Best, inexpensive hides for ball pythons? Pictures, please

Hello… Can you give me some ideas for good, inexpensive, easy to clean hides for ball pythons? Pictures would be appreciated. Thanks!

@thecrawdfather You made some cheap hides recently didn’t you? I have been meaning to copy your idea for a while, so mind sharing again? :joy:

Gladly. I stole this from Jason of Morph Mixology on Youtube, so disclaimer I didn’t come up with it I only adopted it.

First off snake hides are such a ripoff. It’s truly unreal we can spend 30-50 bucks on a hide made from plastic or fake stone etc. those companies must make an absolute killing. Lol. Smart marketing.

I went to my local Dollar Tree and got a few little tubs for, you guessed it, one dollar. I cut them down using a box cutter/razor, the key with these since they are pretty brittle is you make your line on whatever height you want them, then go over it once with the razor and just score it, don’t try and cut it on the first time around or you’ll crack them.

After I cut the bottoms down, I used scissors/razor to cut the opening the same way, then put a few small holes in the top so they don’t hold too much moisture and breathe a little (might not be necessary depending where you live just what I did.)

Last step was take a lighter and run the flame all around everything you cut so there isn’t a sharp edge and that’s all there is to it. Mine are working really well and when I have hatchlings some day I’ll find some smaller ones and copy this too. No they don’t look as good as a faux stone cave or giant skull but for a dollar I’m as a happy as can be lol.

One thing I have noticed that I like is since they’re so lightweight my snakes can move them around on or off the hot spot to be sitting right where they want without having to leave the hide I actually like that a lot. They’re like very slow Hermit crabs moving around or something lol

Also be careful when cutting…I’m not the most crafty and put a deep razor cut in my finger within the first 2 minutes of working on them lol I’m glad I didn’t get any tendons or anything but it was annoying.


Yeah when I was still relatively new I spent a crap ton on just a few hides, couldn’t even tell you how much for sure. Like your idea though and i may copy it!

Like I really would like some of the awesome looking ones out there but I’d rather improve infrastructure etc not blow hundreds on hides for my collection lol

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I paid £6 for a hide from a pet store and my bp would go anywhere near it, so I cut down a plastic plant pot then cut a hole in so he can come and go and he hides in there all day

I bought 5 gallon buckets and cut them down. I used a soldering tool to melt the rough edges smooth. Worked okay for a while, but kinda warped in the heat and cracked during cleaning. I really like the dollar store idea. Thanks.

Can’t beat free and saving stuff from the landfill! I just keep my eye out for suitable plastic containers that I’m about to throw out that could be really good hides. My favorite are protein/supplement tubs. I just cut off all but a few inches from the bottom and cut an entry hole. Sheet metal shears work really well for the cutting. I’ll edit this to add some pictures later.

What matters for what you’re looking for:

  • thick enough plastic so it’s got some weight
  • straight up/down walls (at least enough so when they push outward on the sides it doesn’t go up)
  • not see-through
  • make sure you’ve gotten any sticky residues off of the hide (like from stickers on the product, etc.)

I bought Pangea hides (small, they have 5 different sizes) from amazon for like $3 each (checked again and they are up to like $9 atm), solid black, real sturdy and very easy to clean:
Snake discovery just did a video on this as well :slight_smile:
Hope it helps some!

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I use coin boxes that banks hold rolled change in. But I mostly have colubrids so dunno how the thick cardboard would hold up if the tub/tank has a lot of moisture. For my ball I actually use large black metal vases/cups that I got from a craft store. My girls loves them and they fit nicely in the tank we have her in. Dunno how something like that would do for a tub limited in height.