Snakes Ball Python
Set up your Ball Python's new home. Adults will need a 30 gallon (113.6 L) tank. Younger snakes can be kept in 10–20 gallons (37.9–75.7 L). Make sure you have a securely fitted top to the tank. All snakes are notorious escape artists, and you don't want to have to visit the 'how to find your lost snake' article.
AdPut down substrate. As far as substrate goes, (the stuff you put at the bottom of the tank for your snake to do his business on) you have a lot of options; Paper towels, newsprint, aspen chips, and coconut fibers. The only thing you really can't use is cedar, as the phenol oils in the cedar are toxic to snakes.
- Other essential things that need to be in your snakes cage include: a heavy water bowl (to avoid it being tipped over.) heating elements, hides, and humidity and heat gauges.
- The ideal temperatures for a Ball Python is around 80- 85 F during the day, with a basking spot of around 90 F. Nighttime temperatures can fall to around 75 F on the cool side, but the warm side needs to stay 80 F.
- There are several options here. An under the tank heating pad combined with an incandescent bulb or ceramic heating element seems to work well. The heating element should be screened off to prevent burns. Use thermometers specially designed for reptiles to monitor the temperature inside the tank.
Know the snake's temperament. Because Ball Pythons are naturally so docile, they can also be nervous, finicky snakes, especially while young. It's essential to have at least 2 hides (one at the hot end of the tank, and one at the cool end) for your ball python's mental well being. These can be bought or made out of things like cereal boxes, a turned over plant pot, etc. Make sure nothing you use as a hide could be toxic.
Control the humidity. A ball Python's humidity level should be in the upper 50-65%, 60% is ideal. Monitor this with a humidity gauge. You may need to lightly spray your Ball Pythons tank with water before he sheds to keep the humidity up.
Feed your snake a pre-killed rodent. Heat up the frozen mouse in a plastic bag submerged in warm water. The mouse should be around the same size as the fattest part of your Ball Python's body. Do this once a week. Increase food size as your snake grows.
Shedding. A healthy baby ball python will shed more frequently than adults. The shedding process: a week or so prior to shedding the colours of your snake will begin to fade. It's skin will take on a dull grey sheen and its eyes may become bluish. After that the snakes colours will begin to seem back to normal however in anywhere between 2 and 36 hours the snake will shed its skin. If the snake has difficulty shedding place it in some room temp water with a few drops of baby or mineral oil and help the snake by softly peeling the skin. Also make sure the eye caps and tail are properly shed.