The Rough Green snake can be found on the eastern half of North America. They are agile snakes that do not live off of rodents. They are fun snakes to own as long as you know how to care for them properly.
The rough green snake will grow just over two feet in length. They are very slender, and like their name suggests, they are green in color. With the proper care rough green snakes can live to be over 10 years of age.
Many rough green snakes are very jumpy because of their small size. Adults can learn to tolerate interaction with humans, but some may never learn. Many keepers like this species for their looks, not for being held for long periods of time.
These snakes are unique because their diet consists completely of insects. Adult green snakes can live off of large crickets, super worms and mealworm beetles. Adults only need to be fed twice a week. Feed them as many food items as they will eat in 15-20 minutes. Always remove uneaten insects from the enclosure because they will become a nuisance to your snake.
Some keepers feed adult snakes a pinkie mouse once or twice a month because it contains important nutrients and will fill your snake up for a longer period of time. Too many pinkie mice can lead to fatty liver disease, so they should not be used as a staple in your snake's diet.
Hatchlings and young snakes can eat every other day because they are still growing. These young rough green snakes will eat the same food as the adults.
An adult rough green snake only needs a 20-gallon enclosure to feel comfortable, and hatchlings need a 10-gallon enclosure. Rough green snakes prefer to live alone and they should not be kept in groups unless you plan on breeding them. A secure lid is also important to prevent escapes and to protect your snake.
A loose substrate like aspen shavings or coconut fibers works well for adults. If you are looking for something that is easier to clean, use paper towels or newspaper. Hatchlings should be kept on simple substrates like newspaper to prevent ingestion and makes catching prey easier.
For shelter, provide two hide boxes on the ground. Also offer shelter in the form of foliage and natural objects like plants, rocks and driftwood. A good hiding place for your snake is important because it will relieve a lot of unnecessary stress.
A basking spot of 80-85F should be provided on one end of the enclosure. To achieve this temperature, use an overhead bulb or a reptile heat pad attached to the bottom of the cage. A light source to simulate day and night can be used, but no extra UV lighting is required for this snake.
A water bowl filled with clean non-chlorinated water large enough for your snake to fit in is required. This water bowl should be sturdy and shallow. Mist the entire cage every other day, and daily when they are shedding.
Spot clean the enclosure daily, and keep the water bowl filled with clean water at all times. Replace loose substrates every 2-4 months and paper substrates should be replaced when soiled.
Breeding rough green snakes is harder to accomplish than breeding most other snakes. First a fully develop male and female need to bromate, which is like reptile hibernation. Keep temperature in the enclosure from 40-50F for a couple months. During this time they will not move and they will not eat much. Also, allow very little light to reach your snakes.
After 2-3 months slowly raise the temperatures back up to normal, and mist the enclosure daily. This is when you can introduce the male and the female rough green snakes. They will mate once temperatures are back up to normal and eggs will be laid soon after.
Eggs will be laid under objects in the cage, and sometimes even in the water. Between 4 and 8 eggs will be laid by the female rough green snake. Once the eggs have been laid, they need to be removed from the enclosure and placed in an incubator. Incubation will take 1-2 months and keep the eggs at 80F. Do not let the eggs dry out, and keep them on vermiculite or sphagnum moss.
Hatchlings need to be fed fruit flies and pin head crickets a week after hatching. As they grow, increase the food size. Keep hatchlings on a paper substrate to prevent impaction and so you can monitor their health easily. The rest of their cage is similar to the care of adult rough green snakes.
Rough green snakes are great pet reptiles, even if they don't enjoy much human interaction. Remember, do your research before buying any pet so that it can live happily and healthily.
I received my blue tongue skink yesterday 3/10/15 and he had multiple mites under his scales and in his ear canals. Otherwise he was a healthy little baby.
Clara Porrata - March 11, 2015
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