Are you curious about what you need to care for a boa constrictor properly?
Do you wonder if you have enough room in your home to fit a tank for a boa?
If you are starting to research what you need to own a boa constrictor, you might ask:
What size enclosure do I need for a boa constrictor?
An adult boa constrictor measuring between 6′ and 8′ feet will need an enclosure measuring at least 6′ by 4′ feet to give the animal room to move. If you have a smaller or younger boa, smaller tanks can be used, but as a young snake grows longer, you will have to upgrade and increase the tank’s size.
Read on for more information on the size of an enclosure you need for your boa constrictor.
What Size Enclosure Do I Need For A Boa Constrictor?
Housing your boa in a correctly sized tank is so crucial for their mental and physical well being.
The size of the tank depends on the size of your boa and also on their age.
For an adult boa constrictor measuring between 6′ and 8′ feet in length, you need to provide them with an enclosure measuring at 6′ feet long by 4′ feet wide.
The height of the enclosure should also be at minimum 3′ feet.
Larger and taller is always recommended when it comes to the size of the enclosure.
If you have a boa who does not grow to these sizes, a smaller tank will work just fine.
Baby and juvenile boas will also need less room than the fully grown adult members of their species.
A baby boa is about 17″ to 20″ inches when they are born.
A tank measuring about 2′ feet long by 1.5′ feet wide, at minimum, is a good size for a boa less than 2′ feet in length.
As your boa constrictor grows, it will need to have a larger space.
Boas, like most snake species, grow rapidly in the first few years of their life and they will outgrow a smaller tank rather quickly.
When the boa grows to between 2′ and 5′ feet, the tank will need to be at least 4′ feet long by 2′ feet wide.
A boa over the 6′ to 8′ feet mark will require a larger tank measuring about 8′ feet in length and 4′ feet wide.
The tank will need to be at least 4′ feet high at this stage.
You might be thinking 6′ feet for an adult is a lot of tank, do I have to get something so big?
The answer is a definite yes because even if you don’t see the snake in action moving around, they do need room to stretch out and move.
Too small of a tank, will lead to stunted growth in your boa and open the animal to illness and physical deterioration.
Ultimately, this will all result in a shortened life span and early death for your pet.
A happy and healthy boa is one who has room to move.
Could I Just Buy One Tank For My Boa’s Whole Life?
Replacing tanks regularly might be a pain, and there is a cost to it.
If you’re thinking of buying a large tank for your baby or juvenile boa to grow into, you aren’t alone.
This is entirely possible because think about how a boa grows up in the wild.
There are no little boxes to stay in until they reach a larger size.
It is also cheaper in the long run and more efficient for you.
So yes, it is something you might want to consider, but you will need to take some precautions.
These small boas will need lots of hides or other kinds of cover if you are going to put them in a large enclosure.
We aren’t just talking about hiding boxes here, but also consider partially covering up the climbing branches, so they have places to hide when they are exploring above.
Hatchling boas in the wild have to work extra hard not to become someone’s meal, and despite having been bred in captivity, this isn’t an instinct easily bred out of them.
If you don’t have enough places for these young boas to hide, they are likely to get stressed, and stress leads to many health problems.
As a drawback for you, it will be harder to find your baby boa in a larger tank.
They have more room to hide, and it could make eyeing them or grabbing them for handling sessions or cleaning harder.
You might also have a harder time monitoring when they go to the bathroom.
This is very important to make sure they are healthy and if they are eating.
While using a tank designed for a much larger boa is possible, do not use a water bowl meant for an adult.
The younger boas are at risk of drowning if the bowl is too deep.
If you have decided you want to start with a large enclosure, definitely do your research on how to correctly set up or your animal will likely suffer.
Housing Multiple Boas In One Tank
If you have caught the bug and want to have multiple boa constrictors in your home, you might be wondering if you should house multiple boas in one tank.
This is not the best idea for the well-being of the animal.
Unlike people, most snakes are not social people and like being on their own.
The solitary nature of the boa constrictor, means they don’t do well having a roommate.
If you have more than one snake in a tank, one could end up eating the other.
Aside from being solitary creatures, boa constrictors need a lot of room to move, and by adding another snake to a tank just big enough for one, will cut the space in half.
It is best practice to have one snake per enclosure because of their nature, and to ensure you are giving each one the room they need to move around and stretch out.
Types Of Enclosures For Boa Constrictors?
Boa constrictor enclosures are available in a variety of styles and made from several different materials.
The types of enclosures are usually broken down into just a few categories.
The first of these categories we will discuss are made of glass.
Glass tanks, while heavy, are readily available at local stores or online.
Not only do they look beautiful when you take the time to arrange them, and come in a variety of sizes, but they dissipate heat well and are ideal for creating a temperature gradient.
Remember, a temperature gradient is vital for your boa because they rely on external temperatures to regulate their bodies and perform everyday functions.
They do get more expensive and heavier the larger you get, and they do break more easily than some of the other options.
The second type we will discuss is a plastic or PVC enclosure.
Like glass, they do get expensive the larger they are, but they are far more durable.
On top of this, these types of enclosures hold heat and humidity much better.
Another category to touch on are enclosures made of wood.
Wooden enclosures are very popular among snake enthusiasts who build their own custom enclosures.
This is very common as the enclosure size gets larger, as building your own is often more cost-effective and gives you the freedom to be more creative.
When building your own enclosure, avoid woods like pine, fir, or cedar.
These types of wood contain natural oils harmful to snakes.
We also recommend putting the opening in the front of the enclosure when building your own.
This prevents you fro having to swoop in from above onto your snake, something they will see as a predatory action.
It will also make cleaning and accessing the snake a bit easier for you, especially when the tanks get to be several feet high.
If building your own enclosure isn’t something you want to explore, there are many wooden enclosures on the market to look at purchasing.
You might also look into hiring a local carpenter to build a custom enclosure for you.
Not only would you be supporting a local small business, but you would be able to get someone who will help you design an enclosure to fit perfectly in your home.
These options will give you a nice look without the hassle of figuring out how to build it or purchasing a lot of tools to do so.
Selecting the right size enclosure for your boa is an essential part of good animal husbandry.
You will need to have a large enough tank for the boa constrictor to move around and to provide an appropriate temperature gradient.
These animals require a significant enclosure, so be sure you have the understanding and the space necessary before committing.