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enormous amounts of hair. A friend of mine had a Rock Python which ate Guinea Pigs regularly...but he would shave them first.

That could be a great after-school program for wayward teens hire them as Guinea Pig Shavers!

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Beautiful Boa Jenn! Thanks for posting the pic!
Roger
Ever walked into a room with 150 guinea pigs? It's wild! They come in some pretty whacked out breeds. Jennifer

The most we've ever had was three adult guineas at one time, well we did have 7, but four of those were babies and were sold to the local pet shop.

I saw a spot on Animal Hospital where an RSPCA inspector went to a house to collect 17 guinea pigs because their owner was going into hospital. He said "I opened the door to a sea of guinea pigs". There was 130 piggies in total and most of them were squeaking.
The inspector said the owner had probably started off with one pregnant female...
You won't have to worry about it, but cavies also ... can swallow adult cavies that much larger arguses cannot handle.

I remember you talking about this before. I wonder if the big tegus are predators of them?

I would imagine so. Wild cavies have smaller, pointier heads. The large heads seem to be a "cute" trait bred into our domestic animals. Wild cavies also stay smaller, and there are always the young ones even if the adults are inedible.
Boas, anacondas, caiman, and the like also undoubtedly take their share. Understanding cavies means grokking that they are at the base of the food chain.
I'll have to see what the boas think about them. I brought home two more today, females that had died ... have to buy rats again. I hope not, because it's sad to see the cute little pigs in the freezer.

400 will be a lot of work, but I suppose for a business you can divideup the chores. I'll try to remember to show Kirstin your post, she can probably give you all sorts of pointers about these critters.

Back when we had lots, I got a lot for monitor food, but the adults had to be butchered up if the arguses were going to get them. I wanted to get a few lace monitors just to feed the cavies to (I still want lace monitors, but now I can't use that excuse. Actually, I do. Neither Kirstin or I like abyssinians much, so the lacies would be dubbed the "Abby Disposals.").
lol I was helping with them tonight and noticed that the abys are flighty little buggers, and one young one ... them carefully so we don't get lethal genes. They're pretty cool critters. I may end up with one, myself. :-)

My general impression is that they are cute, dumb, and if you don't handle them regularly they're pretty flighty and jumpy. We've got some sweet ones right now, and some that spazz out when you walk by. Dumb doesn't bother me much - after all, I've got a boa, and it's even dumber!

Luke
I saw a spot on Animal Hospital where an RSPCA inspector went to a house to collect 17 guinea pigs ... total and most of them were squeaking. The inspector said the owner had probably started off with one pregnant female...

When my brother and I were kids, we had Romeo and Juliet, and they had babies. Mom sold the first ones to the pet store, but eventually they didn't want them anymore. We had guinea pigs up the ying-yang. Didn't have snakes then to feed them to.
So after awhile Mom put them in the extra room in the chicken house. They had hay-bale houses. They ate through the bales and made runs in them, and stayed nice and warm in winter. Couldn't sell them or give them away, didn't want to eat them. So we decided to open the little chicken door so they could go outside and eat grass. Before we did that, my brother and I caught them and counted them. We had 98! They mowed the chicken yard for us in the summer. Eventually the dogs, foxes, owls and what-have-you took care of them. The last one left was Juliet. She outlived them all. I don't remember now how old she was when she finally died in the chicken house.
Fond memories. I loved those guinea pigs. Still do, but husband is allergic and it gets too hot in the summer to keep them outside.

Cindy
Hi Jenn,
This is Luke's wife (eep!) Kirstin. Emotion: smile
Yeah, I used to breed these "things" as Luke so lovingly refers to them as... I mainly did breed the longhairs, and can offer some advice, not a ton, I've been working with cavies for about 10 years now.. lol.

Our friend Eve's burm LITERALLY poked the pig with her rostrum about twice, and looked up at us, hopelessly confused as to what this "mess" was in her cage.. okay, I can understand the whole "new world rodent" with an "old world snake" thing, but come on.. the snake hadn't eaten in a month, she STILL didn't know what the heck it was. LOL

Now, I understand you're getting the carcasses from an existing situation, but don't get too excited about utilizing a breeding colony for feeding snakes.. here's why.
Pigs have a REALLY hard deal when it comes to gestation. You will lose about 25% of them... hands down. Sows tend to go toxic around 8 weeks gestation, which sucks because you're all excited, can feel the babies move, and trust me - it's always your multiple Grand Champion BIS sow and it's always on her first litter so you never get anything out of her.. lol. For rodents, they have a HORRIBLY short stick on the reproduction matter. You're looking at a 70 day gestation, with a get of roughly 3-4 offspring per litter (rats are 21 days with about a dozen pups - HUGE difference). Pigs are born larger though - the average is about 4.5 ounces, at birth, fully furred and running as you've noticed.

Hey... you didn't by any chance pick these pigs up (or rather, your boss) from a breeder who passed away about 2 weeks ago in Colorado did you??? Just curious, as 400 is an awfully large number to come out of the blue, and I know they just placed about half of his pigs with somebody just starting up in the breeding biz.. Just a wild coincedence.

The only lethal gene combos are the RnRn combos. That's the Roan x Roan, but it's also carried heavily by the dalmatians. Breeding a dal to a dal or to a roan, and a roan to a roan together produces this wildly bizarre looking micropthamalic completely white pig that has no incisors, or has really weird ones. The occasional one lives and reproduces, but they usually don't make it or are culled for these extensive health problems (blind, can't eat.. not good for success!), but supposedly, from what I hear tell, these go on to produce the BEST roans and dals down the line.. if you can pull them through their first few weeks.
Yeah, I essentially DESPISE abysinnians. Emotion: smile You either love them or you don't. Can't pet them - hair goes all the wrong ways and they get damned pissy when you pet the wrong way, you can't cuddle with them - they are ADHD children without the benefits of ridalin, and I swear, the UGLIEST things with those rat noses. They're the ONLY breed out of 13 that we show while it's moving - the judge gets them to run from one end of the table to the other in order to see if the rosettes hold their shape and the ridges have resilience and density in order to keep their shape while moving. Give me a nice sedate silkie who just sits on his bloody board, or an american with a round cobby body and head ANY day! LOL!!!
About 95% of the "my pig bit me, what do I do??" emails I get are from.. you guessed it... ABY owners!!
)
That's all I have to say on the subject. Well, for now. ;-)

Seriously, ask if you have any questions. I've helped to set up a couple of commercial breeders and have written a book (albeit not fully finished yet, but hope to publish this year) on pigs, showing and health, and can direct you in the right direction if need be. The biggest thing - make SURE your boss has a quarantine room... bordatella rips through a colony in about 2 hours.. it SUCKS.

Best,
Kirstin
PS - I also have a prairie dog, and gpig bites are NOTHING like that, although a well placed set of cavy incisors can certainly do their damage..
I saw a spot on Animal Hospital where an RSPCA ... the owner had probably started off with one pregnant female...

When my brother and I were kids, we had Romeo and Juliet, and they had babies. Mom sold the first ... guinea pigs. Still do, but husband is allergic and it gets too hot in the summer to keep them outside.

The one pig I had as a kid died after two weeks, probably due to Vit. C deficancy because I didn't know about that. I was only eight at the time, but my parents somehow expected me to know how to care for it, and the petstore didn't bother to mention to us that they need vitamin C...

One day I would like to start owning mammals again, but not now.

Gloria
Boas, anacondas, caiman, and the like also undoubtedly take their share. Understanding cavies means grokking that they are at the base of the food chain.

Hmmm, aren't wild guineas found in colder mountain regions? Boas, anacondas and caiman are more of a rainforest animal so wouldn't be unlikely that they'd enounter a GP in the wild?
I'd say a nice fat capybara (largest rodent in the world, looks like a big stupid guinea pig) would be more filling to such animals
A friend of mine had a Rock Python which ate Guinea Pigs regularly...but he would shave them first.

What did he use to shave them? Did he use shaving foam?
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