A Snow Corn Snake is very similar to a regular corn snake. However, they are pink and white in color because they lack melanin. Their eyes are often red, orange, or pink. They are also called Complete Albino Corn Snakes.
Corn snakes are one of the most common pet snakes – and for a good reason. Their colorations are extremely variable, and they are known for their docile temperaments. They are large enough to be held, but they are hardy enough to accept handling.
These are often recommended for novice snake owners. Even children can be taught to handle this snake easily.
Quick Facts about the Snow Corn Snake
|Species Name:||Pantherophis guttatus|
|Common Name:||Corn Snake|
|Adult Size:||2 – 6 feet|
|Minimum Tank Size:||20-gallons|
|Temperature & Humidity:||75 – 95 Degrees; 65% to 75%|
Do Snow Corn Snakes Make Good Pets?
The corn snake often makes a great pet snake. They are docile and very easy to care for. Even beginner snake owners can learn how to handle these snakes correctly and should have no problem meeting their needs. They don’t get very large, but they do get large enough to be handled with ease.
They are quite hardy and adaptable, so they don’t mind some mistakes in care. All these snakes need is a proper enclosure and food. Beyond that, they pretty much keep to themselves.
Snow Corn Snakes are basically albino corn snakes. They will look like a regular corn snake, except they lack pigment. This causes their eyes to be red, orange, or pink. Their skin will be pink and white in color.
Most of these snakes reach about 2 to 6 feet, making their size quite variable. Their bodies are very slender, and they have rounded pupils. They do not have heat-seeking pits like other snakes.
Related Read: Ghost Corn Snake
How to Take Care of a Snow Corn Snake
Habitat, Tank Conditions & Setup
Adult corn snakes require at least a 20-gallon tank. However, bigger is often better. Larger snakes will need a larger enclosure. It is not recommended to keep them with other snakes, as they are not social animals.
These snakes are very good at escaping, so a lid is absolutely essential. Preferably, a heavy lid should be used to prevent the snake from simply pushing the lid up.
Climbing branches are often appreciated, but the tank can be decorated as you wish beyond that. We do recommend a couple of tight, dark hiding areas to help the snake feel a bit more secure.
These snakes do not require light as long as there is a day/night cycle within the home. They should not be placed in direct sunlight, but they should be placed in a room with lighting differences. Beyond this, they do not require any special lighting.
Heating (Temperature & Humidity)
The tank should be heated to varying temperatures using either a heating lamp or an under-tank heating pad. The warm side of the tank should be about 85 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool side can be as low as 70 degrees. The room temperature is typically fine.
There should be hiding boxes with varying temperatures on either side of the tank. Track the temperature using an appropriate thermometer. Be sure to be careful regarding thermometer placement, as the temperature can vary by just a few inches.
Do not mist the enclosure. If you notice that the snake is having a hard time shedding, introduce a piece of damp moss to the enclosure around shedding time.
Aspen and cypress shavings both work well. These are soft and absorbent, allowing the snake to burrow as it pleases. Pine and cedar should be avoided, as the essential oils can harm the snake. You can also use newspaper, but the snake will attempt to burrow into them.
Sand shouldn’t be used because the snake may accidentally eat it.
|Heating||Heat lamp, pad, or tape|
|Best Substrate||Aspen bedding|
Feeding Your Snow Corn Snake
The main source of food for your snake should be rodents. Very small corn snakes can eat the occasional frog, as many rodents may be too large for them. Very large adults are often big enough to eat some eggs. Corn snakes will often not eat crickets or other insects.
Fully thawed out mice should be used. However, live mice may be required if your corn snake is stressed. Some snakes are simply picky and won’t eat already dead mice. Others don’t particularly care either way.
Babies should be fed every 5-7 days, while adults should be fed every 7-10 days.
|Fruits||0% of diet|
|Insects||0% of diet|
|Meat||100% of diet|
Keeping Your Snow Corn Snake Healthy
Common Health Issues
Corn snakes suffer from many of the same health issues as other pet snakes. Mouth rot can occur, though it is typically a secondary infection. This is when bacteria get in a wound in the snake’s mouth, which can cause swelling and similar issues.
Parasites can occur, including mites. These aren’t always easy to notice, but many are visible around the snake’s eyes, mouth, and underneath the scales. These can usually be treated by thoroughly cleaning the snake and tank.
Skin conditions of various sorts can occur if the snake is not kept in a proper environment. Blisters, cuts, infected wounds, and shedding problems all fall into this category.
Like many snakes, the corn snake has a very long lifespan. They usually live 15-20 years in captivity. However, some can live longer when properly cared for. In the wild, they usually only live 6-8 years.
Corn snakes are relatively easy to breed. They sometimes require a period of brumate, which is basically how the snake hibernates. After this winter cooling, they begin breeding. This is done mostly through chemical cues on the male’s part.
Egg-laying takes place about a month after mating. 12-24 eggs are laid into a moist, hidden location—the eggs hatch after ten weeks. In captivity, the clutch’s mortality rate is very low.
Corn snakes reach sexual maturity by length, not age. Females hit sexual maturity at 30 inches long.
You might also be interested in: Corn Snake vs. Copperhead: What’s the Difference?
Are Snow Corn Snakes Friendly? Our Handling Advice
Baby corn snakes are quite shy and scared. They will often attempt to hide and flee if you attempt to handle them. However, they are much too small to do any damage to their owner.
You should allow the snake to settle into its home and a proper feeding routine before handling them unnecessarily. This prevents the snake from becoming stressed out and refusing to eat. Do not handle the snake directly after feeding, as this can upset their digestion.
Handle the snake confidently but gently. Hesitation can make the snake more likely to bite. Once the snake realizes it isn’t going to be eaten, they generally calm down quite a bit.
Shedding & Brumation: What to Expect
Corn snakes will shed their skin every 4-6 weeks when they are little. Adults only shed every three months or so. You should increase the humidity of your tank, if necessary, during shedding, as this ensures that the snake easily sheds without complication. Shed to ensure that the eye caps and tip of the tail were shed off completely. It is easiest to check the skin, not necessarily the snake.
Brumation is often stressful for snakes and can cause some of them to perish. If you don’t plan on breeding our snake, we recommend avoiding brumation. It is optional, not necessary.
Related Read: Black Corn Snake
How Much Do Snow Corn Snakes Cost?
Regular corn snakes only cost about $25 to $50. However, due to their rare coloration, the snow corn snake usually costs about $150 to $200 at most. This is still much cheaper than other snakes.
Care Guide Summary
Looking for a full list of corn snake morphs? We have everything you need here!
Featured Image Credit: Kaleb Kroetsch, Shutterstock
Kristin is passionate about helping pet parents create a fulfilling life with their pets by informing them on the latest scientific research and helping them choose the best products for their pets. She currently resides in Tennessee with four dogs, three cats, two fish, and a lizard, though she has dreams of owning chickens one-day!