Advice for Royal Python Set Up

Ok guys I’m new to Snake keeping and I’ve done much research on the royal python before buying. So I am buying a baby/ juvenile, now rather than buy the full 4-ft setup up I have opted for a cheaper alternative for the time being as it is still a baby. now I have watched many videos and one of the videos I’ve watched they use the plastic storage tub, this is what I have opted for so I have bought a 50 gallon plastic storage tub drill 20 holes in the side and set it up as you would set up any tank hot side coldside etc now when I was buying the supplies from my local reptile store I was advised against this type of setup which goes against every bit of research I have done on YouTube etc watching videos from other breeders I was told the snake could potentially grow up disformed and at risk of killing a snake as there wouldn’t be any UV my answer to this was I will give it vitamin D powder on its food but was told by the man in the shop but this is insignificant and I could potentially kill my snake can I have your thoughts on this

If you are buying an hatchling or juvy go with a 6 to 12 quarts tub, this is important, you g individual do better in smaller enviroment, and since this will be your first snake it is important to provide an optimal enviroment that will be stress free for the animal and will allow you to observe and learn what a normal ball python behaviour is.

They do not need UV (those are nocturnal animals) nor do they need calcium as the prey item provides the necesary amount of calcium.

Here is a guide for new owner just like yourself it will cover your supply list, feeding etc .

Last advice stay away from places like YouTube and such, there is a lot of misinformation, incomplete information, potentially dangerous advice and no one there to oversee, in other words a lot of self proclaim expert.


6 to 12 quarts ???

And yes I have noticed a lot of of bad information on YouTube the channels I have subscribed to to watch I believe are reputable breeders in America as well as one breeder from the UK which has his channel and does sell his snakes on morphmarket

The tank setup with substrate it has 2 hides a large water dish, a log in the middle for hiding so it’s not too packed but I believe he will feel secure and safe in there

Regarding the UV again correct me if I’m wrong but from what I researched is the vitamin D which the snake requires which it gains from UV so this is why I opted for vitamin D powder is this correct??

Thank you for taking the time to reply to my my message

So this is the set up on cold side 1 hide and water bowl

In middle bark to assist with sheding and enrichment for the snake

Hot side hide and humidity box to also assist with sheding

Thermostat probe is in the hot side hide temp set to 31

There is no need for uv or powder supplements of any kind. They get all the vitamins, calcium and minerals from the prey item. When you say the thermostat probe is set at 31 you are referring to it in celsius right? you really only need one water bowl, and if you don’t mind me asking what is the substrate that you are using?

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Yes, @stewart_reptiles did mean to say 6 to 12 qt tub. It might sound small, but a hatchling ball python will fit in the palm of your hand. Generally, if you can fit 2 hides that your snake fits in snugly on each end and one water dish about the same size as the hides, then the enclosure is probably not too small.

Personally I house hatchlings in 7qt tubs, and then move them to 16qt tubs, then 32qt and finally 42qt (or 60qt for females) based on if they continue to feed well after moving up. Some snakes will prefer the more confined spaces and will stop eating if put into something too big, so generally you’ll have better chances of success getting your ball python to eat if you keep the size limited.

Height of the enclosure can also be a factor and I keep all my tubs under about 7 inches tall. Most of their predators will approach them from above, so they prefer to feel like they are well covered from the top at all times.

Best wishes for getting started, it wasn’t that long ago that I was in your shoes trying to learn the basics and find my first python. And it’s definitely still a learning experience!


I mean Celsius yes, also there is only one water bowl in the cold side, that at the bottom of the picture is a hide on the hot side, also the substrate I have used is premium orchid bark.

thank for replying all the information I can get his great


I still don’t understand what you mean by q t tub I’m from UK so working in feet or litres in tank size. at the minute I got is a 50l tun but after speaking with you guys understand this might be a bit big but one thing I kind of gathered is if you pack it out with ornaments rocks etc it should be fine what do you think

And thank for info

That means 6 to 12 liters really (5.67 to 11.35)

Ah, qt as an abbreviation for Quarts, which is fairly close to a Liter (1 quart ~ 0.95 liter)

Much smaller than what you have is generally recommended. It doesn’t mean it can’t ever work though. But with many ball pythons it can be a factor in stress and eating well. If you do end up going with something larger make sure you monitor how well they are eating and their behavior. And be prepared to make whatever changes needed to keep them healthy. A happy, healthy young ball python will stay in their hide all day and will eat every 1-2 weeks when offered food weekly. If you pack the enclosure with stuff make sure it fills a lot of the volume (not just floor area) so that it is effectively a smaller space in terms of liters.


I understand now thanks


Thanks for the information that’s exactly what I’m going to do I’ve got the floor space covered but will buy some fake plants leaves etc can stick them to the side filling up the high-level volume and of course any issues with feeding over the next 10 days or so and I will instantly downgrade to a smaller tub I pick my snake up this evening just got home with it about an hour ago. She seem very relaxed whilst handling her, I have put her into her enclosure she did the full perimeter found her hide and went in no problem she is due her weekly Feed tomorrow so will offer to her hopefully she will take, if she does not will try again 5 Days Later would you say that’s correct? If I have any more problems after this I will downgrade size. according to her feed chart she has are every week consistently

I’d personally just let her be until her next feed date. Skip this week’s feed just to let her settle in without any added stress.

Brilliant thanks, you have been a great help :+1:

Late to this discussion but I’m currently having a feeding problem since picking up my 15 month old female ball. She used to be in a 9l tub and thriving and feeding every week. Now shes in a 40l viv with perfect conditions (31°c 57-65%) and setup. She doesn’t even acknowledge food. I’m putting her in a 9l tub i’ve just bought and I’m confident it will do the trick. I’ll keep you posted but may need advice… :slight_smile:

@dale31 You mention her age not size do you happen to know her weight? Not feeding could actually be a normal phase based on weight.

Shes 625 grams. I’m setting up for a tub as we speak.

I had to put a 2000 gram female into a 23 quart tub before she decided she wanted to eat for me. I got her back in October last year and she had only eaten twice while I had her in my adult female rack.

I’m guessing she didn’t feel comfortable in the larger tub, despite that being a normal size for adult females of her weight. Now she’s crammed into this smaller tub, but if she’s eating then I’ll keep her in there for now :woman_shrugging:t3:

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Id test the humidity in the tubs first before making hole, start with a couple and add more if humidity is too high. You dont want them sitting on soppy substrates because the tub wont hold humidity and you have to keep misting.

Thanks guys and yea I’m leaving it overnight. Had to make a few holes as was abit high. I’ll see where it’s at in the morning. I’m on aspen as the breeder was using it.

All ready feel more confident she will feed once she is settled in the tub.

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