Ever wondered why your ball python sleeps through the day, or hides in dark places. Maybe you thought, are ball pythons nocturnal. If you did, then you would be correct. This is mainly due to their eyesight being very poor, making them highly sensitive to direct light.
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Ball pythons are in fact nocturnal. This means they are most active at night. Bright lights can be very stressful for some species of snake, and ball pythons are definitely one of them. During daylight hours, ball pythons will seek shelter or a hiding spot. They like to feel secure at all times, so make sure when creating a hide in their vivarium, it’s not too big or spacious. They like to feel enclosed, sleeping in hides which they can feel the walls of.
Ball pythons are nocturnal hunters. They scavenge through rodent holes at night, hoping to find a meal which is most likely sleeping. Over time, their eyes have adapted to dim light, and have consequently become very sensitive to strong light.
Their main resource for hunting in the dark is their heat sensitive “pit organs”, which are located along the edge of the snakes mouth. These specially adapted organs enables a ball python to locate warm blooded prey in the darkest of burrows. They are able to detect heat as small as 1/300th of a degree.
So how does the thermal sensing work?
Along the edges of their mouths are their heat detecting devices which we call “Pit organs”. These organs have adapted through thousands of years to detect heat radiation from warm blooded animals.
The pit organs are devised of a membrane, nerves and air chambers. Basically, in simple terms, the air temperature changes within these air chambers. A ball python can pick these changes up extremely quickly, and to the most minuet of temperature changes. The constantly changing, temperature chambers, along with the nervous system, creates a highly accurate and clear thermal imagine for the ball python to observe.
Although this thermal image is very clear to a ball python, it does however only work up to three meters. So they have to be pretty close to their prey before they even realise its there. So hunting animals at night obviously has its benefits.
Most Recommended For Ball Pythons
Bathing Water Bowl – Click Here
Heat Lamp and Guard – Click Here
Reliable Thermometer – Click Here
Vivarium/Enclosure – Click Here
Climbing Branches – Click Here
Hydrometer – Click Here