The orange and white snake, also known as the Mandarin rat snake, is a striking creature with its vivid colors and sleek appearance. Found in parts of southeastern Asia, this species of snake has become a favorite among reptile enthusiasts and collectors alike.
The Mandarin rat snake gets its name from its resemblance to a rat in terms of size and shape. However, its bold coloring sets it apart from other snake species. Its long, slender body has a predominantly orange coloration, with white and black stripes running down its back and sides. The ventral scales, or underside, are a creamy white color.
Unlike many other snake species, the Mandarin rat snake is not venomous, making it a popular choice for those looking to keep a pet snake. In the wild, these snakes are carnivorous, feeding on small rodents, birds, and other reptiles. In captivity, they can be fed pre-killed mice or rats, as well as small birds.
The Mandarin rat snake is a diurnal species, meaning it is active during the day and sleeps at night. They are arboreal, spending much of their time in trees and bushes but can also be found at ground level. They are most commonly found in forested areas, but can also be found in agricultural land.
Due to habitat loss and over-collection for the pet trade, the Mandarin rat snake is listed as a vulnerable species. However, some conservation efforts are being made to protect them and their habitat.
For those looking to keep a Mandarin rat snake as a pet, they require a spacious enclosure with adequate branches and hiding spots. A basking spot is also necessary, as these snakes require heat to digest their food. The temperature should be kept between 75-85 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and slightly cooler at night.
In conclusion, the Mandarin rat snake is a stunning creature with its vibrant colors and slender form. While its popularity has led to conservation concerns, efforts are being made to protect this species. As a pet, it requires proper care and attention to thrive, but its striking beauty and docile nature make it a popular choice for snake enthusiasts.