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RE: Rubber Boa help

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Posted by: RichardFHoyer at Sat May 31 10:44:15 2008  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by RichardFHoyer ]  
   

Taylor,
If all boa populations are similar in all respects to the population here in northwestern Oregon, then males can reach maturity at around 4 years of age and female at around 6 years at the earliest. The mean or average age at which males and females become adults is probably about 6 - 7 years for males and 8 - 9 years for females.

Locally (large morph) males reach maturity at near 18 inches and females at or above 22 inches. For other large morph populations, I suspect that males can be come mature at around 16 1/2 to 17 inches and females at around 20 1/2 to 21 inches although I an not certain I have found a gravid female below 21 inches.

Dwarf morph males may become mature at as small as about 13 1/2 inches and females possibly as small as around 17 or slightly below. The smallest gravid female of the dwarf form that produced a litter was 17 7/8 inches.

The above information was obtained by recording the smallest males that exhibit courtship behavior and smallest females that produced litters. So it seems to be a combination of age and length (perhaps weight as well at least in the case of females) that determines when the species becomes mature.

The only way of knowing whether any particular specimen belongs to the dwarf or large morph is to know where it was captured or the origin or if captive bred, the origin of the parent stock. That there are two reasonable distinct size morphs of the Rubber Boa is a recent discovery and not generally known (or accepted) by the professional herpetological community. Only through my posting of such information are some individuals in the amateur herp community aware of this situation.

Richard F. Hoyer


   

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