Okeetee Corn Snake

Okeetee is a Corn Snake with a unique pattern and color, known as a morph. The Corn Snake actually has over 800 different morphs, and Okeetee is one of the most popular.

It is believed that the Corn Snakes get their name from the markings on their bellies, which somewhat resemble corn or corn, but some think it may also be because they hunt rodents around corn fields and corn storage facilities.

The Corn Snake is a very popular pet snake and is native to the US. The Okeetee was originally found in the wild in South Carolina, and since then collectors have been breeding it in captivity.

If you’re interested in learning more about this beautiful snake, we have more information about the Okeetee and how to care for it.

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Quick Facts About Corn Snake Okeetee

Okeetee Corn Snake in the tank

Species Name:Elaphe guttata
Family:Colubridae
Treatment Level:Easy
Color Shape:Orange with dark red markings with black border
Lifetime:Up to 20+
Adult Size:2 to 6 feet
Diet:Frozen but thawed rats
Minimum Tank Size:40+ gallons
Temperature & Humidity:78º – 82° F with 75° F cold zone and 90° F . sunbathing area

Do Okeetee Corn Snakes Make Good Pets?

The Okeetee Corn Snake is truly a great pet, not only for experienced snake owners but for beginners as well. They are quite docile but strong and love to explore.

They are also quite easy to care for, and their attractive colors make them a fun and lovely addition to your household.

Appearance

This is where the Okeetee Corn Snake really shines! This snake is usually orange in color with dark red saddle markings, outlined by a black border, making the snake very visually striking.

There are distinct lineages of the Okeetee in which breeders have encouraged variety in their appearance. The Abbotts Okeetee can be scaleless with more of a brownish hue, and the Tessera morph has stripes rather than saddle marks.

Okeetees are pretty much the same as the regular Corn Snake in every way other than the coloring. They range in size as small as 2 feet or as large as 6 feet but tend to average around 3 to 5 feet. A 5-foot-tall okeetee can weigh about 1 to 2 pounds.

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How to Take Care of an Okeetee Corn Snake?

Habitat, Tank Conditions & Settings

Tank

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The size of the cage depends on the size of your snake. Choose a tank that is, at a minimum, as long as your snake is long and about half the length of your snake for width and height. This, of course, means you will need to invest in a new cage if your snake is still growing.

Be sure to keep a heavy, shallow bowl of fresh water in the vivarium and give your Okeetee at least two hiding places. You should do a quick daily cleaning and a deep cleaning about once a month.

okeetee corn snake on wood

Lightning

Lighting should mimic the natural day and night cycle, and lights should be on for about 12 hours a day. The best also follow the natural light cycle of the seasons.

Heating (Temperature & Humidity)

The enclosure must have 3 different temperature zones—general temperature should be at 78º-82°F, cold area around 75°F, and warm/dry area at 90°F.

Humidity is best at 65%-75%, which can be achieved with the right substrate and daily misting of the vivarium.

Substrate

Some of the best substrates are aspen shavings and spruce mulch. You need it to maintain proper humidity and allow the snake to dig burrows.

Tank Recommendations
Tank Type:vivarium 40 gallon
Lightning:Mimics the natural day/night cycle
Warmup:Heating pad/ribbon at the bottom of the cage
Best Substrate:Aspen’s bed

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Feeding Your Okeetee Corn Snake

Juvenile okeetees should be fed about once every 7 to 10 days and adults every 10 to 14 days.

They must be fed rodents that have been euthanized and humanely frozen (which you can order online) and then thawed. Rats are usually the Corn Snake’s staple diet, but rats are highly nutritious and should be fed every 14 to 21 days for adult snakes.

Diet Summary
fruits0% of diet
Insect0% of diet
Meat100% diet – small/medium rat
Supplements RequiredVitamin D in some cases

Keeping Your Okeetee Corn Snake Healthy

General Health Problems

The Corn Snake Okeetee is generally very healthy but here are some signs to look out for:

  • Diarrhea or vomiting: There may be problems with parasites or digestive problems.

  • Bubbles or discharge from the nose or mouth: This could indicate a respiratory infection.

  • Resting with its mouth open or restless: Your snake may be overheating.

  • Prolonged scrubbing or soaking behavior: If your snake is spending longer than usual in its water bowl, there may be a problem with mites, which are difficult to get rid of.

If you notice your Okeetee behaving unusually or if you notice any unusual sores or blisters on his skin, take your snake to the reptile veterinarian.

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Lifetime

If you take good care of your Okeetee, it will live for at least 15 years, but maybe as long as 25! Weigh your snake regularly so you can track its health, and as long as you take good care of your snake’s cage and feed it properly, you will have a long-lived pet.

orange corn snake

Breeding

In order to breed for Okeetee hatchlings, at least one of the parents must have the dominant gene. Or both parents need to have the recessive gene for you to have Okeetee offspring.

If you want to breed a rare Okeetee morph, you’ll get better results if both parents are also Okeetee. You will get a hybrid if you breed a pure Okeetee with another Corn Snake. And keep in mind that you have to separate the snakes until they breed.

Are Okeetee Corn Snakes Friendly? Our Handling Advice

The Okeetee Corn Snake is calm and docile, and as far as snakes go, they can be very friendly. The Corn Snake is even considered one of the best snake species that is best adapted to captivity.

Okeetee treatment should be done at least once or twice a week but not more than once a day. Gently touch your snake with something other than your hand, and when its tongue moves, it wakes up.

Always approach your snake from the side and make sure to support its full body weight and never hold its tail. Then you can let the Okeetee wrap around your neck and body.

Shedding & Brumation: What to Expect

Adult okeetee shed every 3 months. Make sure you keep your snake well hydrated and the humidity level in the cage is correct. If the skin gets stuck in several places, give the snake a warm bath and double check that the eye patch and tail are properly removed. And never pull the shed unless it’s been soaked first.

You don’t need to damage your Okeetee unless you plan to breed it. Hibernation for snakes in captivity is not as important as snakes in the wild. If you decide to anesthetize your snake, it will need to be lowered gradually, and do not feed it for about 2 to 3 weeks.

Hibernation usually lasts 6 to 8 weeks, so you won’t be feeding your Okeetee during this time, and then over a day or two, you gradually raise the temperature.

What is the Price of an Okeetee Corn Snake?

The Okeetee Corn Snake can range from $80 to $1,250, depending on the lineage and color and pattern. The rarer the snake and the more interesting the colors and patterns, the more you can expect to pay.

Care Guide Summary

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  • Submissive nature

  • Tolerance of handling for a long time

  • Great for experts and beginners

Counter

  • Sleep during the day

  • The habitat must be closely monitored

  • Feeding thawed mice

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Conclusion

If you are interested in a pet that doesn’t take up much of your time but will be with you for years and will get a lot of attention, you can’t go wrong with the Okeetee Corn Snake.

These snakes are easy to care for and will love to hang around your neck from time to time. Make sure you study this Corn Snake before investing, but you will have a beautiful and charming pet for a long time.

  • You may also want to read: 30 Rareest Corn Snake Morphs

Featured Image Credit: Jasper Young, Pixabay