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Old 03-23-18, 08:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Best beginner snake?

Before I get a snake I was wondering what is the best snake for a first time owner.
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Old 03-24-18, 04:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Best beginner snake?

More than likely you will get several opinions on your question because honestly there is no definitive answer. Growing up, I caught wild snakes and kept some in captivity. At 19 years old my first exotic was a Red Tail Boa. They grow relatively slow and to me was a very easy snake to care for. It lived to nearly 20 years old.

Over the course of the last 35 plus years, I've had several exotic snakes. They all presented their own unique challenges yet I always thought of no single one of them as the best snake or easiest snake to own. They were all the best but each species came with it's own quirks.

I suggest to frequent pet stores and hold different snakes you are interested in. Get to know them. You will know when you find the right one. If you come across a giant python species, please think twice as it being a beginner snake. I've had them in the past and currently have one now. Love my Burm. With a giant comes commitment and a smaller species may be the best route to go starting out.
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Old 03-24-18, 04:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Best beginner snake?

Colubrids (king/milk/rat/corn) are easy to maintain and have tons of colors. Generally a good starter snake but very active and squirmy in hand when held. Ball pythons have a rep as pet rocks but I think they get a bad rap. They are very calm in hand so a lot of beginners love them. Our family has been keeping snakes for about a year and I wouldn't call any of ours too hard for a beginner. Details on our pets in my signature.
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1.0 Cinnamon Ball Python (Wedjet) | 0.1 Arabesque Red Tail Boa (Gorgon) | 0.1 Albino Honduran Milk snake (Scylla) | 0.0.1 Brazilian Rainbow Boa (Iris) | 0.0.2 Mexican Black Kingsnake (Destiny & Chico) | 0.0.1 Brooks Kingsnake (Mikey) | 0.0.1 Kenyan Sand Boa (Jangles) | 0.0.1 Crested Gecko (Squirt) | 0.1 Tangerine Leopard Gecko (Golly)
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Old 03-24-18, 06:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Best beginner snake?

It's really going to come down to what YOU want in a snake. Are you looking for a snake that's easy to handle from the get go? Or are you willing to work with a snake for a while before it handles easily?
A juvenile colubrid like a King, corn or milk is going to be very squirmy and quick. Handling sessions will be a constant hand over hand session and they don't typically outgrow that until at least a year old, often older.
A juvenile Ball Python is going to be very easy to handle from a hatchling.

As for husbandry, a colubrid is going to be a bit easier due to lower temp and humidity requirements as well as being a little more forgiving of husbandry variances. BPs are a little more tricky, but by no means difficult, it just requires a little more effort.

All that being said, any of the above would make a great beginner snake. If you're worried about the quickness and squirminess of a juvenile King or corn you could always get a yearling, sub-adult or adult.

Just do yourself a favor, do your homework BEFORE bringing the animal home. Have your enclosure up and running and dialed in BEFORE bringing your animal home. Make sure ALL of your heat sources are regulated by a thermostat BEFORE bringing your animal home.

I suggest hitting some reptile stores and/or reptile expos and handling a few snakes of different species and sizes and ages. Take your time and find the right animal for YOU.
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