Rubber Boa / Boa Caoutchouc
As its name suggests, the Rubber Boa looks rubbery. It is a uniform olive-green,
reddish-brown, or brown. The Rubber Boa has a blunt tail, making it vaguely look
like it has a head at each end. The eyes have vertical pupils. The Rubber Boa can
grow to over 80 cm in total length.
There are two other unpatterned snakes in British Columbia: the
Western Yellow-bellied Racer and the
Sharptail Snake. In BC, the Racer is greenish to
brown, but the belly is always yellow. It also has a long thin tail. The Sharptail
Snake is reddish brown to gray and has a series of black and white crossbars on the
The Rubber Boa is found across much of southern BC along the US border and farther
north in the centre of the province. To the south the snake ranges across the
northwestern US, as far south as northern California.
The Rubber Boa is found in a variety of habitats from damp woodlands to coniferous
forests. It is also found in moist sandy areas along rocky streams. It prefers
loose soil, because it will burrow into the ground.
Little is know of the mating habits of the Rubber Boa. Females give birth to 2-8
young in late summer. The juveniles are almost 18 cm long at birth.
The Rubber Boa is active at dusk and at night. It is a constrictor, preying on small
mammals and birds. With its prehensile tail it can climb shrubs and small trees.
Much of its time is spent under ground, either burrowing or using the burrows of
other animals. If threatened the Rubber Boa will often roll up into a ball, hiding
its head and raising its tail, which can appear like a head.
The Rubber Boa is relatively widespread in British Columbia, but it is not common. It is
unclear if populations are declining as a result of development activities. It has been
designated Special Concern by