Kingsnakes can be found in southern Canada, the United States, and Central and South America. These snakes are attractive, peaceful, and nonvenomous. Milk snakes are one of 45 kingsnake subspecies. These snakes are simple to care for and make a nice first snake. They come in a wide range of sizes, colors, and designs.
Many subspecies have striking, beautiful designs, including those that resemble the red, black, and yellow color banding seen on venomous coral snakes as a natural defense. The nonvenomous kingsnakes have black bands that touch red bands, while the nonvenomous coral snakes have yellow bands that touch red bands.
It’s important to have a safe cage. Kingsnakes are known for putting their enclosures to the test and jumping from even the tiniest of rooms. A firmly latched top would be needed for the enclosure. These snakes can squeeze into even the tiniest of openings. In the cage top, make sure there are no openings, openings, or small splits. Since they can eat other cage mates, kingsnakes should be held alone.
Hatchlings can live in a 10-gallon aquarium tank. However, medium-sized (36 inches) adult snakes need a 20-gallon tank, and larger, full-grown snakes (60 inches) would thrive in a larger enclosure, such as a 60-gallon tank.
Reptiles are cold-blooded animals who must maintain their body temperature by switching between colder and cooler areas of their environment. Provide a thermal gradient or temperature spectrum in the kingsnake’s enclosure ranging from 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 28 degrees Celsius) during the day to 10 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit (2 to 5 degrees Celsius) at night.
Most of snake owners choose to heat their tanks with under-tank heaters (placed under half of the tank). For nocturnal animals, radiant heat sources such as ceramic heat emitters are preferable to incandescent bulbs by using overhead heating.
Since they are mostly nocturnal, they do not need illumination as long as the room receives sufficient light to signal the change from night to day. While most nocturnal animals do not need ultraviolet light, a UVB (5.0) fluorescent light may help with calcium absorption from their food.
High humidity is not needed for kingsnakes since 40 to 60 percent is adequate. You should monitor moisture levels with a hygrometer or humidity scale. A small dish of water in the cage should suffice in most situations. They can benefit from more humidity during shedding.
The bedding or padding for the bottom of your pet’s cage is called substrate. Paper towels or butcher paper are suitable for washing and monitoring feces while dealing with fresh snakes. Reptile carpeting, Astroturf, reptile bark, mulch, or aspen shavings are some of the substrates that can be used (never use cedar, redwood, or pine).
Once they’ve gotten used to you, kingsnakes are easy to treat. They’re low-maintenance and just need a little attention throughout the week. This snake rarely attacks; when it does, it normally confuses a finger for a prey object. The sting of a kingsnake is not painful. It will attempt to flee from you if it feels threatened.
It will attempt to flee from you if it feels threatened. It can also emit a musky odor from its anal glands (which is unpleasant but not harmful) or rattle the tip of its tail in the manner of a rattlesnake as an alarm. You will begin treating a new snake after allowing it to relax for a few days after taking it home. To begin, be gentle and consistent, holding regular short sessions to create confidence.
It shouldn’t take long for the snake to get used to being treated. Handling snakes right after they’ve eaten will cause them to regurgitate their food. These snakes have constrictors on their bodies. They will try to encircle your arm, but they will not be able to hurt you. Begin unwrapping them from the tail end, as their head is the strongest.
A respiratory illness is the most serious threat to a pet kingsnake. Colds or pneumonia may affect these snakes, and is mostly exacerbated by a problem with the cage’s temperature. There may be bubbling or gurgling in the throat, gasping, or mucus around the nose as symptoms.
If you find regurgitated food in the cage, it’s possible that you handled the snake too fast after feeding it. While it may be, it is not always a symptom of sickness. Some explanations for regurgitated food include the size of the food offered or the temperature of the enclosure. Send the snake to an exotics veterinarian if regurgitation occurs again.
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