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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-15-2008, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Question Good Species for Beginner?

I have a 44 gallon viv and I'm not sure what I'd like to put in it, I've only considered putting a snake in it now. By no means is the viv. ready to be inhabited, so I have plenty of time to research what ever species may be suggested. I'm looking for a smaller breed, as I would rather not have to enlarge the viv. And also, a breed that can survive off of a cricket, or similar diet (no pinkies, furries, mice, rats, or rodents of any sorts). I like garter snakes, and I think they may be called hognose snakes? I would love, love, love to get a lime green snake if there are any other species than the green tree python, and maybe a species thats easier to care for than a green tree python... Any ideas?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-16-2008, 04:54 AM
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garter snakes around here are green i believe. but i've heard people say the best starter snake is a corn snake and they come in awesome colours

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-16-2008, 06:05 AM
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It's also going to depend on whether you want to handle the snake. Garter snakes aren't the most tractable. Most of the snakes that live off invertebrates are not the easiest to keep in captivity, nor are they good vivarium animals because they'll spend almost all of their time in hiding. If you are a first time snake owner, I don't think I'd recommend any of them for you.

Green snakes, like many insectivores, are pretty shy animals. They don't reproduce readily in captivity so most of the ones in the pet trade are wild caught. It's very important that they have enough plants to hide in and feel secure. You can't just give them a hide box like most snakes. They are partially arboreal so you need fairly large live plants for them to climb on and hide in. If you don't meet all of their specifications, they can be very reluctant to feed. They are considered moderately difficult snake to keep, if you want to do well by them. Not a snake most would consider for a beginner.

The snakes most commonly recommended for beginners are small, easy keepers like some of the corn/rat/king snakes, just like Mulder suggested. However, if you don't want to feed rodents, that rules them out. My feeling is that you'll either have to compromise on what you want to feed, or how difficult the animal is to maintain.

Have you thought about a nice spider? Some of the larger species of tarantulas make great vivarium animals. JMO. They feed mostly on invertebrates and as long as you keep temperature and humidity within certain parameters, there is relatively little to do as far as maintenance. I feed mine less and less often as they mature. My adult female C. crawshayi only eats every month or two, and given her size and weight, I'd bet she could go as long a year without eating, as long as she was not stressed or disturbed. Not usually a problem as handling is pretty much out of the question with this particular species.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-16-2008, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah... spiders are definately out of the question... I'm an arachnophobe... I got the shivers...

Everything I've read says that garter snakes are good snakes for beginners ...

The tank that I would make for them is just an empty aquarium so I have the option to turn it into a viv. or a terrarium if I so please.

I don't mind owning something that is harder to maintain, but I am a beginner and I wouldn't want to kill the animal due to lack of skill.

And there is no way I would be able to feed it a live animal, or frozen animal (I've had pet rats, they're very smart and make wonderful pets)... I have nothing against those who can, I mean the snake has to eat, but I would just much rather a species that eats crickets or worms or tadpoles like a garter snake lol.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-25-2008, 08:44 PM
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You're kind of limited to what you can have since you don't want to feed it mice, even if they're frozen. Corn snakes are probably the easiest to care for, but you do have to feed them frozen mice. I was told Ribbon snakes are good beginner snakes and you can feed them comets or small goldfish.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 05:23 AM
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Ball pythons are the best beginner snakes in my opinion. I agree with the corn snakes as well though. And yeah, you don't have much choice with snakes if you don't want to feed mice.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 06:18 AM
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have you thought much about a lizard? there a lot that you don't have to feed mice and rats to and would love that size tank...

I hear good things about anoles, geckos, and i think armadillo lizards are quite adorable

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 11:54 AM
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Corn snakes are the best in my opinion. If your not going to feed mice or rats, them your extremely limited to what you can have.

How about a lizard such as: a leopard gecko or bearded dragon.Both of which can be handled.





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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 12:25 PM
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is a beardie ok in that size cage?

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-15-2008, 03:45 PM
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I dunno. I think a 44 gallon would be fine for a small one, but I think as adults a 50 gallon is better. I was just throwing and idea out.

And crested gecko is also an option too.





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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-22-2008, 01:19 AM
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corn snakes

Corn snakes are one of the most available snakes in the pet trade today. The numbers of corn snakes are captive bred annually, and are justifiably one of the most popular snakes of all time. Corn snakes are relatively small, rarely exceeding five feet in length, active feeders, tolerate a wide variety of environmental conditions, come in a dazzling of color morphs, and are very easy to breed.


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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-22-2008, 10:22 AM
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If you do end up getting a snake suck as a corn, you'll need to get an adult snake and supplied him/her with many hides as they get very stressed just being out in the open.A hatching would need to stay in a smaller tank till its large enough.

As hesslei said they come in alot of morphs so your sure to find on you like.

If you don't want snakes anymore because of the mouse factor,tree frogs or another type of frog/toad could work for you.

I just noticed your in Quebec.Theres a reptile expo in Montreal the 10th of August.You might like to be and talk to some breeders there.





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