Pantherophis bairdi (Baird's ratsnake)

Elaphe bairdi

Age: up to 20 years
Origin: United States of America
Length: up to 140 centimeters

The Pantherophis bairdi often has a yellow or darker salmon-colored dorsal pattern. They also have four stripes that run the length of their bodies. The snake's belly is usually gray or yellow and darkens towards the tail


Experience: novice snake keeper
Food: Live or dead prey.
Adult feeding: once a week
Feeding young: 1 time every 5 to 7 days
Water bowl: Yes
Water change: 3 times a week


There is the choice to present the prey alive or dead. It is recommended to offer dead food. This is more practical and prevents the food animal from injuring your snake. It is also advised to offer the food animal with feeding tongs and to feed your snake outside the enclosure. This ensures that your hand is not associated with food and prevents your snake from reaching for your hand while feeding. If you do go for live food, you must supervise the feeding. The prey animal can also injure the snake. Feed the rat snake separately, because when two snakes catch the same prey, they can injure each other and sometimes eat each other themselves. The ideal prey is about as wide as the widest part of the snake.

A small water bowl is better because of the humidity, it should not be too high

The accommodation must be kept clean to prevent diseases and bacteria build-up. This can be done by doing this weekly. In addition, it is wise to thoroughly clean and disinfect the accommodation a few times a year. This prevents the build-up of bacteria. When cleaning, make sure that you also clean the climbing branches and elevations.

To feed the Pantherophis bairdi and to clean the enclosure, your snake will need to be handled. This must of course be done properly so that the snake and you are safe. Handle the hose with a hose hook or lift it with two hands. Do not hang your snake around your neck, because if the snake falls it will clamp around your neck. In addition, there are some important things to keep in mind when handling a spotted python. First, make sure that your snake realizes that you are going to handle it and move slowly when handling it. Also make sure your hands are washed and don't smell like food. Finally, do not handle your snake when it is molting and do not handle it in the dark.


Minimum stay size for 1 hose: 120 x 45 x 55
Lying surface: 0.5m2 with at least one raised lounger per hose on which the hose can lie.
Day temperature: 23-31C
Night temperature: 22-26C
Hours of light: 12 hours
Humidity: 45%-55%
Bottom cover: Care Fresh is a popular bottom cover for this hose with many hose holders


The Pantherophis bairdi is found in the southwestern United States and in the hill country and the Big Bend region of Texas. There they inhabit rocky forested areas. Make sure that there are sufficient climbing and hiding places in the accommodation

Hunting method: Strangler snake
Lifestyle: semi-arboreal & nocturnal


active animals that are usually in a good mood. This makes them easy to handle and excellent pets. Young specimens can be defensive.

Points of attention

The Pantherophis bairdi is a strangler snake, this snake is sensitive to high humidity, so pay attention to this.

Cost and Purchase

Legislation: The Pantherophis bairdi falls under CITES II, to own this snake you need CITES or transfer papers. You should receive this with the purchase.
One-off costs: This includes the costs for accommodation, lighting, heating, water bowl and decoration. This can cost a few hundred euros to a few thousand euros. The final amount depends on the quality and size of the products.
Fixed costs: Fixed costs include the costs for the feed, which is several tens of euros per year.
Unexpected costs: Costs have been incurred when your hose happens to get sick or your equipment breaks down.