absolutely spectacular looking snake is a female
BRAZILIAN RAINBOW BOA named Mrs Noah!
Brazilian rainbow boas are arguably the
most beautiful snakes in the world and a species
that I have always greatly admired.
Mrs Noah was born in Tetbury, Gloucestershire in 2006 and would have been
born live, as boas of all species do not lay eggs
but give birth to live young!
boas get their common name from their amazing skin,
which sometimes seems to shine with all the colours
of the rainbow depending on the angle of the
light (especially sunlight) which shines onto their bodies. This occurs because
there are tiny ridges on their scales which act like
prisms, refracting the light and creating this
amazing rainbow-coloured effect which I personally
find astonishing! This effect can clearly be
seen in the pictures above and below.
especially like the picture directly above as it
seems like she is glowing purple, blue, pink and
green all over! Even though she looks amazing
in these photographs they really do not do her
beauty any justice, she is even better in real life!
She also has a lovely head as you can see here:
Noah, like many of my snakes, appreciates the
opportunity to be out in the sunshine and to have
plenty of room to explore, so I allow her and the
other snakes to be out in the garden as much as
possible during the warm summer months (under
careful supervision of course)!
also a hugely popular snake with children of all
ages and has been visiting schools and parties
with me regularly since May 2009. Here is
Isabelle, 4, enjoying Mrs Noah licking her nose
during my visit to her nursery class -
this is something which many children love to experience due
to the wonderful tickly feeling it gives them!
all snakes, Mrs Noah's appearance changes enormously
in the days prior to shedding her skin. When
any snake is preparing to shed its skin, its natural
colour fades and the skin often takes on a very dull
appearance compared to its normal colouration. This
is caused by a build-up of
fluid between the old outer skin and the new inner
skin. This fluid helps the snake to shed its
skin when the time is right, by allowing it to slide
off more easily.
case of Mrs Noah you can still see some of the
rainbow colouration but it is definitely much paler and subdued compared to her
normal, amazingly vibrant colours!
To ensure that all of my
snakes are able to shed their skin without any
difficulty I always provide a tub of moist
sphagnum moss in their enclosures when they are
preparing to shed their skin, as this helps to raise
the humidity level which prevents the skin from
being too dry to shed. Anyone who has met Mrs
Noah at their school, party or any other event will
also know that I keep a large moss-filled tub in
both her permanent and travelling enclosures the
whole time anyway as a hide box, as she likes the dampness it
provides due to her natural habitat being a nice
Below are 'before' and
'after' pictures of her sitting in one of her hide boxes,
which clearly demonstrate the significant change
her skin colour goes through during the skin
shedding cycle, with 'before' on the left and
'after' on the right!:
As you can see, the change once she has shed
her skin is quite amazing! In the case of Mrs
Noah the newly shed skin is especially beautiful,
because of the 'rainbow' sheen which it has when
viewed in good light as seen below: