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Amazon Tree Boa

Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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The Amazon Tree Boa is one of the most diversely colorful snakes, making it a stunning display animal and pet. In nature, Amazon Tree Boas live among the Amazon rainforest and therefore, require a similar warm, high humidity habitat in captivity. However, due to their tendency towards aggressive behavior and their strict living requirements, they are not suitable for the beginning reptile owner.

Species Profile: Amazon Tree Boa
Scientific Name: Corallus hortulanus
Natural Environment: Amazon rainforest and drier areas of southeastern Brazil.
Average Size: 4-6 feet
Average Life Span: 20+ years.
Appearance: The Amazon Tree Boa has a very thin body and a large, triangular-shaped head with long, sharp teeth and large, bulging eyes. These gorgeous snakes can be found in a wide variety of colors and patterns.
Lighting:As with all snakes, no special lighting is required. However, fluorescent reptile lighting is recommended. Amazon Tree Boas often strike at bulbs that are too bright or bulbs that emit heat and therefore, such lighting should be avoided.
Temperature: 80-85°F by day, 75-78°F by night. It is recommended to mist the enclosure at least twice daily, bringing the humidity up to 80-90% or higher.
Housing:Amazon Tree Boas require a habitat with very high humidity. So, they need a terrarium that can retain humidity. However, the habitat must also allow for adequate ventilation to help prevent fungal and bacterial growth, which can lead to illness. A glass terrarium or aquarium with a partially screened cover works well for this species. Accustomed to life in the trees, these arboreal animals also require a lot of vertical space with plenty of levels and places to climb and perch. Perches like branches, vines or other plants should be criss-crossed to form forks in which the snakes can lie. Wooden dowels, driftwood and other pieces of wood with nooks or flat surfaces also work well with Amazon Tree Boas. Due to their aggressive behavior, Amazon Tree Boas should be housed separately. A large water bowl should be available at all times for soaking, drinking, and to provide humidity.
Diet/Feeding: In nature, Amazon Tree Boas feed on small mammals, birds, and the occasional lizard. In captivity, they can thrive on pre-killed rodents, such as frozen mice that have been completely thawed out. Warming the prey can help increase palatability. Prey should be no wider than the widest part of the snake's body.
Behavior/Interaction: Amazon Tree Boas are aggressive and very alert animals. Because of their constant heightened level of alertness, they are prone to striking and biting. Therefore, you should be cautious when handling these snakes. As nocturnal reptiles, Amazon Tree Boas are inactive during the day.


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