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Description and maintenance of corn snake at home

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Since dogs and cats have become commonplace residents of houses and apartments, many people are looking for "non-standard" animals that can be settled and enjoy their company. These animals include snakes. Today we’ll talk about the representative of the Panferophis clan — the maize snake. We will tell you what a reptile animal is, where it lives and what conditions it needs to create for a comfortable life and reproduction.

Description and photo

To begin with, what is a snake and how suitable is this snake for keeping at home.

The tortoise snake is a North American non-poisonous snake that belongs to the family of the already distinctive. Also, this snake has a second name - gutata.

Snake is a common pet of terrariums, which can always be found in collections of snake lovers.

We found that the reptile is not only not dangerous to humans, but is universally used as a pet. Next, let's talk about the appearance and main characteristics.

As for the length of the animal, it is, on average, 1–1.5 m, but in large terrariums or in natural conditions the snake can reach a length of 2 m. The natural color of the gutata is represented by orange-gold color with clearly visible black stripes, which contrast stand out on reddish scales.

As for the attitude to humans, this snake is not dangerous, not only because it does not secrete poison, but also because it almost never bites, like wild snakes.

A reptile can show aggression only if you hurt it. The snake is a small snake, which, being released from the terrarium, does not pose any danger even to domestic cats.

Morphs

Morphs are color variations that result from the work of geneticists. By influencing the gene responsible for pigmentation and color, scientists were able to obtain several color variations, which we will talk about later.

    Snake Oketee - It is distinguished by pronounced red spots that are framed by a black border. The spots are rectangular or oval with slightly smoothed or deformed corners.

There are also a considerable number of mutations. The most interesting “mutant”, which in addition has a color variation, is the Blizzard snake, which has a pure white color of scales, only in very rare cases you can find a yellowish spot.

Wildlife Features

Now you can answer the question of whether the maize snake is poisonous or not, therefore, we will further describe how the snake behaves in natural conditions, what it eats and in what natural areas it lives.

In nature, the animal lives in deciduous forests. Also settles on the rocks or near farms, where it hunts rodents and small birds.

It is worth mentioning the distribution of gutata. The snake can be found throughout the United States, including in the south in the state of California and near Florida.

Gutata is most active at night and at dawn, since the prey he hunts for appears in the dark. In the daytime, the reptile tries to stay in various shelters or on trees. A predator kills prey like a boa constrictor, wrapping itself around it and squeezing it with its body.

Description and varieties

The length of this reptile is 1−1.5 m. The average life expectancy is 8−9 years. It is difficult to find out how long a maize snake lives by morphological characteristics. You must understand how quickly the animal grows and develops. The snake is active at dawn and at night., because at this time she hunts.

In the maize snake, the natural color is represented by an orange-gold color with black and red stripes. However, morphs are often found in nature - groups of snakes with genetic abnormalities. They differ only in color, the remaining signs are saved.

Popular include:

  1. Amelanism. Reptiles have a red or whitish pink hue. They have no black pigment.
  2. Hypomelanism. Morphs are brown, gray or light brown in color with ventral scales.

Meissen snake is active in the dark, at which time it hunts

  • Charcoal. Reptiles in gray and brown. There is no yellow pigment.
  • Anerythrysm. The animals are light gray in color with small patches of yellow on the neck and lower abdomen. Red pigment is missing.
  • Caramel. Reptiles with a mutation that suppresses red pigment. They “replace” it with yellow tones.
  • Lava. Monochrome dark staining with a predominant black color is characteristic.
  • Lavender. Melanin is practically absent. Therefore, the color of the morph varies from lavender to coffee, pink.
  • Emory. The main color is gray with a bluish tint. The spots are painted in carrot tone with slight darkening at the edges.
  • Blizzard The snake has white scales. Rarely can a yellow spot be found on it.
  • These morphs live in deciduous forests, near rocky slopes, on barren soils. The largest population is located near farms throughout America, in the provinces of Mexico, on the territory of the Cayman Islands.

    Home Content

    For the tortilla snake, horizontal-looking terrariums are bought with a size of at least 50x40x40 cm. One individual or a group of reptiles is launched there - 1 male and 2 females. Reptile housing is heated with an electric carpet. The temperature is monitored by a thermometer. Measure it at a distance of 3 cm from the substrate in a warm corner. At low temperatures, the representatives of the species stop the digestion process, and immunity decreases.

    A ditch with water - required element. In it, the reptile will swim and soak during molting. The terrarium makes hidden places for the animal, where it can relax. Objects collected in nature are placed in containers, having previously been treated with a chlorine solution. A ditch with peat moss is placed in a warm corner, and a dry shelter in a cold corner. It is recommended to use paper, coconut substrate or gravel. The terrarium should be sprayed daily with warm water.

    Skid care includes:

    • removal of fungus, dirt,
    • replacement of litter, liquid.

    In the summer, UV baths are organized. For this, reptiles are moved all day to a place constantly lit by the sun, but do not forget that part of the tank should remain in the shade.

    Diet

    Newborns absorb the yolk through the umbilical cord. After a week, you need to put a drinker next to them. If the kids will refuse food, they should be force-fed. As a first feeding, killed pink mice are used to reduce the risk of injury when feeding.

    Do not give reptiles thawed wet foods. They get wet with a napkin so that the substrate does not stick to food. Adults eat 1 time in 5 days by rodents, daily chickens. Together with food they put vitamin and mineral supplements. Water is changed daily.

    Snake propagation

    The maize snake is an ovipositor. Her puberty occurs at 2 years of age. The female brings up to 24 eggs. To stimulate the mating process, the snake arrange hibernation for at least 6 weeks.

    At this time, the temperature in the terrarium is 12-14 degrees. Wintering is recommended from November to January, so that mating occurs in the following months. Pregnancy will last 36–38 days. At the end of hibernation, the temperature begins to gradually rise to 22–28 degrees during the day and to 18–20 degrees at night.

    Although animals do not feed throughout the winter, water should always be near them.

    Precautionary measures

    This snake is not poisonous. Corn snakes secrete poison, but it is dangerous only for cold-blooded animals. A reptile shows aggression only when it is hurt. Therefore, many people like to keep a snake at home, because it does not pose a danger even to a cat. It is forbidden to pick up a snake after feeding. Reptiles can burp what they eat.

    Appearance

    In size, the Amur snake is similar to the four-lane. He is very beautiful - this is one of the most spectacular snakes in our fauna. She is often shot in dramatic frames of feature films. The coloring of the upper side of the body of adults is dark brown or completely black. Against this background, transverse wide yellow stripes bifurcating on the sides stand out sharply. This drawing brings it closer to bright exotic snakes. Sometimes there are melanistic - completely black - individuals of this species. In adult snakes, the general background of the color of the back is black or dark brown. Rare white or yellow narrow, oblique, bifurcated stripes on the sides go against this background. Moreover, the white transverse stripes are more characteristic of females, and juicy yolk-yellow - for males, but, as in any rule, there are exceptions. The head is one-color - black, with yellow spots on the throat and lips. Males are usually larger than females.

    Amur snake is one of the largest snakes in the fauna of the former USSR. Adult snakes grow up to 1.7 meters, but two-meter specimens are also known, the tail is 4.5-5.5 times shorter than the length of the body. The head is relatively weakly delimited from the neck. The preorbital flap is large, the width of the intermaxillary flap significantly exceeds its length, from above, this flap almost does not protrude or extends into a very obtuse angle between the interax. The scales of the first, counting from the belly, four to seven longitudinal rows are smooth, the rest with weak or obvious ribs. Around the body 23, rarely 25 rows of scales. 200-216 abdominal flaps in males, 214-238 in females, 58-78 pairs of caudal flaps, some pairs can be merged into one flap. The abdominal flaps form an unclear rib on the sides of the abdomen. Scales with two apical pores. The anal shield is divided.

    Other snakes of our fauna usually have a protective color, merging with the background of the environment. The coloring of the Amur snake is also protective, but not so much patronizing as disorienting: the bright dissecting stripes prevent the potential enemy from perceiving the snake as a whole. And when this snake creeps, it gives the impression of flickering colored spots, which also deceives the enemy. The head snake on top is usually black, and the labial shields are yellow with black transverse seams. From the back edge of the eye to the corner of the mouth passes a black stripe. The ventral side is yellow, often with dark spots.

    Young individuals of this species are colored differently. Their upper body is brownish with wide transverse brown stripes, each of which has a black border and is separated from the neighboring narrow white strip. On their heads they have a complex pattern of dark and light stripes. The coloring of young snakes masks them both on the ground and in the crown of trees.

    Distribution and lifestyle

    Amur snake is found in North and Northeast China, as well as in Korea and Mongolia. In Russia, he is known from the Primorsky and Khabarovsk territories. In the north, its range reaches Komsomolsk-on-Amur, in the west - to Small Khingan. Amur snake is an inhabitant of forests of various types. However, it enters into thickets of bushes and meadows. Like an ordinary one, he is not afraid of human proximity - he often crawls into villages and keeps himself in the middle of buildings, in vegetable gardens and gardens. He is very mobile, quickly crawls on the ground, perfectly climbs trees (these snakes were noticed at a height of more than ten meters), he swims and dives well. It can cover significant distances (in the experiment it crawled 8 kilometers in one day), returning to its permanent habitat. Like many other animals, Amur snakes adhere to individual sites that persist for a number of years. Snakes regularly leave them, heading for the winter or to certain places where mating pairs form, but then always return there.

    Hollows, rotting wood, rodent burrows, voids between stones serve as shelters for them, in villages - heaps of straw or garbage. They hibernate in similar places, accumulating several individuals (sometimes up to thirty).

    In spring, adult snakes gather in groups, every year in the same place. Males look for females here and seek their location. The male constantly keeps close to his chosen one. When courting, he strokes his partner's body with his head. At the end of the mating season, the males crawl, and the females remain here, bearing eggs. Where Amur snakes for breeding gather, there are usually many shelters in which females can relax and bask in the sun.In such places not only females of the Amur snake accumulate, but also other snakes - a patterned snake and a muzzle.

    In the second half of summer, females lay eggs about 5 centimeters long and 2.5 centimeters in diameter. In clutch there are from 7 to 30 eggs - larger individuals usually bring more offspring. Eggs are laid in a moist, loose substrate - moss, ripe leaves, in the hollows of trees. This species also has collective masonry. In one such "incubator" found 108 eggs. Cubs are born quite large - often longer than 30 centimeters. They feed on a more varied diet than adults — mollusks, mouse-like rodent cubs, small bird chicks, and shrews. A lot of snakes die during the first wintering, as there are not enough suitable (frost-free) shelters in the habitats of the species. They reach puberty in the third year. of life.

    Adult snakes feed on small mammals, birds and chicks, as well as bird eggs, sometimes frogs. The largest individuals can swallow a rat and even a hare. Runners living close to humans often eat chicken eggs. The shell with a clear crunch breaks in the esophagus by outgrowths of the cervical vertebrae, while the snake does not burp it, as some other snakes specializing in feeding bird eggs do. A snake can swallow small prey alive, strangles a larger one, crushing it with a powerful body to the ground or encircling it with body rings.

    In danger, the Amur snake tends to flee. But if this fails, it exhibits defensive behavior: hisses and throws towards the enemy. Like some other species, in an excited state it vibrates with the tip of the tail. A large copy of the snake can seriously bite. However, in captivity, these snakes quickly get used to humans, take food from their hands, breed well. In China, they are sometimes kept as pets, and Amur snakes benefit the owners by exterminating rats and mice.

    Man also uses this large snake for food. The capture of Amur snakes for captive and gastronomic purposes is detrimental to the natural populations of the species.

    Captive breeding and breeding

    It is necessary to keep the snake in a horizontal type terrarium, for a pair of snakes a terrarium of 100x60x70 cm in size is sufficient. In order to stimulate reproduction, it is desirable to keep separately with the connection of sexual partners only for the duration of mating. Peat or earth, usually covered with a layer of fallen leaves or sphagnum moss, is usually used as soil. There should be a spacious drinking bowl in the terrarium, a convenient branch is desirable, but not necessary, you can do without shelter - the snake is very calm and quickly gets used to captivity. As feed use mice, small rats, birds (daily chickens, young quail) and bird eggs. The daylight hours are 9-11 hours. Relative humidity is about 70%. The temperature is 26-31 ° C during the day and 18-20 ° C at night. Wintering (lasting from 1 to 3 months) is optional, but allows you to shift the breeding cycles to a convenient time for you and get 2 offspring per year.

    Mating can be effective in any months of the year, but it is better if they coincide with the natural dates, i.e. May - June. The duration of pregnancy is about 1 month. The number of eggs in the clutch is from 13 to 30, their size is 50-56 x 29-31 mm, weight 25.7-35.7 g. Incubation at a temperature of 29 + 1 ° C and a high level of relative humidity ranges from 34 to 44 days . Young hatch with a size of 295-383 mm and a mass of 13.0 to 20.1 g, which is significantly larger than in nature. In captivity, the mass of young people by the age of six months exceeds 70 g, and by the year 100 g. Juvenile coloration changes after 6 months. The first molt in young people takes place on the 6-10th day after birth, after which they begin to feed on newborn mice.

    Wintering pattern

    The wintering scheme includes 5 periods - cleaning, preparation, cooling, removal from wintering and additional stimulation. The cleaning period is to stop feeding for the time necessary for complete digestion of food, in the presence of water and the same temperature and humidity. The duration of this period depends on the qualitative composition of the diet and the temperature in the terrarium. Preparation - includes a gradual decrease in daylight hours and temperature with a slight increase in humidity to the level required during the cooling period, and lasts about 10 days. This and the previous wintering period is spent in a terrarium in which snakes were kept. The next period - cooling, or actually wintering - is carried out under tightly controlled conditions. To do this, the snakes are placed one by one or in small groups in linen bags, which are placed in hard plywood or in other boxes on a layer of shavings or sphagnum with a thickness of 3-5 cm, all the space in them is loosely filled with the same sphagnum or hay. To avoid sudden changes in temperature, such a box with snakes can be placed inside a slightly larger box, the space between the walls of which are filled with chips. Small wintering boxes can be installed at the bottom of household refrigerators. But it must be borne in mind that the air in domestic refrigerators is very dry, and night temperatures can drop significantly. Therefore, before placing snakes there, you need to make sure that the temperature will not fall below + 5 ° C. To avoid dehydration, once every 5 days, the filler in the box should be slightly moistened with a spray bottle. Withdrawal is the opposite of the preparation period. Wintering boxes are transferred to a place with a slightly higher temperature, then the snakes are transferred to the terrarium with the heating turned off, where they will be kept during the breeding season.

    The heating source is turned on 1 - 2 days after the placement of the snakes in the terrarium. From this moment, daylight hours and humidity are gradually increased. The maximum duration of daylight hours is supported by at least 20 days. The supply of vitamin E (15 - 20 IU / kg of body weight, with food) and ultraviolet irradiation (any sources of artificial ultraviolet light with a wavelength of 285 - 315 nm) is done on the second day after cooling. Feeding must begin on the first day of the transfer of snakes to normal conditions of detention. Intensive ultraviolet irradiation is especially effective from the moment of sexual partners' sitting. As a rule, females are planted in males, although successful mating is possible in the reverse order. When connecting a female with males, it is possible to introduce her immediately into a group of several males, or sequential transmission through several separately sitting males. Mating can be effective in any months of the year, but it is better if they coincide with the natural dates, i.e. May June.

    1. Orlova V.F., Semenov D.V. The nature of Russia: the life of animals. Amphibians and reptiles. - M .: "LLC firm" Publishing house AST ", 1999. - 480s.

    2. Kudryavtsev S.V., Frolov V.E., Korolev A.V. Terrarium and its inhabitants: A review of species and captivity: A reference manual. M .: Forest industry, 1991 .-- 349.

    What does a corn snake look like?

    Toddler reptiles have a length of 20 to 40 centimeters, and an adult reaches the size of 150 centimeters. As already mentioned, the distinctive feature of the snake is its unique color. Runner ornaments very diverse, and the color scheme, for any "taste and color" - black, red, orange, cream, raspberry, pink, coral, cherry, brown, white.

    Where else can you find a snake with such a variety of colors? Okiti - representatives of the classic coloring of bright, saturated colors. There are representatives who do not have bright colors in their color - amelanists. These are white and cream snakes with small shades of yellow or orange.. Snake albino has a light cream color. with barely noticeable dark stripes and eye-catching red eyes.

    Why did this reptile become so popular among terrariums?

    • They are absolutely not aggressive.
    • Unusual and varied color.
    • Small size compared to other reptiles.
    • Very quickly get used to "hands."
    • The stripes do not bite.
    • Live from 10 to 20 years, depending on the conditions of detention.
    • Lightweight and unpretentious in maintenance.

    Have a maize snake and several disadvantages:

    • It is affected by bacteria, so it is very important to monitor the cleanliness of the terrarium and the health of the reptile.
    • They are very nimble and love to explore a new space - therefore they are able to escape. In order to avoid this, you need to pre-equip the home for the future pet.

    Cornstroke Lifestyle

    Adult individuals crawl well and can climb to a rather high height, but the young forces do not have enough for this. In winter, these reptiles hibernate and wake up only with the arrival of warm spring days. They begin to show activity around mid-May, when the grass is already quite high. In the natural habitat for the winter, they crawl into secluded places: under logs, in crevices of rocks and the like.

    In the terrarium they will also look for a secluded corner where no one will bother the snake. Highest activity point at snakes comes at night or in the wee hours, during the day they prefer to rest. The reptile's favorite pastime is hunting rodents, lizards, and small birds. Having reached the target, the snake tightly squeezes it and strangles it.

    Corn snail content

    A small terrarium (about 80 liters, 40–50 liters for cubs) is enough to keep the maize snake, in which it is necessary to maintain a temperature of about 25–29 degrees and a humidity of about 60% (during molting - 80%). And also the terrarium should be well ventilated.

    To heat the "house", you can use special thermal mats, thermal cords, incandescent and mirror lamps, and to maintain the desired level of humidity - a cuvette with moistened sphagnum. If you chose a heat cord for heating, then it is better to lay it under the bottom of the terrarium than in the soil itself. And if your choice fell on a lamp - it must be installed so that the reptile is not burned, it is desirable to fence it with glass or mesh. At night, the heating of the terrarium can be turned off - if the temperature in it does not drop below 22 degrees. And do not forget to install several thermometers in the terrarium to control the temperature, since the temperature is very important for the normal functioning and digestion of your pet.

    Coarse sand, paper, crushed bark, gravel, or a special coconut substrate should be poured at the bottom of the “home”. There is one caveat - if you chose to cover sawdust, small shavings or coconut substrate, then you will have to feed the reptile in another place because of the threat of particles of soil entering the body along with food.

    Without fail you need to equip the reptiles with a nook - a house, a decorative log, a shelf. the choice is huge. Just remember that the size of the shelters should allow the snake to completely hide in them. Ideally, they should have several holes, so that the snake was comfortable to crawl / crawl out. It will be good entertainment to crawl and overcome all sorts of different twigs, sticks, snags. It is necessary to illuminate the terrarium with fluorescent lamps.

    Corn tortoises, like many other reptiles during molting, tend to water - lie down, soak, swim. So do not forget to put the handsome man in a kind of “bathtub”. Well, of course, do not forget about a stable drinking bowl with high walls.

    Arrangement and dimensions of the terrarium

    To begin with, gutata requires an elongated terrarium, so in no case do not get the high option. Although the snake often settles in the trees, however, on an ongoing basis, this form of dwelling will not give the animal enough space.

    The minimum parameters of the terrarium for the maize snake start from 50 × 40 × 40 cm for one snake.

    Next, we’ll talk about the most important thing - arranging a terrarium and heating. It is no secret that all snakes are cold-blooded animals, therefore they cannot exist normally in the cold, since all their life processes are directly controlled by the temperature of the external environment.

    To heat the "home" they use a special heating pad-rug, which is lined under one half of the terrarium. Next, at a height of 3-4 cm from the substrate, a thermostat is placed so that the temperature can be precisely controlled. Also in the house you need to put a cuvette with water in which a snake can fit. This is a very important point, because during molting the snake will spend most of the time in water, which should have room temperature.

    As for the creation of natural conditions, for this it is necessary to place several shelters in the terrarium, in which the snake can hide.

    To do this, you can use purchased options, or build a small cave of natural stones. You can also place several snags or branches, the main thing is not to “litter” the terrarium, but to make it as comfortable as possible for the pet. Now let's talk about the substrate for the terrarium. The bottom of the snake dwelling should be covered with material in order to decorate the terrarium and bring the conditions closer to the natural ones.

    To do this, the bottom is most often lined with pine shavings, crushed bark or artificial material, which can be purchased at any pet store.

    It should be understood that the material must be constantly replaced, as it is contaminated with urine and feces of the snake, which, if you stay in the terrarium for a long time, can cause various diseases in your pet.

    For lighting, standard fluorescent lamps are used that do not give an “acidic” color. All lighting is located outside the terrarium, otherwise your pet will at least get a burn.

    Corn Rice Diet

    An important aspect in the care of the maize snake is its nutrition.

    It is necessary to feed the snake once every five days - after the food that was eaten earlier was digested and went outside. Adults on average eat 1 time per week. Remember that snakes lack a sense of proportion, so do not overfeed!

    The main diet of reptiles is mice - the number depends on the size and age of the snake (1-2 large mice). You can feed the snake with special thawed food. Do not allow the reptile to catch a mouse itself, as there is a chance of infection and poisoning. Adults are desirable sometimes diversify the diet with medium-sized chickens, quails, gerbils or hamsters, but often this is not necessary.

    But also do not forget about various mineral supplements - calcium, eggshell. But concentrated vitamins should be given infrequently - once a month it will be enough. Do not experiment with meat such as pork or beef, and fish - the digestive system of maize snakes is not adapted to such food, so a pet from it can get sick and even die. Always check for water at the pet drinker and change it every day, this is one of the most important conditions for keeping the maize snake! It is sometimes possible to mix mineral water of the Borjomi type into the water, as an additional source of vitamins and minerals.

    Feeding a baby snake is not very different from an adult - it is important to prevent the baby from starving. Feed should be given once every 4–5 days, again subject to complete emptying of the previous portion. Very small snakes, up to six months fed only newborn mice.

    After feeding the maize snake, it is not recommended to disturb, since the reptile can burp. If this still happened, you need to take a break in feeding for at least a week.

    During molting maize snake does not need to be fed.

    You should not stretch out food for reptiles with your bare hands, because the maize snake swallows the whole food and may well grab a hand.

    Is it possible to breed maize snakes at home?

    As mentioned earlier, breeding these snakes at home is not only possible, but often more effective than in the wild.

    When are these reptiles capable of breeding? Their puberty occurs at the age of two to three years. After reaching adulthood, you need to wait until the reptiles come out of wintering, and add vitamin E to the food for two to three weeks. Then hook to each other.

    Mating takes place within 10–20 minutes; after this, the females lay their eggs after 1–2 months. In the terrarium, it is necessary to install a cuvette with a sphagnum - there the female will make the masonry. Clutch usually consists of 6–35 eggs.

    Eggs must be placed in an incubator, where it is necessary to maintain a temperature of 27–29 degrees. In 50–75 days babies of corn snakes will be born. Cubs begin to eat after the first molt.

    When kept at home, re-laying can be achieved - for this it is necessary to further stimulate males and females. In the wild habitat, such a phenomenon was not observed.

    So we examined the principles of maintenance and care of the corn snake. Based on all of the above, it becomes clear why this reptile was so fond of snake breeders - it is unpretentious in food and care and does not cause much trouble. For beginners who have never before dealt with snakes, but want to do this interesting thing - this is the perfect snake. Unpretentious, peaceful - what else is needed? Of course, as in the case of other reptiles and animals, it is better to acquire a cub, as it will be easier to tame it. Cubs quickly enough begin to recognize the owner and love to accompany him in all household chores.

    Climatic conditions

    The temperature in the daytime should be between 22–28 ° С, and at night it can drop to 18 ° С. Several times a day, you need to spray the inside of the terrarium from the spray bottle with warm water to increase humidity.

    Since the snake loves high humidity, for its preservation it is possible to place sphagnum moss in the “dwelling”. Firstly, it will constantly humidify the air, and secondly, it will be an additional decor.

    Do not forget about wintering, which should last about 30-45 days. At this time, the temperature in the terrarium is lowered to 10-15 ° C in order to bring it closer to the natural temperatures of winter.

    Snake Food

    We turn to the nutrition of gutata. We wrote above that in nature the snake eats various rodents, frogs and small birds. In captivity, it will not work to feed him with any dry food, so get ready to buy mice or small quails once a week. You can also feed hamsters, however, the option with mice is the most optimal both in price and in nutritional value.

    Once a month, they give a vitamin supplement along with food, and after every second feeding they offer already crushed eggshells or calcium preparations.

    Also do not forget that the terrarium should always have clean fresh water. To do this, set the drinker at an acceptable height and change the liquid in it every day.

    Several times a month, instead of ordinary water, you can add mineral water, which will become the source of some trace elements and ions.

    Be sure to take into account the preferences of your pet during the preparation of the “menu”, since maize snake can significantly reduce waste.

    This is because some specimens prefer to eat snails, frogs, or even fish. Needless to say, it is much cheaper and more “humane” to feed fish than small mice.

    Pet care

    Caring for the snake consists in the regular replacement of litter, water and removal of dirt and fungus from the terrarium. It is also necessary to feed the snake on time and give it time to digest food (about 4-5 days).

    During this time, you can not take the snake in your arms or somehow disturb, because it can burp the eaten and remain hungry.

    In the summer, ultraviolet baths will not interfere with crawling. To do this, the terrarium is moved to the sunlit place for the whole day, while leaving a darkened part of the house so that the animal can hide from sunlight.

    Also do not forget about the molting, which occurs when the skin becomes too small for the snake. At this point, you should not panic, but it is better to constantly monitor the color of the eyes and scales. As soon as the scales become too light, and the eyes are covered with a milky blue film, you should wash the head of the pet in warm water. Such actions will contribute to an early moult, which will take place in a day.

    During molting, it is impossible to disturb or pull the snake out of the terrarium, as the process can slow down, and the animal itself will experience great discomfort.

    Breeding maize snakes

    Breeding snakes cannot be called easy, but nothing is impossible.

    First you need to get hold of the female and the male, while the female must be older, since they pass puberty later.

    After the wintering runners emerge, they should be irradiated with ultraviolet light (a lamp or sunlight) and vitamin E should be given together with food. Vitamins should be given with food for about 3 weeks, while the food should be nutritious and fit the size of snakes.

    After abundant feeding and vitamin stimulation, the snakes are placed in one terrarium for mating, which takes about 30 minutes.

    After 1-2 months, the female will lay her eggs, and the moist sphagnum placed in a small stand will serve as the “nest”.

    After the whole process, the masonry is pulled out of the terrarium and placed in an incubator, where the eggs at a temperature of 25–27 ° C will stay for about 60–70 days.

    After hatching, the kids will not require food, but only good conditions and warmth, so you need to prepare a separate terrarium for them in advance. The first feeding is done after molting; cubs of mice are used.

    Where to buy, for how much, and whether it costs

    The price for one run starts at $ 15. The price corresponds to the young growth, which has already moved the first molt and is able to eat the usual food. An adult costs at least $ 30.

    It is worth clarifying that the price corresponds to the standard color. Albinos or caramel morphs will cost several times more, so be sure to check the price.

    You can buy snakes in any serpentarium nursery in your area that is engaged in the cultivation and sale of maize snakes.

    We do not recommend buying “by hand”, as the animal may be sick or tortured, which is why you will spend a huge amount of money on rehabilitation.If you like snakes and want to buy a “newbie option”, then the tortoise snake is right for you: it quickly gets used to new conditions, does not show aggression, and also does not require expensive feed.

    The minuses include the pain of snakes and “timidity”, since the snake can constantly hide from you, not wanting to go hand in hand.

    This concludes the discussion of an interesting, friendly snake called the tortoise snake. Before buying an animal, you should estimate the total budget and calculate the maintenance costs, since the snake will live with you for at least 8 years.

    If you want to buy a "toy" for a child, then it is better to buy a cat - a snake loves loneliness more and does not need a company of people, and constant stress and a sharp change in temperature can lead to rapid death of the animal.

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