Mark O'Shea's new softback edition
Venomous Snakes of the World. Also his Dangerous Snakes of Papua New Guinea stamp issue
and all his other books on the new 'O'Shea's Herp Shop'
DK Handbook to Reptiles and Amphibians. Visit the
'O'Shea's Herp Shop'
JAMAICAN BOA Epicrates subflavus
The jamaican boa, known as the "yellow snake" in Jamaica, is one of the world's most endangered snakes. Growing to 2.0m in length it has been almost exterminated on Jamaica despite the island having no dangerous snakes. Apart from active persecution and loss of habitat, the introduction of the Indian mongoose has had a disastrous effect on the survival of the species.
Today the survival of this species depends on it being captive bred in captivity, a project initiated by the Jersey Wildlife Preservation Trust. Natural prey includes rodents, bats and birds.
Endemic to Jamaica, and very localised there,
ie. only where the red spots mark small populations
click on the images to enlarge them
Habitat: Isolated rainforest & woodland
Juvenile Jamaican boas are banded brown rather than yellow
The boa is almost extinct in Jamaica due to active persecution and introduced mongooses
The boa has vertical pupils, a good sign of a nocturnal snake