Is there a way to tell the sex of my ball python?

I have a bp and would like to know if theres any way of telling the sex without probing it? Any tips would be awesome!

You can pop them but can’t visually sex them by tail.


If you were afraid of trying to pop him/her, you could always take your snake to a trusted breeder near you.


Don’t use pet stores, I mean major chain stores (Petco, Pet Supplies Plus, or Petsmart)

I would really be careful who I let sex my snakes. One if they are inexperienced or not very good they can hurt the snake. And they could be wrong don’t want to raise a snake a couple years only to find out they are a different sex.

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Definitely a good point, then how would you suggest one goes about that?

In my local St. Louis area there is a couple of reptile focused pet shops that are on the ball. Not sure where the OP is located but maybe look for a shop that specializes in reptiles. Also if you know any local breeders you can also ask them. I myself don’t sex any of my snakes but there’s only two people I let do it and they have never been wrong lol.


OK I’ll definitely change it to a trusted breeder

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In all honesty, using probes is a lot safer and easier than people make it out to be. Just firmly hold the snake and gently push the probe in until it stops, then count the number of caudal scales (belly scutes of the tail). If more than 3-4 it’s a boy. Most of the time you can tell even without counting because if the probe stops almost immediately it’s female, if it goes in fairly deep it’s a boy. The blunt tipped probes are so much safer than the old timer probes, as long as you don’t ram it in there you really have to try hard to injure the snake. I taught myself how to probe and it’s really not hard, you just have to be confident about what you’re doing and know how to firmly but gently restrain the animal.

Popping is where I’ve seen people get waaaay too rough. Probing is a lot safer for a newbie. If I had to wait to find a breeder to teach me how to do this where I used to live I’d still be waiting.

Justin Kobylka has a good video on how to probe ball pythons: How to Sex Your Ball Python - YouTube


I taught myself to pop my animals and have never been too rough. You can teach yourself to pop through videos as well, and I trust myself with it way more than probing since the animals could easily thrash if they really wanted to (especially larger animals). I will always vote the least invasive method for things. Not to mention the females out there that probe male despite being proven females and vice versa.

Here is a video for BPs.


This community is awesome! Thanks guys!