Are you wondering if your pet ball python can eat eggs?
Ball pythons have a unique diet that depends on their age. While some snake owners think it is okay to feed their pet eggs, the scientific evidence may say otherwise.
Here, we’ll answer the question of whether or not your ball python can eat eggs and provide a brief outline of what else they can eat regardless of their age.
Let’s get into it.
Table of Contents
Can Ball Pythons Eat Eggs?
The answer is no, ball pythons cannot eat eggs.
Snakes have to consume their food whole. They do not have teeth like mammals, so they have to digest their food whole instead of chewing it.
This is because ball pythons have a unique gut adaptation called vertebral hypophysis.
Like other snakes, ball pythons have a vertebral column stretching throughout the body. The primary function of this column is to protect the snake’s spinal cord. But it also assists in stiffening up the pectoral and pelvic muscles.
When pet snakes eat eggs, this body part prevents them from swallowing them whole. This can cause your snake to choke on the eggs, particularly if you’re feeding them chicken eggs-which are sizeable.
Interestingly, snakes enjoy significant nutritional benefits from eggs, just like humans. So, are there other ways that your ball python can eat eggs?
Are Ball Pythons Able to Eat Boiled Eggs?
Giving ball pythons eggs sounds good, but if you give your pet snake eggs they won’t likely enjoy it.
This particular breed of snake enjoys the hunt. It’s natural for your ball python to want to eat the food they hunt and prey on.
Dead prey isn’t always appetizing, particularly if you’re feeding your snake hard-boiled eggs. While eggs do have the nutrition that your snake needs, they would much rather eat rodents.
Ball pythons are carnivorous, so they like to find food. Chances are, even if you feed eggs to your ball python won’t even eat them.
Besides their general disdain for chicken eggs, there are a few important reasons why you shouldn’t give your snake eggs.
Reasons Why You Should Not Feed Your Ball Python Eggs
If you let your snakes eat eggs, you’re risking their health.
To start with, your ball python cannot digest the hard shell of an egg.
If your ball python eats eggs, it will disrupt its digestive tract and damage its digestive system.
Of course, the damage caused by eating eggs varies. It could be minor, or it could be severe. However, the risk isn’t worth it.
Sometimes if a snake eats an egg, it regurgitates it. And if it does, it could have trouble spitting it out. If that happens, it could die, unfortunately.
You love your pet ball python, you don’t want to see it hurt. So, don’t feed it eggs!
What Can Ball Pythons Eat?
It should be clear that your snake cannot eat chicken eggs or any other type of egg. So, what other things can ball pythons eat?
A ball python’s diet consists of anything it would find in the wild and consume.
Dead or live rodents are the primary prey for this type of snake. Most snake species love eating mice and rats.
Yet, your pet python can eat other types of prey, too.
For example, birds are a common part of their diet and natural habitat. Whether they’re dead or alive, it doesn’t matter much to wild ball pythons. They’ll consume dead animals all the same.
Ball pythons eat a variety of animals.
Insects, too, are a natural part of a ball python’s diet. Young ball pythons, in particular, enjoy eating insects. They are smaller, easier to digest and make for a quick meal to hold them over until they find something larger and more filling.
In addition to these other basic types of meals, adult ball pythons can also eat:
- Guinea pigs
You can either let your ball python consume the prey live or killed.
Ball pythons prefer to hunt their prey, yet, the ethics of feeding your snake live prey is a gray area, at best.
Feeding live animals to your pet snake is not something that is encouraged. While it is possible for them to eat live prey, it is not recommended that you offer it to them.
In fact, feeding your ball python pre-killed prey has benefits. For example, your snake is less likely to be injured in the hunt by their prey. Some of these animals have sharp teeth and could bite your snake.
Most pet owners prefer to feed their snake frozen meals and allow them to thaw before serving. However, avoid feeding your ball pythons frozen food, as they are sensitive to the cold.
Let frozen food thaw at room temperature, and then feed it to your snake.
Can Other Snakes Eat Eggs?
The answer is yes!
There are two types of snake species that you can feed eggs to.
Indian Egg Eater
As its name suggests, the Indian egg-eating snake can eat eggs. Also known as E.Westermanni, these snakes feed mainly on eggs. Unlike other snakes, this species has a unique structure that helps them break down eggshells.
African Egg Eating Snake
Also, going by the name Dasypeltis, African Egg Eating Snakes are nonvenomous and prefer to live in wooded environments shrouded in a temperate climate. This egg-eating snake is harmless and enjoys consuming eggs.
In general, snakes in the wild avoid eggs because they pose such a danger to their health. The vast majority of snakes prefer rodents and insects to eggs.
Commonly Asked Questions
What Should You Feed Your Ball Python?
Excellent question. What you should feed your ball python depends on several factors, including age and size. Reptiles eat various food, but your snake might need to adjust its diet depending on how old it is and the environment you’ve put together for it. Check out our ball python weight and growth chart to learn more about your snake’s size.
Are Ball Pythons Able to Eat Chicken?
Yes, your ball python can eat chicken. However, if you feed it to them, ensure it is raw. Additionally, you shouldn’t feed them chicken regularly. Mice and rats provide all the nutritional needs that your snake has, and a regular diet of chicken can cause deficiencies in their diet.
What Size Rodents Should You Feed Your Ball Python?
While ball pythons aren’t egg eaters, they do dine on rodents. What size rodent is right for your pet? There is no set rule on what size rodent to feed your snake, but a good guide is to take a measurement of your snake’s midsection. Take that size and multiply it by 1.25 maximum. That is the largest size rodent you want to feed your snake. Any larger, and you’re putting your pet’s life in danger.
Ball pythons can eat a variety of foods and animal species. Mice, chicken, gerbils, and insects are on that list. However, your ball python should never be fed eggs. It can potentially kill your pet.
Feed your snakes whole, pre-killed prey for the best results and their health.