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Feed, Caging, Supplies & Services Discussions concerning the feeding requirements of any of our critters, the cages they need to live in while in our care, and all of the supplies and services needed to do this right.

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Old 11-17-2020, 09:10 PM   #1
Snakes for a 29 bio active tank?

*Attached pics of the tank*

Tank is 12"x30"x18" (wxlxh), with a fluorescent light strip, heating lamp and a small heating pad which could be put on the side. The background is styrofoam cover in concrete and there is a water bowl built into the corner.

I set this tank up for two garter snakes, but both babies died on me. When asking in a garter group what I did wrong I was told bad luck and issues with the original aspen shavings. I was then told to maybe try a different snake species as my first snake due to the garters' habit of just dying due to their quantity over quality take to reproduction.

I have seen
  • Corn snakes
  • Rat snakes
  • Californa King Snakes
  • Milk Snakes
  • Rosy Boas
  • Children's Python
  • Hognose
  • Kenyan Sand Boa

suggested, but I feel like either they are too big for the size, not right for the setup(since it's a humid bioactive), or a bit out of my price range.

Does this tank actually work for anything but garter snakes?
Attached Images
Old 11-19-2020, 07:37 PM   #2
Note: I am aware some of these plants are super dead, trying to fix that/figure out what went wrong. (probably a light problem)
Old 11-19-2020, 08:44 PM   #3
Socratic Monologue
The plant in the first pic looks dehydrated -- either from too much heat, or too dry or too wet (roots can't breathe) substrate.

I don't think that any of the snakes on your list would be good candidates for that vivarium. All of them, though, are fantastic snakes to keep, for the right keeper. I'd recommend learning a lot about each of them, finding opportunities to handle specimens of the species you are keen on, and then setting up an appropriate enclosure for whichever you choose (which won't likely be 'bioactive', IMO).

Not what you want to hear, likely, but best for the animal you eventually decide to care for. Also, I've never kept garter snakes, but the info you got from the 'garter group' strikes me as questionable. I was hoping a knowledgeable garter keeper would chime in here.
Old 11-20-2020, 11:37 AM   #4
Baby garters have the habit of just dying due to failure to thrive, so people in the group suggested I start with other snakes due to how badly I take animal death and my inexperience.

I am doing research on snakes, but I feel like I set this tank too much for garters. I did actually switch to bioactive due to the aspen shavings from my original setup killing one of the garters, so I was hoping that would be good for some others as well. Is it actually bad for most snakes?

Also, do you mind if I ask what would be the problem with corns, rats, rosy and children's and this tank? Is it size or not enough hiding spaces?
Old 11-20-2020, 04:35 PM   #5
Socratic Monologue
I don't keep many of the species on your list. Rosies and hogs I do, and that viv is exactly wrong -- too wet, too hard to give decent belly heat/thermoregulation choices. Children's pythons and KSBs are desert animals, too. Corns and cali kings should have more room. Ratsnakes are a huge group -- no generalizations possible. That list isn't directed at your enclosure at all; people who advised the species I addressed simply don't have a clue.

Choosing a species because it will work in a viv you happen to have is not something I want to promote. Many of the species on that list might turn out to be miserable to live with (biters/muskers) -- choosing based on species will help avoid that.

If you're worried about sunk costs in the viv, consider how much a snake costs over its life. The animal is $100, say, then $1.50 a week for 15 years for food, and a $150 vet visit at some point -- that's $1420. The cost of the viv is a minor factor.

And, I'm not saying this to be a jerk, but: every snake you keep is going to die, someday. It won't be easier to take after you've cared for it for its whole life, and have to watch it decline. If you are attracted to garters, figure out how to keep them; I'm assuming it is possible, since people do it. Maybe start with one that's established.

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29 gallon, bioactive, humidity, picking a snake, snakes

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