Species group: Kingsnakes and Milksnakes
Other common names: Costa Rican Milksnake
Scientific name: Lampropeltis triangulum stuarti
Stuart's Milksnake is native to El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Northwestern Costa Rica, where it inhabits dry tropical forests and coastal plains.
Appearance / health:
Lampropeltis triangulum stuarti is a tri-colored Milksnake with wide red rings. Stuart's Milksnakes average 3 to 4 feet in length.
Behavior / temperament:
Naturally shy, Stuart's Milk Snake will tend to stay inside hiding boxes and under the cage’s substrate. They are diurnal but will most likely spend most of the time moving under cover. Once tamed, they can be amiable enough to be handled and appreciated.
The ideal terrarium for an adult Stuart's Milksnake is at least 20 gallons. It should be a woodland type with climbing branches and plenty of hiding places on the ground. To suit the snake’s tendency to hide, one or two hiding boxes should be available, and the substrate should be a thick layer of peat, fallen leaves, aspen shavings, cypress mulch, newspaper, or paper towels.
A bathing pan large enough to accommodate the whole snake is essential for soaking (especially when shedding) and to help maintain good moisture levels in the cage. Day temp: 73-90F; night temp: 64-81F; basking temp: 95F; humidity: 60-80%; lighting: 12 hours (6 hours in the winter time). Cage must be secure because the milksnakes are are known to breakout of weak caging.
Like other milksnakes, the Stuart's Milk Snake is shy and secretive, wanting to slither away and hide under the substrate or inside hiding boxes. They should be kept alone or in small groups of the same size snakes. Disparity in sizes will result in cannibalism.
Gorgeous and Hardy
The beautiful, mild-mannered Stuart’s milksnake is a great choice for novices, yet interesting enough for advanced keepers. Even after decades of work in zoos with snakes from around the world, I reserve a place in my collection for this interesting creature.
Most that I've kept have adjusted to handling in time. Their care is straightforward - just as for other king and milksnakes. A simple 20-30 gallon terrarium stocked with a hide box (or, better yet, cypress mulch or aspen into which they can burrow) and heated to a temperature range of 78-85 F, with a basking spot of 88 F, meets their needs. With proper care, your pet can be with you for over 20 years..
From findiviglio Jan 23 2016 1:08PM