How to choose the best pet snake ?
Snakes fascinate, amaze, and for some, frighten. They are mostly unknown to the general public. For many, a snake is vicious, aggressive, and slimy. Films or cartoons do not help to improve their image. However, some passionate people practice something that would give some people a nervous breakdown: Terrariophilia.
It is the passion of reptiles that goes as far as owning them at home. They can be lizards, turtles, and of course, snakes.
It is about the serpent that we will talk about in this article. There are many snake species that you can own at home, and it would take too long to summarize them all in one article. This is why we will talk about the most widespread and the most accessible for beginners.
The simplest, easiest, and most common snakes pet are ;
- The corn snake
- Ball python
- California Kingsnake
- Boa constrictor
👉 Before start, If you love snake you can also visit the best collection of snake jewels in the united states !
1. Corn Snake | Pantherophis guttatus
The Corn snake (Pantherophis guttatus) is a snake of the Colubridae family. It is native to North America. It is found in the wild in the southeastern United States 🇺🇸 , from
- New Jersey
This diurnal snake measures from 1m22 for the smallest males to 1m83 for the largest females. Its diameter is, however, quite small. It lives on average between 15 and 20 years. We find today all possible colors with man's selections, but its natural color is orange, dotted with dark red spots surrounded by black.
This small serpent is certainly the most recommended snake for a beginner. It is rather active, but although there are no zero risks in the snake, this species rarely bites, except in case of intense stress, and even in the case of a bite, the pain is not really severe. Moreover, this snake does not require complicated living conditions in terms of humidity and heat to be brought to it. Concerning food, mice are sufficient (even when frozen). 🐁
In short, the corn snake is an excellent choice to start as a pet because ;
- Small and thin in size
- Not aggressive
- It does not require a special living condition
2. California Kingsnake | Lampropeltis getula californiae
This snake is found in the wild in the southwestern United States, including;
- Western Nevada
- Southern Utah
- Western Arizona
This serpent measures 1m20 and 1m30, going up to 1m50 for the largest specimens. Like the corn snake, the California Kingsnake has a fairly small body diameter. This species has a lifespan of about 15 years.
There are also in the California Kingsnake, many varieties of colors from the selection made by man. In nature, this snake is spotted with a white stripe, then a black stripe, all along its body. There are also varieties with a dominant black or white.
Beginners can hold this snake, but who will have already been well informed. Like many snakes, it is a rather lively snake and also rather shy. But unlike the ball python, the kingsnake is quicker to defend itself by trying to impress, i.e., by hissing and banging. With this species, the risk of biting is a bit higher.
Although conditions such as temperature and humidity are quite simple to set up for this species, the terrarium in which it lives will be a little less so. The California kingsnake being a semi-arboreal species, it will be necessary to prepare its habitat accordingly. Even though this snake is ophiophagous in the wild, it feeds on other snakes, including specimens of its own species; it accepts mice without any problem when it lives in captivity.
3. Ball Python | Python regius
The Ball python (Python regius) is a snake of the family Pythonidae (pythons). This species is native to Africa and is found in the wild in;
- Senegal 🇸🇳
- Togo 🇹🇬
- Ghana 🇬🇭
- Ivory Coast 🇨🇮
- Guinea 🇬🇳
- Sierra Leone 🇸🇱
The royal python is a nocturnal snake. It measures from 1m20 on average for males to 1m40 for females. Unlike the corn snake, its body is quite thick. This species generally lives between 15 and 30 years. The ball python has also been subject to many selections to create different varieties of colors. Its natural color is brown on its back, dotted with small black spots, with a black line running along its spine. As you can see, her colors are perfect to camouflage herself in her natural environment.
The ball python is a shy and fearful snake, so it is recommended for beginners. he is called ball python because it curls up into a ball and hides its head in the middle of its body when it feels threatened. Therefore, a snake with an aggressiveness close to zero (even if I remind it, zero risks never exists).
The ball python doesn't require complicated life parameters either. Unfortunately, with its activity period at night and its very calm behavior, you will see it move very little. Another disadvantage is that even if it feeds on mice when it is young, as an adult, you will have to give it a raccoon, which can be a disheartening experience.
4. Boa constrictor | Common Boa
The boa constrictor is a snake of the family Boidae. He is part of the world's biggest serpent in the world. This species is found in South America;
- Argentina 🇦🇷
- Mexico 🇲🇽
- West Indies 🇦🇬
This snake measures from 2m50 for males to 3m20 for females, for a weight of 10 to 15kg. There is also a subspecies, the Boa imperator, which is the smallest subspecies of boa, not exceeding 2m40. The boa constrictor can live from 20 to 40 years.
Unlike many other snakes, the boa constrictor has not been subject to many selections to create new color varieties, although there are a few. Its natural color is light brown, mottled with darker brown. Its tail is often darker than its body, perfect for camouflage in nature.🍂
We pass into a category above the snakes seen previously; it is not recommended for beginners. You've to be well-informed and prepared.
Although it is not aggressive, the boa constrictor will not hesitate to bite to defend itself. And as you can imagine, with such a size, the bite is very painful. 🤕
The necessary temperature and humidity parameters are not difficult to achieve, the terrarium will have to be of a substantial size to accommodate this large snake, so you will need the corresponding space to place a terrarium of this size in your home.
The feeding of the boa constrictor can also be discouraging. Because of its size, mice are obviously not enough. It will be necessary rather than to give him a rabbit or guinea pig.
You have now learned about four species of snakes that are very common in the terrarium world. Whether it attracts you or not, whether it frightens you or not, this article will have made you realize that snakes are not as "bad" as movies or cartoons want us to think.