Corn snakes are cold-blooded and get their heat from their surrounding. So caring for your corn snake means providing it with the heat it needs to stay happy and healthy.
But what temperature does a corn snake need?
Read on to find out the right daytime and nighttime temperature for corn snakes and how to choose the right heating accessories for your corn snake vivarium.
Daytime temperatures for corn snakes
Corn snakes can’t produce their own body heat so vivarium heating is essential to keep their environment at the right temperature to aid their digestion and keep their immune system functioning correctly.
During the day corn snakes need a temperature gradient of 21-30℃.
You can achieve this by heating one end of the tank with a heat mat like this or a basking lamp. Heats mats are generally the better option as corn snakes are nocturnal, and they tend to use heat from the ground rather than the sun.
Your corn snake vivarium needs to have a temperature gradient, i.e. a hot end and a cool end, and you can achieve this by covering approximately one third of your tank with the heat mat.
ALWAYS AVOID heat rocks for any reptile as they provide a localised source of heat that is too hot. Heat rocks are very dangerous for corn snakes because they don’t feel heat in the same way that we do; they could be touching something hot and not realise that it’s burning them. It could curl itself around the heat rock and seriously burn itself.
Overheating can be dangerous and potentially fatal for corn snakes so make sure you always use a thermostat to control the temperature of their tank.
It’s a good idea to put a hideout like this at the hot end of the tank to give your pet a warm place to rest (Amazon has a great selection of hideouts if you’re not sure what to get) but make sure you put a thermometer near the hideout as this is where your corn snake will spend most of its time.
Nighttime temperatures for corn snakes
At night your corn snake doesn’t need as much heat as during the day. After all, in the wild your corn snake would be used to a temperature drop at night.
The right temperature for your corn snake at night is around 20-25℃.
You can achieve this by turning the basking lamp off, and leaving the heat mat on. Corn snakes need a light pattern that mimics normal daytime so leaving the heat mat on is the best option for heating your corn snake vivarium at night; it will keep your snake warm without confusing its body clock.
Choosing the right heat mat for corn snakes
Now you know what temperature your corn snake needs, it’s time to choose a heat mat. They usually cost around £20 and Amazon has a great selection.
Here are a couple of our favourites:
Now you know the right temperature for your corn snake, stay on Vivarium World for even more snake care advice: