Do snakes breathe while they are eating?

beetleman

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yes they do, they have a "hole" forgot what it is called,right where their tongue is ,when they are swallowing the meal that "hole" is open so they can breath while they are swallowing.
 

Cirith Ungol

Ministry of Fluffy Bunnies
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I'm asking because I watched a program today where it was suggested that reptiles don't breathe while they eat their prey - they don't chew it and don't breathe while it's going down.

That seemed a bit odd to me, especially since my corns can take 5min to swallow a mouse. I have seen the windpipe open up wide after the mouse has gone down, but I've never checked while the prey item was still in the mouth.
 

Brian F.

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yes they do, they have a "hole" forgot what it is called,right where their tongue is ,when they are swallowing the meal that "hole" is open so they can breath while they are swallowing.


Yes, there's a breathing tube under the tongue that allows breathing while swallowing prey. I believe it's called a eustacian tube (sp?). Can anyone confirm or correct this for me?
 

beetleman

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YES! that's it! man.........i should know these things:wall: ive got 4 snakes and i see that all the time when they are swallowing their meals.
 

bugmankeith

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Ok so on the thought of breathing while eating, if my newt is eating underwater, is it holding it's breath or breathing through it's skin?
 

Mushroom Spore

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I think they do, but possibly only through the nose? I don't remember the details exactly, only that I've read that one of the reasons a snake with RI won't eat is because the mucus keeps it from being able to breathe while eating. Which would explain why my python got a mouse halfway down his throat and promptly backed off right before I had to take him to the vet for an RI. {D
 

dtknow

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Ok so on the thought of breathing while eating, if my newt is eating underwater, is it holding it's breath or breathing through it's skin?
Both. They stay under for a long time, but when eating or active they seem to need to come up about once every 5-10 minutes.
 
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