Got a burning question about Miss Julius? Wannna tell me I'm stupid for having such a pet in a flat? Bring it.
Got a burning question about Miss Julius? Wannna tell me I'm stupid for having such a pet in a flat? Bring it.
Comments: 239 • Responses: 84 • Date: 2013-06-26 07:29:45 UTCsource
brooslee61 karma2013-06-26 07:31:36 UTC
Where do you live? If near me, I will gtfo immediately.
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KringelbrtFusteybuns66 karma2013-06-26 07:43:16 UTC
Germany. But I think what would alleviate your Ophidiophobia more than my location is the fact that Julius is now deceased.
brooslee54 karma2013-06-26 07:48:57 UTC
I'm not really scared of snakes, just the ones who can open doors.
Sorry for your loss. I hope he had a good life.
KringelbrtFusteybuns68 karma2013-06-26 07:51:11 UTC
She was certainly clever, opening doors wasn't her only talent. She could also drain the bathtub, open the fridge (but why??) and manage to knock everything off my desk in one fell swoop. She had a somewhat short life, but was well pampered throughout.
lumpking6923 karma2013-06-26 10:17:20 UTC
How did she die? What killed her?
KringelbrtFusteybuns131 karma2013-06-26 12:22:05 UTC
Well was finally did her in was euthanasia, but what sickened her nobody knows. In 2010, she had a respiratory infection over winter. That cleared up well with treatment and she was fine. Next winter though, it came back, despite our insulating the room and adding a 280 watt, 36"x24" heat panel. We treated it, and she remained sick. It came and went for a year, worsening to pneumonia, despite medicines. She was in and out of our vet's office, having cultures, bloodwork, xrays, ultrasounds. Whatever strain of bacteria was in there, we couldn't ID it, and it didn't respond to any treatment. Meanwhile, she's refusing all food, and losing weight rapidly. A few months later, I noticed one of the caudal scales on her tail was red and inflamed, but there was no external injury. The next day, it was 4 scales. The third day it was 8, and rather foul smelling. An emergency trip to the vet revealed that she had a massive infection in her tail, but even the vet couldn't say how it happened. In the few hours we were at the vet, it had spread even further. The doc said we could amputate the bottom 2 feet of tail, but that would be traumatic, and there was no guarantee that would stop the infection as at this point, it seemed systemic. We decided to have her euthanized, to spare her any more suffering. It was devastating.
catchierlight9 karma2013-06-26 15:06:41 UTC
This is so sad to hear. You gave her a wonderful and cozy life (based on a blog post somewhere where there was a gallery of pics of you and your (girlfriend?) hugging her and cohabitating with her lovingly. I think all good pet owners would have done what you did, if you don't mind me saying so. Now, that being said, she has left an indelible mark in my life (not being sarcastic here) since the moment she flopped and I LOLed. I immediately sent it to my brother (also an animal lover and former snake owner) and said that this is my new favorite vid. (which I'm sure alot of people did). Julius was awesome and you are too.
KringelbrtFusteybuns8 karma2013-06-26 19:21:30 UTC
Which photos of what girlfriend in the who now? That's curious. Got a link?
lumpking699 karma2013-06-26 12:27:43 UTC
Damn, thats very sad and tragic.
Have you ever stepped on her or maybe sat on her by accident? If yes, did she freak out and try to bite or just shrug it off?
KringelbrtFusteybuns24 karma2013-06-26 14:23:04 UTC
Yeah, since she was allowed out every day for hours, she would often be underfoot. She didn't seem to care the slightest bit when we would trip over her.
OK_now_what7 karma2013-06-26 17:54:27 UTC
ugh that sucks.... my father and I raised an albino Burmese just like yours when I was a teenager. It also had his own room.
Ours came down with an infection as well, it turns out the pet store we bought our feeder-rats from had some type of infection outbreak and the dirty rat got out snake sick (along with many other customers who bought feeder rats/mice from this place - which closed down shortly afterwards) and we had to put ours down too.
KringelbrtFusteybuns8 karma2013-06-26 19:22:28 UTC
You know, I wouldn't be surprised if that's what happened here, too. She was fine in LA, fine in Berlin, but once we moved to Baden-Württemberg, everything went downhill. Hmmm... Did they ID the bacterium responsible in your case?
MrLister57 karma2013-06-26 08:07:30 UTC
Is it true that Julius was actually a giant mutant banana slug that you trained to eat bunnies?
KringelbrtFusteybuns61 karma2013-06-26 08:28:57 UTC
Close, summer squash. ;)
real_nice_guy3 karma2013-06-27 16:56:46 UTC
reminds me a bit of hand banana
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-27 20:27:28 UTC
BadgerBalls21 karma2013-06-26 13:04:23 UTC
More of a comment than a question, but OMG, the sock with the googly eyes.
I'm not a snake person, but with that thing on her head, who could resist!
Terribly sorry to hear that she's no longer with us. And by "us" I mean "you". I'd actually be sorta terrified to hear that she was with me. =P
KringelbrtFusteybuns15 karma2013-06-26 14:11:57 UTC
Yeah, I had to go there. A boring ol white sock would have worked, but Julius needed some pizazz. lol
AmosHaas16 karma2013-06-26 09:12:20 UTC
Thanks for doing this! I was just going through your archive of Julius videos the other night. :)
1) In one of the videos you show her acting restless when she was in heat. How did you deal with that? Did she ever get pregnant?
2) Were your friends afraid to hang out at your apartment?
3) Why did you need to bathe her? Do pythons get BO in the wild too or is that a domestic thing?
4) Where are you from? Your English is so good I can't tell.
Please do more videos! Julius was so fun to watch.
KringelbrtFusteybuns29 karma2013-06-26 12:06:06 UTC
Hope you enjoyed them! :)
She was hormonal for a while there, and we had a mature male in the house as well, so that didn't help. She was gravid once, by accident. I was housing a friend's male Burm for a few weeks, and they got busy. Nothing came of it though. She exhibited all the signs, swelling, basking inverted, going off food, but never laid eggs.
My landlord in Los Angeles was afraid to come in, but that was for the best as he was a shady motherfucker who I didn't trust as far as I could throw him. Otherwise, nobody seemed too worried.
Julius took baths because she got dirty. Snakes urinate and defecate in their cages, so sometimes crawl through it. I'm not about to have a trail of snake germs across my floors (GROSSSSS!) so she got bathed whenever she messed her cage. Plus, she really loved to be in a warm bath. These snakes are semi-aquatic, so really love to be in a pool.
I'm originally from Connecticut. Lived in LA for a decade, then left to Germany in 2006.
I would love to video more of Julius, but sadly, she is no longer with us. Maybe when we get another Burm in the future, I will pick up where I left off. :)
PvP_Noob15 karma2013-06-26 12:37:47 UTC
my 20 year old iguana also enjoys a warm bath. moreso now that she's so old.
Thankfully her teeth and gums are still healthy so we think she will be with us for a few more years.
KringelbrtFusteybuns16 karma2013-06-26 12:47:47 UTC
Really, who doesn't?? I love them, too! I also shower with hanging orchids.
Canukistani4 karma2013-06-26 19:50:52 UTC
note to self: move my air plant to my bathroom
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-26 20:29:04 UTC
Good idea, definitely. I have a bunch of Vanda orchids, and they join both myself and the husband when we shower. They love the humidity. Don't open a window after your shower though, it'll chill them. Let the bathroom air out slowly.
Canukistani1 karma2013-06-26 22:42:23 UTC
what about their daylight? my bathroom doesn't have a window
KringelbrtFusteybuns1 karma2013-06-26 23:14:22 UTC
Well, don't leave them in forever then, just long enough to enjoy the humidity of your shower.
A kentia palm, monstera deliciosa variegata and dracaena marginata sharing the shower
<img src="http://lickmy.vg/img/lj/12/jungle shower.JPG">
Butterflynoses15 karma2013-06-26 16:51:55 UTC
This is an odd question.. But I think you know my brother and sister in law, Scott and Niff?
KringelbrtFusteybuns20 karma2013-06-26 17:00:59 UTC
LOVE THEM TO BITS!!!
MrLister9 karma2013-06-26 17:56:58 UTC
And the world got smaller yet again!
KringelbrtFusteybuns9 karma2013-06-26 19:08:38 UTC
Misaniovent12 karma2013-06-26 14:41:34 UTC
Can you talk about the expense of owning her? You mentioned feeding her rabbits, guinea pigs, and potentially kid goats. What would that cost?
Is there any training aspect to a snake this big?
She was very beautiful and I'm sorry to hear she passed away!
KringelbrtFusteybuns13 karma2013-06-26 16:47:11 UTC
Purely ballpark figures here, but here's a break down:
Terrarium (when she was smaller) $1200
Heat panel: $200
Annual power use for heat: €800
Rabbits for 1 year: €500
Not to mention water use for all the baths, and the vet bills towards the end. That was several thousand. So yeah, not a pet for shallow wallets.
I didn't so much train her, as influence her. It's not like you can teach her to sit or anything, but when she did something that we liked of her own accord, we would reward her with attention, so the behavior gets repeated.
Slavakion5 karma2013-06-27 11:39:53 UTC
In comparison to what OP said, the cost for a more common pet snake (like a corn snake or ball python) is significantly lower.
KringelbrtFusteybuns4 karma2013-06-27 15:22:51 UTC
Yes, definitely true. It's not a huge financial investment to have a ball python, but there are costs, especially if the animal gets sick. The main cost with a ball or corn would be the snake itself, should you choose a rare or fancy morph. But that's true across all animals - the bigger it is, the more expensive it is to maintain.
TheGreatWalrus12 karma2013-06-26 10:51:51 UTC
I had never heard of Julius, so I found some of what I think are relevant videos.
Slitherin on some people
KringelbrtFusteybuns13 karma2013-06-26 11:17:05 UTC
Yes those are all Julius. yrcomplacency was my old youtube account (current is deadlinenov24), and the door opening one is a copyright infringement.
TheGreatWalrus11 karma2013-06-26 11:24:58 UTC
Oops. Sorry. I'll delete the link to the door opening video.
KringelbrtFusteybuns20 karma2013-06-26 11:47:27 UTC
Danke. Best to use this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bxc_55ur-J4
Keep_Scrolling12 karma2013-06-26 10:47:01 UTC
What were the best reactions you got from visitors to your home?
KringelbrtFusteybuns51 karma2013-06-26 11:52:38 UTC
Most of the people that visited either in LA or Berlin knew Julius was present, so not too many odd reactions there. She did go out in public quite often though, and that's where we had fun. Most memorable was the time I had called the LAPD for something, and once they had dealt with it, they noticed the snakes in my car (we were moving them to a friend's house while we redid the floors). One officer asked if he could handle them, and soon a half dozen or so officers were posing for photos with my snakes.
MiserubleCant8 karma2013-06-26 16:33:02 UTC
Wait, you had her in LA and then moved her to Berlin?
That sounds interesting. Almost like you could make a movie from it somehow.
KringelbrtFusteybuns19 karma2013-06-26 17:24:08 UTC
Yeah, when I decided to move here, leaving Julius, Turkey and Nina behind wasn't an option. I don't know how people can just abandon a pet when they move. The whole thing makes me want to punch them right in their stupid face. "Ooh it's far, and the apartment doesn't allow dogs" - so find a different apartment.
I hired Paula of universalpettravel.com and she was amazing. Snakes aren't her usual fare, but she was lovely and made sure the whole deal went smoothly and as stress free as possible.
The look on the face of the customs dude in Berlin when he opened Julius' crate to inspect it was PRICELESS though.
NatieB6 karma2013-06-26 19:25:25 UTC
Did you have to deal with CITES paperwork when you moved her out of country? Was is complicated/expensive?
KringelbrtFusteybuns15 karma2013-06-26 19:38:19 UTC
Yes. That took MONTHS, and was a royal pain in the ass. I had to get 3 separate sets of documents (3 pythons), vet checks in both countries, build IATA approved shipping crates, arrange shipping... the cost was extraordinary. But worth it, cos who ditches a family member??
kmentropy10 karma2013-06-26 12:46:42 UTC
How did you go on vacation? I can't imagine it was easy to find a pet sitter for Julius.
KringelbrtFusteybuns12 karma2013-06-26 14:13:12 UTC
Believe it or not, it was pretty easy to find a sitter. She wouldn't need to be fed while I was away, just monitored to make sure the heat was right, and that she didn't run out of water. Of course, Julius would have to approve the sitter... cos if I chose someone she didn't like, she'd be a real handful when it came time for them to clean her cage!
kmentropy5 karma2013-06-26 14:26:17 UTC
Interesting! I'm surprised you didn't have issues finding someone that wasn't scared of her.
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-26 14:27:12 UTC
Well, it has to be a trusted friend with snake experience, first and foremost. You just know who to ask after a while. :) Alex, usually. lol
Camerononymous10 karma2013-06-26 07:51:31 UTC
What did Miss Julius' diet consist of? How often?
KringelbrtFusteybuns26 karma2013-06-26 07:57:13 UTC
When we first got her, she was young and underfed, so we put her on a growth diet or a small rabbit or a few guinea pigs a week. Everything fresh killed or frozen thawed - NEVER LIVE. Many reasons for that. When she matured and her growth slowed, we had her on a large rabbit every two weeks, but she wasn't always hungry, so the fresh killed rabbit that was refused ended up in the freezer for next time. Had she not been ill and refusing food altogether, she would have been moved up to kid goats soon, as rabbits that large and numerous were getting hard to find.
Kilgore-troutdale7 karma2013-06-26 08:03:45 UTC
Did falling hurt her? Were you willing to find her bigger food?
KringelbrtFusteybuns27 karma2013-06-26 08:30:59 UTC
No, the fall out of the closet didn't hurt her. Snakes have a lot of dense muscle around very flexible bones, so she was just fine. Maybe surprised, but not hurt.
Domestic snakes are also very clumsy creatures, I find, as they haven't really needed to stay on top of their grace for survival, as a wild snake would.
deltarefund-10 karma2013-06-26 13:30:02 UTC
Kid goats? Omg, sad.
I know it's the circle of life and all, but sad!
captainpott7 karma2013-06-26 14:05:01 UTC
so you eat kid cows and kid pigs and maybe even kid sheeps, but the snake cant have a goat?
KringelbrtFusteybuns11 karma2013-06-26 14:29:23 UTC
Exactly. Animals eat animals.
There was one time that Julius refused her two, large FK rabbits, so I cooked them for our dinner instead.
lumpking698 karma2013-06-26 10:21:47 UTC
Have you ever had a scary encounter with the snake? Did you ever fear it?
KringelbrtFusteybuns19 karma2013-06-26 11:55:48 UTC
Yes, a few! But these were mostly right in the beginning, before Julius had really become accustomed to us. While Julius was napping in the hall, my roommate walked by her in stinky socks, and she lunged at his feet. She didn't get him, but it served to teach him to wash his feet more often.
The other was when she was temporarily housed in the same room as 4 sexually mature male snakes (Burms and boas). This infuriated her, to the point she was violently striking at the plexi doors to her cage. That was pretty scary. But once the males were removed, she went back to her normal dopey self.
lumpking698 karma2013-06-26 12:02:38 UTC
She ever bite you?
KringelbrtFusteybuns25 karma2013-06-26 12:12:02 UTC
Yes, once. Feeding error on my part, so it's not like she was being aggressive or anything. I was hand feeding her thawed rats that another snake didn't want, and she opened her mouth larger than necessary, getting two of my fingers stuck in her mouth along with the soggy rat. Felt like having my hand crushed under a truck tire studded with thumb tacks. Not a serious injury though, just sore for a while afterwards.
Shrekusaf9 karma2013-06-26 17:32:28 UTC
thank you for this description. i had a green annie, she was 17 feet and very quick tempered. she tagged the back of my arm once and i have been searching for a good description of what it felt like for a very long time. fire like no other. miles was a beautiful snake, but 17 pissed off feet was too much for my wife to handle, so off to a herp she went.
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-26 19:18:17 UTC
I don't even want to imagine a green annie bite. Oy vey!
Shrekusaf3 karma2013-06-26 22:50:17 UTC
40 or so teeth at half an inch long. so. much. blood. it wasnt even the clamping that hurt, but the impact, followed by the waiting to let her let go instead of trying to pull my arm out of her mouth. it was only about a second, but it felt like years. imagine a fast pich softball covered in tacks hitting you on the tricep, then waiting for it to fall out on its own.
KringelbrtFusteybuns2 karma2013-06-27 15:26:57 UTC
This. I didn't fight Julius' bite, I just waited it out and made sure she didn't coil. Took about 20 minutes. I wasn't worried, as I had 4 adults in the room with me, but damn did it ever hurt.
sandpatch8 karma2013-06-26 08:50:38 UTC
How long did she live? Have you ever been scared that she would kill you?
KringelbrtFusteybuns19 karma2013-06-26 11:56:59 UTC
We're not sure of her age exactly, as she was a rescue. If I had to guess, she was about 2 or 3 when we got her, and lived with us another 9 years.
I never feared for my life around her. Once or twice jumpy when she ws in a nasty mood, but overall, no worries.
slorebear7 karma2013-06-26 13:55:56 UTC
how did her nasty moods manifest?
KringelbrtFusteybuns26 karma2013-06-26 14:15:02 UTC
She would be extra hissy, very loud at that, to express her displeasure. when mildly irritated, if you touched her she would shove you away with a lump of coil, and twitch her body. If she were really mad, she would bluff strike, by moving her head towards you quickly, but never opening her mouth. If she was freaked out by something, she would empty her anal glands. Grosssss.
Beard_of_Valor7 karma2013-06-26 14:25:24 UTC
Things I never knew about. I actually like snakes, but I've never seen one that big not behind glass. I can't imagine those anal glands secreted anything pleasant.
KringelbrtFusteybuns8 karma2013-06-26 14:28:05 UTC
Smells atrocious. Nasty, shitty oily guck. urp
songwind4 karma2013-06-26 16:53:52 UTC
Did she ever bite you?
KringelbrtFusteybuns4 karma2013-06-26 19:42:44 UTC
greenlion228 karma2013-06-26 14:46:02 UTC
Thanks for the AMA! I'm a snake keeper as well, but I don't have any giant species.
The thing that I really enjoyed about your videos was seeing evidence that the snake can learn. I've been in a few arguments over whether or not snakes have the ability to learn or if they are exclusively instinct-driven. What are your thoughts on this in general, and could you share any specific experiences with Julius you that influenced your opinion on snakes having the ability to learn?
KringelbrtFusteybuns7 karma2013-06-26 16:50:45 UTC
Snakes and other reptiles can absolutely learn! There is a lot of instinct in them, as they are not domesticated in the dictionary definition, but they can and do learn and remember. I mean, hell, cockroaches have been proven to remember mazes and learn over time in experiments. Insinuating that a snake, which is higher cognitively than a roach, cannot learn is asinine.
Great example - Julius and opening doors. I'm sure the first time was an accident. But she remembered, then intentionally did it over and over again. She never understood the concept of "locked" though.
mkautzm7 karma2013-06-26 14:06:43 UTC
I've always wanted to have a huge snake to hang out with. I've never wanted to do the maintenance associated with them though, but I love your videos as they let me live vicariously through you.
It's a huge bummer that we lost Julius :(. Very sorry for your loss.
What makes her temperament so level? I mean, she just kind of always was seen just hanging out, not really too concerned with the 'annoyances' around her. That always struck me as unusual. How do you keep a giant snake like that calm?
KringelbrtFusteybuns12 karma2013-06-26 14:26:01 UTC
Burmese pythons as a general rule are a really calm species. Of course there will always be individual snakes that are more uppity than others. We lucked out with Julius. She was chill to begin with, and I suppose my habit of conditioning dogs to be nonreactive was continued on Julius.
scytheria7 karma2013-06-26 14:55:43 UTC
Did Julius ever seem to get attached to her food? Had a friend whose snake decided one of the live mice she gave him made a better roommate than a meal, until another feeder mouse killed it.
Also, is your username an Eddie Izzard joke? >_>
KringelbrtFusteybuns9 karma2013-06-26 16:40:30 UTC
And yes, exactly. Izzard FTW.
KringelbrtFusteybuns7 karma2013-06-26 16:40:14 UTC
Julius was never fed live, so no. It's hard to make friends with a corpse. Though she did have a soggy rat bed once.
MrLister3 karma2013-06-26 18:00:53 UTC
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-26 19:10:44 UTC
kaukauna7 karma2013-06-26 15:21:16 UTC
How does it make you feel that one of the headlines about the video compared the snake to a "big drunk taffy"?
KringelbrtFusteybuns13 karma2013-06-26 16:37:30 UTC
It was pretty funny, cos it's entirely accurate. lol
Do_It_For_The_Lasers6 karma2013-06-26 16:08:51 UTC
When you were on the television, you said "I don't look too bad..."
You look great! And it looks like you were also wicked loving to your pet :P I didn't know snakes could have feelings (or even want attention) but you made me like them a little more.
KringelbrtFusteybuns8 karma2013-06-26 16:35:52 UTC
Eh, what can I say, I'm self conscious. I was also like 8 months pregnant so felt absolutely porcine.
somethingyousee5 karma2013-06-26 22:05:24 UTC
Nice AMA! Probably I'm a bit late, but will try my luck:
Do you think Julius was (or can be) domesticated? Domesticated in a sense that she would never attack you not because you're too big or uneatable, but because you are friend, master?
How would Julius feel about another pet, say cat or dog? Were there any cases of interspecies bonding?
Did she "know" where she lived? If you let her outside, would she come back home?
Why never live food?
Thanks for the AMA!
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-27 14:46:47 UTC
Never too late. I will keep this AMA going so long as questions come in.
No, with a but. No because at this point in human snake relations, it's too early. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, and have a certain mental programming to be in a pack of which humans are readily accepted as surrogate members. Reptiles have not been on human radar (as anything more than a threat) for very long so that evolutionary bonding has not yet developed. Do I think it possible? Perhaps, over time, but one must take into account the mental differences between mammals and reptiles. Perhaps it won't be possible, due to a snake's solitary, instinctive nature. But then again, wolves were once purely instinctive wild creatures, and now we have poodles. So, maybe?
Julius did not like other animals, of any sort. She hated other snakes, especially males, and got aggressive around them. She feared dogs greatly, despite never having had a bad experience with one (as far as I knew, anyways). Anything else she would probably have eaten. My other Burms though, were lovely around smaller animals. Turkey, for example, would slide around with my ferrets (supervised, of course) and not show the slightest inkling of food response or aggression. He also escaped from his cage and went to sleep in a ferret bed we kept near the livingroom. The ferrets were kept caged though, so there wasn't a risk of him devouring them while we were away.
Sort of? But probably no. When Julius was basking on the warm front sidewalk in LA, and had enough of the mockingbirds dive bombing her, she would slither back up the stairs into the flat. But I think if she were any further removed than that, say a few streets away, she probably would just seek out a warm place to nap, where ever that might have been.
NEVER FEED A SNAKE LIVE FOOD. Natural as it may be, these snakes are not wild anymore, and their hunting skills are not as honed as their wild counterparts. A "domestic" (for lack of a better term) snake doesn't need to fight hard and fast to subdue prey, so become complacent and lazy about killing, therefore facing injury. The prey on the other hand, is going to fight tooth and nail, literally, for its life. Ever been bitten by a rat? Not fun. Food animals can gravely injure snakes, causing bleeding, scarring, reluctance to feed, infection, loss or eyes or teeth, or even death. Nobody who gives a damn about their pet would ever willingly subject them to that potential harm.
Finally, we're talking about an animal you want to be a PET. A nice, gentle, calm house animal. Everything possible should be done to dull the hunting and killing instinct of these creatures if they are to be kept safely in the home around people. Hell, even zoo animals aren't fed live food. Ever seen a zookeeper drop a live gazelle into the lion pit? No, cos it's cruel and unnecessary. Zoo predators are fed cuts of meat and bone, zoo snakes fed fresh killed.
It is best to feed snakes frozen-thawed prey, or if they're picky fresh-killed or "brained" prey. This is also more economical for the owner, as you can buy bulk and keep food on hand in a freezer, instead of having to search it out and drive all over the place when Mr. Slithers is hungry.
dmo11254 karma2013-06-26 15:04:21 UTC
I see a child in some of your videos. Do the child and J ever interact without a pane of glass between them? If so what occurred?
KringelbrtFusteybuns11 karma2013-06-26 16:39:15 UTC
Yes, they did. Never alone though, and when Wes would climb on her, I either held Julius' head (juuuust in case) or was between them, so could grab her if necessary. I never needed to intervene though.
Here's a video of them together. Note you don't see her face, cos I'm holding it.
leconnaisseur4 karma2013-06-26 16:34:53 UTC
Was ich mich schon immer gefragt hab: Was macht man in dem Falle, dass Julius (RIP) sich spontan überlegt, anzugreifen? Selbst Hunde und Katzen neigen ja manchmal zu aggressivem Verhalten, daher stelle ich mir das bei größeren Tieren (Pythons oder auch Tiger) relativ schwierig vor. Gibt es einen speziellen Trick? Ist man einfach grundsätzlich schneller als die Schlange oder passiert ein solches Verhalten nicht ohne massiven Hunger/Überlebensinstikt des Tieres?
PS: Ich bin zwar kein Fan von Schlangen, aber nach ein paar Videos von Dir bin ich echt von Julius begeistert!
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 17:00:39 UTC
Na ja, das ist einfach ein Risiko das mann akzeptieren muss. Genau wie mit Hunde oder sogar ein Kuh - eine grosse Tier kann gefährlich sein. Punkt. Aber auch wie mit Hunde oder andere, mann kann die individuelle Tier kennenlernen, und was sie mögen/nicht mögen, und vertraue das Tier nicht zu beißen... oder morden. Trotz allem, muss mann vorsichtig sein. Deshalb hatte ich, z.B, Julius' Köpfchen fest behalten, als Kinder uns besuchen gehabt.
stranger_with_candy3 karma2013-06-26 18:08:03 UTC
Do snakes like being pet and cuddled? Or do you just like...watch it do its thing....?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 19:06:59 UTC
Some do, sure! Imagine snakes like dogs, some breeds are lap dogs and want to be around people, while others are more aloof and distant. Julius was a cuddler, but grew more aloof as she got older. My male Burms were all snugglers too, moreso than any female.
Mereology3 karma2013-06-26 08:20:14 UTC
I'm so sorry for your loss and I really miss seeing updates about Julius! Such fantastic pictures. Do you have any other reptiles/would you consider adding another snake of her size to your household in the future?
KringelbrtFusteybuns10 karma2013-06-26 08:28:24 UTC
Thanks for the kind words. We all miss Julius a whole lot. She was a huge part of my life for a long time, and it just feels weird without her around. Though probably a lot safer since in her stead there's a mischievous 3 year old.
I do plan on having another Burmese python in the future! I'm thinking though, probably a male. Julius was amazing, but had attitude to spare. The male Burms were just dopey loves. Not to mention that their smaller size makes them not quite so ungainly as Julius.
lumpking694 karma2013-06-26 10:21:16 UTC
Can you talk a little more about her attitude and ungainlyness?
KringelbrtFusteybuns13 karma2013-06-26 14:21:58 UTC
She was just a diva, plain and simple. Acted like the queen of the house, pushing people out of chairs when she wanted to sleep there, climbing across the keyboard if you were on the computer when she wanted attention, and being snooty around people she didn't like.
The ungainliness was just cos she was so big and quite domestic. She got careless and clumsy. No need to be careful where your butt is, when someone else will always be watching out for you!
mongoose_plus10 karma2013-06-26 17:15:49 UTC
She sounds like every cat I've ever owned.
KringelbrtFusteybuns6 karma2013-06-26 20:30:03 UTC
But with no hair everywhere, scratching furniture, stealing food or litter all over the floor.
GeneralTry4 karma2013-06-26 15:16:13 UTC
So she could actually recognize you over guests that were over at your house?
KringelbrtFusteybuns13 karma2013-06-26 15:33:45 UTC
Yes, absolutely. Some she loved and would try to lay on soon as they had a lap, some she despised and would try to threaten. Poor Mike.... lol
GeneralTry9 karma2013-06-26 15:38:31 UTC
Wow, call me ignorant, but I didn't know snakes could do this.
KringelbrtFusteybuns6 karma2013-06-26 19:19:35 UTC
Absolutely. They are quite intelligent. Well, some are. I've had some red tailed boas that were pretty derpy.
SickControl1 karma2013-06-26 21:41:54 UTC
I was told my a science teacher in high school that snakes have incredibly simple minds and are pretty much just drawn to warmth and food. Guess that guy was completely wrong.
KringelbrtFusteybuns1 karma2013-06-26 23:15:25 UTC
Basically. Even bugs are more complex than what he described.
WeepingAngelZA3 karma2013-06-26 13:48:38 UTC
Hi! Thanks for the AMA
Some of your videos are about you helping Julius shed the skin around her face. I always thought peeling was discouraged and that the snake should be allowed to shed on their own terms. Is this true? In Julius' case, why did she need the extra help?
Sorry if the information is already in one of the videos, but I'm at work now and can't watch them - Covertly Redditing right now ;)
KringelbrtFusteybuns11 karma2013-06-26 14:07:04 UTC
Hand shedding snakes is generally discouraged, as some snakes won't tolerate it, and do just fine removing it on their own. However in some cases it is necessary to give the snake a bit of help when the skin doesn't come off. Never remove reptile skin when dry, it can really hurt the animal. Julius soaks for hours before we attempt to remove the stuck skin. In the video you mention, she had shed everything but her face, and seemingly forgot about it for over a week. I wasn't about to leave it on, especially not over her eyes, as it could impair her vision.
goa6043 karma2013-06-26 13:29:31 UTC
Kinda nasty question but, where does house snake poop?
Does it have its won "sandbox"or maybe wants to go out?
How often does it do that?
KringelbrtFusteybuns10 karma2013-06-26 14:09:55 UTC
That's one of the gross things about snakes in the home... they're near impossible to housebreak. Some prefer to go in their cage, some prefer to soil the bathtub, but most times they just go where they are. Julius made her fair share of messes, which is why my flats always had hardwood floors after getting her. If you're watchful enough, you can catch them before they mess the floor or sofa. You can also learn your reptile's habits... some go in warm water (like iguanas) and can be trained to do so. Some snakes like to poo right after a meal, so we would leave J in the bath after eating, to cut down on oopsies.
ODoyle903 karma2013-06-26 16:23:59 UTC
That video made my day, as well as my mom's when I showed her. I'm an owner of a 4 foot (1m+) ball python, but have always been a big fan of the larger snakes. People are sometimes afraid of snakes, but 100% of the people that gave Boomer a chance and held her ended up loving her!
My only question is: what kind of tank was she held in? Did you create a custom one or buy one of pricey ones from a manufacturer?
KringelbrtFusteybuns6 karma2013-06-26 16:34:20 UTC
When J was smaller, I kept her in the largest plexiglas terrarium I could find. One was 300 gallons I think. Then I upgraded her to a custom built enclosure, that was 8'x3'x2'. Brought it with me to Germany, but Air France was ahem rough, and it was badly broken, no longer watertight. Bad news when your snake pees a gallon at a go, yanno?
We moved her to a room of her own in 2009. Insulated it with styropor sheets, lined the floor with 2mm black plastic pond liner, installed a giant heat panel as the roof of a heated cave. Then of course, removed the door handle after she kept letting herself out.
ODoyle905 karma2013-06-26 16:37:21 UTC
Having their own room is, I imagine, a snake's dream. Thanks for sharing all this! I find giant snakes extremely fascinating.
The sheer volume of urine is not something I had thought of though... haha
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 16:52:08 UTC
Yeah, we had to layer the floor of her room in a thick layer of newspaper to prevent flooding, and even then we weren't always successful in preserving the floor.
septango13 karma2013-06-26 16:43:39 UTC
did you ever get any jurrasic park jokes? :3
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 16:53:20 UTC
And how! _^
Squirrelnugs3 karma2013-06-26 17:38:13 UTC
Am I the only one who missed the video?
KringelbrtFusteybuns2 karma2013-06-26 18:12:29 UTC
I think you might be, lol
Squirrelnugs1 karma2013-06-26 20:03:02 UTC
Well shit..I still can't find it! Lol
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 23:04:57 UTC
Ttran7783 karma2013-06-26 18:48:44 UTC
Very entertaining AMA.
I had a ball python (Marley) who, when handled, loved to slither himself into my hair. He would also slide into some old boots from time to time and hang out. Did Julius ever have any little quirks like that?
Marley would only ever eat medium sized pinkies, and was very particular about them. Was Julius ever picky about her food?
Marley seemed to haaaaaaate going into the garage with me, no clue why. Did Julius ever exhibit any like behavior to anything?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 19:01:57 UTC
Julius had plenty, just like Marley. She liked to get her face stuck in the paper-out of my printer. She would try to go under the bed, but get stuck cos she was too fat. She liked smelling ears. (The tongue flicking in the ear was kinda weird though.)
Balls are very picky eaters and reluctant to change habits. What you write doesn't come as a surprise at all. Burmese though are bottomless pits, and never picky. Ok, usually not. When a Burm acts weird about food, you know something's wrong.
Julius didn't seem to mind any one place more than the next, but she certainly had a preference for some people over others.
TheWingnutSquid2 karma2013-06-27 06:18:46 UTC
I didn't know snakes could be cute, your snake is freaking adorable
KringelbrtFusteybuns1 karma2013-06-27 11:47:21 UTC
Before I got her, I didn't know it either. She really surprised me, and everyone, and opened me up to another amazing facet of snakes.
margaretblue2 karma2013-06-26 18:19:00 UTC
Watching Julius with your son throughout the years has been really awesome. What are some of the things you think your son learned from having Jules around?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 19:03:15 UTC
Unfortunately, Wes was too young to really have gotten anything from Julius. I hope he will from our next python though.
verybluetardis2 karma2013-06-26 16:58:35 UTC
This is one of the coolest things I've ever seen. Thank you for giving me some insight into giant pythons that can be loveable. How old do these pythons usually get? Did she learn to open the door on her own or was she nudged towards it?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 17:05:50 UTC
Glad you enjoyed!
Large pythons that are well cared for can live 25+ years. Less in the wild, as that's a tough life. Julius was maybe 11-13 years old when she passed - long-ish, but she was cut short by illness.
The door opening was all her. The first door she opened was a round knob, to my roommate's bedroom in LA. Good morning!
PlasticGirl2 karma2013-06-26 09:24:24 UTC
Loved your videos....big snakes are fun to watch.
KringelbrtFusteybuns6 karma2013-06-26 11:55:56 UTC
FunkyDuck102 karma2013-06-26 17:57:36 UTC
I thought this said YOU were Julius, but then I used my context clues to figure out that you're probably not an albino python. Probably.
KringelbrtFusteybuns11 karma2013-06-26 18:12:15 UTC
I have my python moments. Mostly when I have too much gin, I slide around on the floor, and get stuck under the sofa.
Lennethare2 karma2013-06-26 17:25:36 UTC
This is such a big coincidence, I just watched all your videos the other day. How much would it cost to by my own giant python and keep it in America?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 18:17:45 UTC
A lot, actually. I can't say an exact price, because that depends on how much you want to spoil your pet, but it's not cheap. The initial investment can be easily 1,000 USD, and upkeep a couple hundred a year, depending on electricity prices in your area (they're awful in Germany) and how much food your new friend requires.
AngelicSerenity2 karma2013-06-27 21:50:32 UTC
I am very late to the party, I know, but you did say you would keep answering questions as long as people kept asking them :-).
I read this this whole thing as fearless people fascinate me. Plus you are highly amusing and you grow the native flowers of my land :P (Apparently the land does not belong to us whities though as was in recent news, but let's not get into that).
I have a question...albeit a very uneducated one and from what I can tell no one has asked this yet.
My understanding of pythons (all types, especially the really big ones) is that they very quickly (in the blink of an eye) can wrap themselves around you and squeeze you to death in seconds? I this correct and was this something Julius would technically have been capable of doing?
If it is, did the thought ever cross your mind? Would you have been able to stop it if it's as quick and as powerful as I was lead to believe?
I am probably going to get very little sleep tonight as I am now paranoid her ghost will come back to life and find it's way into my tiny apartment. I am a sissy beyond believe and you don't even want to know the state my mind goes into if I just even see a picture of a spider. Not that snakes terrify me as much, but you wouldn't catch me dead near a live loose one.
One last question...
Are people technically allowed to keep anaconda's and do you know anyone that has?
For big snake lovers, that would be the ultimate pet wouldn't it?
Thanks for your time :-)
KringelbrtFusteybuns2 karma2013-06-27 22:38:58 UTC
Constrictor snakes are fast, sure, but the bite/wrap thing doesn't happen in the blink of an eye. Also, it's reserved for food. Most bites to owners are bite and release, which is a warning to leave them alone.
A rule is, when handling large snakes, have an adult for every meter or so long the snake is. 1 meter - 1 person. 2 meters - 2 people, etc. That way, if it should happen that you get bitten, there is someone around to extricate you from the mouth or coils. If you handle a large python alone, well, that's pretty risky. It is possible to get out of a coil by yourself, providing you have a hand free. A lot of snake bites occur to one arm, leaving the other available to grasp the snake by its tail, and unwrap backwards. Of course, with a big'un, this will require more than one person to perform. It is, however, the most effective way to remove a snake that has coiled around you.
The squeezing does not mean instant death, and snakes don't crush bones. In fact, if you were to xray a snake-squeezed prey animal, you'd find that no bones are broken (ok, maybe one or two, as sometimes a leg is at a weird angle or whatever). Snakes kill by suffocation, slowly. Every time the prey breathes out, the snake tightens, preventing them from taking a breath in. It takes a python about 10 minutes to feel it has killed it's rabbit enough to uncoil. So in the unfortunate circumstance that a human had been coiled, they'd have a good amount of time to remain calm and unwind the snake.
I have been bitten (many many times, but only once by Julius) and coiled (around the arms and ankles) but it was no big deal, as I had others present, and didn't flip out.
If Julius' ghost ever came back, she'd probably just pee on your floor and take a bath. She's too lazy to be mean. lol
Finally, yes, it is absolutely possibly to own an anaconda, and many do, myself included. I had a young yellow annie named Ming the Merciless - and he was a bastard! Green annies are even more temperamental. I wouldn't say it's the boss level of snake ownership (that's hot snakes, or venomous ones) but it's up there. I only had Ming as he needed a place to go, and I was a rescue. I wouldn't keep an anaconda as a pet, as their temperaments aren't very nice, so they're ill suited for the task.
Solarian_132 karma2013-06-26 15:42:11 UTC
KringelbrtFusteybuns7 karma2013-06-26 16:37:07 UTC
She ate every 3-4 weeks as an adult. She excreted fro more often, as she drank a LOT of water. We cleaned up pee nearly every day, and broke out the cow pie shovel monthly. Lemme tellya... it's horrifying, the smell of her #2. It will wake you in the night, from 3 rooms away. Blech.
KringelbrtFusteybuns1 karma2013-06-27 20:22:12 UTC
Also, in case you wanted more gross detail, her urates were the size of my hand, fingertips to wrist, and what's left of two rabbits was as big around as a can of spray paint and weighed several pounds.
Nyrb1 karma2013-06-26 16:15:21 UTC
Have you thought of training thousands of pythons to do this then releasing them on a town?
KringelbrtFusteybuns5 karma2013-06-26 16:34:41 UTC
Thousands, no. BILLIONS.
limondrop1 karma2013-06-26 18:30:32 UTC
How did you come upon getting a snake like Julius?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 19:05:43 UTC
Julius was a rescue. I met a guy in a place who said he knew of an albino python looking for new digs. I stepped right up, cos I adore them, and I'm not one to let any animal go homeless. This, coincidentally enough, was right after I had a bit part in a film where I played a circus animal trainer, and had to work with one of the albino Burms on set. I fell in love with them, then not a week later I have my own.
blindsamurai141 karma2013-06-26 17:22:45 UTC
there is a video where you slam a sock onto the snakes head to bring it to feeding. Does it hurt the snake at all to throw it on its head like that?
KringelbrtFusteybuns2 karma2013-06-26 18:13:10 UTC
It wasn't rough, it was just fast. I had it stretched open enough to easily slip over her face.
blindsamurai141 karma2013-06-26 22:05:39 UTC
oh ok it looked kinda like a "you gotta get that thing on there quick" kind of deal
KringelbrtFusteybuns4 karma2013-06-26 23:05:32 UTC
Well yes, because she knows the sock means food is coming, so she gets excited. Gotta be quick about it.
eljew1 karma2013-06-26 20:03:39 UTC
How big was Julius when you first obtained her?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 20:22:51 UTC
About 8 feet long, and weighed 30#. In the time I had her, she doubled in length, and more than quadrupled in weight.
Canukistani1 karma2013-06-27 01:56:21 UTC
Was that Julius microwaving food or her doppelganger? If it was our Reptile Overqueen, what was in the microwave?
KringelbrtFusteybuns1 karma2013-06-27 13:05:18 UTC
That was a surprise Doppelganger! But it does serve to show that Burms really are just oversized throw pillows, and with proper care can be a lovely housepet!
dtmc1 karma2013-06-26 17:00:27 UTC
What prompted you to teach her to open doors?
And how hard is she to train?
KringelbrtFusteybuns6 karma2013-06-26 19:08:23 UTC
I didn't teach her to do this. She happened upon it once by accident, remembered it, and repeated it endlessly til the sound of flicking door handles invaded our dreams.
rockthebottle861 karma2013-06-27 02:50:00 UTC
I have a red tail Columbian boa that is about four and a half feet long. She's growing rapidly and her size is beginning to overwhelm me. Any tips on How to overcome this?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-27 14:10:12 UTC
Well, not to sound too harsh, but isn't that something you should have taken into account before you got the snake? Boas are large, and hit 6-8 feet on a regular basis.
That said, a 4-5 foot boa is only about as big around as an orange max, so what's the problem? Spend more time with the snake, and you will become comfortable with her, as she will with you.
psych0ranger1 karma2013-06-26 17:32:22 UTC
Do you have a ghost story?
KringelbrtFusteybuns3 karma2013-06-26 18:13:40 UTC
Sure, but not snake related. The house I grew up in in CT was pretty creepy.
Canukistani1 karma2013-06-26 20:27:13 UTC
What was the top half of Julius' cage for?
And if I may, what took you to Germany and what do you do? In some of your videos we can see your walls. Did you decorate them yourself? I ask because you seem to be a really cool person.
KringelbrtFusteybuns2 karma2013-06-26 20:39:43 UTC
The top half of the black vivariums held two other snakes - a 9 foot male (Turkey) and a 4 foot male (Nina). After they were sold, it held towels and an extra water dish.
I left the US for political reasons. Since I'm not looking to start a left vs right debate, let's leave it at that. I chose Germany as my family is actually from here, Wiesbaden, to be specific. Why not go back?
The painted walls were the first round of decor in that flat. I didn't actually do any of it, rather, every person that visited was asked to do their own interpretation of a skull or skeleton. I liked all the different styles.
As for what I do? A hobby turned business. I grow African violets and orchids and sell them worldwide. I also occasionally sell fancy dwarf aquarium shrimp. In my spare time, I gin and take photos of bugs.
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Proof submitted confidentially.
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AMA the snake or GTFO!
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