Northern Rubber Boa
Rubber boas can be found in grassland, woodland, and forest habitats
Northern rubber boas inhabit much of the Western United States and range into southern British Columbia
Least Concern (IUCN Red List)
This species is
to the Truckee Meadows.
Northern rubber boas are comparatively small snakes, averaging only 21 to 26 inches in length. They are two-toned with a uniform tan or olive-brown on their upper side (dorsal side) and a yellow or cream underside (lateral side). These boas are smooth and shiny, with very small eyes and a blunt tail.
These snakes are nocturnal and prefer colder temperatures than most snakes.
They are the smallest members of the boa family (Boidae).
Rubber boas form a defensive ball if threatened, pulling covering their head and exposing their tail as a decoy. The tip of their tails are stubby and easily confused for a head.
They generally live up to 40 or 50 years in the wild.
The genus name Charina means graceful in ancient Greek.
The largest threat to Northern rubber boas is over-collection for the pet trade, despite that it is illegal to sell wild-caught boas.
Burke Museum. “Northern Rubber Boa”, 2020 https://www.burkemuseum.org/collections-and-research/biology/herpetology/amphibians-reptiles-washington/northern-rubber-boa
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services. “Rubber Boa”, 2014 https://www.fws.gov/nwrs/threecolumn.aspx?id=2147549974
Hammerson, G.A. “Charina bottae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species”, 2007 http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2007.RLTS.T62228A12582270.en.
California Herps. “Northern Rubber Boa - Charina bottae”, 2020. http://www.californiaherps.com/snakes/pages/c.bottae.html
Image: Tony Iwane, https://www.flickr.com/photos/tonysfotos/13685330974/, license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/, cropped from original.
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