Want A Colombian Boa Constrictor? Have A Peek At Our Care Sheet!
Colombian boa constrictor might give you a picture of a vast and terrifying reptile that squeezes people to death. Well, you have got the wrong impression!
Though they grow up to be big and powerful, these creatures are amazingly docile. For beginners, they are the best option to keep as pets. These beauties are easy to take care off even though it requires focused attention. They are relatively tame and non-venomous snakes.
Compared to the various subspecies, the Colombian boa constrictors are most famous in the pet industry. These species are mostly found in a variety of pattern morphs and attractive colors. Just as the name says, these are commonly seen in Columbia and the neighboring countries.
Beginners can offer proper care. However, the lengthy lifespan and large size make them suitable for advanced and moderate level pet keepers. Guess what… they are highly adaptable and at times, seen near human establishments. Due to the manageable size and friendly behavior, the demand for this species is quite high.
Before getting one, make sure that you can handle the strength and size of the mature species. These grow up to 13 feet in length and live up to 25 – 30 years. Let’s have a look at how to take care of these terrestrial reptiles.
Lots of specialized breeders find interest in breeding these species for extended periods. As for the young ones, they are born each year from May till August. Fall and late summer is the peak season where the boa litters are available in plenty. To make things more easier.. you can buy them from online retail shops or exotic stores.
Colombian Boa Constrictor Size:
As for the size, you may encounter a few exceptions! There is a remarkable difference in size between the female and male species. The male reptiles are generally small, having an average length of 5 – 7 feet.
The adult size females are heavier and grow up to 6 – 8 feet in length. The central American species are relatively small in size. Looking for a small Boa Constrictor? Look out for the central American varieties from Panama, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica.
Colombian Boa Constrictor’s Lifespan
There are cases were these long-lived reptiles had lived more than 40 years. Usually, the average lifespan ranges from 20 to 30 years in captivity. So think carefully before bringing one home.. as it’s a long term commitment!
Colombian Boa Constrictor Care Guide
A variety of cage options are present for these creatures. Reptile terrariums are one among them. Plastic enclosures made especially for reptiles using high-grade plastics are more suitable. These are capable of maintaining proper humidity within the enclosure. Planning to breed boas or look after them in huge numbers? A rack system would be the best choice for this.
Baby boas till the age of two can be adequately housed in a glass terrarium of appropriate size. A cage of 30 inches length and 12 inches width would offer a secure enclosure for a baby. It has to be well prepared in advance before the baby arrives at your place. As they overgrow, you will have to think about larger quarters.
Adult species require more space ranging from 6 feet width to 2 feet depth. A larger area is essential if you’re planning to house multiple snakes. Keepers mostly prefer individual shelters like vision brand and Penn Plax brand cages. Add ons such as sticks, rocks, and other items are the best options to furnish the enclosure. However, you need to make sure that things are parasite free and placed securely.
2. Temperature and Lighting:
These tropical creatures maintain their body temperature by thermoregulation. Yes, you heard it right! So, remember to have a warm and cold side inside the cage. Place a heat source of 90° at one end and maintain the other end at 80 – 85°F.
Ceramic heat emitters, infrared lights, basking bulbs, and heat pads are some of the best options for warming these creatures. Use a good thermometer to make sure the temperatures are appropriately maintained at each end of the cage. Fluorescent bulbs enhance the natural shades and simulate a day and night cycle for the boas. Note that this is not essential for the survival of this species!
Several number of substrates are generally used for this species. The common ones are cage carpet, aspen, newspaper, and brown or white wrapping paper. Cypress and fir barks are acceptable, but not suitable for breeders.
Would you like to use mulch or cypress bark? Ensure that it’s not too damp as these barks hold humidity well. The enclosure can be properly cleaned if you are planning to use carpet or aspen bedding.
4. Colombian Boa Constrictor Food:
Baby boas up to two years of age consume an average-sized rodent every 7 – 10 days. Excessive consumption can result in abnormal growth, regurgitation, and premature deaths.
Additional supplements are not required! Make sure that the rodents are free from diseases and parasites. As they mature into adults, they feed on more giant rabbits or rats every 10 – 14 days. Make it a point to monitor their weight so that they don’t become underweight or obese.
5. Water and Humidity:
A water bowl is an essential requirement for these reptiles. It offers a place to drink water and soak in if they wish to do so. It also adjusts the humidity inside the cage. The moisture should be well maintained at around 60 – 70 percent.
Feel free to use a hygrometer to monitor the percentage. Misting the entire enclosure using room temperature water daily helps adjust the humidity.
6. Handling the Colombian Boa Constrictor
What makes Columbian boas the popular choice for pet lovers? The credit goes to their reluctance to bite and their even temperament. As for the standard caution, ‘excessive handling of snakes is a big no’ is fine here. It is because the species can be gently handled regularly.
However, you need to watch out for any signs of stress. Do you notice any ill temperament? Conduct a thorough check on their cage temperature and humidity level.
Colombian Boa Constrictor Price
Based on the type of boa you need and the place you buy it from, the rates may differ. A reduced black pigment or light-colored hypomelanistic species are available in reptile shows for $75. The latest designer, morphs, costs above $5,000. The standard shaded boas or wild phase are usually found in retail stores at a price ranging from $150 – $200. These types are also seen at reptile shows for $60 – $75.
Always make sure to get your boa from a reputable store. Check for active ones that lack any deformities, respiratory infection, or retained shed skin. Look out for snake mitts that are tiny black parasites that thrive on their surface. Gather as much information as you can before you bring them home.