Boas (Family Boidae)
Rosy Boa,Lichanura trivirgata(Cope, 1861). (Plate 10.24, Map 10.18) 24–36 in (60–90 cm); heavy-bodied with head small in proportion to body; background color gray with three broad, distinct reddish stripes running the length of the body; tail short and blunt. Habitat: In our area, Rosy Boas are restricted to Creosote Bush Scrub below about 5,000 ft (1,500 m). They occur in rocky hills and canyons and are very rare or absent on valley floors. This species is mainly nocturnal but is occasionally active in the early morning and late afternoon during the spring. Remarks: The subspecies of Rosy Boa present in the area is the Desert Rosy Boa (L. t. gracia ). Two other subspecies occur in coastal southern California and in Baja California and Sonora, Mexico. The Rosy Boa and the Rubber Boa (Charina bottae ) are the only members of the Boa Family in the United States. These two species are tiny in comparison with the giant pythons of Africa and Asia, the Anaconda of the Amazon Basin, and the Boa Constrictor, which occurs from Mexico into South America. The Rosy Boa, like other boas and pythons, kills its prey by constriction. This species feeds on rodents, birds, and occasionally lizards. Rosy Boas are gentle, slow-moving snakes. They usually remain motionless when approached and never attempt to bite when picked up. Range: Known only from the foothills of the Panamint Mountains and Argus Range surrounding the Panamint Valley. Suitable habitat exists in the Owens Valley in the foothills of the Inyo Mountains east of Owens Lake, and in the hills surrounding the Saline and Eureka valleys, but no specimens have been recorded (see ? on Map 10.18). References: Gorman (1965), Klauber (1931).
Localities: California, Inyo Co.: 0.2 mi E Darwin Wash Rd. on Hwy. 190; 10 mi W; 8.9 mi W Panamint Valley Rd. on Hwy. 190.