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Old 11-19-17, 02:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

Hello, first of all sorry for my english. I want my first snake and i would like someone who knows to guide me.

The ideal snake for me is:

-No venomous.
-Not very long and especially not fat. If the snake is long but thin its ok for me.
-Have a differentiated head of the body. I dont know hot to explain it very well, but a perfect example is a boa constrictor.
-A very active snake(the opposite of ball python). The aggresiviveness its not a problem for me and i dont care if he bites me.

I have the money and i have the desire lo learn and can keep the snake in good condition.

Thanks.
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Old 11-20-17, 04:13 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

Hmm... Russian rat snake? Another good option is a Trans-Pecos rat snake but those might be harder to find where you are.

Neither is known for being aggressive and both--especially the Russian rat--are active. Both are pretty easy to care for, which is an important consideration. The Russian rat is semi-arboreal and needs a cage that is tall as well as large. Trans-Pecos rats are more terrestrial. Russian rat tends to be bigger both in length and girth but usually stays under 6 feet. I think the biggest of my Trans-Pecos is 5 feet.

I would say the Russian has more of the super active, curious personality but the Trans-Pecos has a bit more of the look as far as head : neck ratio. The Russian looks a lot like a mangrove snake Boiga dendrophilia but without the nasty bite or volatile temperament and the head isn't as differentiated. The Trans-Pecos is actually cute, with bug eyes and very soft skin. The Cape house snake *looks* like it should be dangerous, with elliptical pupils and the long spade head shape, but it's really not.

Another consideration is a Cape house snake. They are slender and small--males around 2 feet, females 3 to 4 feet--but have loads of personality and the Cape subspecies has the look you like. They are semi-arboreal and like to climb. House snakes are rear-fanged but the bite doesn't cause any reaction in most people. I am unusually sensitive to it and the worst that happens is my hand gets puffy. Get them young and captive bred and you probably won't have much of a problem with that anyway.

ETA: The Australian genus Antaresia has some snakes you might like too. They have the slender wedge-head look and stay small like house snakes. I really enjoy my Stimson's pythons. Others are the spotted python, children's python and anthill python.
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Last edited by SerpentineDream; 11-20-17 at 04:18 AM..
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Old 11-22-17, 01:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

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Originally Posted by SerpentineDream View Post
Another consideration is a Cape house snake. They are slender and small--males around 2 feet, females 3 to 4 feet--but have loads of personality and the Cape subspecies has the look you like. They are semi-arboreal and like to climb. House snakes are rear-fanged but the bite doesn't cause any reaction in most people. I am unusually sensitive to it and the worst that happens is my hand gets puffy. Get them young and captive bred and you probably won't have much of a problem with that anyway.

Cape house snakes as in boaedon capensis? They shouldn’t be venomous. At least they aren’t listed as venomous and this is what the inside of my 4 year old female's mouth looks like.
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Old 11-22-17, 02:13 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

House snakes aren't rear fanged to my knowledge. Great creatures though - feeding response like a mini retic
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Old 11-22-17, 03:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

Everyone is surprised to hear that they are rear-fanged. But yup, they have small, hinged rear fangs. They leave distinct puncture marks and my hand swells up and hurts for about a day. No biggie, and most people have zero reaction. To the OP, they are nothing to fear.

TLD, I think you'll be able to spot the little fangs on your snake if you can get a very crisp shot of the top of the jaw, even if they are folded back. Should be located next to the front part of the eyeball.

Here's their page on Toxinology. Mind you, Toxinology classifies everything that doesn't solely kill its prey by venom as non-venomous, even if it has a clinical effect on humans. If you scroll down you'll see information about first aid and clinical treatment. They are pegged at zero on the "Danger Meter," even below hognoses which move the needle a bit but are still classified as non-venomous, as are Boiga spp.. WCH Clinical Toxinology Resources

Here's a photo of my hand after a few bites from my mean-as-hell hobby Olives, though not a great one. Next time I get bitten I'll do a better job. However my hand is puffed up 3 times its normal size and there are fairly distinct fang marks despite multiple overlapping bites. Again, I am the exception not the rule as far as reactions go. I had the same reaction from my Cape house snake. We were at the vet and I was learning how to probe a snake to check gender. The Cape house is not mean--he just didn't like having a metal probe shoved into his cloaca. The vet watched in amazement as my hand visibly swelled, as he also was unaware that they were rear-fanged and had looked at me like I was a flake when I mentioned it.

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Last edited by SerpentineDream; 11-22-17 at 04:17 AM..
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Old 11-22-17, 02:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

Totally possible I'm missing something but all I see on there says non-venomous? Are you sure you aren't just allergic to their saliva? I've seen someone have a similar reaction to corn snake bites.
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Old 11-24-17, 07:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

I believe they (cape house snakes) are considered in the group of Colubridae that are rear fanged. The fangs aren't fangs as such in viperidae and other venomous snakes. They are more of enlarged stationary teeth that are unhinged but contain hollow grooves where the neurotoxin flows through. They have to really chew when they bite to stimulate the duvernoy's gland to transfer the neurotoxin into their prey. Several groups of colubrids fall into this category of vestigial rear fangs or more appropriately enlarged rear teeth.
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Old 11-24-17, 07:52 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

The garter snake is the classic "first snake" and fits all of your highlights. They are a medium to large size depending on the particular subspecies. Colorful and active are just a couple of their attributes.
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Old 11-24-17, 10:52 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: I'm looking for a snake with these characteristics.

I also have a cape house snake, so I was a little surprised to see it mentioned that they are rear fanged. I couldn't find anything that said they are. But yeah my guy makes no move to bite me anyway and other people who have been bit by the hobby olives mention no swelling.

He does have a great feeding response. Great little snake. Curious about me and friendly.
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