WRITTEN BY GUEST BLOGGER ERIN BROWN
12/31/08: What’s Not Happening This Week.
Last week I talked about how hectic it was around the Animal Department for the holidays. This week is no different. The museum is closed New Years day, and since it is a holiday, there will only be two keepers working. Since basically all that’s going on this week is some more crazy holiday preparation to make sure our keepers are all set for New Year’s week, I thought that I’d talk about what’s NOT going on this week.
All of our snakes and alligators here in the Animal Department get fed once a week, on Thursdays. Since we are so short staffed tomorrow, that feeding got done today (Wednesday, New Year’s Eve). Usually Keeper Kent does a very cool snake and alligator feeding program that you can check out every Thursday at 4pm at the snake exhibit in Carolina Wildlife. Kent is super passionate about snakes, and knows tons about them, so the program is a really good time for people to come and ask any questions that they have about snakes, or any other reptiles. Since that is not happening this week, I took some footage when I was feeding the corn snakes, and got some really good videos I thought I’d share. This is no substitute for seeing it in person, so make sure to come one Thursday at 4pm to see it for yourself!
Something you’ll see in the video is that the mice I’m giving the snakes are already dead. We don’t give our snakes live mice for several reasons. A big one is that we don’t want any diseases the mice may have to be passed to our snakes. The mice that we get we keep in a freezer, which kills everything like that. Another reason is that we want to prevent any injury that could occur when snakes get live mice. This could include the snake striking something hard (like the side of his enclosure or his water bowl) when he is going after the mouse, or injury from the mouse trying to defend itself. Another thing I’d like to point out is that corn snakes are some of the most well natured snakes that you can find. I have never had one strike at me when I was handling it. Also, they are usually curled up inside a box, or under some paper towels fast asleep. As soon as they caught scent of the mice, all of them were at their window ready to eat!
I hope you enjoy the video. Happy New Year!