Ball pythons (Python regius) are amazing reptiles, captivating snake enthusiasts worldwide. They are non-venomous from Sub-Saharan Africa and loved for their docile temperament. Also, they have a manageable size and a fantastic variety of morphs.
Are you looking to own this snake as a pet and want to learn ball python prices?
This guide gives comprehensive information about ball python prices in 2023. It includes their initial costs, appropriate enclosure, food requirements, and essential supplies. Also, we give helpful tips on how to cut down costs, both on purchase and basic supplies.
Currently, ball pythons don’t have subspecies. But depending on their regions, you can get them in different patterns and colors. Also, breeders have morphs not found in natural settings in the wild.
The name ball python comes from this snake’s defensive position, whereby they wrap their body around their head for protection from possible attacks.
Factors that determine a ball python’s cost include age, color, and breed availability. Depending on the variable you choose, you should be ready to pay between $100 and $250 for a young one.
You can spend up to $100 and $175 for a pastel or spider python. However, you will need about $1,600 to $2,100 to get a killer clown ball python. But there are hundreds of ball python varieties, colors, and prices in the market.
Price Comparision of Different Pythons
|Axanthic ball python||$300 to $950|
|Banana ball python||$200 to $700|
|Albino ball python||$200 to $500|
|Butter ball python||$200 to $400|
|Ball python MORPHS||$250 to $550|
|Bumblebee ball python||$120 to $240|
|Candino ball python||$350 to $550|
|Chocolate ball python||$120 to $240|
|Coral Glow ball python||$350 to $600|
|Ghost ball python||$100 to $175|
|Cinnamon ball python||$100 to $300|
|GHI ball python||$2,900 to $4,200|
|Ivory ball python||$200 to $400|
|Killer clown ball python||$1,600 to $2,100|
|Lesser ball python||$100 to $175|
|Leucistic ball python||$350 to $500|
|Leopard ball python||$100 to $350|
|Mystic ball python||$150 to $300|
|Pewter ball python||$150 to $550|
|Mojave ball python||$100 to $150|
|Pastel ball python||$120 to $275|
|Pinstripe ball python||$100 to $175|
|Phantom ball python||$120 to $240|
|Queen bee ball python||$350 to $650|
|Spider ball python||$100 to $175|
|Spinner ball python||$150 to $400|
|Spotnose ball python||$150 to $220|
|Sunset ball python||$1,300 to $2,600|
|Super blast ball python||$220 to $400|
|Yellow belly ball python||$175 to $350|
|Vanilla ball python||$220 to $450|
Factors That Determine Ball Python Prices
Ball pythons can cost as little as $100, depending on different factors. The local market and geographical location often determine the cost of these pet snakes. Also, their genetic traits, origin, health, and age can affect their prices.
Although, many times, their characteristics determine ball python prices.
Ball python genetics determine its price value. If it has unique marks or rare genetics, you will pay more. At the same time, it may cost you less to get one with standard genetics.
The next factor determining a ball python’s cost is its size. Commonly, large ball pythons are more expensive than small ones. Large snakes need more space and food, increasing maintenance and ownership costs.
Specific ball python availability determines their costs. Rare morphs are hard to find and therefore more expensive than common types. Similar to other commodities, the law of supply and demand applies.
Also, pet snakes are more expensive in countries where they are less common.
Color is an important factor for ball pythons. Some colored varieties, like those with orange and yellow hues, have a higher demand than others. Hence, their prices can be more than that of common-colored ones.
Captive Breeds vs. Imported Breeds
Breed type is also among the major factors determining ball pythons’ cost. Captive breeds are more expensive. Ask for their breeding information regarding their previous diseases, genetics, pathogens exposure, and any other details you may want.
Imported breeds may come from wild snakes. And their genetics, lineage, and health information may be unknown. You must be careful since some importers charge as much for these as captive breeds despite their value differences.
Besides the initial ball python prices, there are other costs. We’ve created a comprehensive guide on the ball python’s long-term costs, including the cage and accessories.
Ball pythons are special and require a cage enclosure matching their natural habitats. Making one is relatively cheap.
|Heating apparatus||$10- $50|
|Thermometer and hygrometer||$10|
|Shower or spray bottle||$10-$20|
The cage or enclosure size depends on the size of your snake. There isn’t one size for all ball python pets. Adults need at least a 20-gallon size enclosure, but it would help to have a more spacious structure.
A 40-gallon structure is better since you can make varying vegetation and hides, creating a wild feel. Hence, the cost depends on size, as follows:
- 20 gallons at $70 to $200
- 40 gallons at $150 to $240
- 67 gallons at $300 to $450
Dry hides give snakes a feeling of safety and comfort in their settings. For better comfort, provide two dry hides for your ball python. The first should be on the warm side of the tank, and the second should be on the cold side.
These give your snake more than one option for only $10 to $30. The cold side should be within 75F, while the hot side should be 85F-90F.
This section gives your python pet a comfortable atmosphere with about 60-70% humidity. It closely resembles the dry hide but has higher humidity levels. The moisture makes it easy for skin to shed and enhances comfort.
You can customize their shedding hide at home with a yogurt container and paper towel. Or get ready-made ones with Tupperware and moss fillings for about $10. But you can also go for special hide designs for about $20 to 25.
Ball pythons are cold-blooded, so they don’t generate heat. You need to provide heat in the right amounts for their comfort. Ensure the tank has a cold and warm side, each with a thermometer. Follow the tips below to achieve the best temperatures for them.
- Get a dome or a heat lamp for about $10 to $35.
- Place a heating pad, which costs between $20-$50, under the tank.
It’s advisable to track the humidity and temperatures in the python cage. It would be best if you got a hygrometer and a thermometer.
This device is essential to control the temperature levels in the cage. This will give you peace of mind at only $25 to $50. With these, the cage temperatures will be ideal.
Scoops are important to remove fecal and urine matter from the cage for maximum cleanliness. Alternatively, you can buy a waste remover for $12-$15.
Always provide your snake water in a shallow dish. Purchase a long-lasting and stable water bowl, which is affordable at around $10 to $20.
Soak it in shallow warm water for about 10 to 15 minutes to boost hydration and promote proper shedding. Increase the soaking to once a day, as shedding increases.
Light fixtures are optional in your ball python cage, but some people find them necessary. At $10 to $30, you can get quality light fixtures. However, remember that prolonged light exposure may cause sleep cycle disruptions and distress.
You can make an oasis for your python tank by adding hides, sticks, plants, and rocks. These decorations enhance their environment and promote health and satisfaction. You can achieve this with less than $100, good imagination, and household items. Alternatively, you can use fake plants and intricate hides at a higher cost.
Pythons do well in relatively high-humidity environments. Keep their environment humid for optimum well-being. A cheap spray bottle is all you need to accomplish this.
As a ball python owner, you must consider consumable products and ownership expenses. These consumables include substrate, moss, and food. And they need regular replacement.
Their costs break down are as follows:
|Substrate||$50-70 per year|
|Sphagnum moss||$20 per year|
|Food||$1 to $3 per meal|
You can use freely available materials like newspapers or buy them at your local pet store. You can buy aspen shavings at about $5 to $10. But it is important to get the right materials despite their costs.
Replacing the substrates after two months is advisable to maintain a healthy tank bed. In addition, you must avoid materials with small particles, sand, and gravel, as the snake may ingest them, leading to constipation.
Sphagnum moss maintains moisture for long periods. You may need to replace these occasionally, but costs are manageable at only $20 per year.
Ball pythons are carnivorous and will only feed on meat, mostly rodents, whose prices depend on size. Also, your pet’s age and size determine the number and type of rodents you will give them for good health.
Here is a guide on python age and the size of rodents you should feed them:
Small, young pythons: Feed them small pinkie mice once weekly for proper growth and development. The mice will cost you about $1 to $2 per mouse.
Adults: these ball pythons need large mice to meet their nutrition requirements. You will part with about $4 to $5 per mouse.
Large ball pythons: These snakes need large rats once each week or two. Each goes for about $10 to $15.
The breakdown above shows that annual food costs for these pets are more manageable than others. Feeding them frozen prey is not good, although they may be cheaper. Freshly killed rats and mice are preferable.
In addition, it’s not advisable to give your pets live rodents since they may bite them, causing infections. Pet pythons will comfortably feed on dead prey, unlike wild snakes.
How Often Should You Feed a Ball Python?
You can feed your ball python every five days if it is of small size. At the same time, large pets can eat once every one to two weeks. You will feed them less as they age.
In addition, ball pythons tend to feed well in the afternoons or evenings since they are nocturnal animals.
Sometimes, you will give your ball python food, but it will be reluctant to eat. This may be due to the following:
- Habitat temperatures maybe be too cold or too hot
- Extra-large habitats
- He doesn’t recognize the food you give him
- The snake is preparing to shed his skins
- Your snake is stressed
- It is breeding season
- He is unwell
- Your python is not hungry
In addition, you may need to do the following:
- Warm frozen food before feeding
- Cut pre-killed prey
- Look for signs of illness or shedding
- Regulate the tank temperature
- Clean the habitat
These pets are living creatures. Hence, they are prone to medical problems despite how much care you give them. You may notice some abnormalities which add to general upkeep costs. Some of these signs include the following:
- Parasite infestation
- Mouth rot
- Snakes viral diseases
- Retained eyecaps
- Trauma symptoms
- No stool,
- Not eating,
- Poor shedding.
It may cost you up to $100 for an initial treatment vet visit. Please be keen on any of the above signs and take action early to avoid large bills.
In addition, you can get insurance services for your ball python. Compare different offers and settle on one with the best policies and benefits to suit your needs. Consider their exclusions, deductibles, company reputation, and waiting periods. This way, you will get the best deals and know what to expect in emergencies.
You can avoid these costs if you can maintain a healthy environment and provide proper care to avoid frequent health issues. Also, schedule regular checks, maintain appropriate humidity and temperature levels, and keep the tank clean.
These snake pets are generally cheaper than other animals or reptile pets. Here are a few ways ball python ownership is convenient:
- They are comfortable in small cages with less setup.
- They are cheap to feed since adults feed once per week or two weeks.
- Although some materials are expensive, they can last a long time if you take good care of them. These include the bedding, a thermometer, a heat mat, and a terrarium.
- They require less care than other pets.
- Excellent choice if you need a cost-friendly pet.
If you are a snake lover or a prospective ball python owner, here are a few tips to minimize costs — both the initial costs and consumables:
Research and Compare Prices
Before buying one, compare their prices from pet stores, breeders, and online sellers. The prices may vary significantly, so explore your options and settle on the best deal. But don’t compromise on health and quality.
Rescue or Adopt
You can rescue or adopt a reptile from adoption centers. This way, you will save more than getting one from a breeder. Also, you will give care to a needy snake.
Go for a Standard Morph
Unique and rare ball python varieties are attractive and expensive. You can choose a normal morph and pay less for the initial purchase.
Buy Young Pythons
Snake hatchlings and juveniles are cheaper than adults. Although they need more attention and care, you will enjoy seeing them grow while saving money on initial costs.
Set a DIY Habitat
Customize your cage or enclosure instead of buying from the store. This way, you will enjoy design flexibility and budget-friendly prices.
When making purchases, go for discounts and deals on important supplies like heating equipment, enclosures, hides, and substrates. Be keen on online sales, promotions, and reptile expos where you may get discounts.
Join Reptile Communities
Look for your local reptile communities, social media groups, and forums. Here you may find members rehoming or selling their ball pythons at affordable prices. Also, you may get valuable information on cost savings.
Ensure Good Health
Investing in preventative care and quality husbandry to reduce health risks is important. This helps to reduce veterinary costs. Also, you should disinfect and clean the cage, ensure optimal humidity and temperature, and give a suitable diet.
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