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Woodhouse Lane, Botley, Southampton SO30 2EZ
Tel. 01489 789300
In association with South Coast Constrictors
Phyllomedusa bicolor
Phyllomedusa bicolor

Care Sheet

Common Boa Constrictor (Boa constrictor imperator)


Common names: Common Boa Constrictor

Size: 180-240cm is average, however exceptionally large specimens can exceed 300cm.

Age: 15-20 years is average, however, this species have been known to live up to 25 years.

Difficulty: Low, they make good pets due to moderate size and relatively easy husbandry.

Temperature: Ambient of 80-85°f (26-30°C) with a hot spot of 88-95°f (31-35°C)

Humidity: Medium to High. So a light-misting daily is recommended. A damp moss hide should be included to aid the Boa in shedding. Water needs to be changed everyday.

Housing: 150x60x45 (5ft) is perfectly adequate for an average adult Boa constrictors. Small plastic enclosures such as breeder boxes and small faunariums are suitable for hatchling and juvenile Boa constrictors.

Heating: Dependent on what enclosures you are heating. Plastic enclosures can be heated using heat mats, whereas a wooden vivarium or similar housing should be space-heated using bulbs, ceramic heaters or heat plates.

The three most important things to remember when heating any enclosure are:

  • Ensure the animal cannot burn itself with the correct fitting of the heat source and protecting it with a guard.
  • Choose the appropriate wattage for the size enclosure. This can help further reduce the risk burns and overheating (it can also help save energy!)
  • Always using an appropriate thermostat. (Refer to Thermostat Guide)

Substrate: Orchid bark is a widely used medium for keeping Boa constrictors on. However, Aspen and wood chip can also be used. Unprinted newspaper is perfect as a neutral flooring, although it does need to be changed quite regularly.

Diet: Defrosted rats, and large boas will eat defrosted rabbits

Natural Distribution: Central and South America

Things to note: There are many other subspecies of boa constrictor available, many of which have different husbandry requirements.