How Big Does A Corn Snake Get?

Fully grown Corn Snakes can reach up to a whopping 5 – 6 feet (60” – 72”) in length, considering they’re on the smaller side of snake species available to be kept as a pet they’re still quite big.

Keep reading to learn more about Corn Snakes’ growth rate and how we can help them reach their potential.

Corn Snake Size & Growth Chart

Corn Snakes start their growth as soon as they hatch, but this is a slow process typically taking 2-3 years to reach adulthood.

The lifespan of a Corn Snake in captivity is significantly longer than when in the wild.

  • Captive Corn Snake life span: 10 – 30 years
  • Wild Corn Snake life span: 6 – 8 years

Fun Fact: In the snake world, it’s more common for female snakes to be larger than males, Around 66% of snake species have larger females.

I’ve compiled a table below showing the rate of a Corn Snake’s size and weight increase as they age.

AgeLengthWeight
Hatchling8” – 12”5 – 10 Grams
(Juvenile) 6 Months1.6’ – 2.5’ (19.2” – 30”)24 – 30 Grams
(Juvenile) 12 Months2.5’ – 3.3’ (30” – 39.6”)30 – 100 Grams
(Adult) 24 Months +2.5’ – 6’ (30” – 72”)Up to 1000 Grams

Pro Tip: When measuring the length of your Corn Snake, the safest method is to use a piece of string from head to tail tip and mark it. With the marked string, measure against a tape measure.

Best Habitat Size For Corn Snakes

A rule of thumb for Corn Snakes is they require an enclosure twice the size of their body’s length. 

This is because they’re active snakes and will explore their enclosure constantly. So homing them in an enclosure not suitable for their size will impede their enrichment and overall health.

I don’t recommend getting this biggest enclosure you can from the get-go though. Hatchlings and juvenile Corn Snakes will be overwhelmed by larger enclosures.

  • Hatchling & juvenile enclosure sizing: 20 – 40 gallon tank
  • Adult enclosure sizing: 120+ gallon tank

Does Shedding Affect Corn Snake Growth?

The short answer is no, shedding doesn’t affect growth in Corn Snakes, however, it is how they grow.

Corn Snakes are reptiles, and unlike mammals, their skin doesn’t stretch as they age. Instead, they’ll grow more skin underneath the outer layer and shed it off once they’re ready. Causing them to increase in size.

How Often Does A Corn Snake Shed?

The shedding process changes as Corn Snakes age, babies and juveniles will shed nearly twice as often compared to adults due to their growth rate being significantly faster.

AgeShedding Schedule
Hatchling4 – 6 Weeks
Juvenile4 – 8 Weeks
Adult8 – 12 Weeks

7 Factors Affecting Corn Snake Growth

#1 Enclosure Size

The size of their habitat whether it’s too small or too big will prevent your Corn Snake from growing effectively. 

Enclosures that are too small will prevent them from exercising and getting the necessary enrichment they require. Being able to move around and stretch their body helps build muscles and encourages healthy growth.

Enclosures that are too large especially for younger Corn Snakes will cause them to burrow and hide away if they’re overwhelmed by the size.

#2 Temperature

Ensuring you have the correct temperature gradient for your Corn Snake is essential to their overall health and wellbeing.

If the enclosure is too cold, they’ll use most of their energy to retain heat instead of utilizing it for growth. They’ll also lose their appetite in colder habitats, as they use heat to assist them with their digestion.

These are the ideal temperatures for Corn Snake enclosures.

  • Cool Side: 75°F – 82°F (24°C – 27°C)
  • Warm Side: 80°F – 85°F (26°C – 29°C)
  • Basking Side: 88°F – 92°F (31°C – 33°C)

#3 Humidity

Humidity plays a direct role in Corn Snakes’ growth, As I mentioned above shedding is how Corn Snakes grow and if the humidity levels are incorrect they’ll be unable to shed effectively.

To maintain humidity levels, you need a fine balance because causing an environment that is too wet can cause bacterial and fungal infections. 

Whereas environments that are too dry will prevent your snake from being able to shed healthily and will stunt their growth.

Maintain a humidity range of 40% – 50%.

#4 Diet

Corn Snakes aren’t fussy when it comes to eating but this doesn’t mean you can feed them anything. They need a diet consisting of rats and mice to ensure they have the energy levels to grow.

The size of the prey needs to be the same as the thickest part of your Corn Snakes’ body and be fed to them every 7 – 10 days.

#5 Health & Wellbeing

It’s important to keep an eye on your pet’s health as this will greatly stunt your Corn Snake’s growth. 

For example, a snake constantly under stress will hide away and become unwell. To prevent stress in your Corn Snake, provide plenty of safe places for it to go in the enclosure, and have the enclosure in a sensible place.

Enclosures kept away from loud noises, and busy areas such as the living will greatly reduce stress.

#6 Exercise

Your Corn Snake needs to be able to exercise to build up their muscles and keep fit. Providing them with enrichment activities is easy and beneficial for their overall health and growth.

All you’ll need to provide is;

  • Spacious enclosure
  • Loose substrate to be burrowed in
  • Climbing apparatus such as logs, rocks, climbing walls
  • Hide spots

#7 Genetics

The same as mammals, the genetic makeup will affect the growth rate of your Corn Snake. 

If the parents were on the larger side then it’s likely so would the offspring. Similarly, if the parents were on the smaller side, so would the offspring.

Closing Thoughts

You can optimize your Corn Snakes growth by providing them with the correct care.

Remember to provide;

  • Plenty of space in their enclosure
  • Correct temperature gradient
  • Correct humidity levels
  • A healthy diet
  • Plenty of enrichment opportunities

It’s also important to remember, not all Corn Snakes reach a full size of 6’. If a Corn Snake is 4’ it may still be healthy, but the genetics didn’t allow for the growth.