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Latin name: Euprepiophis mandarinus
This individual is a female, EBV bred, hatched in early July 31st 2021 and is about 12” in length. She's eating live pink mice.
Temperament and general info: With one of the most beautiful naturally occurring patterns of any rat snake, this is a highly sought-after colubrid species.
They can be skittish when young but tame down very quickly, making them gentle and very nice snakes for handling.
Lifestyle and habitat: These snakes have a widespread range encompassing all of mainland China as well as the northern areas of some Southeast Asian countries. They are shy and crepuscular (active at dawn and dusk) and spend a good amount of their day hidden in burrows or underbrush.
Size and lifespan: Being a smaller rat snake species, they tend to grow just over 4' in length at most and stay slender-bodied their whole lives. They can live up to 20 years in human care.
Quick care stats:
Temperatures: This snake likes it cool and humid! Consistent temperatures in the mid 70s will keep a mandarin rat snake happy and healthy. They don't tolerate temperatures over 80 degrees well, especially for long periods of time and therefore are prone to overheating. Keeping them at room temperature with no heat for most of the year works well in most households.
Humidity: 40%-60%. Hand mist 1-2x daily or set up an automatic mister.
Tank size: 10-20 gallons for babies/juveniles, 40+ gallons for adults.
Tank type: Standard rectangle-allow for good floor space. Make sure it has a secure sliding door/doors. Sit-atop screen lids for glass tanks are not recommended for these guys, snakes are escape artists!
Heat and Lighting: No heat for this species! Full spectrum UVB lighting is not required for this species but is highly recommended for all reptiles for overall welfare and to establish a day/night cycle.
Substrate and furniture: Soil or bark substrate 3"deep or deeper. Moss lining parts of the top of the substrate will be a nice hiding place for the snake as well as provide humidity. Provide lots of log and cave type hiding places. Provide a water dish that is large enough for the snake to curl up into for soaking.
Handling: Mandarin Rat Snakes tolerate gentle handling well and can be handled several times per week. Just watch for signs of stress and try to limit sessions to 30-45 minutes.
When not to handle: After the snake has eaten, give them 2-3 days to digest their food before handling them again. When you first bring the snake home or move it to a new enclosure, wait at least 3 days before handling it to give it a chance to settle in to the new environment.
Feeding and frequency: every 4-5 days for babies, 1x per week for juveniles and adults. Prey item should be as wide as the widest part of the snake's body.