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Thread: ball python terrarium - increasing humidity

  1. #1
    Devon's Avatar
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    ball python terrarium - increasing humidity

    Hey Tf, I need to increas the humidity in my ball pythons terarrium. As you can see from this picture, it's not humid enough... they aren't even shedding properly.



    So, what I thought about raising the humidity is adding plants and soil, and a waterfall (if I get one for christmas) . The thing is, I don't know how I should add the plants and soil and stuff. Would plants and soil even rais the humidity?

    What I was thinkking is adding plants and some soil in mounds on the right side where the window is, and moving the heat pad and lamp to the left side, and keep the water dish in the middle-ish....

    Does anyone have any thoughs?

    Thanks.

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    Charlatan lizasaur's Avatar
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    While I don't recommend plants and soil (the plants will just get mown over, and the soil may harbor pests/diseases. There's not a whole heck of a lot known about keeping them on that, and all) there are several options you can do:
    1) Definitely switch the substrate to something better at holding humidity. I reccomend Coconut Husk chips or fiber. Those are great at holding humidity, and when your snake is in blue, you can mist it to up the humidity (just don't soak it- you don't want fungal issues!)
    2) Seal up 2/3 of the tank lid with saran wrap, starting at the warm side of the tank. Do it in such a way that you leave an opening for the light and it doesn't inhibit you from getting into the enclosure. Move the waterdish to the warm side of the tank. You can optionally mist the tank, too.
    3) Humid-Hides! They're easy to make and solves nearly any issue with shedding- just take an empty tupperware container, make an entry hole in the side (smooth any rough edges, of course), place it on the warm side of the tank and put a damp rag on the floor of the hide. EDIT: Raven is right, you could use some of that LFS you can buy in the petshops too...I have heard that it can dry out after ~5 hours, so if you go that route, you may want to keep an eye on it.
    4) Give the snake a regular, lukewarm bath. When you're doing this, make sure you have a thermometer in the water! What feels warm to us is above our body temperature, meaning over 98.6 degrees, which may be a little too warm for our cold-blooded friends. While it may feel too cool for us, using a thermometer to make sure the water is in the low 90s to mid 80s is the best idea. Alternatives such as misting the snake with Shed-Aid or water, or sitting them on the towel rack while you shower are possible, but not quite as effective.

    Hope this helps
    Last edited by lizasaur; 12-17-2010 at 09:24 PM.

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    Raven01000's Avatar
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    I think it would be difficult to keep both the plants and snakes happy. You'd need to keep the plants watered, but the damp soil could lead to problems for the snakes. I have heard that if you keep their bellies moist all the time it can lead to skin problems or rot. The soil would also make it difficult to remove the substrate and the urine therein and to generally keep the tank clean. Not only that, but the snakes would almost certainly crush the plants as they slithered about the enclosure. I know my snake would have squashed his plants to pulp long ago if they had been real and not plastic. That said, it might still be possible, but it will probably be pretty difficult. When I first got my snake, I remember hearing about a book (called something like "the Art of Keeping Snakes") that went into detail about how you can create an enclosure with plants and stuff.

    If you want something more simple or just need something to use for the time being, the safest and easiest way I know to raise the humidity is to make a humid hide--a box or cave lined with moss or other humidity raising substances that the snakes can enter when they want some added humidity. You could make a simple one out of a Tupperware container or shoe box, and you could put it in whenever they are about to shed. You mist the interior to keep it humid, and then you can remove the hide after they have shed. My ball python sheds well without one, but my leopard gecko had trouble before I made him one. I had to help him with his first shed, but after I put the humid hide in he's never had another issue.

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    Devon's Avatar
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    thanks Raven and carnivores. For now I will just use the humid hide then, and if I get a mini waterfall for christmas then I start to get into the complicated stuff.

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