Dumeril's ground boa
This boa, endemic to Madagascar, lives in the rainforests in the south and southwest of the island, always near the streams and lagoons in the jungle.
It can be up to two metres long and feeds on mammals, eggs and other small invertebrates. Crepuscular, it rests during the day inside holes or under fallen branches.
It lives exclusively in the western half of the island of Madagascar, mainly in regions in the middle and south close to the coast. It is also found—probably introduced—on Reunion Island, in the Indian Ocean.
- Distribution / Resident
- Extint in the wild
- Critically endangered
- In Danger
- Near threatened
- Minor concern
- Insufficient data
- Not evaluated
Discover how they are
The Dumeril’s boa is a small boa, measuring between 1.5 and 1.8 metres, exceptionally reaching two metres. With small eyes and vertical pupils, it has a short, prehensile tail. The dorsal colouring is greyish or brownish, with two series of longitudinal dark spots, with black lines behind or between the eyes.
They inhabit wetlands close to streams and other small watercourses running through driest forests in the east and south of Madagascar, up to altitudes of 1300 m.
It primarily eats small mammals, but can also capture small birds, lizards and even small snakes.
This ovoviviparous species has a small number of babies, from two to seven. They are exceptionally large at birth, three to four times larger than Boa constrictor babies, a reproductive strategy related to the scarcity of large predators on the island.
Terrestrial, they tend to spend the day hidden among the forest’s undergrowth, becoming active at night.
Scarce throughout almost their entire area of distribution, the dangers they face include direct hunting and the deforestation of their habitat. In some regions this snake is respected by the local population due to helping devour rat and mice plagues, but in other areas it is feared and immediately eliminated as soon as it is spotted. There are no subspecies.