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  • [General Care] I'm new & need guidance :)

    Hello, I am new to redtailboas.com & would just like to say hello I am also a new mother to a hypo columbian red-tail boa named Iris. I have had her for 2 weeks and she is my first snake. So far so good... I do however have a couple of questions regarding lighting and heating. Seeing as its my 1st reptile (not really knowing what 2 expect) I am using a 40 gallon aquarium with a screen top as an enclosure for her. She is around 2ft right now & a little over a year old. For a thermostat I am currently using the Zilla 1000 watt temperature controller that's set to 93 degrees F. I have an under the tank heater plugged into it thats stuck outside of the tank on the bottom of it. As far as the thermostat probe I have it sunctioned to the side wall of the hot side of the tank inside of the substrate... before I moved it to that spot I had it suctioned to the bottom of the tank on the warm side, inside of the tank, underneath the substrate. I was wondering which spot would be best?! I also have a heat lamp with a 75 watt bulb in it placed on the warm side of tank. On the hot side I have a yellow Zoo Med digital thermometer with a probe suctioned to the side wall of the hot side just above the substrate. It reads 80-82 degrees F. I am wondering if this is an ok temperature? My boa usually burrows under the substrate on top of the heat mat in her hide, so I'm wondering if its too cold? The cool side usually stays around 74-75 degrees F. I mist twice daily with warm water for humidity and put a pillowcase on top of cool side screen top to help hold in heat & humidity. I'm in Houston, TX so it stays pretty humid here. If anyone can please give me some feed back or any tips you may have I would really appreciate it. I want to give my girl the best and most comfortable life possible. Thx so much & so glad to be a part of this community!

  • #2
    Re: I'm new & need guidance

    First of all, welcome to RTB! Check out: http://www.redtailboas.com/f110/down...ion-3-a-31312/
    It's full of information and should answer most if not all your questions. Also, while you CAN keep a boa in an aquarium, it's not really all that easy or recommended for optimum health and husbandry. As soon as you can, please post some pictures of your new pet, we would love to see her.
    http://berkeleyknebel.wix.com/mississippimorphs

    Photo credit:Eddie Ard .....Banner Credit:Big PaPa Ernest

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    • #3
      Re: I'm new & need guidance

      Welcome to RTB!

      You have come to the right place to research and learn.
      "An increase in reptile education can lead to a decrease in reptile discrimination." - Bebo

      sigpic

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      • #4
        Re: I'm new & need guidance

        Could I get some feedback on my set up? I just want to be sure I am doing things correctly... It would be very much appreciated Thank you!! My original post is posted below.

        Also I will post new pics of her soon. Yeah I've read that aquariums aren't very good for them... I hope some time in the near future to upgrade to a boaphile or animal plastics. I've read alot of good things about them.

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        • #5
          Re: I'm new & need guidance

          Originally posted by thewoodlandcreature View Post
          Could I get some feedback on my set up? I just want to be sure I am doing things correctly... It would be very much appreciated Thank you!! My original post is posted below.

          Also I will post new pics of her soon. Yeah I've read that aquariums aren't very good for them... I hope some time in the near future to upgrade to a boaphile or animal plastics. I've read alot of good things about them.
          Buy THE COMPLETE BOA CONSTRICTOR by Vin Russo.

          Read it carefully, and enjoy it! I would research anything written by Gus Rentfro, and as previously stated read the care sheet here.

          Get out of the glass cage as soon as you can. Boaphile and Animal Plastics are great options, and my personal favorite from Constrictors Northwest, Pro-Line is another excellent cage option.








          By the way the correct spelling is COLOMBIAN boa and not "Columbian". Just an FYI, as it is a common mistake.
          There are several heating and thermostat options.

          A favorite of many is the Herpstat line of thermostats from Spyder Robotics.

          A lot of folks use Flexwatt heat tape for heat, and others use Under tank heaters.

          I use radiant heat panels, but all of this is personal choice, and much of it depends on your ambient room temps as well. I happen to use a huge, water filled space heater for the room and that helps with cage temps by never letting room temps drop below 73 degrees even if my cage heat sources totally fail. It also makes the RHP's run more efficiently.

          Contrary to what some may say, there is no ONE WAY to do things. We are all still learning, but the wonderful, experienced breeders that have come before us, and still maintain many boas today that successfully reproduce, do have answers, and proven established care methods.

          Soak up the knowledge and enjoy the hobby!

          Boas will climb if you let them.

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          • #6
            Re: I'm new & need guidance

            Originally posted by thewoodlandcreature View Post
            Could I get some feedback on my set up? I just want to be sure I am doing things correctly.
            First off; welcome to the forum. As far as probe placement you want it at the heat source so you will read exactly what your boa is feeling. As stated, you should have a heat mat under the the tank as well, for belly heat, helps with digestion. Your boa will love you for that. The heat lamp will dry your tank out very quickly, the heat mat will be enough if you room is warm enough. As [MENTION=7407]zamora[/MENTION] said "a tank is not the best cage" but can work. most boa keepers will recommend a plastic enclosure for humidity.
            Keep us posted, we like photos. Don't be shy, ask questions any time.
            Thanks

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            • #7
              Re: I'm new & need guidance

              Welcome from a fellow Texan! Not far down the road either I'm in Brenham. I'm going to also agree with what everyone else has all ready said! This is a great place with tons of knowledgeable folks!

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              • #8
                Re: I'm new & need guidance

                Thank you all for the useful information. I'm definitely going to be doing plenty of research here! Also thx for the spellcheck on the word 'Colombian'. I didn't even realize what I did until you pointed it out. Lol. Those pics of your enclosure are really awesome & inspiring. I've gotta upgrade my enclosure here soon. [MENTION=20196]kurtsherps[/MENTION] you're literally right up the road from me. I am in Waller just passed Hempstead on 290. Very cool!

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                • #9
                  Re: I'm new & need guidance

                  Welcome! this is a fun forum with plenty of ideas & solutions, glad you joined us.

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