To make sure that your ball python stays happy and healthy, you’ll need to know the right temperature. This is important because ball pythons are ectotherms, and they need to feel constant warmth to be healthy.
Keeping your pet’s environment within its ideal temperature range is crucial for maintaining optimal health and overall well-being!
Read on to know how to treat your ball python better.
What Temperature is Too Hot for a Ball Python?
A temperature of more than 95°F (35°C) is considered too hot for a ball python. The ball python structure should have three temperature zones namely; the basking zone which should have a temperature of 88°F to 92°F and should never exceed 95°F, and the ambient temperature should be between 80°F-85°F. The ambient zone is the zone between the basking and the cool zone. The cool zone temperatures should be between 75°F-80°F.
Ball pythons are not very thermally sensitive and can tolerate a lot of heat. They are also very hardy, and their colors do not fade as easily in higher temps.
Too high temperatures can still stress them and the best thing to do is to keep them at the temperatures they come from in the wild.
Ball pythons come from sub-Saharan Africa, specifically Nigeria and Cameroon, so their temperatures should reflect that.
Can a Ball Python Handle Hot Weather?
Yes. Even though they handle high temperatures longer than other snakes, they are still sensitive to the heat and it is important to keep them appropriately cool.
They do not take well to hot temperatures and should be kept in climate-controlled tanks at the correct temperature range.
What Is the Ideal Temperature and Humidity For a Ball Python?
The ideal temperature for a ball python is 75-80°F. The Humidity should not be too high, as too much humidity can cause the snake to become sluggish and lethargic. It is best to keep the Humidity at around 50-60%.
To keep a ball python in proper temperature, you should have a temperature gradient; this is where there is a drop off of room temp.
This will help keep the snake cooler and warm at night. You should also provide thermally neutral hides during the day, especially if your house is already warm.
What Temperatures Do Ball Pythons not Like?
Ball pythons do not like high temperatures. It would help if you never exposed your ball python to temperatures 100 degrees or higher.
This type of heat will cause thermal stress and inhibit your ball python’s ability to digest food properly.
Ball pythons also do not like extremely cold temperatures. For example, in the wild, ball pythons handle warm to hot temperatures.
They do not handle anything below 70°F as it will cause stress on the snake and make it weaker.
What Is the Ideal Humidity for a Ball Python?
The ideal humidity for ball pythons is 50%-60%. A ball python’s environment should be humid, but not so humid that it would cause a lot of drooling.
Too much drooling can make it harder for the snake to shed properly, which leads to health complications.
If the humidity is too low, it can lead to your ball python having shedding problems. Ball pythons have skin that will stick together and rip when trying to shed. Not only does this hurt your ball python, but it can cause other health issues.
How Do I make My Snake Tank More Humid?
If you need to make your tank more humid, there are a few things you can do. Firstly, you can add a humidifier in the room where the ball python is.
You can also purchase turtle or reptile foggers that will put fog inside the snake tank and increase the humidity just enough to alleviate any shedding problems it might have.
Can I use a Heat Mat for My Ball Python?
It would help if you did not use heat mats for ball pythons. A heat mat is not very effective for heating your snake’s tank and can cause thermal burns.
Ball pythons do not handle too much heat well, so using a heat mat is not recommended whatsoever.
Do Ball Pythons Need Light 24/7?
Typically, ball pythons do not need light 24/7. They can go days without any light, and it won’t hurt them. If you keep your ball python in the darkroom at all times, it will not be able to maintain proper temperatures.
Also, the sun can cause some of the snake’s scales to fade due to its UV rays, so it is good to have a light on at dusk if you want that beautiful pattern to stay. They need this extra heat source to ensure they shed properly and digest food better.
Ball pythons do not need belly heat, but they can benefit from it. Belly heat is when you position the snake, so it is close to a sub-surface area that has higher temperatures.
The best example is positioning your snake next to the heated tile (underneath your tank).
Belly heat is recommended if you have a ball python that seems particularly sluggish or lethargic. Ideally, you should have a warm spot to put the snake in on your tank when it is inactive.
DO NOT position your ball python near the surface of your tank. This is where the heat from the lights will radiate into. The surface area of a tank with lights can become quite hot, and that heat can start to hurt your ball python.
The best place for a ball python is under the glass or another substrate that remains cool and does not expose it directly to the heat coming from your lights.
What Happens When a Snake Overheats?
When snakes overheat, they can become dehydrated and weak. This is when they might show signs of dehydration, such as dull, faded colors and slow movements. Also, the snake will be irritable, and your ball python may not be eating.
When a ball python overheats, it will likely start panting or spend a lot of time soaking in the water to cool down. If it does not cool down the snake will become lethargic in an attempt to get rid of excess heat and water loss.
How Long Can Ball Pythons Go Without Heat?
Ball pythons can go several days without concerning themselves with heat.
If your ball python goes without heat for too long, it could die or become severely ill. It is best to try and avoid this situation altogether.
How Do You Treat an Overheated Snake?
You can treat your ball python by doing the following:
Run Cold Water Over Its Body
First, you can use very cold water to treat your snake. This will make it cool down to help lower its temperature. The water should feel cold to the touch compared to your ball python.
Provide Better Hides
The other thing you can do is stop your ball python’s exposure to heat. This will help them get back on track and normalize their body temperature faster.
If they become too chilled, you can use a heat lamp or other means to warm them up again. Never use hot lights, as that could cause your snake more harm than good if they are too hot already.
The last thing you can do is increase Humidity. This will create a micro-climate for your ball python, which will lower their temperature and help them to recover more quickly.
You can use a moisture trap to help get better humidity levels in the room or place something like a glove box next to the tank with some damp towels inside.
What Signs Show That a Snake Is Overheated?
When a ball python is overheated, it will show signs like:
The snake will be very sluggish and lethargic when overheated or dehydrated. This is because it does not have the energy to move around or hunt for food.
The snake’s colors will start fading when they get too hot so, you can see that something is wrong with your ball python.
If the ball python’s head droops and has a slight twitch in its jaw, it shows signs of overheating and dehydration.
Lack of Appetite
The snake may not be eating if it is too hot or too cold. If your snake does not eat, you should go to the vet to better diagnose what may be wrong with your ball python’s health.
If the snake is lethargic, you can tell it is hot in your house even if you do not have a thermometer and humidity gauge to show the temperature and humidity levels.
There are a few different things that you may want to consider when keeping your ball python. Things like temperature, humidity, and light play a big role in the life of your snake.
Ball pythons are very easy to care for once you get used to how they move, feed them, and keep their habitats clean. With the right amount of heat and humidity and providing the proper environment for ball pythons, they can live long.
94% of pet owners say their animal pal makes them smile more than once a day. In 2007, I realized that I was made for saving Animals. My father is a Vet, and I think every pet deserves one. I started this blog, “InPetCare”, in 2019 with my father to enlighten a wider audience.