She's a corn snake. A very very young corn snake.
The lady at the pet store said that it was a "fancy corn snake" and charged me an extra 20 dollars. I don't know about how fancy Lasso is on the scale from "not at all fancy" to "highly fancypants," but what I know for a fact is that she's totally adorable.
We've had her for just over six weeks now, and she's already grown from 10 grams to almost 12.
I've always liked reptiles, and in retrospect I wonder why I didn't get a pet snake sooner. Well, in any case, now that I did, I'm totally in love.
The surprising bit to find out was just how gentle and shy the snakes are.
I guess if you hatch from an egg and are so small that anything can hurt you, and then you're expected to fend for yourself in the wild, it makes sense to be a scaredy-cat. But even as they grow, corn snakes remain quite reclusive.
In general it looks like the vast majority, and maybe all snakes prefer flight to confrontation unless they're hunting. Wonder why people are so afraid of them?
Anyways, Lasso spends most of the time hiding.
During the day she sleeps, and in the evening she comes out and "hunts" around her enclosure if she's hungry.
She's rarely hungry. We feed her every 5th day, if she's been hunting for a day already. If she's been sleeping on day 4, we let her work up some appetite until she's hungry enough to get active. Once she's eaten, she disappears into one of her hiding places for three days or so.
We feed her little frozen mice. Thawed, of course, and even warmed up to body temperature, to make the food more enticing to the snake.
That's another thing about them: they're not always going to feed readily, even if they've been hungry for a while, but at least corn snakes are among the least picky eaters.
We set her up with a nice glass tank, and a warming pad on one side, so she can thermoregulate.
When you think about it, nature did a great job optimizing snakes. The design is akin to a race car: if it's not essential, they don't have it.
Say, why would you waste energy and maintain your own body temperature when you can go and warm yourself on a rock, or hide out in a cool spot if you're too toasty?
Snakes live on a completely different time than we mammals do. To them, it would probably appear quite tedious to find food and water several times a day, constantly on the move, we have complex systems in place to keep our body temperatures within the very narrow operating range, and we have all these confusing limbs.
I imagine Lasso is feeling somewhat superior to us with her slow zen-like pace.