Brief Summary

Read full entry


Bolyeriidae is a small family of poorly-known snakes endemic to Mauritius and nearby islets, although one of the two species has become extinct and the other is extirpated from almost all of these islands. They are colloquially called "boas" but in fact they are not closely related to "true boas" (family Boidae). Some have proposed that "splitjaw snakes" is a better name because of the unusual morphology of their upper jaws, which have a hinge partway along their length, an adaptation that may aid them in grasping their hard-bodied lizard prey. Bolyeriids lay eggs, reach 1 to 1.5 meters in length, and are primarily nocturnal. They change color from day to night and also throughout their lives. Captive breeding and reintroduction efforts to an island from which pests have been eradicated have undoubtedly helped the sole remaining species, Casarea dussumieri, which has recovered from a minimum global population size of less than 250 adult individuals in 1996 to over 1,000 today.


Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Andrew Durso

Supplier: Andrew Durso

Belongs to 0 communities

This taxon hasn't been featured in any communities yet.

Learn more about Communities


EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!