What is a Bumblebee Ball Python?
Ball pythons (Python regius) are indigenous to Western and West Central Africa. They were given the name "ball python" as it is their habit to form a ball-like shape whenever they are threatened. Ball pythons are closely related to boas and to other pythons. Like boas and other pythons, they constrict their prey, such as a mouse or other small rodent, for example, by coiling around it and squeezing until the prey suffocates to death. In the wild, ball pythons are nocturnal, and therefore they hunt at night and rest underground during the day.
At the time of birth, a typical ball python is about 16-18 inches long, while adult ball pythons can be as long as three or even four feet. Wild ball pythons, on average, live about 20-30 years.
The bumblebee ball python, which is shown below, is a gorgeous yellow and black snake that is generally docile and, unlike other ball pythons, does not occur naturally in the wild. Instead, this snake is produced by man through one of multiple possible deliberate breeding schemes, the genetics of which are explained in the next section.