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[boa mandarita]

GEOGRAPHY Found throughout Madagascar from rainforest to cleared wooded areas.Except the desert in Southern Madagascar.It can also be found on the island of Nosey BE.

CARE Funny name Madagascar {tree] boa for a snake that spends little time in the trees!In captivity they prefer the ground.Although they are good climbers and often take to the trees they do not need a cage setup like the emeralds more like a carpet.This is probably in most recent times the most smuggled snake into the U.S.A. Hundreds were smuggled into Florida and sold to different dealers in those areas.One of the main culprits in this operation was arrested a short time ago with numerous gravid females and adults.That operation has been shut down and the price of Sanzinia will probably even out a little more.They were dropping in price rapidly.They are usually referred to as Sanzinia and this seems a more suitable name than tree boa because they spend more time on the ground then in the trees.The enclosure should be setup to provide climbing branches but does not have to be high.In fact many breeders of this species do not even place basking places in the enclosure but may use heat from the floor.It is really your call.They will climb on a tree to bask and if that is what you would like to see then provide heat from above.They require a cage temp about 82, with a higher basking/warm spot of around 88.Humidity should be kept on the higher side, but the enclosure should be dry and not soggy.Humidity around 70% will work fine.They seem to be more nocturnal and one may notice more climbing activity at night.They prefer a hide box on the ground throughout the day.Color can vary from individual to individual and also varies by geography.Mandarin phase specimens tend to be a lighter color with gold highlights, sometimes with a grayish tone.Exceptional specimens of this snake may be a bright rich dark minty green color.Substrate may consist of bark mulch, cork bark or even aspen bedding however some breeders just prefer newspaper which also works well.This species may soak and a water container should be large enough for the snake to climb in to.

SIZE AND FEEDING Typical size of this snake is between 5 and 6 foot although there is always the giant 8 foot 30 pound female somewhere!Ask Dick Georgon!He'll tell you!Any how they feed well on mice and rats weekly and are usually even tempered and do not mind handling.Some adults may be a little nippy however these are probably wild caught sold as captive bred and were not raised with any handling.This is a beautiful snake!

BREEDING This snake has proven difficult to breed.If breeding is a success fertile clutches are hard to predict.This is probably due to the number of wild caught smuggled animals that have been brought in from different areas with different temperature requirements for breeding.One thing is a constant and that is this is a snake that may definately need a combating male.Like the Black Head Python males breed more readily when combat is iniciated and this should be kept in mind while buying juveniles to raise up and breed.The old trick of tossing in a freshly shed skin of another male sanzinia maybe a friends?Will sometimes work, however better to be safe than sorry purchase two males when buying young.Cycling sanzinia may be difficult because different geographic specimens depend on different temperature drops.Some specimens require a drop down to 60 degrees before fertile mating will occur!Others will not tolerate drops that low and will come down with respiratory problems.Best to drop temps first time to probably 68 with the raise in temperature into the 80s in the day time.This will provide a grid for your future breeding programs, to see if you may need to go lower.These temps should be maintained for two months after which time males should be placed with females.Combat may occur and breeding also but it may occur after the warm up as well.After a couple of weeks to gather temperatures should be raised back to normal.Incedentally during cooling humidity should drop as well.Possibly to around 50%.After the warm up occurs, humidity should be raised to around 90% with frequent sprayings to simulate the Madagascar rainy/flood season.After fertile copulation females will go into a shed.After and during the shed females take on an extremely dark color almost black.This is probably to retain heat.A basking spot of 90 should be provided.Typical gestation will be around 4 - 6 months.The babies will usually shed the same day after birth and are a rusty reddish color.Although some specimens from a different locality may have yellowish babies as well as red color babies.These babies are usually pretty good feeders.Feeding on small fuzzy mice as first foods.Some however may prefer lizards and should be provided with scented pinks.Juvies may like to climb and thier enclosure should be setup exactly like the adults.Specimens start changing color around 6 months with a color change in about a year some a little later.


NOTESThis is a very nice looking snake enclosures do not need to be large and they usually are nice to handle except imports which will be cut down this year[it is illegal to import these snakes although many still do]