How Do Snakes Feed Their Young?

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A snake’s diet depends on the type of snake but all snakes are carnivores.

Snakes eat small mammals such as rodents lizards and other snakes as well as birds and eggs.

Some snakes will also eat carrion or dead animals.

Preying On Young

To feed their young female snakes often times will fast or eat less so that their young will have a better chance of survival.

When the female snake is ready to give birth she will find a safe place to do so away from predators.

Once the young are born they are on their own and must fend for themselves immediately.

The mother snake will not stick around to help them hunt or protect them.

The young snakes will usually eat the same things as their parents small mammals lizards and other snakes.

One difference between the young and their parents is that the young are more likely to eat insects and other small invertebrates.

This is because they are not yet large enough to take down larger prey items.

Regurgitating Food

Another way that snakes can feed their young is by regurgitating or vomiting their most recent meal.

This is most common in captive snakes as wild snakes will typically only do this if they are sick.

If a captive snake is well-fed and healthy they may regurgitate their meal to their owner as a sign of affection.

It is not recommended to handle a snake immediately after it has regurgitated its meal as the snake may see you as a threat and become aggressive.

Mice As Prey

One of the most common prey items for snakes both young and old is the mouse.

Mice are small and easy to catch and they are also a good source of food.

Snakes will often times eat multiple mice at a time depending on their size.

If a snake is very large they may even eat a rat.

Birds As Prey

Birds are another common prey item for snakes.

Birds are typically larger than mice so they are not as easy to catch.

Snakes will often times eat baby birds as they are easier to catch and are a good source of food.

Carrion As Prey

Some snakes will also eat carrion or dead animals.

This is not as common as most snakes prefer to eat live prey.

However carrion can be a good source of food for snakes especially if there is not much live prey available.

Conclusion

Snakes are carnivores and they will typically eat small mammals such as rodents lizards and other snakes as well as birds and eggs.

Some snakes will also eat carrion or dead animals.

To feed their young female snakes often times will fast or eat less so that their young will have a better chance of survival.

When the female snake is ready to give birth she will find a safe place to do so away from predators.

Once the young are born they are on their own and must fend for themselves immediately.

The mother snake will not stick around to help them hunt or protect them.