Ball Python care Guide
Depending on the age of the snake, it’s going to vary from snake to snake at just how large a cage terrarium should be. If you’re trying to find a suitable home for a young hatchling, then you’re only going to need a 10 to 20 gallon aquarium, but if you’re trying to find a suitable cage for a more mature and developed python then you’re more than likely looking at a 20 gallon terrarium. The larger they grow the more space that’s going to be needed to move around and develop.
When you’re dealing with a full grown adult, it’s been recommended that you go with a minimum of a 30 gallon terrarium, and while some people have gotten away with using less, it’s not particularly recommended for sanitary reasons or for the python’s peace of mind. You wouldn’t want to be concealed and locked up in a restricted area would you? Well neither does the Python, it needs room to move around.
If you’re not the greatest at measurements or deciding what kind of cage you should get, then there’s a good rule of thumb that experts like to go by. Basically, you take the length of your ball python and double that. You want to make sure that the cage is double the length and double the width so that there will be no doubt that there’s plenty of room for the python to roam about and feel comfortable.
Some people prefer to start out with a large aquarium because this eliminates the need to purchase a larger one once the animal grows. You have to keep in mind that while it may be cost efficient and saving space in the meantime to provide a small cage for a young python, it will grow over time and you’ll need to upgrade your cage. Not only that, but you’ll have to buy more accessories, more substrate and find a new place for it as well. It won’t necessarily hurt to start out with a large cage.
It should be noted that when you’re housing a ball python, you have to make sure that you cover the cage carefully because like David Coperfield, the Ball Python is a master at escape. These animals can slip and slide through the smallest cracks and find their way out of any hole that is present, so you want to make sure that you not only have a solid cage provided but that you have a lid or door that’s locked up. Don’t just rely on a standard piece of plastic to contain the python, make sure that there’s a lock on the door.
Wire mesh is the most common and preferred type of material for the cage because it allows proper ventilation and air intake into the structure. While some people do use glass material to enclose the animal, most people have the most stable and successful results raising ball pythons in mesh style cages. You have to keep in mind that you’ll be doing a lot of maintenance work on the cage as well and for the material inside the cage, so you have to keep that in mind when picking or building your cage.