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Top 10 Pet Snakes for Beginners

I am a veterinarian who is trying to bring a new taste to people's lives.

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Snakes are wonderful creatures. They live in solitary, love to hide, and are rarely venomous. As of now, they have found themselves as friends of modern humankind. Their demand as a pet is on the rise, and their perceived cuteness is enough to make them the first choice of millions of households.

But before you make a baby snake your best friend, you must do thorough research on their habitat, food, and living conditions.

The following list contains some of the most common and beautiful snakes that can become your crime partners.

10 Best Pet Snakes for Beginners

10. Common Boa Constrictor
9. Rough Green Snake
8. African Egg-Eating Snake
7. Cape House Snake
6. Rainbow Boa
5. Gopher Snake
4. Rosy Boa
3. California Kingsnake
2. Ball Python
1. Corn Snake

A Dark Colored Boa Constrictor

A Dark Colored Boa Constrictor

10. Common Boa Constrictor

The reason why boa constrictor finds the last place in our list is their size and length. They are large, 10-15 ft long, and heavy. Commonly referred to as a red-tailed boa/boa constrictor, they are autochthonous to South and Central America. They are brown and grey with reddish-brown saddles.

Despite their size, they can become good pets. They have no special living requirements, other than the size and strength of their enclosure. The enclosure must be at least 30 gallons for a baby snake and should stretch up to 50 gallons in the case of an adult pet snake. In the wilderness, they prey on rats and small dears. But In captivity, they can easily feed on frozen rodents, chicken/rabbits.

They become calm and docile once acclimatized to their new home. they have a long life and can live up to 30 years or more. Almost all boas can coil themselves around you if they feel threatened as a result, they are mostly recommended for adult beginners.

A Close Up Shot of Green Snake

A Close Up Shot of Green Snake

9. Rough Green Snake

The non-venomous green snake is slender and can stretch up to 2-4 feet in length. A common resident of Southern US, they are green in color with a yellow belly. They eat insects and spiders in natural conditions

Due to their smaller size, they require a much smaller enclosure. A 20-gallon enclosure will be enough for an adult. The optimum temperature for rough green snakes is between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Green snakes exhibit calm behavior and rarely bite or show defensive etiquette. They are easy to feed and have a much less feeding expense. Their aquarium must contain a substrate such as newspaper to burrow. These pet snakes require delicate handling as they can be stressed and may try to escape.

The life span of these snakes is no more than 15 years. They are excellent for teenagers and young people who want to experiment and bring a different taste to their lives.

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8. African Egg-Eating Snake

Are you one of those who don't like to feed frozen or live animals to your pet snake? Are you worried about the quality of meat that you are victualing? If this is the case, then you might want to take a look at this one. Native to Africa, egg-eating snakes are some of the most beautiful snakes on this list. They are brown with their body covered in scales.

They are not larger than three feet, so a medium-sized stockade of around 20-25 gallons is advised for proper rest and exhibition of innate behavior. The temperature must be kept between 60–90-degree Fahrenheit. They don't require UVB bulbs and are non-burrowers (substrate should not be more than an inch). A water bowl is mandatory and should be placed in the enclosure.

They may live up to 15 years in confinement, and a baby African eating snake costs around 80-120 dollars.

The only downside is that they cannot feed on rats, mice, or chickens. They require smaller eggs of quails and finches that are rare in many western countries.

top-10-pet-snake-for-beginners-in

7. Cape House Snake

Brown house snakes, as they are generally known, are brown to olive-green in color. They originate from the African continent but are becoming increasingly popular among snake pet owners and breeders.

The most important reason for their popularity is the high reproduction rate and rapid acclimatization to their new home. They can breed nearly 5-6 times a year and lay almost a dozen eggs in each cycle, making them one of the most profitable when it comes to money. In each reproduction cycle, they produce different morphs with a variety of colors. African brown snakes have a short life span of 8-10 years and require a 20-gallon enclosure. Their price can range between 80-200 dollars.

They don't require any special care. Brown snakes are seldom stressed and comfortably adjust to their new homes. These things make them a perfect candidate for the number seven spot on our list.

For a complete guide to pet snake care, click here.

An Adult Rainbow Boa Climbing a Chair

An Adult Rainbow Boa Climbing a Chair

6. Rainbow Boa

Rainbow boa is probably one of the most beautiful and colorful snakes in the world. They are mostly found in South America, precisely in the Amazon River basin and Venezuela. They have scales on the body that reflect light and produce a rainbow effect increasing their beauty and looks.

But just like boa constrictors, they are long and shy. The enclosure must be at least 30 gallons and more for adults. They can coil around anything when they feel danger and should never be left close to children alone. Their shy nature makes them hard to keep and reproduce. Their colors make them expensive. Although they are available for 100-150 USD, certain morphs can cost $2000-3000.

In short, the charm and beauty of a rainbow boa is not a match for everyone and should only be left for adults and experienced snake pet keepers.

Want to know more about snakes? Click to grab the Nat Geo Snake Manual.

A Gopher Snake Against A white Background

A Gopher Snake Against A white Background

5. Gopher Snake

Slightly resembling the venomous rattlesnake, gopher snakes are endemic to North America. They have a variety of morphs and range from 3-5 feet in length.

They are cheap and can be bought at a reasonable price of around 100 dollars. They are one of the most popular pets among snakes. They love to bask in the sun and swim in water for thermoregulation. So, their vivarium must contain a bulb and a pot of water. They can be fed on frozen/thawed rodents such as rats and mics.

top-10-pet-snake-for-beginners-in

4. Rosy Boa

Rosy boas are smaller members of the Boidae family. Their description is widely varied. Most are 4-5 feet in length with red and orange spots against a light background (mostly light red/pink). They can be found in Southern US and Mexico.

Rosy boas are very docile and tamed. They are smaller than other family members and can be left with children. They seldom bite and remain very calm in captivity.

Their enclosure requires a heat source and adequate lighting. Due to the smaller size, the vivarium of around 30-40 gallons is suitable. Despite their loving and tranquil nature, they are escape artists so the enclosure must be sturdy and sealed. They can eat thawed mice. They live for 30 years. The exact cost depends upon the color, age, and pattern of the skin. A typical price tag is around 200-300 USD.

Their calm nature, beautiful colors, relatively smaller length, and quick adjustment to the captivity make them an out-and-out contender for beginners.

A King Snake in Wild

A King Snake in Wild

3. California Kingsnake

The California king snake is the only king snake to make its spot on our list. They feed on other snakes but don’t grow exceedingly large. They are about 3-4 feet in length. They are naturally found in the Southern US and California.

Baby kingsnakes are more popular than adults. California kingsnakes can be easily housed. External heat and water are necessary for health and digestion. They may live for 20 years if rightly housed and cared. Like other medium-sized snakes, they also require a 15-25 gallon vessel. A typical price tag ranges around 100-250 USD.

They remain equally calm among teenagers and children and are an excellent choice for beginners.

They are pretty voguish among the snake pet community hence deserve the third spot on our list.

 Close Shot of a Ball Python in Wild

Close Shot of a Ball Python in Wild

Python Isolated Against White Background

Python Isolated Against White Background

2. Ball Python

The only python on our list, the ball python is undoubtedly the most popular python among the snake owner community. Hailing from Africa, ball pythons are brown with intricate design patterns. They have plenty of morphs and their price ranges from a few dollars to thousands of dollars.

Their morphs have different color patterns but range from 3-5 feet in length. They are medium-sized snakes, easy to handle, and serene in captivity. They require more humidity so a water tub/pot must be placed in their enclosure.

Baby pythons are cute with shining colors. Once accustomed, they don't cause problems and hardly attack. They love human interaction, remain friendly on touching and playing, and can be good friends with children and kids.

These reasons are enough for them to occupy the second position on our list

Corn Snake in Playing Mood

Corn Snake in Playing Mood

1. Corn Snake

Without any doubt, corn snakes are uncrowned pet snake kings. They are indigenous to the US. They are relatively small—only 2-3 ft in length.

Their nature, demeanor, and color combination make them the first choice for beginners. They come in plenty of morphs with very different color combinations.

Important things to keep in mind are temperatures ranging between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit, a medium-sized enclosure (20-30 gallons), and substrate as corn snakes are burrowers.

Cute baby corn snakes are welcomed by kids and adults alike. They are easy to handle and look after. They remain balmy. Their bite does not cause a significant injury. Living up to 20-25 years, they come with a price tag of 40-200 USD but can go as high as whopping 2000 dollars.

All these things combine makes them a perfect candidate for pets and earns them the first spot on our list.

A corn Snake in its Enclosure

A corn Snake in its Enclosure

References

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Abdullah Iqbal

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