Although they are no where near as popular as corn snakes or ball pythons, the Brazillian rainbow boa is slowly increasing in popularity within the reptile keeping community.
There are a number of established social media influencers within the reptile keeping community who have added Brazillian rainbow boas to their collection recently and this has sparked an increase in the number of questions we see about the species.
The most common question that we see by far is if the Brazillian rainbow boa bites or not with some less common yet related questions about a Brazillian rainbow boa biting also being asked.
Due to this, we have decided to publish this dedicated article going over all of the questions that we see asked about a Brazillian rainbow boa biting.
Our hope is that we will be able to help as many of our readers as possible get a better idea of the bite risk with the snake as well as help you avoid or at least reduce the bite risk as much as possible.
Do Brazilian Rainbow Boas Bite?
The Brazillian rainbow boa can and will bite, especially as a younger snake that has not been handled much or socialized much.
Even older Brazillian rainbow boas will still bite from time to time if you have not handled them in a while due to the species being nippy and skittish.
There is still a low bite risk with a Brazillian rainbow boa that has been handled extensively and socialized correctly though so keep that in mind too.
This is why we would usually recommend against a beginner getting a Brazillian rainbow boa if they want to handle the snake on a regular basis.
Something like a corn snake will usually be a much better option for most people who are looking for a good beginner friendly snake to keep.
Is A Rainbow Boa Poisonous?
The rainbow boa it not poisonous as they tend to ambush their prey and then constrict them rather than use venom.
This means that if your rainbow boa does bite you, there is no need to worry about venom from the snake.
Please keep in mind that depending on how bad the bite is, the wound may end up becoming infected so you should still clean the wound on the bite area and monitor it for potential problems.
Is A Rainbow Boas Bite Painful?
Most rainbow boa snake bites are not as painful as most people think as they will usually strike, bite, and retract within a second with the experience being over before you know it even happened.
That said though, some rainbow boas can lock onto you after biting and although this does not necessarily hurt, it can draw your attention to the fact that you have a snake biting you and make people panic.
If your rainbow boa does lock its jaws on you then they can be surprisingly strong and difficult to remove.
Some rainbow boas, especially younger snakes will bite you instinctively rather than as a self-defense system so they will not telegraph the bite such as giving you a warning that the snake feels threatened.
Due to the snake not giving you a warning, it may be your natural reaction to pull away from the bite and if you time this wrong, it can end up making the bite worse and cause you pain.
How Can You Reduce The Chance Of Your Rainbow Boa Biting You?
There are a number of things that you are able to try to reduce the chances of your rainbow boa biting you.
Like we mentioned earlier in the article, we would not recommend a rainbow boa for a beginner but a more experienced reptile keeper should be able to use the tips below to reduce the chances of their rainbow boa biting them.
You also have to factor in that your rainbow boa may still bite you even after you go through all of this work explained below.
Handle Your Snake From A Young Age!
One of the best things that you can do to reduce the chance of your rainbow boa biting you is to handle them from a young age.
This will help the rainbow boa get used to being handled and being around humans which will make them less skittish and more docile as they grow older.
It also helps to teach your rainbow boa that your hand is not a threat and that it does not have to bite your hand when you put it into the snake’s vivarium.
Remain Consistent With Handling Your Rainbow Boa!
If you only handle your Rainbow Boa once in a while, they may become skittish and more likely to bite you when you do try to handle them.
By remaining consistent with handling your rainbow boa, they will get used to being handled on a regular basis and be less likely to bite you.
We would recommend handling your rainbow boa a few times a week for the best results.
Don’t Handle Your Rainbow Boa When They Are Hungry!
One of the worst times to handle your rainbow boa is when they are hungry as they may mistake your hand for food.
It is best to handle your rainbow boa before feeding them or at least a couple of hours after they have eaten to reduce the chance of them biting you.
Don’t Handle Your Rainbow Boa When They Are Shedding!
Another time when you should avoid handling your rainbow boa is when they are in the process of shedding their skin.
During this time, their vision can become impaired and they may mistake your hand for food or a potential predator.
If you must handle your rainbow boa when they are shedding, be extra careful and go slow so you do not startle them.
Don’t Handle Your Rainbow Boa When They Are Sick!
You should also avoid handling your rainbow boa when they are sick as they may be more prone to biting you.
If you must handle your rainbow boa when they are sick, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly afterwards to avoid getting sick yourself.
Remove All Sources Of Stress From Your Rainbow Boa!
One of the main reasons why snakes may bite is because they are feeling stressed.
There are a number of things that can cause stress in snakes such as:-
- Having too many people handling them.
- Being handled too much.
- Not being handled enough.
- Having a dirty vivarium.
- Having a vivarium that is too small.
- Having a vivarium that does not have enough hiding spots.
- Having a vivarium that is too hot or too cold.
Try to remove as many of these issues as possible from your rainbow boas vivarium to reduce the chances of the snake biting.
Remember That Younger Rainbow Boas Bite More!
It is also important to remember that younger rainbow boas are more likely to bite than older rainbow boas.
This is because they are still getting used to being handled and may not yet be used to humans.
As your rainbow boa gets older, they will become more docile and less likely to bite you.