What are the most difficult reptiles to breed in captivity?

some reptiles are easier to breed than others but what are the species that took more work and time to breed in captivity or there are still some species that aren’t never been breed in captivity?

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I would say any species that eats the males on occasion would probably be harder to breed, like hognose snakes



Moluccan scrub pythons

Calabar burrowing boa/python

Dragon snakes

White-lip pythons

Rhamphiophis genus


Sunbeam snake is another one. Basically a slightly less difficult dragon snake in terms of care and I don’t think anyone has managed to breed them yet.


Indigo snakes would definitely be one of them. Mostly because it’s so hard to get the permitting to actually keep them

I would disagree on indigos. Getting the permit is not difficult, just time consuming (and some people feel expensive). Everyone that I know of with them get clutches easy enough, they just tend to not mass produce them

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Really, people who usually breed them are people who Breed snakes like Blacktail Crebos, from the people that I have heard from say that they I like an intermediate to expert level breeding experience

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Yes, they certainly are not beginner animals in terms of breeding. But they are reliably produced by breeders every year, which, to me, means they would not fall into a “most difficult” category. Especially when you compare them to things like Moluccan scrubs, that have been produced in captivity maybe once or twice despite years and years of very serious keepers trying.

It’s just something you watch for upon introduction but the same can be said about any species because any animal can become unpredictable, so really part of breeding. :wink: (I had a BP female trying to kill one of my males just to show it can happen with one of the most easily most laid back species.)

In this same vein, I had a ball female actually kill the male. :grimacing:

Ouch that sucks, I came close, shows to anyone any animal can be unpredictable even if easy to breed.

I remember hearing that ringneck snakes are hard to keep in captivity. Does anyone know if that’s the case? I would think the average herper would find it tough to keep any species that needs very specific prey, especially specific prey that needs to be alive when offered.

Maybe it is challenging to breed venomous? Just because you’d have to take so many precautions? I’d have no idea what to do with a baby puff adder! (other than coo at it and take pics, heh.)


Ringneck snakes are just another example of a wild caught species that has issues thriving in captivity. Prey and living conditions are easy to keep, but not many people know much about them and they aren’t something you can make mistakes with since they are so small (and they can stress easy). Some people also try to get them on tiny mice because they can’t be bothered with bugs even though earthworms are mainly what they eat. They also eat salamanders, frogs, slugs, and sometimes other snakes. It is my understanding that they need a cool environment too.

Venomous are pretty easy to breed in most cases. So long as you have a snake hook and are careful that is. Gaboon vipers are apparently some of the easiest to breed, and they have a lot of babies. That is why you can find them so cheap for sale. If I had the permits (and a death wish) I could get a baby gaboon for under $200.


Proof that some venomous are cheap by alot
These were all found on faunaclassifieds.com

And kingsnake.com

Dragon snake and mangshan vipers.

Thorny Devils due to how rare they are in captivity and how difficult they are to feed.
Marine iguanas.
Sea snakes.


Unfortunately most people don’t realize that the expense of the snake is a very small portion. The enclosure, equipment, and training will take thousands of dollars and years of time. But, some people think that just because an animal is cheap it is easy to keep.