Species group: Boas, Anacondas and Pythons
Other common names: Dumerils Ground Boa
Scientific name: Acrantophis dumerili
The Dumeril’s Boa is in the unique position of being common in captivity but rare in the wild. It is found only in southern Madagascar and on nearby Mascarene Island. Although long-protected, the Dumeril’s Boa is threatened by deforestation and other forms of habitat loss.
Dumeril’s Boas occupy arid thorn scrub, sparsely-wooded dry forests and the outskirts of farms and villages. Time is mainly on the ground, but trees and bushes may be used on occasion.
Appearance / health:
The Dumeril’s Boa is a heavy-bodied snake that averages 5-6 feet in length, with some individuals approaching 8 feet. The pattern of coloration is complex, with most exhibiting dark blotches over several shades of tan and brown, sometimes overlain with a pink or orange tinge.
With proper care, captive longevity for this hardy species may approach 30 years. Dry sheds are common in terrariums where the average humidity is consistently below 30%, but skin infections will take hold in overly-damp environments. Air circulation that allows the tank to dry out after heavy misting is essential.
Behavior / temperament:
Dumeril’s Boas are generally calm in temperament, with most tolerating gentle handling. Young animals may be especially defensive. As is true for all snakes, they must be handled with care; adults are not suitable pets for children.
Dumeril’s Boas are relatively inactive and do well in modestly-sized enclosures. Youngsters may be accommodated in terrariums of a length equal to their own, but adults require custom-built cages measuring at least 5 x 4 feet. Newspapers, cypress mulch, eucalyptus bark and similar materials may be used as substrates. A dry cave or hollow log serves well as a shelter. Ambient temperature: 78-82 F; basking temperature: 88 F.
Wild Dumeril’s Boas are opportunists, taking bats, rodents, birds, lizards, domestic fowl and a variety of other species. Pets readily accept rats and mice.
A cooling-off period of 1-2 months at a temperature of 72 F, basking site of 82 F, and an 8 hour day length will often stimulate reproduction. Four to fifteen youngsters, which average 15-20 inches in length, are born alive after a relatively long gestation period of 5 – 7 months.
Written by Frank Indiviglio
great pet snake, dependable eater, .Gentle giants, Good temperament, great beginner snake
little skittish, large cage, respiratory infection, feeding aggressiveness, initial setup
humid microclimate, large constrictor, basking area
Rare in the Wild, Hearty in Captivity
These stoutly-built beautifully-patterned snakes rare in the wild but bred often in captivity. Dumeril’s boas are generally mild mannered - in zoos I've used them as demonstration animals - but due to their size (4-6 feet on average, with some approaching 8 feet) they must be handled with care and are not suitable pets for children. Their care is similar to that of the boa constrictor, although, hailing from generally arid habitats, they are susceptible to skin infections if maintained in damp surroundings. But with proper care they are just as hardy as common boas – several of mine are still going strong in their early 30’s..
From findiviglio Jan 4 2016 4:52PM