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BROCHURE RACK

Burmese python versus constrictor boa

 

Find out which of these snakes give birth to live young and which is the heaviest

Burmese python

 

Location: Southern- and Southeast Asia
Diet: birds and mammals
Length: Average 3.7 metres
Weight: Up to 90kg
Reproduction: Lays eggs
Risk: Vulnerable

 

Boa constrictor

 

Location: North, Central and South America
Diet: Birds and mammals
Length: Up to 4m
Weight: Up to 27kg
Reproduction: Ovoviviparous
Risk: Not Evaluated

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Habitat

The Burmese python is a rainforest dweller that inhabits Southern and Southeast Asia, while the boa constrictor lives in North, Central and South America in a wide veriety of habitats from arid semi-desert landscapes to the tropical rain forests, which they prefer. It is also found in some of the Caribbean Islands. Both snakes can be found near water as they are excellent swimmers.

Reproduction

Burmese pythons breed in the early spring, with females laying clutches of 12–36 eggs in March or April. She will remain with the eggs until they hatch, whereas the boa give birth to live young, as many as sixty snakes at a time, each measuring 17-20 inches October-January.

Diet

Like all snakes they are carnivorous. Both are also nocturnal and prey on a wide variety of small to medium sized mammals and birds. To kill their prey both wrap themselves around their prey and contract their muscles so they are killed by constriction. They Thanks to elastic jaw ligaments both snakes are able to extend their jaw wide so they can swallow their prey whole.

Morphology

The Burmese python is one of the five largest snakes in the world and can reach up to 5.74 metres, although averages are usually nearer 3.7 metres, and can weigh up to 90kg. The slighter boa constrictor ranges from 0.91–4m in length and weighs in at a lighter 27 kg. The python is also a good climber and are aided by a prehensile tail.

 Threats

The biggest threat to both snakes has to be humans as both are popular as exotic pets, particularly the albino python, and hunted for their skins and flesh, which are traded in certain parts of the world. Both are also often killed by farmers who view them as pests. Young boa constrictors are also preyed upon by a large variety of animals such as coatis, hawks, caimans, eagles and wild pigs.

The boa constrictor is classed as not evaluated by the IUCN, which means… (help!!) as the Burmese python is listed as vulnerable with populations decreasing.