Snake Dietary Recommendations
Specific Dietary Recommendations: The variety of snakes kept in captivity is considerable and their food preferences are quite variable. Following is a list of preferred prey animals for the snakes most commonly kept in captivity:
Boa constrictors, pythons, rat snakes, gopher or bull snakes:
- Warm-blooded prey is preferred, such as rodents and birds. Juveniles of these species prefer the very small warm-blooded prey species.
- They may also consume very small lizards and snakes. Some tree boas and pythons prefer lizards to mammals and birds.
Garter snakes, ribbon snakes, water snakes, etc.:
- Fish, frogs, salamanders, toads, earthworms, slugs and carrion are preferred.
- Many accept dead mice if they are covered with the external mucus of frogs or fish before they are offered.
Indigo snakes, king snakes, and many racers:
- Warm-blooded (mice, etc.) and cold-blooded prey (other snakes, lizards, etc.) are preferred.
- The indigo snake prefers frogs but may eat anything when hungry, including dog or cat food.
Ring-neck, or brown snakes and their relatives:
- Salamanders, earthworms, very small snakes and lizards are the food of choice.
Racers, vine snakes, coachwhips:
- Lizards are preferred. Racers also eat mice and chicks of ground-nesting birds.
- The young of these snakes eat large insects, such as crickets and grasshoppers.