Please don't over feed a corn snake!
Corn snakes should look like a loaf of bread.
Many people see corn snakes as the throw away pet of the reptile world. They feel this way because of two reasons. 1. There are always so many available. 2. They are so cheap compared to other reptiles. It is a sad thing that people see them as "Throw Away" pets much as people view any kind of rodent. These wonderful, intelligent and gentle snakes come in so many colors and have such interesting personalities! One only has to pay attention to their snake for 2 or 3 days to realize its not just a stupid decoration that has to be fed.
I think the biggest issue comes from the fact that too many people get their first corns as babies. Babies need special care compared to an adult or even sub-adult. They need a smaller home to start, they need smaller feed and to be fed more often. I find my hatchlings do much better if I do not handle them at all other than for feeding until they are one double pinks. What is double pinks you ask?
Here is the guide I use to feed my snakes. It is lightly based off of the Munson Plan which can be found on cornsnakes.com/forums .
- Snake up to 15 grams gets one small pinky weighing 1-3 grams
- Snake up to 25 grams gets 2 pinks weighing a total of 6 grams
- Snake up to 50 grams gets a peach fuzzy (has a light fuss of fur, but not a full coat)
- Snake up to 80 grams gets a Fuzzy (has a full coat of hair but eyes are shut)
- Snake up to 125 grams gets one Hopper (still kinda small but eyes open)
- Snake up to 175 grams gets one weanling (almost adult size and no longer nursing)
- Snake 175 or up gets one regular adult (weighing less than 30 grams)
These are Mice only. At this time I do not feed rats. Corn snakes can only handle eating rats in the first 4 sizes on average. So I would have to have a Ball Python to take any bigger. This feed schedule also has a timetable.
- Being fed one pink eats every 5 days.
- Being fed 2 pinks gets fed every 7 days.
- Being fed 1 peach fuzzy gets fed every 7 days.
- Being fed 1 fuzzy gets fed every 7 days.
- Being fed 1 hopper gets fed every 7 days.
- Being fed 1 weanling gets fed every 10 days.
- Being fed 1 adult gets fed every 10 days until they reach 300 grams then they get fed every 14 days.
- If a snake begins to look round instead of like a loaf of bread (flat on the bottom, relatively flat on the sides and round on top) push back feeding 2 days more, for example if a snake on hoppers begins to look too fat either switch it to the next size or feed every 9 days instead of 7. Which to do depends on the size of your snake.
It is best to invest in a scale that weighs in grams up to 10 lbs to track your snakes weight. By watching both their shape and their weight you can be sure your snake does not get grossly overweight which can lead to horrible illnesses, exuberant vet bills and eventually the untimely death of your snake. Corns should live a minimum of 10 years, but have been known to live to be 20. I believe the record is 26 years of age.
Feel free to post questions in the comments and I will post in response!