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Wildlife: Snake - Ground Boa


Ground Boa, Lazy Snake, Pygmy Boa – Tropidophis caymanensis caymanensis; (Grand Cayman)

Joey Ebanks with Cayman Ground Snake - Alsophis cantherigerus

Size: up to 600 mm SVL* Adult body colour is sandy gray with darker patches along the back and a cream coloured underside. On close inspection, one can see a dark line running from the eye to the base of the head. The eye is a golden colour with an elliptical pupil. A distinguishing feature is the yellow tail tip, more pronounced in the young. Juveniles show a bold black and white patterning along the back, which gradually changes to the adult colour as they mature. This is a nocturnal snake often found around rotting wood and in other natural ground debris. This snake is well known for its initial release of a vile odour when stressed by handling. Called “Lazy Snake” either because it sleeps all day or because of its placid nature.  (Three of these, held in captivity for several months were “tame” and seemed almost bored. When they were handled, they lazily moved from hand to hand with no urgency. When they were taken to the forest for release near a hollow log, their excitement was noticeable. They began to flair their nostrils and move much more quickly, flicking their tongues and straining to get away. Upon release, they disappeared almost instantly.)   

* Key:
SVL Snout to Vent Length

Total Length (including tail)

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