Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Bahamian Boa or Pygmy Boa… Does Anybody Know?

Doug Jeffries found this snake one morning on his recent bonefishing trip to Long Island in the Bahamas with Angling Destinations' host Bjorn Stromsness. If anyone can make a positive identification of this little boa, please let us know.

Doug said, "It was a cool little snake, all curled up next to one of the coolers. Samantha [the manager of the lodge] squealed when she saw it. I hadn't heard of the Bahamian pygmy python (I had mentioned this as a possible identification option). Now I have to research that. I thought the Bahamas didn't have any endemic snakes and they were all immigrants that came on boats and stuff."
[I think there are two endemic boas in the Bahamas: the pygmy boa and the Bahamian Boa]. Can anybody help us identify this snake?


  1. C'mon, some one who truly knows their Bahamian reptiles has to comment here. I found this Fact Sheet from the High Commission . It confirms there are a few endemic snakes including the pygmy boa and the Bahamian boa.

    This link lists a few more snake species (but I can't confirm they are actual different species or just "thought to be" separate species. Check out the photo of what they call a Bimini boa, looks real close to the one we caught.

    This site states there are 3 distinct species of Bahamian boa and 8 sub-species.

    My conclusion is we found a small Bahamian boa. I saw a much larger specimen of what I believe is the same species eating a red shouldered hawk on Andros' Middle Bight back in the 1980's.

  2. This kinda brings that snake you saw on Mangrove Cay full circle. That snake was probably not off a ship, but was a big Bimini Boa which is what I think you had on Long Island.
    Danny Thought this in an e-mail to me:
    The snake Doug is holding looks like what we call a "Bimini Boa". I've only seen a couple. A friend of mine in South Florida had one growing up. I believe they are pretty rare. Danny.

  3. Hi, My name is Zachary Knowles Bahamian reptile expert and that snake you have is the Bahamian boa constrictor