesn’t mean it will or will not work for you.

A degree of common sense/stockmanship is required after the basic knowledge of how to care for any animal is obtained.
Not so- there is pretty conclusive evidence that royals are semi-arboreal in the wild. Thrasops once posted a scientific paper describing this. Royals are semi-arboreal by nature, not merely from captive-learned behaviour.

Well I’m not really sure if that theory really stands up given every Royal I’ve ever had absolutely loved climbing around their branches in the evenings.

Hell , Corn snakes are often described as climbers but mine barely use this branches at all


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This. They climb in your viv because they climb in the wild.
 

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[/QUOTE]Not so- there is pretty conclusive evidence that royals are semi-arboreal in the wild. Thrasops once posted a scientific paper describing this. Royals are semi-arboreal by nature, not merely from captive-learned behaviour

I’m not disputing in any way shape or form that royals are in fact semi arboreal in the WILD I thought “justabeginner2’s” theory was that animals that suited/adapted/preferred life in a rack/rub system were more readily and heavily bred from due to the logistics and ease of doing so? Therefore certain strains, bloodlines etc could be less “semi arboreal” than others?

My “rack royals” are comparatively slug like in their activity (even when provided a life in a viv) compared to my “viv royals”

For me the video was very interesting, insightful and backed up by scientific research, BUT it will not stop me using rack systems for certain individual royals in my collection as life in a viv I feel would be detrimental to their health 🏻
 

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I've lost count of the number of species I have kept over the years and apart from snakes that are diggers like sand boas and fat snakes who are too cumbersome to climb a branch like Bloods, the one thing they have all had in common is that they will climb a branch or up to a higher level if given the chance. This includes all the large boids, colubrids etc etc.

If a snake can climb why wouldn't it? It's a natural instinct to seek food, to find the sun, to avoid predators and to just simply explore its environment if and when it chooses to. Sometimes they like to climb up things and sometimes they like to cram themselves into tight areas to feel safe. All my snakes like to cram themselves into high hide boxes so they feel secure in a tight space but with the added bonus of being less vulnerable off the ground.

Are people still touting this pack them in tight rubbish?

If people don't even want to give their snakes a bit of extra limited captive enrichment, perhaps they should consider keeping photographs of snakes in a scrapbook?
They could save money on food and electric bills and they could collect as many photos of the pretty snakes as they want. And they wouldn't be depriving the reptiles they feel so "passionately" about from realising their most basic instincts in an already confined environment.
 

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I've lost count of the number of species I have kept over the years and apart from snakes that are diggers like sand boas and fat snakes who are too cumbersome to climb a branch like Bloods, the one thing they have all had in common is that they will climb a branch or up to a higher level if given the chance. This includes all the large boids, colubrids etc etc.

If a snake can climb why wouldn't it? It's a natural instinct to seek food, to find the sun, to avoid predators and to just simply explore its environment if and when it chooses to. Sometimes they like to climb up things and sometimes they like to cram themselves into tight areas to feel safe. All my snakes like to cram themselves into high hide boxes so they feel secure in a tight space but with the added bonus of being less vulnerable off the ground.

Are people still touting this pack them in tight rubbish?

If people don't even want to give their snakes a bit of extra limited captive enrichment, perhaps they should consider keeping photographs of snakes in a scrapbook?
They could save money on food and electric bills and they could collect as many photos of the pretty snakes as they want. And they wouldn't be depriving the reptiles they feel so "passionately" about from realising their most basic instincts in an already confined environment.
Bravo.:2thumb:
 

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I've only been keeping snakes 34 years.... when I got my first snake in 1986, and then joined a society in 1990, which by this time I had got as many books and magazines on keeping snakes as possible, the fad of keeping royals (well all snakes really) in tubs was non existent. Everything was housed in vivs. Even very respected breeders of the day kept their collection in vivs, even it it meant that nearly every room had one or two walls covered with stacks from floor to almost ceiling. Most royals were housed in 3' or 4' vivs as standard, and they did really well. I have no knowledge of where or when rack systems were first introduced, but I'm guessing it was around the mid to late 90's when morphs started making their appearance and commercial breeders needed to capitalise on them so the rack-em-stack-em approached became the norm.

I'm sure if the secret to keeping royals was to give them a space they can hardly turn round in and kept in perpetual darkness 24/7 on newspaper then people would have been using that method 30 / 40 years ago...

Roylas love to climb... given the opportunity....
 

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I've lost count of the number of species I have kept over the years and apart from snakes that are diggers like sand boas and fat snakes who are too cumbersome to climb a branch like Bloods, the one thing they have all had in common is that they will climb a branch or up to a higher level if given the chance. This includes all the large boids, colubrids etc etc.

If a snake can climb why wouldn't it? It's a natural instinct to seek food, to find the sun, to avoid predators and to just simply explore its environment if and when it chooses to. Sometimes they like to climb up things and sometimes they like to cram themselves into tight areas to feel safe. All my snakes like to cram themselves into high hide boxes so they feel secure in a tight space but with the added bonus of being less vulnerable off the ground.

Are people still touting this pack them in tight rubbish?

If people don't even want to give their snakes a bit of extra limited captive enrichment, perhaps they should consider keeping photographs of snakes in a scrapbook?
They could save money on food and electric bills and they could collect as many photos of the pretty snakes as they want. And they wouldn't be depriving the reptiles they feel so "passionately" about from realising their most basic instincts in an already confined environment.
Hi Andy hope you’re well. Don’t know if you recall but I bought some of the big IKEA tubs from you earlier in the year and if I remember rightly you’d built a great rack using these tubs that you still had in your reptile room when I met you. What did you used to keep in these?
 
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