Many factors adversely affect the lifespan of wild corn snakes. For example, climate changes can have an unfavorable effect on rodents (their primary food source).
Another cause of death among wild corn snakes is the common diseases that spread to rodents. These often pass to corn snakes, leading to their early death.
Finally, the many wild corn snakes don’t make it into adulthood due to predation on baby corn snakes and corn snakes’ eggs.
In contrast to the perils of living in the wild, captive corn snakes can live for between 15 and 20 years.
How Long do Corn Snakes Live?
Corn snakes in the wild live for between six and eight years. Pet corn snakes can live to be 20 years and perhaps even longer. However, the average age when captive corn snakes die is 15 years.
How Old is your Corn Snake
If you did not acquire your snake as a hatchling (see below), you might wonder at the age of your pet. Unfortunately, telling the age of a corn snake might not be a straightforward matter.
It is possible to determine the age of a corn serpent by its size up until it is about one year old. After that, it becomes increasingly difficult to tell.
If you can, get in touch with the breeder to find out how old your corn snake is. Good breeders will have a complete record of the corn snakes that were born there.
If your breeder can’t tell you the age of your snake, or if you did not get your snake from a breeder, then sadly, there aren’t many other options to determine your pet’s age.
Usually, a good guess is the best that you’ll be able to do.
How to Give your Corn Snake a Healthy, Long Life
Provide your Pet with a Good Environment
Corn snakes are best kept in a dry aquarium. However, provide a bowl of fresh water (replenish it often, say every couple of days), or construct a shallow soak pool instead.
Ensure the corn snake’s enclosure stays warm and humid.
Provide your Pet with a Healthy and Nutritional Diet
Corn snakes do not need feeding every day. In fact, adults need only eat two or three times a month.
Corn snakes prefer mice as their food, being carnivores.
Tip: Do not put a mouse in with your pet if it is not hungry. Your pet won’t prey on the mouse.
The mouse might become agitated and attack your snake, causing injury and possibly serious or fatal illness.
Protect your Pet from Health Problems
To maintain your snake’s good health, keep its enclosure clean.
Corn snakes, like any animal, become ill and get infected when exposed to environmental hazards.
A Good Environment for your Corn Snake
You can house a baby corn snake in a small plastic vivarium. However, in just a few short weeks, the snake will quickly outgrow that accommodation.
Eventually, you will have to provide a stronger, more spacious container.
Smaller corn snakes grow to about four feet in length, while larger corn snakes grow to six feet in length. To house a fully grown snake, you should plan on having a vivarium of at least 20 gallons in volume.
Although snakes seem to be perpetually asleep, this is hardly the case. Like virtually every other living creature, snakes need the freedom and space to move about.
As corn snakes are large snakes, obviously, they need a large space to live in as well.
Your corn snake will live longer if you give it a suitable habitat that is, at minimum, two-thirds of its length (but please try to go even larger).
Temperature and Humidity
Snakes are cold-blooded and require warm, humid enclosures. Keep the aquarium at 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
You can set the temperature lower but not lower than 75 degrees Fahrenheit. For optimal comfort, the humidity should be at least 60%.
Snakes love to climb branches, so be sure to have at least one in your enclosure. Corn snakes do not like being social animals.
Therefore they need places to hide. It’s a good idea to provide them with trees bark or boxes for hiding in.
You should also provide substrate, such as moss, at the bottom of your enclosure to allow the corn snake to burrow into it and hide within.
It is critical to keep the vivarium clean for the sake of your pet’s health. Always remove urine and feces from its enclosure.
Failure to remove them will ultimately cause some health problems for your corn snake, some of which are potentially serious.
A Healthy Diet for your Corn Snake
Corn snakes prefer mice and rodents to insects. Your pet will be incredibly satisfied with a pre-killed mouse every 10 to 14 days.
However, if you have a large corn snake (five feet long or over), you can feed it with small rats.
Failure to feed your corn snake a proper diet has the predictable result of shortening its life expectancy. There’s no plausible reason why you cannot provide your snake with an optimal diet.
When it is still young, feed your corn snake baby mice. Doing so will greatly increase its chances of becoming an adult.
Always ensure that you are giving the snake an appropriately sized meal. No corn snake will ever eat anything bigger than its head, so don’t even bother.
Tip: Some corn snakes struggle to adjust to eating dead prey in captivity.
There are many ways to overcome this problem, but the easiest is to let them prey on a live mouse every so often.
Corn snakes, like all living things, need water. They will always find a way to water in the wild, regardless of whether it is a stream, lake, stream, or other body of water.
You must ensure that your corn snake is always hydrated in captivity. To ensure your corn snake doesn’t ingest its own urine and feces, you must change the water daily.
Frequently Asked Questions about How Long Corn Snakes Live
Is it possible to give a corn snake too much food?
You can definitely feed your pet too much. Your snake needs a meal only every 10 to 14 days. If you overfeed your pet, it will become unhealthy and obese.
Are corn snakes great pets?
Absolutely. Here’s why: 1) Corn snakes are not particularly fussy eaters, 2) They also eat regularly, 3) They like a lower humidity (which is easier to maintain), 4) They are quite active, 5) They are easy to handle, 6) They are cute, 7) They are relatively long-lived and should be around for their 15th birthday. What’s not to love?
Afterword: How Long Do Corn Snakes Live
Your corn snake will need close attention if you are to keep it healthy and see it through to its old age. You’ll need to constantly keep track of what it has eaten and its environment.
You will need to be on your toes and keep an eye on its health, looking for any early sign of illness.
However, if you are prepared to put in the work, you will have a long and rewarding experience with your pet.