Snake Care

Ball pythons are hardy snakes and are very forgiving but have several needs that any keeper must provide to have a healthy and happy pet snake. Every keeper should remember that a warm clean enviroment free of excessive noise and stress is important.

Every reptile keeper should have a routine they follow to maintain the healthy and happy habitat required to be a succesful reptile keeper. I recommend you spot clean your pets enclosure and provide clean fresh water for your pet to drink on a daily basis.

Your ball python requires a habitat at least 2 to 3 times larger than they are. This doesn't seem very large to many but ball pythons are nocturnal pythons that spend the majority of there time below ground in termite mounds in the wild. So they actually prefer an enclosure that is not oversized with hide boxes of appropriate size that they can feel secure in.

Due to the large number of pythons in our collection glass enclosures arent practicle and there open top design can make it hard to maintain the proper humidty levels required. We prefer ARS racks for our pythons because of there smart design features and ability to house a large number of pythons in a smaller area. But for many keepers glass tanks are practicle because of there relatively inexpensive cost and availability. Hatchlings and juveniles can be housed in 10 gallon size aquariums with a tight fitting screen cover with a heat lamp on one end to keep the ambient air temp at 80 degrees farenhiet. A small under the tank heat pad is placed on the same side as the heat lamp and works great to give your snake a hot spot of 90-92 degrees. Please remember that every keeper must experiment with the size of the bulb and depth of the bedding to achieve these temps and to maintain humidity levels. Many specialty products are available today to help you provide your pet the very best enviroment they need to thrive but be sure to purchase them from a reptile specialist.

The bedding or substrate you choose is very important but keepers have had success using a wide array of choices from aspen, cypress and news paper. Its important to remember that reptile keepers should never use cedar chips because the oils in cedar can be harmful to your pet. Here at Nicebalz we use aspen bedding during the dryer winter season and cypress during the spring and summer to raise the humidity and to simulate the warmer humid seasons. This helps us to cycle our pythons to prepare them for the breeding season. For hatchlings we use newspaper because it is inexpensive and with the increased feeding schedule its easier when cleaning so many baby pythons on a daily basis.

We feed our ball pythons every 5 to 7 days for hatchlings and every 7-10 days for juveniles and adults depending on the time of the year. Males that are breeding size are known to go off feed during the hieght of the breeding season and this is normal so dont worry. It is important to remember when feeding your ball python to give them appropriately sized food items based on the size of the thickest part of your snakes body.

As your ball python grows the habitat you use must grow with it so juvenile ball pythons after 12 to 18 months should be moved to a 20 gallon long tank with floor dimensions of 30" x 12". After about three years adult should be housed in a 30 gallon breeder tank with floor dimensions of 36" x 18" especially for females as they tend to get larger and heavier than males.