This article is about the care and genetics of enchi ball pythons. The enchi ball python is distinctive, thanks to its larger patches and brighter coloration.
Lars Brandell produced the first enchi ball python in 2002, but breeding facilities have produced many other morphs from it since.
On average, you can expect to pay $50-$150 for a standard enchi ball python, depending on the breeder.
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How Do I Care for my Enchi Ball Python?
The first thing that many new ball python owners want to know is, ‘How do I care for this morph?’
The concept that each morph has specific care guidelines is something of a myth.
You can keep most morphs if you meet a few simple requirements:
- Keep the relative humidity constant.
- Provide the appropriate temperature gradient.
- Ensure that your ball python has access to water at all times.
- Give the snake a hide on each side of the enclosure so it can rest in the appropriate temperature zone.
- Ensure that the substrate is appropriate and helps to keep the enclosure’s humidity in the range the snake needs.
You can learn how to care for any ball python morph in detail in our comprehensive ball python care sheet.
For now, here are some hints and tips to help you make your new pet feel at ease:
- House your enchi ball python in a place where the enclosure doesn’t get exposed to cold drafts.
- Setup the enclosure early, ensuring that all the decorations, equipment, water bowls, and other elements are in place.
- Keep handling to a minimum for the first week, so the snake has time to adapt to its new surroundings before interacting with you.
- Avoid moving the enclosure for the first while after bringing home your new snake, and don’t move things around in the enclosure.
- Ensure that your snake’s enclosure is out of direct sunlight since the sunlight and the heating device combined can cause a deadly amount of heat.
- BEFORE bringing home your new enchi ball python, ensure that the heating system is working, and use some reliable thermometers to track conditions.
Where do Enchi Ball Pythons Come From?
Enchi ball pythons are the offspring of a pair of Ghanaian pythons imported to the US in 1988.
Lars Brandell, a breeder, and his friend imported a shipment of ball pythons which contained two very unusual-looking snakes.
He bred the pair, a male and a female, as it turned out, to several other snakes. The breeding program included a normal female and a high gold female.
The three resulting clutches numbered 15 eggs in total, of which ten hatchlings had the enchi patterning. Thus, the first captive enchi ball pythons were born.
He continued the enchi ball python breeding project and produced the super enchi morph in 2003.
It’s worth noting that the original shipment of pythons had the standard dark brown coloration and black pattern of the normal morph.
It was the shape and design of the pattern that caught Lars’ eye.
Small things (like a ball python with a thin white outline or a different pattern) can have unimaginable results when you’re a breeder.
What Does Enchi Mean in Ball Pythons?
The first wild ball pythons, Python regius, had extreme genetic potential, which breeders used to produce other appearances or morphs.
Enchi ball pythons are one of the many morphs produced from normal ball pythons, and it has a distinctive pattern which takes the place of the traditional stripes.
Most of the blotches on the enchi morph connect to a long, irregular band that travels the snake’s length.
The super enchi has wider color fields and brighter colors.
Basic enchi ball pythons have the same color scheme as normal ones but with a distinctive pattern.
What Do Enchi Ball Pythons Look Like?
The standard enchi morph has a light brown surface color with dark brown patches.
The super enchi morph has brighter colors, larger patches, and a pattern on the head.
Many other morphs have come from the original enchi, though a super enchi is more reliable for creating crosses.
These morphs can take any color, from bright yellow and orange in the banana enchi, to peach in an albino enchi, or dark brown and yellow in an enchi clown.
The one standard characteristic in most designer morphs of the enchi is the enchi pattern. In this morph, most of the stripes seem to meet in the middle.
How Big Does an Enchi Ball Python Get?
Despite their differences in appearance, most ball pythons reach a similar size.
Females reach a larger size than males, in any morph, but they all reach lengths of four to five feet.
You can read more about these snakes’ growth potential and ultimate lengths in our complete guide to ball python sizes.
What Makes an Enchi Ball Python?
The short answer to this question is the snake’s genes.
Most people link enchis to a specific appearance, but that’s not quite accurate.
Enchi ball pythons result from a genetic difference in the normal ball python population, which a breeder exploited to create something new.
While enchis usually express themselves through a different pattern and brighter coloration, not all enchis will physically express their enchi genes.
Some snakes are carriers for the enchi genes but don’t express them. Does that make them less of an enchi? Not by any measure.
Many breeding facilities value snakes that don’t express the genes they carry.
While that may seem difficult to wrap your head around at first glance, it makes a lot of sense.
Snakes that carry a co-dominant gene but don’t express it have the genetic potential for something different.
For example, a snake that carries the enchi genes but expresses only its calico genes may be useful for creating a new morph featuring both calico and enchi in a specific color.
If you decide to breed your enchi, you’ll be happy to know that this fine morph doesn’t have the genetic problems of a morph like a spider.
So you won’t have to worry about kinking or head wobbles unless you cross this morph with a morph that has those issues.
In the following sections we’ll have a look at some of the morphs created from enchis.
Banana Enchi Ball Python
Breeders produce the banana enchi ball python by crossing the enchi morph with a banana morph.
Thus, banana enchi ball pythons have the brilliant yellow or orange colors of the banana ball pythons, but with the enchi markings.
These breathtaking snakes have also been crossed with the following to create new morphs:
- Red stripes
The possibilities with this snake are endless.
Pastel Enchi Ball Python
A pastel enchi ball python is the result of a cross between enchis and pastels. Enchi pastels feature the lighter coloration of the pastels and the patterning of the Enchi.
With the bright yellow, orange, or brown of the pastels, this version of the enchi morph is spectacular.
Thanks to their lighter coloration, enchi pastels were only the beginning of a range of different morphs.
These beautiful snakes have been used to produce morphs like:
- Firefly Enchis
- Butter Enchis
- Clown Enchi Pastels
- Spotnose Enchi Pastels
- Superfly Enchis
What Is a Super Enchi Ball Python?
Since the enchi gene is co-dominant, it’s possible to “double-up” on the gene to get a super.
The super form of the enchi ball python has the enchi gene twice and always contributes an enchi gene to its descendants.
Unlike crosses made with a standard enchi, the offspring of a super can’t be normal. For that reason, super enchi ball pythons are invaluable in morph creation.
Super enchis also have a remarkable appearance. The super form has larger patches than standard enchis, with brighter coloration and a unique head patterning.
Where Can I Buy Enchi Ball Pythons?
In the past, buying anything other than normal ball pythons could be a risky endeavor.
Unfortunately, there are many inexperienced and dishonest breeders out there who want to make a quick buck.
Many new keepers and aspiring breeders have become discouraged when they paid for designer morphs and came home with something else.
Over the last fifty years or so, the markets have been evolving at a steady clip, and today it’s not hard to find a guaranteed enchi ball python for a good price.
Many keepers like to go to reptile expos and reptile conventions (or repticons for short) to buy their new morphs.
These gatherings are invaluable opportunities for new keepers to meet their fellow enthusiasts and buy high-quality animals.
However, there isn’t a repticon in every region, and not everyone likes going to events.
If you prefer shopping from home, or live far from the nearest expo, consider an online store like MorphMarket.
These platforms feature thousands of morphs, and you can get your hands on normal enchi, super enchi, and many other ball python morphs.
The snakes get shipped with express couriers and usually arrive within 48 hours.
Whatever you do, AVOID purchasing your new ball python morph on a general listing site or social media marketplace.
These platforms have no systems to ensure that the breeder is honest, and you might not get what you paid for.
Some reputable pet stores have relationships with ball python facilities and may also stock the enchi ball python morph.
How Much Should I Expect to Pay for an Enchi Ball Python?
Since enchi ball pythons have been around for quite some time, they no longer cost a small fortune.
Depending on which breeder you buy from, you can expect to pay around $50-$150 for a normal enchi.
You can expect to pay much more if you buy any of the ball python morphs produced with this co-dominant morph.
A pastel enchi clown, for example, can fetch $2,000. A pastel lesser enchi morph goes for around $500.
Which of the Enchi Morphs Are Bright Yellow?
While the dark brown color and black pattern of the standard enchi, super enchi, or enchi lesser is enchanting, there’s much attraction in the other colors.
Ball python facilities breed super enchi to other morphs to produce new and lighter morphs.
Yellow and orange have become some of the more popular colors, and several morphs have this color set.
The obvious place to turn if you want a yellow ball python is the banana enchi, or even a banana super enchi if you can find one.
Pastels are also available in yellow, and by now, you can even buy a super pastel super enchi lesser or another complicated yellow ball python morph.
The enchi patterning readily lends itself to new morphs, and people produce countless different yellow versions.
The ONLY limit to finding a yellow enchi morph is how much you’re willing to spend. Some of the rarer crosses may fetch $2,000-$5,000 per snake.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this article about the enchi ball python. Remember that your options aren’t limited, and there are many other morphs on the market.
Our website has articles about popular morphs, like the cinnamon ball python and the spider ball python.
You can also check out our massive guide to different ball python morphs, which can help you decide which you like best.
Are you planning to keep and breed enchi ball pythons, or are you still deciding which morph you like? Let us know in the comments.