I have a leopard gecko (almost adult), a baby crested gecko and I’m thinking about getting a snake. I’m kinda leaning towards a garter snake but a corn snake isn’t out of the question either. Any thoughts or comments?
Garter snakes can be very skittish and don’t really live long lives. No one quite knows why, but the Natricinae subfamily of snakes can just up and die for seemingly no reason even if they are healthy and young, and even when they do live long lives it is unlikely for them to live over 10 years. If you want a snake that is going to live a longer life and not have a chance dying for no reason a corn snake would be good. King snakes, milk snakes, and Eastern rat snakes are all good too. Eastern rat snakes (black rat snake, greenish rat snake, Everglades rat snake, and yellow rat snake being variants) are probably the snake with the most personality and intelligence out of the bunch. My rat snake girl is a lot like a lizard in her behavior with how she always want to know what I am doing. They are the largest of the recommendations with an average of 5-6ft and they are semi arboreal so they need a nice enclosure to climb in too. I also have to say something that isn’t quite a popular opinion; don’t get a BP as a first snake. They have requirements (humidity and heat) that can be a bit difficult for a new keeper to maintain (the proper equipment isn’t the cheapest), and they can have issues wanting to eat because they are too stressed for a number of reasons, and this tends to scare new keepers and have them making terrible decisions. They also aren’t the most fun to own since they aren’t very active and aren’t the smartest creatures. All of the other species mentioned are rock solid and only need temps as high as 85°F, and most don’t have higher humidity requirements.
Hello, and welcome to the morph market community!
Out of those 2 species, I would suggest a corn snake.
I would lean towards a corn snake because what you would feed them is most likely easier to find in most cases. Garters, especially as babies require a diet primarily of earthworms or small feeder fish. Depending on where you live, that could be hard to find. Garters also seem to do better with another garter snake in their enclosure. Corns are perfectly fine and overall are more content to be the only snake in their enclosure.
Also Corns are much more adaptable to handling as hatchlings. Garters seem to be a little more high strung.
If you’re thinking of purchasing a corn snake, look into Bairds rat snakes.
They are very docile, stay a good manageable size like corns, and are a perfect beginner snake. They also have amazing color changes into adulthood, which is very beautiful to watch.
The Bairds is basically the tiny cousin of the Eastern rat snake. They are both in the Pantherophis genus and have similar behavior (and appearance). Not sure about baby bairds but I know baby Easterns can be very…standoffish at first. They mock strike to try and scare you, and sometimes (but rarely) bite with those tiny little teeth. They calm pretty quickly once they are worked with though.
I second @ashleyraeanne suggestion.
Don’t get a ball python as a first snake. They are awesome snakes, but they do require pretty exact husbandry standards that have to be met to keep them stress free.
Oh totally, those 2 subspecies are very similar.
From the Bairds rats I’ve owned tho, all have been docile and I’ve never even experienced a defensive strike from them.
They seem to musk more than anything, or rattle their tail like bull/pine/gopher snakes.
Easterns rattle their tails too, and musk on occasion but not often. The babies act a lot like hognose babies with the hissing and striking to try and spook ya. I find it to be adorable, but they aren’t all like that and calm very quickly. Now Texas rat snake babies in my experience are all angry little things.
I’d agree, Texas rats are just pissed off little monsters most the time , but still harmlessly adorable.