last changes: Sunday, January 06, 2008

    Keeping and Breeding of the Northern Mexican Pine Snake

    Pituophis deppei jani

2,0 jani, German CB, 5 years old


0,1 jani, GB-CB, 1 year old


jani, my CB 2002, aprox. 1 month old

Keeping and behavior

The northern mexican pine snake is for an beginner of snake keeping not ideal, because of it’s temperatur needings and behaviour specialities. Adult jani grow rare to more than 1,5m and need a medium sized terraria with some hiding places and, if possible, a climbing branch. My adults never took a bath, but I have a yearling, that regulary baths. So I give them a bathbowl, in wich one jani will fit, if nessecary.

The preferd temperatures of the northern mexican pine are aprox. 24-26°C. Higher temperatures they don‘t like so much. The snakes then sometimes reguriate the food and become highly nervous. They are animals from the mountain landscapes. The animals can live with other jani’s or other species normaly without problems – if it is stress free. If they are feary and bite in the beginning, they normaly calm down in the next weeks. Good hidingplaces make this easier to the snake. Some animals will not become hand tame, but they stop biting.


My animals take several sorts of rodents. It‘s normaly the same, wether the food is alive, fresh dead or thawned frost food. Mostly they get defrosted mice and small rats.


You should offer them a 2-4month long hibernation period at 5-15°C. It is helpful for the fathering ability. In the year, when my animals only brumate, the laid only infertil eggs.

Reproduction and breeding

After the hibernation the snakes eat some times and they get in mating mood. After the succsessful mating the eggs grow for 6-8 weeks in the body of the female. Some days after the pre egg laying shed it lay a cluch of eggs. From my snakes I know clutches of 4-7 eggs, other (greater) females had up to 14 eggs.

After a medium incubation period of about 63-67 days the snakes begin to hatch.

Young snakes

After hatching the small northern Mexican pines have a lenght of 35 to 45 cm. They are a little more slender than the deppei hatchlings.

The ground color is normaly a pale light brown with saddle markings. The saddles begin in the neck very indistinct and become more clearly and darker towards the tail. The coloration is a very pale and a resembles a colour poor variant of the adults. In the second year they become more colorful.

The first food of my snakes are defrosted some days old mice. Non feeders are possible and need an intensive care. The further keeping can be without problems, when you keep the animal stress poor and the temperatures don’t get too high. The growth rate of the mexican pine snakes depends mostly on health factors of the snakes. Some of them can eat a lot of food and grow quickly. Other eat less or have problems, if they eat to much and so they grow slowlier.

Maturity and lifespan

Depending on the amount of food and the biological possibilitis of the animals the maturity begins seldom in the 2nd year. More often they mature in the 3rd or 4th year.

In normal cases the snakes become aprox. 15 years ore a little more.

My animals

In my terraria there live one adult pair and some animals in rearing.

Biology in Habitat

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