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Old 11-19-18, 01:04 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Python habitat noob questions...

Considering a pet snake...
Doing all sorts of research.
Decided a ball python would be a good start. Although not really considering more than one reptile.
Found a couple breeders that i can drive to and actually see the place and animals to make the choice instead of picking online from a picture.
The question is....

If I end up picking a smaller snake, holding in a bin for a while, until the snake is a bit larger, then transferring to a proper terrarium, I was not able to find too many details on this but am I believe that there is no major issues transferring a snake.
As a follow up...
Is starting with a large tank and blocking portion off and adjust to fit the size of the snake over time a practical thing to do?

I don't mind spending money, but I don't like spending money unnecessarily.

I would rather get a nice tank and make it work over time, rather than start with a small tank and have to change it a couple times over a year or two to fit the snake size.
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Old 11-25-18, 05:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

Any of those options would work, depends on what you want to do and what works best for you. But all of those options are viable and doable.
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Old 11-26-18, 11:25 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

I have a 6-month-old garter snake in a 40 gallon breeder, so I think it's totally fine to start a small snake in a big enclosure. She has multiple hides and a humidity box. She uses all of those, but is also out a lot and basks on a piece of driftwood and plastic plant.

Because she is still young and small and I am still working on getting her more comfortable with taming, I keep her on newspaper instead of a bioactive set up or aspen, so she can't burrow to escape me. Once she's tamer, I'll convert the tank to a bioactive set up.

I had her in a 10 gallon at first (because that's what I had handy), and have not noticed any change in behavior since she moved into a larger tank. She has not become more shy, timid or scared because of the extra space.

I have a second, smaller, younger garter in that 10 gallon that I'm growing up to cohabitate with the bigger garter. That one is much shyer by nature and hides a lot in the 10 gallon.

Good luck.
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Old 11-27-18, 07:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

[QUOTE=MnGuy;1039395]I have a 6-month-old garter snake in a 40 gallon breeder, so I think it's totally fine to start a small snake in a big enclosure.../QUOTE]

Although this may be working for garters, it's VERY important to understand that garters and Ball Pythons are EXTREMELY different animals.

With BPs it is best to start out with a small enclosure, especially for new keepers who aren't yet experienced enough to identify stress in the snake.

To make for a successful first experience for the animal and for the keeper I highly suggest keeping a young BP in a small enclosure until the animal reaches at least 500 grams. Once they reach 500 grams they've typically become more confident and will do well being switched.

When it comes to new keepers, especially with BPs who are notoriously finicky eaters, it's best to keep it simple. Focus on huabandry in simple setups. Follow the advice of experienced keepers and learn all you can. Read, read, read and read some more. The more we know about our pets the better we can care for them.

Good luck and keep us posted!!!
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Old 11-27-18, 10:04 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

All of the options you mentioned would work.

I'm going to agree with Craig, in that it would probably be best to keep it simple and smaller. If you wanted to block off a certain portion of a bigger tank, that would work just fine.

Garters are a whole different story. They are super active and will utilize any space you give them. On top of that, they are very adaptable and don't stress out too easily.
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Old 11-27-18, 12:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

Good point, guys. Thanks. Although I wouldn't say garters don't stress. My baby garters are definitely skittish. I just haven't noticed the size of the enclosure impacting my garters' skittishness. The one in the big tank is generally more relaxed than the small one in the small tank. Seems like an issue of individual temperament.
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Old 11-27-18, 01:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

I didn't say they don't stress. I said they don't stress out too easily. Garters are pretty tough snakes that can handle a wide array of conditions. You can stick one in a small tank or a massive one, and so long as there is some heat, water, and one or two places to hide, it will likely be fine. That can't be said for all snakes, including BPs.

Also, being skittish and being stressed are not one in the same. While skittishness can certainly be a sign of stress, it isn't always. Some snakes are more skittish/flighty by nature, whereas others show signs of stress in other ways.

You are correct about individual temperaments...each snake is different, even if they are the same species.

I stand by my earlier post - I think a good idea would be to buy a larger tank and block a portion off. Definitely an easier and cheaper method in the long run.
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Last edited by Bandit; 11-27-18 at 02:07 PM..
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Old 11-27-18, 02:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Python habitat noob questions...

Bps can 100% be started out in larger cages. If they want to go ahead and utilize the big cage, they can. If they're worried, they can use a small tub for quarantine until they're sure that it's eating, but I started my bp out in a 3.5'x2.5'x1.5' as a hatchling (iirc, could be off by a foot or so on any of the dimensions, but it definitely wasn't smaller). If the cage is utilized correctly, it shouldn't pose any problems.

Garters can be just as skittish as ball pythons, and their hyperactive nature can actually make them a little bit more prone to overreacting if they are that nervous type.
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