Ball Python Breeding age size

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Ball Python breeding age size:

Basically you need to understand it takes a long time to raise Ball Pythons to maturity. Unfortunately many people are looking for a shot cut to grow their snake and produce a clutch of eggs. This decision is usually based on greed for money; these are the same individuals always posting how much they love their snakes.  Over feeding your Ball Python can cause obesity which could affect your snake’s health. An obese snake does not equate a healthy snake. 

There are a few factors that play into Ball Pythons becoming good breeders: size (body mass), age (maturity), and educational research on the keeper’s part. Males should have good weight but should not be overweight. If a male is too skinny, he will not have the energy reserves to breed multiple females. This could cause many infertile eggs also known as slugs. Males become reliable breeders at about 700 grams. Provided the male eats well and when fed on a normal schedule this size is usually attained in 12 to 18 months. Mature males make better breeders. A sign of sexual maturity is when the male starts to produce sperm plugs.  Some males are timid breeders in the first season. Their confidence is usually much higher in the second season of breeding.

A female Ball Python’s age and body mass are crucial for them to produce follicles and become a successful breeder. Females will start reproducing at 1500 - 1600 grams. On average, a female will hit this weight in about 30 months. This would be achieved if the female has a good appetite and is fed on a normal schedule; not power fed. You should not attempt to breed a female that weighs less than this. Unfortunately due to greed, people are breeding female ball Pythons around 1000 – 1200 grams. It is actually very cruel when you breed a female who is under age and under sized. People do not realize how big the egg is that comes out of the female’s cloaca when they lay. A female will lose between 500 -700 grams after they have laid their eggs. So remember, it takes a long time to raise female Ball Pythons to sexual maturity, approximately three years. Even if a female is 1600 grams but is too slender, do not breed her. Body mass and girth are crucial. There will always be the exception to the rule where a snake may naturally mature and grow quicker than normal without being overfed. We usually will not put a female into the breeding program unless she is at least 1800-2000 grams, proper body mass and three years of age.

The recovery process for each female is different. Some females may require more time. So basically you may use the one season on and one season off method by rotating the cycle between females.

The pictures below by Joe Compel are a basic guideline of what a breed-able size is. The ruler is six inches long. We usually do not breed our females unless they are at least 1800-2000 grams and approximately three years of age.

I hope this information helps some first time breeders. Thank you for your time.


Best of luck,
Living Art Reptiles.
Source Information:
Living Art Reptiles.
Photos: Joe Compel & Living Art Reptiles

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