Best cheap beginner snake that can fit in a snake rack thats not a garter or ball python

Hi i am wanting a snake thats under 200 dollars for care and the animal i am gonna buy said animal in the next year or two but i want to prepare if you can help i would greatly appreciate it


I would highly recommend African House snakes. They’re extremely easy to handle, never seen one try to bite, and they stay a manageable size.


Ok thank you


Corn snakes or other rat snakes are good candidates as well


I would definitely go for a corn snake. Their care requirements are pretty basic and imho solid eaters. There are tons of morphs and colors available as well. :lizard::frog::snake:


House snakes, corn snakes, sand boas, and rosy boas are all great beginner snakes that have a small adult size and are typically docile and easy to handle. They’re hardy and their environmental requirements are pretty easy to achieve. While some of the morphs for those species can be a bit pricy, normals and more common morphs are pretty inexpensive.


Would this be an ideal size for all of those


That cage would be fine for any of those species. Also king and milksnakes make great pets, although when young can be slightly nervous.


Yup, I think those dimensions would be just fine for adults of any of those species. You may want to start a baby in a somewhat smaller enclosure, though.

Oh, western hognose snakes are also another good species to look into. Small, easy to care for, and freaking adorable. Although they’re a little more pricey, even for a normal. But they may go down some in price by the time you’re ready to purchase, it seems like more and more people are breeding them.


Thank you for all your advice


My only caveat on kings is that, depending on the species, you could end up with problem feeders, e.g., alterna, or really mouthy/bitey animals, e.g., CalKings. So a bit more front-end research would help there


Gotta chime in and agree with the recommendations for corn snakes or African house snakes. Corns especially are available in an amazing variety of colors and patterns. They’re curious and friendly, easy to care for, solid feeders. I love milk snakes but recommend that it you go for a milk or king, you opt for at least a yearling. They’re noted for being nervous and/or defensive as youngsters. Actually, ask a lot of questions whatever you choose. Individuals are just that: individual. Don’t be afraid to ask about any individual’s temperament.

Let me say a bit early, welcome to the hobby!


@bennyandjammy I have a Western hognose that has been a sporadic eater since he was a baby. I also have a hit or miss African house snake that eats maybe twice a month.

My new little baby milk snake will musk me when I pick her up and then she will chomp down on a finger when given a chance, and believe me, her tiny teeth are sharp!

I don’t have any experience with cal kings but I just
acquired a beautiful baby girl gray banded king snake that has been eating boiled pinks so I hope I will be successful when I feed her the first time.

@caryl And I have the sweetest little albino (I think) corn snake that came from a Petsmart. This little guy loves loves loves to eat, is super friendly and has NEVER bitten me or pooped on me! His name is Jelly Bean: Here he is peeking at me:


You have a nice little collection, @caron . That’s really an interesting variety. I love that you know their personalities. And your Jelly Bean is a handsome little guy! My first corn snake was a birthday gift from PetSmart. He was an Amel, too. I’ll always have a soft spot for Amels. :heart:


Thank you Caryl! So here is the rest of the list:lol

1 Brazilian Rainbow boa flighty and headstrong
3 CA boas sweet sweet sweet clingy! Lol
1 Maricopa rosy boa boy very sweet
2 BP’s boy and girl (boy is brand new)
1 Loxocemus bi color python really cool

My milk is a New Mexico

1 Leopard Gecko
1 Crested Gecko
1 Spade foot toad. (Will eat and eat)
1 Dumpy Gree Tree Frog (coming next week)

Yes, I like variety! Lol!


That’s fantastic!


I believe I am late in my reply… but, house snakes, corn snakes, sand boas, and rosy boas are all great beginner snakes that have a small adult size. These are typically docile and easy to handle. They’re stronger snakes and their environmental requirements are pretty easy to accomplish. Some morphs of these can be $$$$ but most of the normals of these types are inexpensive.

Another choice if you want a mid level challenge with still a hardy snake… Carpet python. However, get it as a baby and follow the videos on youtube. They are snappy when young or babies. But constantly handling… they chill out and by the time they outgrow you set up they are AWESOME!!!


Kings and corns for sure. Extremely hardly snakes in that they are very forgiving with husbandry


Have the agree with others, corn is the best option. You have a large variety to choose from, easy care, good eaters, and you can find some pretty cheap. This is waht I gave my daughter for her first snack. She was able to take care of it herself.


I’ll concur with a lot of the above, and from a personal note, I am going to especially second the Rosy :rose: Boa votes. We have been big (BI/Red Tail) boa keepers/breeders for many years and have recently gotten into Rosy Boas, and we are loving them, especially as beginner pets!

In fact, we’ve been doing some market research (to decide if we are going to expand into these) and so far we are getting great responses from families/beginners due to their size, and we are finding that they certainly have the personalities of the big boas, just packaged into these small bodies. We are now Rosy fans!

Here are some pictures of Rosies on another thread here on MM:

Hope this helps! :slight_smile: Have fun with whatever you choose!