Thinking of getting an exotic pet? Well, snakes are in the trend, there are tons of varieties of snakes, actually, there are about 3000 different varieties of snakes in the market, but not all are pet-stuff. When starting off with snake-keeping, you need to know a lot of things about them, so let’s discuss some of the coolest pet snakes in the market and decide which one would be best for you:
Snakes mentioned in this article have pretty basic care requirements and are readily available in your nearby pet stores.
Ball Python (Python regius)
Ball Pythons are one of the best snakes, to begin with. They look astoundingly beautiful and are super easy to care of. They come in a ton of different morphs, designs, and colors. If you are looking for a snake that you can handle, Ball Pythons should be top of your list.
Price: You can get the common one easily for $30-$40, but when you want the more rare and crazier colors you will have to spend more; some can even cost more than $1000.
Size: One of the best things about this snake is, they do not get huge. A female can get about 5-feet long at maximum, males on the other hand will only be about 3-4 feet long. Females tend to get bigger than males. They are a pretty big snake to start with, but they are very manageable.
Tank Size: For homing a female you would require a bigger tank of at least 40-gallons or more whereas for a male a 30-gallon tank would be perfect. So, they do not require a huge enclosure
Boas (Boa Constrictor)
Boas is another awesome, immensely popular snake in the pet industry that comes in various interesting colorations and patterns. In the wild, there are numerous species of this snake, but mostly two species are kept as pets, i.e. Boa Constrictor Imperator (common boa)and the BCC – Boa Constrictor Constrictor (red-tailed boa).
Size: Boas are heavy body snakes in comparison to most pet snakes. A fully adult female Boa will be somewhere between 7-12ft whereas males are a bit smaller, 6-8ft. In captivity, if kept extremely well, this snake can get up to 60lbs, but the normal weight is would range between 20-30lbs.
Lifespan: In confinement, Boas averagely live for 20-30 years. The longest living pet Boas, live for 40 years, but it happens in the extremely rare case.
Care guide: These snakes like to bask under the sun, mostly in winters. As juveniles, they will behave as arboreal snakes, but as they age they tend to get territorial. They are much lazier than ball python, therefore fun to handle. They would not try to crawl out of our hold, they have a personality.
Caution: They can bite you, and their bit can seriously harm you so you need to take proper cautions with it. This applies to actually every snake, with expectations of the snakes whose bit are not dangerous for us.
Kingsnake (Lampropeltis spp.)
Kingsnake is a territorial, nonvenomous in-demand snake, in the snake-keeping hobby. Till now there is a total of 45 recognized subspecies of this snake, but only a few are in the pet industry. So, if you are looking for a snake that grows quickly then, kingsnake is the snake for you.
Size: These snakes grow up to 3-5 inches in length. Their perfect sender body makes their length very much manageable.
Lifespan: Kingsnake mostly lives for 20-25 years. But if it is taken very good care of and fed a nutritious diet, it can live longer too.
Care guide: For keeping them healthy, you will have to feed them with small mice every 5-7 days or 1-2 adult mice every 10-14 days. Try to feed them a variety of food, it will keep their skin and color shiny and vibrant. Keep a large water bowl in the enclosure always and change it at least twice every week.
Caution: After bringing them you need to give them some time to settle in, which usually takes about 2 weeks. In that duration, you should not try to handle them. Also do not handle them at least after 48 hours of a meal, it can stress them out.
Milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum)
Milksnake is one of the most beautiful pet snake species available in the market. Their coloration and easy care level makes them very popular amongst reptile hobbyists. About 24 subspecies of this beautiful snake are sold around the world.
Size: These very near relatives of kingsnakes can grow from 2-6 feet in length. They can grow double in length in just 3 years and at this age, they will get sexually mature too.
Tank size: These snakes are not the most active snake in the hobby, they prefer not to move a lot as this can make them feel insecure. So, a 20-30 gallon tank setup would be best for them. They have a climbing habit so, it is recommended to keep them in a vertical arrangement rather than a horizontal one.
Care guide: It is recommended to feed them about 2-3 times a week. If you want them to grow faster, you can also feed them more often. But when they grow old you will just need to feed them just once a week.
Caution: Do not feed live prey to young snakes they will be too active for them.
Corn Snake ( Pantherophis guttata)
Corn snakes make great pet snakes for people who are just starting off with the hobby. Gentle nature, varied coloration, easy handling makes them one of the best snake in the hobby. These snakes are readily available at any pet shop, online store or you can get them directly from breeders.
Size: They grow from 4-5.5ft in length. With proper care, they can live for 10-12 years and even more.
Tank size: For housing a juvenile you will need at least a 10-gallon tank, but as they grow old you will need to switch to a bigger enclosing space. You need to be very careful in keeping them because they have a reputation for being escape artists.
Care guide: Corn snakes are naturally nervous and defensive species. Feed them every 7-10 days, do not put them near any heat source. Always keep a bowl full of fresh water in their enclosure, to keep them hydrated.
Caution: When you get them home, you need to take special care of them, feed them properly, make them feel at home because they can stress out very quickly.
Following were some of the most common and beginner-friendly snakes that you can choose from. There are tons of other varieties of pet snakes too, but the above are the best to start with, so choose wisely and take your time to enjoy the snake-keeping hobby.