||Five years old|
||Brazilian Rainbow Boa|
I rescued this magnificent specimen he was very underweight, dark and
muted in color, and extremely aggressive. The first time I attempted to
handle him I was bitten four times. He hid continually and refused all food
for well over a month. In searching for a solution to his issues, I
discovered that at some point in his life prior to my custodianship his
jaw had been badly injured such in a way that is unlikely to ever fully
heal. For this reason it was painful and difficult for him to eat the
usual sized food offered to a snake his size. I began offering him food
half the usual size, twice as often, and had immediate results. He has not
refused a smaller meal once. I have also been slowly acclimating him to
being gently handled, starting first with leather gloves on and slowly
working away from the use of them. I am now able to handle him for
prolonged periods without any signs of aggression.
He recently shed his skin for me for the first time since I obtained him,
a nice clean shed, thus providing further evidence that his new home and
diet is working and that he is growing strong and healthy. As you can see
by the pictures, his color is now fantastic. He is nearly the maximum
length he will achieve at over five and a half feet in length, although he
could still stand to put on a bit more girth.
Quetzalcoatl is a success story in that he almost certainly would have
perished prematurely had he remained under his previous care. These snakes
are not for everyone as they have particular needs, which differ from
other common pet snakes, but for the educated caregiver they are a delight
to behold with their shimmering rainbow of iridescence!
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