Tails and Scales

Amazon Tree Boa

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The Amazon tree boa (Corallus hortulanus) is the most geographically widespread of the tree boas. It is found from northern South America throughout the Amazon Basin east of the Andes. Along with its wide distribution, it also varies widely in color and pattern. Natural color forms range from deep brown or black to bright yellow and red. Most individuals show some form of dorsal pattern, normally appearing as dark hourglass markings across the body. Occasionally uniform-colored snakes without any pattern are seen.

As their name suggests, Amazon tree boas spend most of their time in trees and shrubs. In the wild, they utilize a wide variety of habitats, but primarily live in lowland tropical forests that receive more than 60 inches of rain annually. They also inhabit disturbed areas, such as woodland edges, secondary forests, agricultural zones and human habitations.

They are found from sea level to an elevation of 3,280 feet and typically occur in habitats with continuous canopy contact. This allows them to move from tree to tree without descending to the ground. Juveniles, however, are most commonly found closer to the ground in low shrubs where they can hunt lizards at night.