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Brazilian Rainbow Boas


Het Hypomelanistic



Double Het Ghost

Dumerils Boas

Unnamed Female 1
Unnamed Female 2


Care Sheets

Beginner's Guide To Brazilian Rainbow Boas
Brazilian Rainbow Boa Care Sheet
Dumerils Boa Care Sheet

Frequently Asked Questions

Brazilian Rainbow Boa FAQ's
Dumerils Boa FAQ's

Do It Yourself Projects

Snake Rack
Rodent Breeding Tubs


How To Sex A Snake
How To Pick Up A Snake
Dumerils Boa Giving Birth 1
Dumerils Boa Giving Birth 2
Dumerils Boa Giving Birth 3
Breaking Through Egg Sac
Dumerils Boa Eating Mouse
How To Feed 2nd Food Item
Dumerils Boa Eating A Rat
BRB Shedding Short
BRB Shedding
BRB Striking A Mouse 1
BRB Striking A Mouse 2
Feeding A Hesitant BRB
Hypo BRB Swimming
BRB Eating A Rat


Brazilian Rainbow Boas Dumerils Boas

Brazilian Rainbow Boa Frequently Asked Questions

Click on a question to see the detailed answer

How long do Brazilian Rainbow Boas live?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas can live over 20 years in captivity.


How big do Brazilian Rainbow Boas get?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas typically grow between 5-7 feet long with females being larger than males.


What do Brazilian Rainbow Boas eat?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas in captivity should be fed appropriately sized mice and rats.


How often do Brazilian Rainbow Boas need to eat?

            Baby and juvenile Brazilian Rainbow Boas should be fed once every 4-7 days, and adults 7-14 days.


What time should I feed my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas are most active at nighttime and are most likely to eat when lighting is dim or dark.


Should I feed my Brazilian Rainbow Boa mice or rats?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas do well with both mice and rats of appropriate size.


What size mouse or rat should I feed a Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            It is common for people to recommend feeding a food item no larger than the thickest part of the snake’s body.  However, a more specific guideline is to feed your snake a rodent that weighs approximately 13% as much as the snake.  For example, a 38 gram Baby Brazilian Rainbow Boa should eat a 5 gram Fuzzy Mouse or Pinky Rat.  A 385 gram Juvenile Brazilian Rainbow Boa should eat a 50 gram Small Rat or two 25 gram Adult Mice.  This doesn’t have to be exact, and your snake can eat food slightly larger or smaller.


Can I feed Brazilian Rainbow Boas more than one food item at a time?

            It’s okay to feed Brazilian Rainbow Boas multiple food items as long as you don’t exceed the recommended amount of food.


What is the difference between live, fresh killed, and frozen thawed rodents?

            You should almost always avoid feeding your Brazilian Rainbow Boa a live mouse or rat.  Live rodents have sharp teeth and can severely injure or kill your snake.  An exception to this is that Baby Brazilian Rainbow Boas can be offered Pinky Mice and Rats to stimulate their feeding response.  Pinkies haven’t developed their teeth yet and pose little risk to your snake.

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas usually accept fresh killed rodents as readily as live, without the risk of injury to your snake.  The most humane way to kill a mouse or rat is to separate their vertebrae and break its neck.  This can be accomplished by chopping a rodent’s neck with the edge of your hand or by swinging it by the tail and hitting its neck against the edge of a hard surface.  If you are unsure how to do this or feel uncomfortable, frozen thawed may be your best option.

            Frozen/Thawed mice and rats have many advantages.  Most Brazilian Rainbow Boas can be converted from eating live and fresh killed rodents to frozen thawed.  It’s convenient to always have food on hand in your freezer and eliminates the task of killing the rodents yourself.  Additionally, freezing mice and rats kills any potential parasites they may be carrying.


How do I warm up a frozen mouse or rat?

            Frozen thawed mice and rats can be warmed up several ways.  The most common is to set the rodents on a plate, or put them in a plastic bag and submerge them in warm water until they are completely thawed out.  Never attempt to feed a frozen food item to your snake.


Can I refreeze uneaten mice or rats?

            Mice and rats can be refrozen one time if they haven’t been eaten within a few hours.  Food items that have been left in the cage overnight should be discarded if uneaten.  Any mouse or rat that has an unusual smell or appearance should be thrown away immediately.


Should I wash my hands after handling mice or rats?

            You should always wash your hands after handling mice and rats.  In addition to cleaning off anything potentially harmful, this will help prevent your Brazilian Rainbow Boa from mistaking your hand for food.


Should I feed my Brazilian Rainbow Boa in its cage?

            It’s okay to feed your Brazilian Rainbow Boa in its cage.  Ensure that there isn’t anything present that could be hazardous to your snake if ingested.  Opening the cage regularly to clean or handle your Boa will prevent it from associating an open cage only with feeding time.


Should I worry if my Brazilian Rainbow Boa isn’t eating?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas typically have an excellent appetite.  Many times, a boa may refuse food if it is getting ready to shed.  If your Rainbow Boa consistently refuses food, ensure that the temperature and humidity are within the proper range and that it appears healthy.  If no negative symptoms exist, a healthy Brazilian Rainbow Boa can go many months without eating without any harm.


How can I tell my Brazilian Rainbow Boa is going to shed?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas turn a milky blue/gray color about a week before to shedding.  This typically lasts several days and goes away before shedding.


How often do Brazilian Rainbow Boas shed?

            The duration between sheds depends on the growth rate of your Brazilian Rainbow Boa.  Typically, babies and juveniles shed every 3-6 weeks.  Adults shed less frequently once they reach their full size.


What kind of cage does my Brazilian Rainbow Boa need?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas can be kept in anything ranging from simple plastic tubs to large elaborate terrariums.  The key components are a secure enclosure with a large water bowl and a place to hide.  Adult Rainbow Boas do best with at least 4-6 square feet of space.  Babies can thrive in something as simple as a plastic shoe box/storage container.  Brazilian Rainbow Boas do well with a variety of substrates ranging from sphagnum peat moss, cypress mulch, paper towels, craft paper, or newspaper.  The essential thing is to maintain high humidity and the proper temperature.  If you decide to use a glass cage or fish tank, be sure to cover the top to limit dissipation of humid air and loss of heat.


What size enclosure should I house my Brazilian Rainbow Boa in?

            Baby Brazilian Rainbow Boas do well in plastic shoe boxes with a secure lid.  Juveniles do well with about 2-3 square feet of floor space, and adult Brazilian Rainbow Boas should have at least 4-6 square feet.


What kind of heat source should I use for my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas do best with under-tank heat pads or heat tape, or radiant heat panels.  These should always be connected to a thermostat.


What temperature should I keep my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            A Brazilian Rainbow Boas cage should have a temperature gradient from 75-83 degrees Fahrenheit.


Should I drop my Brazilian Rainbow Boa’s cage temperature at night?

            Other than reducing the cage temperature prior to breeding season, it is not necessary to reduce the temperature at night.


What kind of thermostat should I use for my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            A Proportional Thermostat is the safest and most reliable way of maintaining the proper temperature for your Brazilian Rainbow Boa.  They vary the amount of power to your heat source so it consistently stays the right temperature.  Other thermostats deliver power to the heat source with an on/off switch.  The problem with this is that the temperature can range 5-10 degrees.


How much humidity does my Brazilian Rainbow Boa need?

            Baby Brazilian Rainbow Boas need 90-100% humidity, and adults need at least 70-80%.  The best indication that the humidity correct is when your boa sheds in a single piece.  Tattered sheds indicate that the humidity is too low.


How do I maintain high humidity for my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            Cage humidity is best maintained by having a large water bowl, a damp hidebox, and limited ventilation.


Do Brazilian Rainbow Boas need Ultra Violet (UV) light?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas do not require Ultra Violet lighting.


How often should I clean my Brazilian Rainbow Boa’s cage?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boa cages should be cleaned anytime they’re soiled.  Typically, the cages can be spot cleaned weekly and thoroughly cleaned every two weeks.  The water bowl should be changed at least every week, or anytime it’s dirty.


How should I clean my Brazilian Rainbow Boa’s cage?

            A Brazilian Rainbow Boa’s cage can be effectively cleaned with warm soapy water.  Ensure that all soap is rinsed away before replacing bedding, water bowl, and hides.  Harsh cleaning agents should be avoided because they can be harmful to your snake.


What kind of substrate should I use?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas do well with a variety of substrates ranging from sphagnum peat moss, cypress mulch, paper towels, craft paper, or newspaper.


What kinds of hides can I use for my Brazilian Rainbow Boas?

            Plastic containers with entry/exit holes cut in the side make ideal hides that are easy to clean and maintain humidity.  Molded plastic caves/hides may be more pleasing to look at and also work well.  Hides made from materials that mold easily or are difficult to clean should be avoided.


Can I put more than one Brazilian Rainbow Boa in the same cage?

            Other than during breeding season, it is best to house your Brazilian Rainbow Boas separately.  This makes accurate record keeping easy and eliminates any risk of cannibalization.  Although some keepers have successfully housed several Rainbow Boas in the same cage, most would advise against this.


Do Brazilian Rainbow Boas stop growing if you keep them in a small cage?

            It is a misconception that boas will stop growing if you keep them in a small cage.  It is simply inhumane to keep a snake in a cage that’s too small.  The factors that determine a Brazilian Rainbow Boa’s size and growth rate are genetics, food consumption, and temperature.


Do Brazilian Rainbow Boas have live birth or lay eggs?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas have live birth.  The babies are born in clear egg sacs that they break out of soon after being born.


How long are Brazilian Rainbow Boas pregnant?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas have a gestation period around 5 months from ovulation.  The litter is usually born about 117 days after Post Ovulation Shed (POS) depending on temperature.


How many babies do Brazilian Rainbow Boas have?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas have a typical litter size of 12-24 babies.  However, litters of over 30 babies have been recorded.


Do Brazilian Rainbow Boas have ears?

            While Brazilian Rainbow Boas don’t have external ears and can’t hear sound, they can feel vibration and sense their body’s attitude.


Why did my Brazilian Rainbow Boa shed in pieces?

            Brazilian Rainbow Boas will shed in tattered pieces if the humidity isn’t high enough.


How often should I handle my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            A Brazilian Rainbow Boa should be given enough time to get used to its new cage after you first get it home.  Handling should be minimized for the first couple days to a week.  New snakes can be held several times a week for a few minutes at a time to get it accustomed to handling.  Brazilian Rainbow Boas can be handled for longer periods as they become used to human contact and as they grow larger.  Be careful of excessive handling.  Keep in mind that Brazilian Rainbow Boas have specific temperature and humidity needs, so prolonged handling outside their cage can be stressful.


When shouldn’t I handle my Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            There are some situations where you should avoid handling your Brazilian Rainbow Boa.  Rainbow Boas shouldn’t be handled for 24-48 hours after eating.  This will avoid stressing the snake, which could cause regurgitation.  They are also more likely to eat when left alone prior to feeding.  Boas can also become stressed when handled when they are getting ready to shed.  If you feel like your snake is becoming stressed, it’s time to return it to the cage.


How do I pick up a Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            A Brazilian Rainbow Boa should be picked up by sliding your hand under its body in a smooth and steady motion.  Avoid the side of its body closest to the head.  Be sure to support its body while holding the boa to ensure it is comfortable and feels secure.


What do I do if my Brazilian Rainbow Boa bites me?

            Baby Brazilian Rainbow Boas tend to be nippy.  Getting bitten startles you more than it actually hurts.  Continue to hold your boa even if it bites you.  This will teach the snake that you are not going to hurt it, and biting you isn’t going to get it put down.  Brazilian Rainbow Boas quickly get used human interaction and typically become calm pets with consistent handling.


Should I wash my hands after handling a Brazilian Rainbow Boa?

            As with any animal, it’s always a good idea to wash your hands after you’re done interacting with them.



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