The largest snakes in the world: Boa constrictor

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The largest snakes in the world: Boa constrictor

The Boa constrictor is a snake belonging to the Boidi family, much feared as it is capable of killing even large prey by wrapping and suffocating them in its coils.
Its range is wide: according to a latitudinal gradient it is present in central-southern Mexico (Veracruz, Tabasco, Chiapas and Yucatán), in all the states of tropical Central and South America as well as in the Lesser Antilles.

The habitat it prefers is that of tropical rainforests and wetlands. However, it is an adaptable species that can be found in numerous habitats, provided there is a certain vegetation cover and humidity. The average length and weight of this adult species are between 250 / 300cm x 10 / 15kg for males and between 250 / 350cm x 10 / 20kg for females, however the genetic capabilities of a subject, weaning and quantity, quality and frequency.

power supply make the numbers only a general estimate, it is easy to find specimens both below and above the average. The growth is however constant throughout the life of the Boa, even if in recent years it is lower, the development of diameter and length grows.

It feeds on small mammals, lizards, mice, squirrels, birds, sarigas, bats, and other smaller snakes. Males are attracted to the smell of females unlike many similar species. The females do not lay eggs, but being ovoviviparous they give birth to already formed young.

It gives birth to 20 to 50 babies at a time which, at birth, measure just under half a meter. The coloring of boa constrictors can vary greatly depending on the locality. However, they are generally a brown, gray, or cream base color, patterned with brown or reddish-brown "saddles" that become more pronounced towards the tail.

This coloring gives B. constrictor species the common name of "red-tailed boas." The coloring works as a very effective camouflage in the jungles and forests of its natural range. Boa constrictor can be found through South America north of 35 ° S (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Brazil, Bolivia, Uruguay, and Argentina), and many other islands along the coasts of South America.

An introduced population exists in extreme southern Florida, and a small population on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands now appears to be reproducing in the wild. Boa constrictors are ambush predators, so they often lie in wait for an appropriate prey to come along, then they attack.

However, they have also been known to actively hunt, particularly in regions with a low concentration of suitable prey, and this behavior generally occurs at night. The boa first strikes at the prey, grabbing it with its teeth; it then proceeds to constrict the prey until death before consuming it whole.

Unconsciousness and death likely result from shutting off vital blood flow to the heart and brain, rather than suffocation as was previously believed; constriction can interfere with blood flow and overwhelm the prey's usual blood pressure and circulation.