Can corn snakes live together?
Can corn snakes live together you ask. Wild corn snake tend to be solitary reptiles. This means they like to be alone. They don’t live together, hunt together, sleep together, nor do they really like each others company.
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Many people think that keeping corn snakes in the same enclosure will effectively keep costs down, and their corn snakes will have company. However, being an asocial reptile means your corn snakes may become more stress if they are housed together. If you see two corn snake which look like they are huddling together. It may look like they are comforting each other. But this isn’t the case. They are actually competing for that specific space. One snake will always loose and this can cause a lot of stress, for both snakes. So keeping corn snakes together in the same enclosure is not advised.
There are many problems that can arise from housing two corn snakes together in the same enclosure. Here is a list below of some of the most common dangers from housing corn snakes together.
Corn snakes are used to be alone in the wild and are very antisocial towards other corn snakes. They become very uneasy around other snakes, and will often try to avoid them at all costs. Housing two corn snakes in the same enclosure can raise their stress levels if they feel they can not avoid each other. More than likely, if one snake is bigger than the other, it will quickly become the more dominant snake. This means the smaller snake could become ill through stress and even stop eating completely. We do not want this for our corn snakes.
Early and unexpected breeding
As hatchlings, it’s hard to determine the sex of a corn snake. Whilst you think this won’t be a problem until your corn snakes are fully mature, it’s likely the snakes will mate prematurely. This can be very dangerous for the female corn snake. Complications can arise with premature mating, just like all animals. And in the worst cases, even death.
Corn snakes have been known for cannibalism. This means that they eat their own species. So yes, corn snakes will eat other corn snakes. Although this isn’t very common, it will be come more common when housing corn snake together. Corn snakes are opportunists, so when they get a chance to eat, they will. In the wild, corn snakes never know when their next meal will be. If they haven’t eaten in a few weeks, then another snake will look like a very tempting meal. Snakes need to eat to survive like every other living species.
The spread of disease and illness
This is a very common factor when housing corn snakes together. Corn snakes can pick up disease and illnesses very easily. And they can spread them just as easily as well. In turn, this will add some more stress on top of the stress they already have from living together.
Corn snakes may became overly aggressive when hosted together. This is specially common when housing two males. Both males will likely fight to become the dominant snake. This can have very severe consequences for the losing snake. The snake will become scared to be in the enclosure and will most likely stop eating and become very ill. Usually it’s the bigger of the two snakes that will become the more dominant snake. They pretty much become a bully, and this will cause a lot of stress for the other, smaller snake.
Housing corn snakes together…
Although it’s preferred and recommended not to house corn snakes together. It is predominantly the owners choice. So if you are going to house your corn snakes together, then here is a list of factors you need to take into consideration.
Only house corn snake of the same sex and size
Housing snakes of the same sex and size will eliminate the chance of premature breeding. Also housing snakes of the same size will reduce the chance of one snake becoming a dominant snake. Commonly, snakes of the same size will respect each others abilities and won’t fight. They only do this with smaller snakes which they can easily dominate.
Feed them separately
Feeding your corn snakes separately will reduce the chance of one snake becoming dominant over the other. You will commonly see that if your corn snakes are fed together, then one snake will try to steal the others food. This will cause one snake to become dominant and the other to stop eating. We do not want this to happen. So be sure to have a separate feeding tanks for both your snakes.
Enclosure size and hides
The enclosure will need to twice as big as an enclosure which would house just one snake. Corn snakes need their own space, so having an enclosure which allows this is a necessity. Along side this, you will be to include twice as many hides for your corn snakes. This is so there are plenty of places for both snakes to relax separately. They will most likely never sleep in the same hide.
So can corn snakes live together in the same enclosure? It’s not recommended. But initially, it’s completely up to you. What ever you decide, please take into consideration the factors above.
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