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Corn Snake Health Information

Juvenile Corn Snakes can be housed in 10-gallon terrariums. A 20-gallon-long (30 inches by 12 inches by 12 inches high) will house even the largest adult. Enclosures with more floor space are recommended when housing multiple snakes together. Snakes should be separated when feeding. Suitable substrates include newspaper, outdoor carpeting, pine or aspen shavings, and soil. If using a loose substrate such as soil or wood shavings, it is best to feed the snake in a separate enclosure so that the substrate is not accidentally ingested. Provide hiding places at the warmer and cooler areas of the enclosure. During the day, the ambient temperature should be between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit and they should have a warmer area between 85 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. At night the temperature can drop to the low to mid 70s Fahrenheit. Hatchlings' enclosures should not drop below 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Though Corn Snakes may breed without undergoing a winter cooling period, seasonal cycling helps to ensure reproductive success. Only healthy snakes with good body weight should be bromated. The snakes should not be fed for the two weeks prior to cooling them or while they are brumating. The brumation temperature should be between 55 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The Corn Snakes will, however, be more active at the high end of this range and so will lose more weight than if they will if kept at the lower temperatures. The temperature should be lowered gradually over a period of about 10 days to the desired temperature, which should be maintained for between 30 and 60 days. The enclosure temperature should then be raised gradually to normal maintenance temperatures. Food should be offered about a week later.

Put the pair together immediately following the female's first post-brumation shed, and leave them together for about 5 days. If copulation is not observed, separate them for about a week and try again. Provide a nest box with moist peat moss, vermiculite, or perlite for the female to lay her eggs in. Females usually lay approximately one or two months after coming out of brumation. Most will shed about 10 days prior to laying. The number of eggs per clutch varies from 4 to 40 with the average clutch consisting of between 8 and 16 eggs. Corn Snakes may double-clutch about two months after laying their first clutch. The second clutch in a season usually contains fewer eggs than the first. Incubate the eggs in moist vermiculite or perlite at 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. At these temperatures, eggs will usually hatch in 45 to 55 days. The baby Corn Snakes will shed one to two weeks after hatching and should then be offered newborn pinkie mice. Some Corn Snake hatchlings are reluctant to feed on pinkies and will require small lizards, tube feeding, or use of techniques like lizard scenting or braining the pinkies.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Corn_Snake".
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