Environmental Studies Program


Date of this Version



Environmental Studies Undergraduate Student Thesis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2020.


Copyright 2020 McKenzie Martinez


Python regius, also known as the ball python or the royal python, is one of the most popular reptiles in the pet trade and has been heavily imported, kept, and bred in captivity since 1976 (Toudonou 1). This species has adapted to life in captivity extremely well making it one of the most popular reptiles in the reptile trade. It is one of the first reptiles many reptile enthusiasts own. It is a frequently used species for educating the public in zoos and other facilities. Some of the main reasons that Python regius has maintained its popularity in the reptile trade are that they are extremely docile, willing to feed on prey items that are easy to obtain, reach sexual maturity quicker than many other python species, breed very easily in captivity, and do not require a large enclosure (Stieb). There are two husbandry methods for keeping Python regius, in a room set at a constant ambient temperature, and in an enclosure that's back end has a belly heat hotspot and the temperature gradually decreases towards the front of the enclosure. But does one of these husbandry methods, hotspot vs ambient temperature, promote faster growth in Python regius and/or create a stronger feeding response?