How can you tell the gender of a corn snake?

Answered by Jeremy Urbaniak

Alright, so let me share my personal experience on how to determine the gender of a corn snake. I’ve been a snake owner for several years, and I’ve learned a few tricks along the way.

First things first, let’s locate the cloacal opening. This is the vent located near the end of the snake’s tail. It’s where the snake eliminates waste and also where you can determine its gender. Take a close look at the area, and you’ll notice a slight difference in appearance between males and females.

If you’re looking at a female corn snake, you’ll likely notice that the body tapers immediately after the cloaca. In other words, the girth of the snake’s body will decrease right after the vent. This gives the female a more streamlined appearance towards the tail. It’s as if the body narrows down right after the opening.

On the other hand, if you’re examining a male corn snake, you’ll observe that the body remains somewhat the same size for a few inches past the cloaca before tapering towards the tail. This means that the male snake will have a slightly thicker body for a short distance after the vent before it starts to narrow down.

Now, it’s important to note that these differences in body shape can sometimes be subtle, especially in younger snakes. As snakes mature, their sexual dimorphism becomes more pronounced, making it easier to determine their gender.

Another method you can use to sex a corn snake is by probing. This technique is more invasive and requires some experience and caution. It involves gently inserting a probe into the snake’s cloaca to measure the distance it can be inserted. Male corn snakes typically have a longer hemipenis (the male reproductive organ) compared to females. However, probing should only be done by experienced individuals to avoid harming the snake.

It’s worth mentioning that while these methods are commonly used by snake enthusiasts and breeders, they are not foolproof. In some cases, it can be challenging to determine the gender of a corn snake solely based on external characteristics. If you’re unsure or want a more accurate identification, it’s always best to consult a reptile veterinarian or an experienced snake breeder.

To summarize, when it comes to sexing a corn snake, you can look for differences in body shape near the cloacal opening. Females tend to taper immediately after the vent, while males maintain a slightly thicker body for a short distance before tapering. Probing is another method but should only be done by experienced individuals. When in doubt, seek professional advice for a definite identification.