If you own a ball python, you know that giving it the best environment is always a priority. As part of making sure it is comfortable, it needs the best substrate for ball python as its bedding. With a great substrate, it is able to keep the cage from getting too damp and a place for the snake to play.
Different substrates will have different compositions. This calls for a keen look for the best among them all. Let us check them out to learn more.
- About Substrate and Furnishings
- What Kind of Substrate or Bedding Should You Use for the Bottom Cage of Your Ball Python Cage?
- Best Substrate for Ball Python on the Market
- Top 10 Best Substrate & Bedding for Ball Python Reviews
- How often Should You Change Ball Python Bedding?
- What Makes the Best Substrate for Ball Python?
- What is the Right Humidity for Ball Pythons?
- Is Sand a Good Substrate for Ball Pythons?
About Substrate and Furnishings
Before you can get the best substrate for ball python, you need to understand their natural habitat first. On overall, pythons are known to love the grassland and savanna habitats. They would also love to live in underground rodent burrows. As a result, you need to provide a similar environment by using substrates.
Ball pythons are generally shy and thus having a place to burrow for hiding will be great. It is the reason you have to explore several options when it comes to substrates and furnishings to find the best.
The substrates can be made of different materials. That being said, it is recommended that you avoid using substrates made from cedar. This is because cedar material is toxic to different types of snakes. You can always do further research about a substrate material before making up your mind.
As part of making sure that the ball python is comfortable, include lots of hiding places. This allows for it to easily hide if it has to. Such places should also be free from too much moisture. This all comes down to the substrate’s ability to retain moisture.
In the enclosure, it is also good to add some climbing structures. This allows for the snake to coil itself around the structures. Well, do not overdo it, but rather keep it simple.
You can different types of substrates on the market, but the following are some of the good substrates to consider.
- Cypress mulch – this substrate is attractive and will always hold humidity quite well.
- Reptichip – this is another top brand. It makes substrates that are good for absorbing odors and moistures quite well.
- DIY tropical mix – this involves a combination of 50% peat moss and 50% organic topsoil. It is an inexpensive substrate and will still hold the humidity quite well.
- Cat’s Best Universal – this is another good option for absorbing moisture and odors in the snake cage.
Just as there are many good substrates, you can expect to meet some bad substrates. The following are some of the bad substrates to stay away from.
- Sand – the use of sand is not recommended as it tends to get dusty. It does not also hold humidity over a long time.
- Cedar/pine shavings – this substrate will have oils that can easily cause neurological damage to the reptiles.
- Reptile carpet – the substrate is not the easiest when it comes to cleaning. It also cannot handle big messes.
- Carefresh – this is another substrate that can get dusty and also cannot hold humidity.
What Kind of Substrate or Bedding Should You Use for the Bottom Cage of Your Ball Python Cage?
A lot goes into picking the best substrate for the ball python cage. You always have to consider the safety first. You do not want to use substrates that would cause harm to the pet. As a result, check out the different bad substrates mentioned above to know which ones you are supposed to avoid and use.
Best Substrate for Ball Python on the Market
Working with the best substrate for ball python is definitely going to have many benefits. You will end up giving your pet a comfortable place to relax. That being said, which one is the best? Below is a table comparing several substrates available for purchase right now.
|Pictures||Substrate Ball Python||Made from||Links|
|Cypress Mulch||Natural Cypress Mulch|
|Aspen Snake Bedding||Renewable Resource|
|Coconut Fiber||Natural Green Product|
|Repti Bark||Natural Green Product|
|Reptile Prime Coconut|
|Peat Moss||Organic Product|
|Aspen Shavings||All Natural|
|Eco Carpet||Natural Green Product|
|Zilla Snake and|
Top 10 Best Substrate & Bedding for Ball Python Reviews
1. Cypress Mulch
Coming from a top brand, you can always expect some good news. It is made to be 100% natural cypress mulch. This is important to provide your pet with the best environment possible. As a result, the pet should be comfortable in its new home.
The manufacturer also mentions that it is as a green product. This means that it will not harm the environment with any toxins. This is also something great for your ball python.
The materials used to make the substrate also work great to retain the moisture. You now have just the right humidity in the enclosure. This makes it generally great for your snake. It is also good for other animals such as frogs, toads, lizards, and more.
- It is made to be all natural
- It will not introduce toxins into the environment
- The product is good for other pets mostly snakes and lizards
- The mulch tends to easily get infested with mites
2. Aspen Snake Bedding
For a long time, this has been the most preferred substrate by professionals around the world. They just know how good it is for providing a new home for your pets. As a result, it is commonly used for snakes, lizards, and other related species.
The substrate is generally safe and looks natural. It also allows for the pet to form burrows in it. This will definitely make it work just as good as the wild.
The manufacturer also made it to have an impressive 191% absorbency rating. This allows it to keep the moisture in the cage within the right range. To make it better, it is odorless to make it even safer for the ball python.
- The product has no toxic oils to make it safer
- It works great for a wide range of species
- It is recommended by many professionals worldwide
- A few complaints about it getting mites in a short time
3. Coconut Fiber
This product is all about giving you the best quality. Who would want to spend money on a product that does not offer value for money? Thanks to its building materials, it is able to remain as the best substrate for ball python.
The product is made from coconut husks. This makes it possible to compost them into amazing substrate. The substrate is good in terms of drainage. This allows it to retain just the right amount of moisture to keep your pet happy.
You never have to worry about the odors either. The product is able to break down the odor and other waste product. This keeps the cage cleaner.
- It is an all-natural product
- It is able to provide the best drainage
- The product offers a naturalistic look
- Some feel that the substrate is too dry
4. Repti Bark
This is another top model to consider. Since it is all-natural, this will always make more people feel it is worth getting. It is natural as it is made from the fir tree barks.
To make it the best, it is still hygroscopic. What this means is that it will easily absorb moisture and release it. This results in creating the best humidity levels around the cage. Such a scenario is great for reptiles and this includes ball pythons.
The substrate is also good when it comes to conducting and distributing heat evenly. This should provide the best environment for your pet.
- It is made to be hygroscopic
- It allows for easy, natural digging and burrowing
- The substrate is super easy to maintain
- The substrate comes with a lot of splinters
5. Reptile Prime Coconut Fiber Bedding
There is no doubt you would want the best substrate and this one is also a nice option. First of all, we find that it is suitable for various terrain setups. As a result, it can be good for reptiles, invertebrates, and amphibians.
Some even use it with tropical species. This is because you can keep it as a dry or damp substrate. It can be changed to suit your needs for a ball python substrate. Thanks to its superior humidity retention capabilities, it should the best value for money.
The model also works great when it comes to naturally absorb and break down the odor. It should keep the cage smelling all good. The same goes for the waste products.
- The substrate will naturally absorb odor
- It works great for different types of species
- It comes with superior humidity retention characteristics
- It tends to attract bugs over some time
6. Peat Moss
This is another top option you can opt for as the best substrate for ball python. This is because of the all-natural materials used to make it. There is no doubt you would have many people going for it because of the natural properties.
That is not all, it can be mixed with soil to make it even better. As a result, it is a substrate that comes with the best retention for water and nutrients alike.
It does not just work for your snake pet, but also can be great for planting potted plants. This can be great for creating the best environment in the cage. It will end up giving the snake a natural habitat in no time.
- The substrate comes from a reputable brand
- It has an impressive capacity for holding water and nutrients
- Can easily be blended with soil for more benefits
- It is overpriced for the quantity
7. Aspen Shavings
This substrate is processed better than what you get with other options. This is because it eliminated dust and wood debris. Those who are always worried about splinters from other substrates, you can always opt for this one.
The substrate is further made to be environmentally friendly. Even if you decide to dispose it, you will not have to worry that it would harm the environment. Also, the shavings are all-naturals thus making them pet-friendly and generally safe for your ball python.
As for cleaning, the manufacturer made it easy for you. All that is needed is to clean in a mild soap solution. This helps quite well to remove the odor and other wastes. You should now have a smell-free cage for the pet.
- The substrate is easy to clean
- It is made to be biodegradable
- It does not have aromatic oils and thus pet-safe
- Sometimes it can be too damp
8. Reptichip Premium Coconut Substrate
This is another cool substrate to buy right now. The manufacturer made it so easy to clean. That is what you want if you are going to keep the ball python in a clean environment. It also does not have cases of dust. This should definitely be pet-safe for many to love.
The moisture is retention is great. It is not too much to make the substrate too damp. The retention is enough for creating the best humidity levels.
You will also love it for being 100% organic. The use of organic supplies will keep it eco-friendly and sustainable as snake bedding. To make it even better, the substrate is also good for absorbing odors.
- It absorbs odors and waste products quite well
- It is 100% organic and thus eco-friendly
- The substrate does not have dust
- If not cared for well, it can get molds easily
9. Eco Carpet
This substrate comes from a top brand. It is all about good performance, which is great value for money. First of all, we find that it is pet safe. Now you never have to worry about accidental ingestion. You can have it in your ball python cage to keep enjoying itself.
The product is all-natural. This just goes to show that it is eco-friendly. Who does not like eco-friendly products in this era? You can dispose it easily without necessarily having to worry about it impacting the environment negatively.
The substrate allows for ease of cleaning. This is because you can wash it to remove the wastes and odor. On overall, you can always have it cleaned to keep the cage clean also.
- It is easily washable to keep it clean
- It is pet safe so no accidental ingestion
- The substrate is all-natural
- It is expensive for size
10. Zilla Snake and Lizard Litter
It is definitely one of the top options for you to consider as the best substrate for ball python. This is because it is a top choice for many professionals. This should give you the confidence that you are buying a top quality product.
To make even better, the product is cheap. You will not have to spend a lot of money to keep your ball python comfortable.
The substrate is heat treated. This makes the chips to be ultra-absorbent. This is good to ensure the moisture is maintained within the right range needed for your pet.
This substrate is still hypo-allergenic. This means that it does not contain any harmful oils that would otherwise harm the pet. It is definitely something you would want today.
- Laboratory grade chips making them safer
- They are ideal for snakes, geckos, and skinks
- The chips are heat treated to keep the ultra-absorbent
- The packaging is small, thus multiple bags are needed
How often Should You Change Ball Python Bedding?
It often comes down to the different maintenance needs of the substrates. That being said, the recommended time is that you get to do the maintenance at least monthly. Some can even do it weekly, which is still fine.
When it comes to changing the bedding, do not do it too often as it can also be upsetting to the python.
As for the cleaning process, you need to use the procedure as recommended by the manufacturer. Still, you can simply wash the substrate in a water solution. The solution should contain 5% bleach to help remove the waste and keeping it smelling fresh.
Make sure to leave the substrate to air dry before returning the snake into its clean home. Well, if it was just changing the bedding, you can have it in once you finish with the setup process.
What Makes the Best Substrate for Ball Python?
So, you might be looking to get the best substrate, but you have no idea what to look for. Below are some important things to consider.
– The substrate should be simple to clean. You will have to clean the substrate from time to time. This means that if the substrate is easy to clean, you should have some fun times doing so. Some of the things you will have to clean include urine and feces. Regular cleaning is definitely important for the cage.
– The substrate needs to be comfortable to the ball python. You have to keep in mind that the snake will spend most of its life in the cage. As a result, keeping it comfortable is crucial. Make sure the substrate is non-abrasive to the python’s skin.
– Another consideration is the temperature. You have to choose a substrate that can retain a constant temperature. The same thing goes for the humidity. Having constantly changing conditions will definitely have some negative impacts such as stress on the python.
– The substrate you get should easily be available. This is a substrate that you can get with ease if you have to top up the existing levels in the ball python’s cage. Also, it should be affordable so that you can keep the snake comfortable.
– The substrate that you choose should definitely offer plenty of coverage. You have to keep in mind that pythons generally love to keep it to themselves. This means that they would burrow the substrate. As a result, it should be enough to allow such activities.
What is the Right Humidity for Ball Pythons?
As mentioned earlier, having a substrate that can maintain the right humidity in the cage is crucial. However, what is the right humidity for ball pythons? Well, the humidity can often be tricky for most ball python owners. It is recommended that the humidity level stays between 55% to 60%.
It is advisable that you never allow the humidity level in the python’s cage to go below 50%. You might have to keep a hygrometer in the snake’s terrarium to help with the overall regulation.
Is Sand a Good Substrate for Ball Pythons?
It is possible to notice that some snakes live in the desert. This is where sand is in plenty. It might get some people thinking of getting sand as a substrate. Well, you should never do that for your ball python.
The problem with sand as a substrate is that it tends to clog the pores of the snake. This makes it uncomfortable and even impacting the overall vision. Another thing is that it can get dusty which is not something you want for a ball python.
Also, the sand can also be ingested while the python is feeding. This is going to lead to some digestion problem. There you have it; sand is not the best substrate to use for ball pythons.
If you are looking to end up with the best substrate for ball python, you now have an idea where to start. Not all of them are safe, as a result, there is the need to do more research if you have to. That being said, all the models we have mentioned above are definitely great. You can pick one that you feel is great for your cage today.
Also, make sure to clean the substrate more often to keep the cage clean and smelling good. Most of them have an easy maintenance procedure, so it should be hard to do.