Part of the rat snake clan, the corn snake is a great beginner snake due to their smaller size and friendly demeanor.
Corn snakes can be found in the eastern United States as far north as southern New Jersey down to Florida, and as far west as Louisiana and Kentucky. Size-wise they are a good choice for new snake owners because they aren't as thick and cumbersome as larger breeds. This can take away some of the intimidation for first-time owners.
A heat gradient is necessary for corn snakes, with the warm end being around 85 degrees F, this ensures that they can thermo-regulate. An under tank heater or heat tape on one side of the tank is usually the best way to achieve this. When they are shedding, a moist hide is necessary. Any type of hide with wet moss or paper towels will do the trick.
The corn is the most frequently bred snake for pet purposes and can live from 12 to 20 years in a 20 to 30 gallon tank for one adult.
Corn snakes are also quite elusive. They are usually climbing and burrowing during the day, as they are diurnal. They tend to be secretive and love hiding and natural light is sufficient.
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Corn snakes can grow from 24 to 72 inches.
Corn snakes have very wide variation of colors from a dark blood-red to a light silver/lavender.
Corn snakes are docile and friendly, which makes them great for newbies.
Corn snakes reproduce any time from March to May, and are oviparous, laying 10 to 30 eggs per clutch. They lay in late May to July and the eggs need warm, humid conditions to incubate and hatch. Corn snakes do not tend to their eggs. The gestation period is 60 to 65 days at roughly 82 degrees F.
Hatchlings are usually 10-15 inches. They reach maturity anywhere from 18 to 36 months.
Corn snakes eat appropriately sized mice and rats, frozen or alive, every few days.