Best beginner to Intermediate reptiles

Hello I’ve kept reptiles for awhile from lizards to frogs to snakes ect but mostly colubrids I’m looking for a snake that doesn’t exceed 7ft prefer being able to feed on rats once adult or sub adult but I’d love to hear recommendations of any species

Some preferences
• semi arboreal and/or semi aquatic
• active by day
• likes food (like garters lol
• calm for handling
• realitively easy care

Garter for attention


To me you have just described a male Boa Constrictor.

When they are young they like to climb anything you will let them.

I wouldn’t say they were active by day, but they spend a LOT more time out of their hides than my Pythons do.

Neither of my two boas have EVER miss a meal, they literally are dust bins. And they know the difference between my hand and their food. If ever any of my other snakes refuse food, it never goes to waste. They will take their big rat and stuff in a few small ones if they are going.

You wouldn’t believe how calm boas are until you have owned one. I have been bit once and that was only because he missed the rat I was waving in front of him and got my finger… Instantly let go and went straight for the rat… They are that nice to handle I was surprised he didn’t kiss my boo boo better :joy:

Care consists of:
Feeding every 10 days
Change water daily
Heat mat and thermostat
Clean enclosure every two weeks (spot clean when needed) and full clean every month. It takes no more than 20 minutes and my tanks are 6 foot.

That is it.

They are lovely animals.


I had a female when I was younger :heart_eyes:

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Seems to me a carpet or bredli would fit your bill perfectly

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Black Pine Snake. They are awesome looking. Moderately inquisitive. And, given time, would fit your size requirements.

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I’d have to agree with eaglereptiles.
Boas are just amazing snakes. Especially for beginner to intermediate keepers.
Or if you’re not confident with a powerful constrictor, even tho I’ve never met a defensive or aggressive boa, I’d recommend a Bairds Rat Snake.
Whatever you decide to go with, research the species and make sure it’s a good fit for you.

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Consider woma pythons. While not really semi arboreal mine will climb stuff and uses every inch of it’s tank.

They actually described a black rat snake perfectly. Semi-arboreal and loves to climb, active during the day and will almost constantly be on the move, loves food and never miss meals, as babies they can be a little wiggly (they tame easily) but adults handle great, and you can keep them using ambient temps (no hotspot) because they don’t need temps above 85°F during the day (you need a room that at least gets to 82 during the summer, I use a space heater if I need it warmer during the colder months). At night they can handle drops into the low 60s if in the winter and you can even let them burmate once they have some size. They don’t usually exceed 7ft but the record is like 8ft (my full adult female is probably 5’6"-6’). They are extremely inquisitive and mine acts more like a lizard because she will come up to the side of her tank when she sees me. North American native colubrids are as rock solid as they get, but the Eastern rat snake (black rat snake, greenish rat snake, Everglades rat snake, yellow rat snake, are all different color/pattern variants) are probably some of the most widespread across the U.S. They are also great swimmers.

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