House Snake Caresheet

 

Background Information
The African House Snake is a small constrictor native Ethopia, Sudan to Senegal and also in as far north as Morroco. Found throughout the continent south of the sahara desert in Africa it grows 2 - 4ft in length, it is a dimorphic species with females growing larger than males. Brown bodied with cream patterning which comes plain striped or spotted, its colours suit well to the drier african plains where this species is often found. Other house snake species come in various other colours such as olive green, gold and black. House snakes are often found near human settlements, hence the name, but this is no concern as it is completely harmless and prefers to avoid any confrontation. They are a placid and highly underrated species that are often overlooked as a starter snake and are certainly a good alternative if corns grow a bit big for ones liking.

Level of Experience

Beginner

Habitat

Grasslands, savannah shrub areas, scrublands

Life Span

20 years

Active Time of Day

Nocturnal

Natural Prey

Rodents, Lizards, Frogs

Terrestrial / Semi Arboreal / Arboreal / Aquatic / Fossorial

Terrestrial

Reproduction

Mate: Spring
Lay: Summer

Clutch Size

7 – 18 eggs

Breeding Weights / Length / Age

Males: 100g+ / 2ft / 2 years of age
Females: 250g+ / 3ft / 3 years of age

Brumation Time

2 months

Brumation Temperature

14 – 18 ‘C

Incubation Time

75 - 83 days

Incubation Temperature

24 – 29 ’C

 


Captive Requirements and Welfare
House snakes come from a wide range of habitats giving the owner plenty of options in how to design a natural african enviroment. Being a smaller species they don’t need the biggest enclosure however due to their sexual dimorphism females will quite likely need a larger space. Housing together is not advised as sexual maturity is reached at a very early age in house snakes. It can take as little as six months for females to be mature and being mated at such a young age can put huge stress on their bodies and has been known to be fatal.  

Vivarium size

30x30x30cm for hatchling
3ft x 1.5ft x 1.5ft for adult

Daytime Temperature (cool – warm)

21 – 31 ‘C

Night-time Temperature

18 – 22 ‘C

Heating Equipment (on timers)

Spot bulb during day, heat mat at night

Substrate

Most Natural: Dried Forest Floor Bedding / Repti Bark / LR desert bedding
Alternatives: Aspen, Beech Woodchip

Hides

2 at minimum: however their burrowing nature could count their substrate as their second hide.

Decor

Fake plants and terrestrial greenery is preferred with this species and will aid in shedding

Water

Fresh water topped up when needed clean out water bowl every few days to prevent slime build up

Food (Feeding)

Pinkies for hatchlings then increase the size as they grow. Always take the snake out and feed in a separate box to prevent substrate being eaten.

Cleaning

Spot pick weekly, full clean monthly