For those who are new to the hobby, we often get inquiries about what is an ideal beginner-friendly snake. Beginner refers to a level of care that is relatively simple and doesn’t need a lot of upkeep other than good husbandry and attention to detail. Snakes seem to be the most popular of all the reptiles available in the hobby.
The majority of the creatures on display at any reptile show are legless. Snakes may be a wonderful addition to your household. Depending on the individual snake and the species, they may be shy or outgoing, and some are easier to care for.
For those new to the hobby or for anyone who wants to add a new animal to their collection that is fairly easy to keep, we here present you five beginner friendly snakes in no particular order.
Based on ease of care, cost, and temperament, we look at the best pet snakes that may be handled by beginners in this article.
Children’s Pythons are a rare small-sized snake that grows between 2.5 and four feet in length. These are excellent starter pets and are calm enough to be around children who are under supervision.
The reptile requires the most basic care and diets of rodents. When treated with care and consistency, they have excellent temperaments. They may cost $70 to $350, depending on how long they live.
Smooth Green Snake
This snake, which has a extremely thin physique like the rough variety, is endemic to North America.
It may be fed insects in a small cage (e.g., a 10-gallon vivarium), but it does not like being handled for extended periods of time. They’re best for someone who wants to treat their reptile like a show piece rather than a pet.
Like its relative, the Rough Green Snake (also included in this list), the Smooth Green has similar care needs and temperament. The fact that this animal is available makes it fall lower on the list.
As captive-bred animals, they are rarer to find. Just a few breeders and wild caught specimens (which are also prohibited to keep) may be more challenging for various reasons.
Smooth Green might be a fantastic option for anybody who is a beginner and obtains their hands on one.
They are tiny in size, making care simple, feeding fast, and education fun. They cannot be handled often, but their little size makes it so easy. They may live for up to 15 years, and the cost will change depending on where they are from.
The children’s python is the first of our pets to consider. This nocturnal snake was named after Australian scientist John George Children, and is native to Australia. The little to medium size (two to four feet), slender body, and tame demeanor of the children’s python have made it popular.
The children’s python is one of the most basic snakes, with minimal upkeep requirements, despite its lack of color. Snakes like to climb and explore, and they especially enjoy resting in secluded areas and vegetation. Children’s pythons may survive up to 30 years in the wild.
Common Boa Constrictor
Their size and length are the reasons why boa constrictor is ranked last on our list. They’re colossal, weighing in at around 10 to 15 feet long.
They are indigenous to South and Central America and are commonly known as a red-tailed boa/boa constrictor. With crimson-brown saddles, they are brown and grey.
They may become nice companions despite their size. Other than the size and strength of their enclosure, they have no special living requirements.
For a baby snake, the enclosure must be at least 30 gallons large, whereas an adult pet snake’s should be able to grow to 50 gallons. They feed on rats and tiny dears in the wild. However, frozen rodents, chicken/rabbits, are easily available in captivity.
Once acclimated to their new habitat, they become calm and submissive. They may survive up to 30 years or more and have a lengthy lifespan. Since they are mostly meant for adult beginners, almost all boas may coil themselves around you if they feel threatened.
Before the coveted Ball Python came around, the Corn Snake was known as “The Most Popular Pet Snake Breed.” So it’s pretty easy to figure out why. Docile and easy to care for, corn snakes are a good beginner snake.
Although they don’t grow to be huge, they can live a long time and grow to be between 2-6 feet in length. Corn snakes may live up to 20 years if they are treated properly. For some prospective snake owners, they do need a rodent-based diet, which may be a turnoff.
Western Hognose Snake
The western hognose is a unique animal with unusual habits. The Great Plains of America are home to these reptiles. They’re frequently misidentified as rattlesnakes.
The coloration of western hognoses resembles that of deadly rattlers. A body that is covered in tan, gray, or olive green is included in this category. The head of this species, however, is very different.
Western hognoses have an upturned snout rather than the conventional triangular head of other snakes. The snake uses their snouts to dig in the sand for concealment, which is a little point.
Because they are typically quite passive in captivity, these are excellent pet snakes. When surprised, on the other hand, they may do some alarming things.
To form a cobra-like hood, the snake will usually flatten its body. It may even lie on its back and open its lips to pretend to be dead in some circumstances! This is a predator-avoidance strategy that involves this behavior.
Common Boa Constrictor
Boes aren’t the best choice for a first pet because of their huge size. The boa constrictor, which grows to be around 13 to 16 feet long, demands a skilled handler.
The boa eats deer, lizards, fish, and other animals native to South and Central America. Rabbits, rats, and chickens are ideal as pets for them. You want to keep them away from children.
If stressed or threatened, boas can become strong and tightly wrapped. Between $60 and $200 is the price of a common boa.
The Ringneck, like its name implies, is another native snake found in North America with a bright yellow or orange ring around their neck.
They are about a foot long on average and are very tiny.
They need more husbandry (e.g., earthworms) and eat them frequently. In comparison to the rest of the list, it receives more proper heating and lighting.
They’re usually calm and can withstand brief handling; nevertheless, if they’re handled for many minutes without a break, they may become irritated.
This venom is not harmful to humans, despite the fact that it can harm its prey. Any attempts to bite your finger will be ineffectively harmful because their mouths and teeth are so small.
They are relatively uncommon because they are not as popular as other pet snakes. They may thrive for ten years in captivity, but only survive for six years in the wild. They cost between $10 and $30 USD.
Carpet pythons are indigenous to Australia, but the resemblance ends there. These snakes range in color, pattern, and size, with some reaching lengths of up to 12 feet.
Although this snake may seem a little bit snappy when it’s younger, it may grow into a docile and tame adult. Carpet pythons prefer to stay on trees and limbs. Carpet pythons can live up to 20 years in captivity.
Rough Green Snake
The green snake, which is non-venomous, can reach lengths of up to 2–4 feet. They are green in color and have a yellow belly, and they are a frequent resident of the Southern United States. In the wild, they consume insects and spiders.
They need a significantly smaller habitat since they are tiny. An adult will need a 20-gallon habitat. Rough green snakes should be kept between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Calm behavior is common in green snakes, and they seldom bite or exhibit defensive manners. They have a lower feeding cost and are simpler to feed.
To burrow, they need a substrate such as newspaper in their aquarium. Since they may be stressed and attempt to flee, these pet snakes must be handled with care.
These snakes have a maximum life expectancy of 15 years. They’re great for teenagers and younger individuals who want to try new things and spice up their lives.
Another excellent snake for beginners is the California Kingsnake. When in the wild, they kill and eat other snakes, including rattlers, giving them the name “kingsnake.” They’re only about 3 to 4 feet long and require minimal upkeep.
But, if not handled properly, they may get a little snappy. That’s just their way of pleading for more affection! They aren’t overly picky when it comes to feeding.
Rodents, lizards, birds, and even other snakes will be devoured by them. It may be a good idea to keep him in his cage.
The ball python is undoubtedly the most recognized snake species. In the pet snake community, this species is extremely common. It’s a great (and popular) choice for first-time owners, as well as experienced users.
Central and Western Africa are home to ball pythons. captive-bred snakes make up the majority of what you buy in the market today. In reality, new morphs are frequently developed by selectively breeding the species.
There are several distinct ball python morphs when it comes to color and pattern. Brown, black, and gray are the most common hues. Axanthic, ivory, and butter ball pythons are among the more exotic morphs available.
Ball pythons aren’t always friendly (this is something newbies frequently find out the hard way). Contrary to popular belief, they are not always handled. It requires patience to develop trust and get the snake used to human touch.
Ball pythons may bite when they are threatened, so don’t make the mistake. Thankfully, the vast majority of bites aren’t harmful.
Garters are a common wild snake in homes around the world and one of the most populous. Worms and small fish are devoured by captive garters. They don’t need a lot of maintenance because they have similar heating and lighting needs.
The garter enjoys resting in the sun, so it’s a good idea to put them up with a basking lamp. They are a unusual little snake because they grow no longer than four feet. The garter snake is a common household invader that is friendly and domesticated, making it safe for children to handle. At less than $50 per snake, they are a bargain.
Although The Rainbow Boa is not ideal for beginning owners due to its shy and nippy nature, it has been included on this list due to its other redeeming features.
Rainbow Boas are well-known for their vivid colors, which are the first and foremost thing about them. They gleam with a lustrous, iridescent sheen in the light.
Because of their natural tropical habitat, they need specialized husbandry and specific tank conditions that replicate their native environment. While they may be fussy and shy as infants, the appropriate Rainbow Boa can be tamed down with regular handling as an adult.
They might be more demanding, but if the appropriate amount of time and care are invested in their upkeep, they can be worth it.
Gopher snakes, which are prevalent in western North America, are our next snake. The bull snake is one of nine subspecies. These tough snakes may grow to be anywhere from three to six feet long and range in color.
Gopher snakes may resemble rattlesnakes when they shake their tails, although they don’t have fangs, and these non-venomous snakes can be confused with rattlesnakes. Provide a basking lamp because they love to bask in the sun. Gopher snakes may survive up to 20 years.
African Egg-Eating Snake
Do you object to giving your pet snake frozen or live animals? Are you concerned about the quality of the meat you’re eating? You might want to take a look at this one if this is the case.
Egg-eating snakes are one of the most gorgeous snakes on this list, and they’re indigenous to Africa. Their body is covered in scales, and they’re brown.
Because they are only three feet tall, a 20-25 gallon medium-sized stockade is recommended for adequate rest and display of natural behavior. It must be maintained between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
They’re non-burrowers (substrate shouldn’t be more than an inch) and don’t need UVB bulbs. It’s required to put a water bowl in the cage, which should be positioned.
A baby African eating snake costs about 80-120 dollars, and they can survive up to 15 years in captivity.
Rats, mice, and chickens are the only animals they cannot eat. In many Western countries, they prefer smaller quail and finch eggs that are uncommon.
Another docile snake that’s a great beginner snake is the Rosy Boa. They aren’t as well-liked as other snakes, but collectors appreciate their calm demeanor and extended life. In captivity, Rosy Boas can survive up to 25 years.
One of the snake world’s escape artists is Rosy Boas as well. When designing the proper enclosure for them, you must be extra cautious. They’ll find a way out if one exists. They consume rodent-based diets as well, but prefer thawed frozen mice to live ones.
Another excellent-looking pet snake is the milk snake, which may bring a lot of beauty to your right cage. Red, black, and yellowish-orange stripes are common. Yet, there are numerous color variants.
Milk snakes may be found in a variety of environments in the wild. Much of the continental United States, Central America, Canada, and northern South American nations are home to them.
They’re all over the place. The reptile trade, on the other hand, continues to favor the species.
These snakes may grow to be quite large. These creatures can grow to be more than four feet long! As a consequence, to stay healthy, they need a large enclosure.
Milk snakes are mostly nocturnal and dwell on the ground. The snake will rest and conceal itself throughout the day. Milk snakes attempt to blend in with their surroundings when they are out and about.
Dekay’s Brown Snake
While they have a shorter lifespan of 7 to 10 years, they cost less, starting at $10 and going up to $30.
Many experts agree the right Dekay’s Brown can make a fine first snake for anybody, despite herpetologist’s opinion that it is not a fine first snake.
Because of their tiny size (hardly exceeding a foot in length), they don’t need as much space as other species’ tanks.
This species is found across North America and requires low temperatures, making it simple to maintain. Brown Snakes are Dekay’s naturally inquisitive species, and human interaction and handling do not stress them.
They eat insects and earthworms instead of small mammals because they are so tiny.
Depending on your management style, they tolerate occasional, gentle handling and have a easier time in the husbandry of this pet. With the right husbandry, they are definitely managable for a beginner.