Ball python care and cage setup.?

Ball python care and cage setup.? Topic: Ball python care and cage setup.?
July 18, 2019 / By Asaph
Question: I was wondering if anyone could direct me to a site that gives a good guide to the care and housing of a ball python. i was thinking of getting one but i want to know all the equipment i would need first to make sure i properly care for one.
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Best Answers: Ball python care and cage setup.?

Valary Valary | 7 days ago
I can't give you the link to a site, but I can tell you that if you go to a pet store where they have ball pythons and ask what you need, the store owner will be able to tell you. It can be quite expensive. You will need an aquarium of course, a top or lid that is breathable, a light to keep the snake warm, a thermometer to stick in the cage to make sure he is at the proper temp, a water bowl, and some accessories so your snake has something to do. Also you will need some type of bedding for the bottom. All of this costs about 250 bucks (not including the snake). But keep in mind, as the snake grows, you may need a larger aquarium for him if you originally bought a smaller one. You may also need mite spray. Do not use tree limbs that you find outside for the inside of your snakes cage, they may have mites on them, and once your snake has them they are hard to get rid of and can even kill your snake! I had a ball python die because I couldn't control the mites I had so stupidly exposed him to for not researching better. A simple google search for "ball pythons as pets" will give you tons of information. Good luck
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Valary Originally Answered: what is wrong with my ball python?
He must have had it since the last shed and you didn't realise - I didn't realise it had happened to my snake for a few weeks. It's not really obvious, I just happen to notice that one eye was a bit cloudy. Next time he sheds you should feel the head-shed (say that 10 times fast!) to make sur the eyecaps have come off. To get the eyecap off, raise humidity in your tank by misting (spraying water in it) and moving the water bowl nearer the heat source. You can also raise temps a few degrees aslong as they don't exceed 90F. Get a bowl of lukewarm water and a cotton pad and gently wipe the cracked eye with a soaked cotton pad. Do this each day. Wait until the next shed and the eyecap should come off with it, but check him very carefully to make sure it has. Until then, check daily that the appearance of the eye hasn't changed. If it looks swollen or worsens, get him to a vet ASAP or he could lose the eye due to infection. Be especially careful to keep the cage clean, remove any feces ASAP to avoid infection. A stuck eyecap is one of the most common afflictions that happens to snakes and it's hardly ever something to worry about. The next shed should sort it, but just incase it doesn't you should look around for a good herp vet and save a bit of money incase he needs treatment. Good luck and I hope he's ok.

Scout Scout
You need a cage at least as long as the ball python first. You also need bedding, i use aspen shavings and there probably the best thing you can use, and its quite cheep. You can also just use newspaper. You will need a heating pad that covers at least 1/3 of the bottom of your tank. Next you need a hide, they can be bought at the store or you can make them your self. If you decide to make it you can take a small shoebox or another box and cut a hole big enough for the snake to get in, and put a paper towel roll in the tank. You will need a water dish, also can be bought at the pet store or you can use one of your own. If you use one of your own make sure its nice and heavy so the snake cant tip it over, and don't doubt your snakes strength. It also has to be big enough for the snake to soak in during shedding time. Then its up to you on the rest of it, you can put a few hides and a branch maybe, i personally have a branch, an artificial shrub, two paper towel rolls, a store bough half log, a store bought water bowl, and i use aspen shavings.
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Oanez Oanez
http://www.kingsnake.com/ballpythonguide/ I just recently got a ball python hatchling, and this guide (though extensive) has a lot of information. http://eclipseexotics.wingedwolfpsion.com/ballpythoncaresheetbudget.html This is also one of the many guides that tell you how to make an economical ball python set up. Many prefer using plastic bins with locking latches and soldered holes, since it is both easier to clean, securely closed, and better for keeping humidity in. Of course, after all that, it is always nice to visit a good ball python forum for specific questions: http://www.rcreptiles.com/forum/ <--- lots of experienced people, fairly nice. Godspeed
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Maddie Maddie
Cage size: Ball pythons require a secure, well-ventilated cage. A glass aquarium with a secure ventilated top (screen wire or perforated metal) makes a satisfactory cage. Plastic storage boxes, with numerous perforations for ventilation, can be satisfactorily used to maintain ball pythons. Hatchling ball pythons do best in an enclosure with about 40 square inches of floor space; often, if placed in too large an enclosure, a hatchling may be insecure and fail to feed. Sub-adult ball pythons do best given 120-200 square inches of floor space. Older adults require at least 400-600 square inches of floor space. Most adults could live out their lives quite happily in an enclosure the approximate size of a 20-gallon-long aquarium. Water: Clean water should be available in a glass or ceramic water bowl at all times. For hatchlings we supply a small 8 oz water bowl measuring about 2.5" in diameter, 1" in depth. Adults are provided a 16 oz water bowl, measuring 4" in diameter and 3" in depth. Ball pythons are rarely observed to soak in their water bowl in conditions of normal health and security. Most often the reason for ball pythons to sit in their water bowls is that they are stressed or insecure in their cages (they are "hiding" in their water bowl,) or if they are plagued by an infestation of snake mites. Temperatures: Temperatures are extremely important for the successful maintenance of reptiles. Your captive reptiles rely on you to provide them the necessary temperatures they need for a healthy life. Don't guess temperatures, measure them! As a general starting point for successful maintenance, ball pythons can be kept in a cage that has a night time low temperature of 79-81 degrees F and a daytime high temperature of 81-85 degrees F. As is true for many snakes, ball pythons can better tolerate temperature extremes if they do not have food in their digestive system. If recently fed, they should not be subjected to temperatures more than 92 degrees F or below 75 degrees F. When empty of food, ball pythons are tolerant of a wider range of temperatures. Feeding requirements: Ball pythons eat mice all their life. One appropriately-sized mouse per week is an adequate feeding schedule. Older and larger snakes may eat two or three mice, or one small rat a week. Hatchlings seem to prefer live small mice (just weaned, 4-6 weeks old) for their first meals. Most juvenile, subadult and adult ball pythons readily accept dead food, either thawed or fresh-killed. Adult ball pythons may not eat during the winter months. This is normal. Typically they will start feeding in late winter or early spring.. REMEMBER! A hungry live mouse may attack and damage or even kill a ball python if left unsupervised. Always place food for a rodent in the snake cage, if feeding live prey. Shedding: Ball pythons generally have few problems shedding their skin. When a snake incompletely sheds, and a portion of the skin is left adhered to the snake, the snake should be soaked in pure or slightly-soapy shallow water for several hours, after which the skin typically comes off very easily. Special considerations for hatchlings and juveniles: Youngsters are very hardy and most do very well for their keepers. Hatchlings do best if kept by themselves, so that they are not intimidated by a cage mate. Hatchlings seem to prefer somewhat cooler temperatures than adults; we maintain hatchlings at temperatures of 79-82 degrees F. Young snakes often appreciate a small box in which to hide during the day.
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Maddie Originally Answered: how can i keep my ball python happy?
First off, what kind of substrate do you use? I have found that even when misting several times per day, the wrong kind of substrate and having a screen top cage will seriously lower a Ball python's chances of having a good shed and your chances of keeping humidity up. ;) If you are considering getting a new snake cage, may I suggest getting something front-opening with no screen lid? They tend to be more expensive, but they hold humidity much better than regular glass tanks. If that isn’t practical, you are doing a good job with covering the top, though you may want to cover it a bit more, and switch to a towel or a sheet of non-bag plastic safety reasons. Try to make sure your snake has a very large water bowl on cool side of the tank that is kept filled with fresh, clean water at all times, not just for drinking but to up cage humidity. Heck, you may consider putting another water dish on the warm side for humidity, as well. I have a 12 year old male Ball python, Apophis; that had shedding issues for years. I had him in a screen top cage with most of the top covered, and tried using dozens of different substrates, anything from cypress, newspaper, aspen, paper towels, regular towels, repti-bark, etc. Nothing was working, and no matter how many times daily I misted his terrarium, he still had bad sheds, I couldn’t get his humidity above 40% for more than a couple of hours at a time, and he seemed dehydrated. I finally switched him to a solid construction, front opening terrarium with small screens on the sides for ventilation, and he seemed less dehydrated and the humidity was higher, but he was still having issues shedding. Finally I was talking to my best friend (a Ball python, Redtail boa, and Leopard Gecko breeder), and she recommended trying Eco-Earth by Zoo-Med, a compressed coconut dirt substrate that she said worked wonderfully for high-humidity species, didn’t need to be misted anywhere near as often as most bedding, and seemed to be mold resistant. I was skeptical, but I wanted to give it a try. Sure enough, after I started using Eco-Earth, Apophis has been very healthy, completely hydrated, has been eating perfectly, and hasn’t had a bad shed since I started using it more than a year ago. I only want the best for my pets, and so it takes a lot for me to recommend a product, but Eco-Earth is something that I highly recommend to anyone having humidity or shedding issues with their reptiles or anyone who is looking for a new substrate. :) I hope this helps, and if you have any further questions at all on the subject; please feel free to message me and I will be happy to assist you. Good luck with your Ball python!

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