There are two Madagascar tree boas at the Zoo, a female named Icky and a male. Icky was born in 1996 and came to the Zoo in 1998. The male was born in 2007 and came to the Zoo in 2015. This medium-sized constrictor occurs in two color variations. Prevalent mainly in the eastern half of the range is the green to grayish-green form, which tends to be about two-thirds of the size of the Mandarin form, which is yellow, orange and brown and occurs in some parts of the western side of the range.
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List status: Least concern. Though very common throughout Madagascar, these snakes are still considered at risk. Their habitat is being lost through deforestation and mining. It is believed that only 15% of Madagascar’s original forested areas remain. Listed as CITES Appendix I, which means that it is threatened with extinction and CITES prohibits international trade except when the purpose of the import is not commercial, (example: scientific research). Though sales are prohibited, there is still a problem with illegal pet trade.
This snake is found solely on the island of Madagascar and on the small nearby island of Nosy Be. It can be found throughout the islands’ forested habitats, primarily where water is nearby.
Madagascar tree boas feed primarily on birds, bats and small, ground-dwelling mammals.