How Big Can a Ball Python Get?

For example, many hobbyists may refer to Ball Pythons as a small or medium snake, but did you know that some exceptional Ball Pythons have attained lengths over 6 feet?!

Most people are in for a shock when they unravel any snake these guys are masters of deception when it comes to their actual size. To further complicate matters, baby Ball Pythons start out life pretty tiny , and like most reptiles, they grow slowly.

To become a Ball Python growth expert in under 10 minutes well help you answer the following questions: Knowing the expected adult size of any reptile is critical before adopting as this will allow you to properly assess whether or not you have adequate space for their enclosure.On average, adult Ball Pythons measure 3 to 5 feet long and weigh about 2.5 to 5.5 pounds. Ball Pythons will continue to grow throughout their entire lives , but most of them reach adult size, and their growth slows down considerably, at around 3 or 4 years of age .

If youre not exactly sure how old your Ball Python is or how big it should be, given its age, you may find the following age-associated size guidelines to be helpful. Its important to keep in mind that this information is on average , but each Ball Python will grow at its own rate depending on its genetics, food source, environment, temperature, and more. Their initial growth rate will vary widely based on their hatchling weight.

Generally speaking, a hatchling Ball Python should double its weight by around three months old , at which point it may be considered a juvenile. Its reasonable to expect a juvenile Ball Python to measure 16 to 24 inches long and weigh between 500 to 1000 grams . Most reputable breeders sell their Ball Pythons once theyve reached that milestone and entered the juvenile stage.

Its reasonable to expect a juvenile Ball Python to gain around 50-100 grams per month, give or take. As long as your juvenile Ball Python continues to gain weight, rather than lose it, youre on the right track! By the time your juvenile Ball Python reaches its first birthday, it will probably measure 16 to 24 inches long.

A sub-adult Ball Python measure 2.5 to 5.5 feet long and gain an additional 300 to 500 grams per year At this point, theyve put a decent amount of size on, but theyre still growing noticeably fast, and they arent quite adult-sized. An adult Ball Python measure 3 to 5 feet long and weigh 1,200 to 2,500 grams .

Most Ball Pythons will reach their full size at three years of age, which is when they will be considered an adult . However, those who are fed and grown on a slow schedule, might not reach this milestone until 4 or 5 years of age. From this point on, they will continue to grow, but the growth will be so minor that you probably wont even notice!

Between 3 months and 1 year growth will be lightning fast and slow down slightly until around 3 years of age for most snakes, at which point they should be relatively done growing.Its a good idea to have a general understanding of how fast your Ball Python will grow so that you can plan accordingly for its food and enclosure. Contrary to popular belief, Ball Pythons and other reptiles do NOT grow to fit their enclosure! They will continue to grow to their full potential as long as you feed them, regardless of the size of their habitat.

Even Ball Pythons that had extremely stunted growth for the first few months or years of their life will reach their full potential size; it just takes them a little longer. After Ball Pythons reach their adult size, typically from 3 to 5 years old, their growth slows considerably. Obesity is a prevalent issue in captive snakes, especially inactive species like Ball Pythons.

Obesity will, undoubtedly, shorten the life of your snake and make it very unhealthy. By the time your Ball Python starts looking chunky, its already built up a massive store of internal fat thats putting pressure on its organs! Start tracking its weight, so you know if something is working to help it drop grams!

Add branches, bird ladders, and ropes to the enclosure to increase your snakes activity level. Encourage your Ball Python to move more by handling it more often and placing it on climbing opportunities (get creative! Stair banisters, bookshelves, cat towers, wooden chairs, and ladders are all great ideas.)

An underweight Ball Python will have a ridged back and a sharp triangular body shape when moving on a flat surface. Severely malnourished Ball Pythons may have a belly that curves in, loose skin, sunken eyes, and bony jaws. For example, extra-large retired breeding mice have more fat than adolescent small or medium rats.

If appropriate feeding practices dont help, take your Ball Python to your reptile veterinarian for a health check. Are you worried that an average-sized Ball Python may not fit in your home and lifestyle, but youve already fallen in love with their appearance , temperament, or husbandry requirements? Unfortunately, if you think theyre too large, miniature or dwarf variety Ball Pythons arent a thing yet.

However, if youre looking for something on the giant side of the Ball Python size spectrum, youre in luck! Imported Ball Pythons from the region around the Volta river are notoriously large and in charge. Intestinal parasites are the number one cause for unexplained weight loss, or lack of growth, in young animals, including Ball Pythons.

Researchers have found that because many parasites present similar symptoms the only way to diagnose intestinal parasites is by taking a fresh stool sample to your local reptile or exotics veterinarian. It may seem challenging to under feed a snake since theyve evolved to go very long periods between meals. The truth is that not everyone is accustomed to the idea of Ball Pythons ingesting prey that is larger than their head!

Beginner snake owners may be tempted to feed their Ball Python pinkie rats when, in reality, theyre ready for smalls! A Ball Pythons food should be as wide as the widest part of the snakes body or slightly wider. While these tropical snakes dont necessarily go through an entire brumation, like their temperate cousins, Ball Pythons will sometimes decide to fast through the Winter or any other time of year, for any reason, honestly.

Fasting is not necessarily a cause for concern unless your Ball Python starts losing weight . At that point, its time to start looking into ways to tempt your snake to eat, such as If youve looked into every other potential cause above, your best bet is to take your Ball Python to a veterinarian for further diagnostic testing.

While Ball Pythons emerge from their eggs as tiny babies, sometimes even weighing less than 50 grams, they all grow up to be a medium-large snake thats capable of taking down rats and adorning your neck as you move around the house. Their growth rate varies based on several factors, some of which are uncontrollable, but they generally take 3 to 5 years to reach their full adult size of 3 to 5.5 feet long. Even if your Ball Python isnt growing as fast as our chart suggests, try not to stress too much.

Determining your Ball Pythons age based on its size or comparing it to the size of other Ball Pythons that are the same age wont do you much good every animal grows at its own pace!

What is the largest ball python ever recorded?

The Guinness Book of World Records lists the longest ever captured snake to be 32 feet. The heaviest — a Burmese Python kept in Gurnee, Ill. — weighs 402 pounds, the book said on its Web site. , Professional ball python breeder from 2007 to 2014.

Can you be killed by a ball python?

Can a ball python kill a human? No, they are considered incapable of killing a human child or adult through constriction. They are simply too small to pose such a threat (with the possible exception of human infants).

How long does it take for a ball python to reach full size?

Hatchlings of both sexes are born between 10 to 17 inches long. Males should grow around 8 inches per year, while females grow between 12 to 16 inches each year. After three years, a male will be full grown and should measure 2.5 to 3.5 feet.

Can a ball python eat a cat?

Ether way a ball pythons normal prey is a rat this is considerably smaller than a cat. Ball pythons are unlikely to eat a cat and thus unlikely to do anything except avoid cats.

– As your ball python gets ready to shed, their eyes will turn a milky blue/gray over the course of a few days and their skin color will start to dull and develop a whitish sheen. They may become irritable during shedding periods. If possible, avoid handling while theyre shedding and right after theyve eaten

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Ball Pythons are one of the smallest breeds of python in Africa. These snakes are slow moving and have a stocky body shape. They are also one of the calmest species, making them very popular.

Their size is a big factor in their popularity as it makes them more manageable for keepers. Read on to learn about their full grown size, growth rates, and how to maintain a great body condition for a healthy snake

Full grown male ball pythonBall Pythons are thick, stocky snakes that stay relatively short. One study on wild male species found the largest individual was 4.5 feet long, but this is unusual. Female Ball Pythons are much larger due to their genetically faster growth rate.

Adult males are slimmer and weigh between two to three pounds, but females are much heavier and will pack on weight. These snakes are sedentary and have a slow metabolism, this makes it easy for them to put on weight quickly. Monitoring your Ball Pythons growth rate will help you determine if your snake is maintaining a healthy size and weight.

The growth rate of a snake is calculated by measuring the total size gained within a year, but what does this mean for your pet? The natural growth rate of a Ball Python is different for males and females. On the other hand, males will grow eight inches per year until they reach sexual maturity at three.

Researchers discovered that females are hatched with a higher postnatal growth rate. With a consistent feeding schedule, females will reach four to five feet long in five years . It will help you to track their growth, keep them within a healthy weight range and stop obesity.

If your snake is growing faster than the charts below, make sure your tank setup and husbandry is correct and that your feeding schedule is appropriate for their age. As long as your ball python keeps a healthy body condition, it is okay for them to be heavier than normal. Ideally a ball python should have a rounded, equilateral triangular shape from the spine.

There are many factors that go into a ball pythons size, but the averages below will help you to gauge their growth rate: AgeMale LengthFemale LengthHatchling10 to 17 inchesSix Months20 to 27 inchesNine Months25 to 30 inches25 to 35 inchesOne year1.5 to 2 feet2 feetOne and a Half Years2 to 2.5 feet2 to 3 feetTwo Years2 to 3 feet2.5 to 3.5 feetThree Years2.5 to 3.5 feet3 to 5 feetFour+ Years2.5 to 3.5 feet4 to 6 feet AgeMale Weight (grams)Female Weight (grams)Hatchling50 to 80One Month70 to 10080 to 105Six Months275 to 360300 to 360Nine Months400 to 450450 to 470One year500 to 800650 to 800One and a Half Years600 to 9001000 to 1400Two Years800 to 11001200 to 1800Three Years900 to 12001200 to 2000Four+ Years900 to 12002000 to 3000 Choosing prey based on the size of your ball python is very important. It will help to ensure your snake has a healthy growth rate and will prevent obesity.

If you feed your snake at a fast pace, they will grow faster, but they become at risk of becoming overweight. The diet schedules below outline the best feeding guidelines for your snake using either mice or rats. This creates a revolving cycle; the snake is too big to feel comfortable moving, so it stops exploring and gains more weight.

Males, even when fed the same diet as a female, have slower growth rates and stop growing much earlier. A basking area of 88 to 92F and a proper temperature gradient is essential for metabolizing food . This not only helps them maintain a steady growth rate, but also stimulates activity and prevents obesity.

Without a proper sized enclosure, it is nearly impossible to create a temperature gradient and give space for your snake to exercise. Feeding mice at a young age can slow down your pythons growth rate, but this helps to maintain a healthy weight. Feeding rat pups will help your snake to gain size quickly at a young age.

It is important to regularly weigh your snake and study their girth to make sure it is within the recommended guidelines. Obese Ball PythonThe first step to monitor your snakes weight is to purchase an appropriate scale. A scale with a platform of at least six inches square should be large enough to accurately weigh this snake.

Most kitchen scales come with a bowl that is capable of holding a young snake, but an adult, especially a female, may be hard to fit into these. A snake who is starting to feel comfortable will move quickly and may try to escape the container. It may sound like a lot of work, but once you master getting your snake to stay still for a few seconds, weighing them becomes easy.

By five years, a female can grow as long as six feet, making them twice as big as males. Husbandry, enclosure size, power feeding and diet also affect length and body condition.

How big do ball pythons get? An adult female ball python grows to the average length of 3 to 5 feet long, where an adult male ball python grows to the average length of 2 to 3 feet. Ball python hatchlings are about 10 inches long. If a ball python is in the wild, it can take up to 4 to 5 years for it to reach its full size. Whereas in captivity, it can be up to 3 years

Whereas in captivity, it can be up to 3 years till a ball python reaches its full size. They can be easy to care for regarding their tank size , the amount of food they should be eating, and the temperature they must reside in.

There is not an exact size chart to how long ball pythons grow to at a certain age because that information varies to each snake. It is essential to feed your ball python all the nutrients it needs to be healthy and live out its fullest lifespan. By being able to meet the nutrition your ball python needs, as well as their dietary preferences, you can feed them without difficulty.

Do not try to capture mice or rats from the wild , they can hold many parasites like lice, fleas, and ticks, as these can be very harmful to you and your snake. The reason for this is because small mice can and will fight for their lives so they are most likely going to scratch or bite your snake in an attempt to save its life. Feeding your ball python correctly according to its age and size is extremely important to how long and big it grows.

By not feeding its proper amount of food your ball python can stay stuck on a small size and not grow to its average length. Make sure to have a dark and warm hiding spot within its terrarium to help smooth the digestion process for your snake. Some ball pythons can be picky eaters and even avoid the food you give them but it is always for a reason.

Habitat size

An appropriately sized and shaped habitat will accommodate normal behavior and exercise for a ball python. A very young snake can be housed in a 10-20 gallon tank. You will need to increase habitat size beyond 20 gallons as your snake grows to adulthood. A ball python will reach adult size in 3 years. An adult should be housed in a tank that is large enough for them to stretch out fully. A 40-gallon breeder tank is the minimum recommended tank size for an adult ball python.

Where to buy a ball python

A well-balanced ball python diet consists of:Things to remember when feeding your ball python:

Weight to Age Chart

Ball Pythons are thick, stocky snakes that stay relatively short. A fully grown ball python will measure betweenMales are always smaller than females due to sexual dimorphism, they finish growing at the smaller end of the size spectrum. Males are between 2.5 to 3.5 feet long by the time they reach three years old. One study on wild male species found the largest individual was 4.5 feet long, but this is unusual. The smallest measured adult male was only two feet long.Female Ball Pythons are much larger due to their genetically faster growth rate. Many females are between four to five feet long, some have been measured as large as 6.5 feet! They typically weigh around five pounds (Babies hatch at only 10 to 17 inches long. This may seem small, but these hatchlings burst into the world ready to eat their way to adulthood.Both sexes grow at a nearly identical rate for the first six months, after that females begin to grow roughly 1.5 times faster:When compared to other pet snakes this species is classified as medium-sized.Ball Pythons have a thick, stocky body shape because of their weight. Adult males are slimmer and weigh between two to three pounds, but females are much heavier and will pack on weight. They have a more rounded, full body. This body condition is directly linked to their ability to produce offspring.These snakes are sedentary and have a slow metabolism, this makes it easy for them to put on weight quickly. Enclosure enrichment and feeding schedules are important to stop them from becoming obese. Females can become overweight quickly if not monitored.

Ball Python Growth Rate

Monitoring your Ball Python’s growth rate will help you determine if your snake is maintaining a healthy size and weight. The growth rate of a snake is calculated by measuring the total size gained within a year, but what does this mean for your pet?The natural growth rate of a Ball Python is different for males and females. Females have a growth rate of nearly 1.5 times that of the average male.On the other hand,Researchers discovered that females are hatched with a higher postnatal growth rate. This means that they start growing faster than males within three months of hatching. As they age this becomes very clear.

Size By Age

Weighing your snake is very important, especially during the first three years. It will help you to track their growth, keep them within a healthy weight range and stop obesity. If your snake is growing faster than the charts below, make sure your tank setup and husbandry is correct and that your feeding schedule is appropriate for their age.The lower range of the weight spectrum described by the tables below is typically for males.Females are often on the higher end, or even exceed it.As long as your ball python keeps a healthy body condition, it is okay for them to be heavier than normal. Just make sure they do not put on weight too fast and become obese.A healthy body condition looks at the overall girth (There are many factors that go into a ball python’s size, but the averages below will help you to gauge their growth rate:

Feeding Chart by Size

Choosing prey based on the size of your ball python is very important. It is one of the most important things a keeper can do. It will help to ensure your snake has a healthy growth rate and will prevent obesity.With a routine feeding schedule, and appropriately sized prey,Juveniles and adults should have more time between feeding. This allows them to grow without gaining too much weight. If you feed your snake at a fast pace, they will grow faster, but they become at risk of becoming overweight. This is termed “Power Feeding” and can shorten their lifespan.If your snake is on the smaller size, you may need to feed smaller prey items for longer. Females that are being prepared to breed may be fed more.The diet schedules below outline the best feeding guidelines for your snake using either mice or rats.

Feeding guidelines can be adjusted depending on the body condition of your snake. To judge this, you need to know the signs of being underweight or overweight.An underweight Ball Python will have a triangular body shape with a sharp spine shape. They will also seem very active because they are searching for food. If you use the suggested guidelines above, it is very difficult to underfeed your snake.Many keepers misjudge an overweight body shape to be ideal because they are heavy-bodied snakes. An obese snake will normally have scale wrinkling and folding when moving. Their bodies will also feel squishier with bulging around the vent and neck.Obese snakes also explores less. This creates a revolving cycle; the snake is too big to feel comfortable moving, so it stops exploring and gains more weight.

How To Weigh A Ball Python

Many full grown ball pythons reach a length between 2 to 5 feet long, but this depends onOne of the biggest influences on this species’ size is gender. Males, even when fed the same diet as a female, have slower growth rates and stop growing much earlier. Adult females can be twice the size of males!Husbandry is also another factor in your ball python’s adult size.A basking area of 88 to 92°F and a proper temperature gradient is essential for metabolizing food. This not only helps them maintain a steady growth rate, but also stimulates activity and prevents obesity.Husbandry is tied to enclosure size.Without a proper sized enclosure, it is nearly impossible to create a temperature gradient and give space for your snake to exercise. A 20-gallon tank can work for juveniles, but adults need at least 40-gallons. Some ball python morphs need a 50-gallon tank.A feeding schedule is also very important, regardless of whether you begin by feeding rats or mice. Feeding mice at a young age can slow down your python’s growth rate, but this helps to maintain a healthy weight.Many factors can affect the growth rate and body condition of your snake. It is important to regularly weigh your snake and study their girth to make sure it is within the recommended guidelines.

How to Feed Your Ball Python

It is essential to feed your ball python all the nutrients it needs to be healthy and live out its fullest lifespan. By being able to meet the nutrition your ball python needs, as well as their dietary preferences, you can feed them without difficulty. You also will not have to worry about whether it’s receiving the best treatment in captivity.Luckily, the diet of a ball python in the wild does not differ much from the diet of a ball python in captivity. They are carnivorous snakes and need to eat plenty of meat in order to be healthy.The most popular foods to feed your ball python are the following:Keep in mind, that the food you give you snake depends heavily on its age. You will not want to feed your young snake a prey that is too large to swallow and digest.For example, younger snakes should be fed baby mice while the adult snake can be fed a variety size of prey. And because they are carnivorous don’t try and feed them insects, or vegetables. A vegetarian diet for a snake can be harmful to its health. It is in their nature to feed on meat, they rely on it for their vitamins and other nutritional value they cannot get from vegetables.When finding the food to feed your python, you can go to any local pet store for a small stock of dead mice, or you can even breed your own supply of mice to feed your python.So be sure to purchase your mice at a store and have it be killed beforehand. The reason for this is because small mice can and will fight for their lives so they are most likely going to scratch or bite your snake in an attempt to save its life. These bites and scratches, while small, can become an infection and that is dangerous for your snake.It is also advised to freeze the prey for as many weeks as you would like, but be sure to