Trying to pick first pair

I love ball pythons and my husband finally agreed to let me get my first pair. I know it could be at least a few years, depending on age, before I can breed but I want to pick genes well. I really love the banana/coral glow and thought about going het pied. I also love ivory, or maybe ghi. I also thought about maybe getting into children’s pythons…what would you get starting out if you could only get one pair. I love them all. It’s so hard to pick. I can only spend about $250 on snakes.

1 Like

$250 isn’t much to work with. If you want to breed it might be best to pick a female first and then get a male in a year or two. It takes 2-3 years to raise a female to breeding age, but only 1 year for a male. Prices go down over time, so you might be able to get a nicer male if you wait.

If you want to breed you have to think not just about what kind of snakes you want to own, but what kind of babies you want to produce. So let’s say you decide you want to own a banana and a ghi. You could get a female ghi now, a banana male later, and when you breed them you have a chance at making banana ghis, which are a really nice looking combo.

You could also get a female yellowbelly now, a male ivory later, and breed for more yellowbellies and ivories, or you could get a het pied female now, a banana het pied male later, and try to breed for banana pieds. Those are just a few ideas I’m throwing out based on your preferences. It’s all up to you.


That’s a good point. I think I will get just the female now and wait for the male. Thanks!

I definitely second @the_rotten1 about just getting them a couple years apart with the female first. I’ll add that it will give you more time to see how you like keeping a ball python, and to consider what you want to breed. There is so much out there in terms of morphs. Having a couple years to explore will definitely help so you find that perfect morph you never knew existed.


Your budget is plenty if you’re patient or do some extra legwork. You could also start with a female and give it time to grow before purchasing a male. If you want to raise them yourself then you can wait a couple of years before buying a male since females take a lot longer to grow to maturity.

A freshly hatched banana/CG should run $150~ for a male but if youre patient you can often find a juvenile or sub adult example in that price range.

If you find a local breeder, a lot of us will let go of adult snakes for fair prices from finished or failed projects.

Not to trash morphmarket, it’s a great resource, if you know what youre doing. My personal suggestion would be don’t buy a snake that you can’t visually inspect first.

More than once I’ve purchased snakes online and what came in the mail was a sack of garbage. Once I paid $500 for a male that had a calcium deficiency and had already been bred half to death. It took months get him back to a decent weight, and good health. I see a lot of misidentified and/or overpriced animals listed online as well.


Yes I have decided to go ahead and just get a female for now. I’m on the hunt for a younger ish banana het pied female. Im just going to be patient and wait for exactly what I want. I can be saving up even more while I wait. Thanks for the tip on ordering online. There are a couple reptile shows coming close to me, (Houston and lake Charles Louisiana ) I’ll probably check those out. I’m also checking craigslist.

I’m sorry you had a bad experience buying online… I however have had the exact opposite. I’ve had wonderful experiences buying online. I never rushed a purchase or bought something to buy something. There have been times I’ve waited for years before I finally found an animal online I had to have. Every single animal I have ( that I didn’t produce ) are from online. I did extensive research on every seller I’ve ever sent a penny too. I knew exactly how I wanted each morph to look… Ex I wanted a blade clown not just any blade clown. To many people post blade clowns and they look horrendous. Their sides have wayyyy to much pattern imo to be a decent quality blade clown. I waited and waited in ambush quiet a few years until the perfect one came along. Had the clean solid stripe on his back no pattern on the sides. His head stamp I wanted to be a arrow head well when my perfect blade clown popped up I pulled the trigger , and paid well over for him because he was quality and nobody else was getting him, but me. Be extremely picky look over hundreds of pictures online of what a certain morph should look like. Then take all the things you like about that morph , and do not settle on any animal until you find everything you want in one. As for some animals being priced higher online … If they are top top quality I’ll pay whatever they are asking all day long.

1 Like