Put a Real Beauty in your Tank: Taiwan Beauty Snakes in Captivity Series II

21 Jun

For whatever reason this particular genus has seemingly never caught on as a big seller in the herp market; it’s like the Uromastyx being compared to the Bearded Dragon Pogona sp. Regardless of this, they are found for sale for in local pet shops and at conventions as well.

The Taiwan Beauty Snake O. t.  friesi is in some ways a “typical” Ratsnake.  They are a long and slender species, which are alert and capable of fast movement.  This in itself has led some to believe that they are a “nervous” serpent.  In my experience, this is far from the truth.  All the Taiwan Beauty Snakes O. t. friesi that I have dealt with were not necessarily nervous, as they were inquisitive.  If you are confident in handling snakes then you should have no issues dealing with this species.  When handled at least two to three times a week they settle down and are not as flighty as when they are first handled.  They typically find a suitable spot on the handler; anchor themselves with their tail, allowing the head and the rest of the body to explore the surrounding area.

As with any rules this is one of the few exceptions to the general rules stated elsewhere in the Blog when it comes to size.  Average size is anywhere from seven to eight feet in length and weighing about 3 pounds or so.  Due to this size and especially their activity level, they need a large enclosure.  Personally, I would not use anything less than a 100 gallon enclosure 72” x 19” x 19”.  Ideally, a 180-gallon enclosure would be the best.  These measure out to be approximately 72” x 25” x 25”.  It is not an issue whether or not you choose to use acrylic or glass when housing but the drawbacks to glass are the weight of the enclosure itself and it will not flex at as much as acrylic.  Acrylic will scratch easy which can occur from an exuberant snake knocking over branches.

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