Rubber Boa

Rubber Boa


Southern British Columbia, eastern Washington and Oregon, north eastern California, northern Nevada, Montana, Wyoming and northern and central parts of Utah.


Grassland, woodland and forests. Sea level to 9,200 feet. Secretive - hides beneath logs and rocks.


This non-venomous animal is a stout-bodied snake that feels like rubber with a blunt head, no noticeable neck and tail common to burrowers. The tail is prehensile. The coloration is plain brown above, yellow below, without pattern or with a few dusky flecks on the lower sides. Sometimes it is called a "two-headed snake" because the tail is shaped like the head. The last few vertebrae of the short, thick tail are fused. The eye pupils are vertical.

Rubber Boa

Secretive. The rubber boa is a good swimmer, burrower (in sand, loose earth or forest litter), and climber, at home underground and in trees. It is often found in or beneath rotting logs or under rocks. When threatened it curls into a tight ball, raising its tail above the coils and waiving it in a characteristic striking motion.


These snakes ovoviviparous (meaning the eggs are retained inside the female's body until hatched). Two to eight young usually born from August to November. They are seven to eleven inches long are born each time. The young are pinkish to light brown above, yellowish below.

Interesting Facts:

The rubber boa endures cold much better than most snakes. It can tolerate a temperature as low as 54 degrees. It travels farther north than any other boa with the possible exception of two Asian boas. It is the only boa in Utah.

Rubber Boa
Native Utah Animal
Class: reptiles
Genus: Charina
Species: bottae
Length: 14 - 33 inches
Average Lifespan: 7.5 years
Wild Diet: Lizards and small mammals, especially rodents such as voles or mice. Also eats shrews, lizards, and skinks.
Predators: Coyotes and birds of prey
USFWS Status: Not Listed
CITES Status: Not Listed
Where at the Zoo? Small Animal Building: Temperate Zone

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