9-Foot Boa Constrictor Captured on O’ahu
By Wendy Osher
A 9’3″ female adult boa constrictor was captured yesterday, and held overnight at the Honolulu Zoo on O’ahu. Inspectors with the state Department of Agriculture picked up the snake this morning, and now have it safeguarded at the Plant Quarantine Branch.
An enforcement officer with the Department of Land and Natural Resources was called to the scene at about 6:30 p.m. Monday by hunters who had spotted a snake near the Waiawa Correctional Facility. The DLNR officer picked up the snake and dropped it off at the Honolulu Zoo.
Boa constrictors are native to Central and South America and can grow up to 12-feet in length. Although non-venomous, the boa is considered an invasive species in Hawai’i. Snakes pose a threat to Hawai’i’s environment because they have no natural predators in the state and are known to prey on birds and their eggs–increasing the threat posed to endangered native birds. In addition, state officials say large snakes can pose a danger to the public and small pets.
Individuals who have illegal animals are encouraged to turn them in under the State’s amnesty program, which provides immunity from prosecution. Illegal animals may be turned in to any HDOA Office, Honolulu Zoo or any Humane Society – no questions asked and no fines assessed. Anyone with information on illegal animals should call the PEST HOTLINE at 643-PEST (7378).
*** Supporting information courtesy State of Hawai’i, Dept. of Agriculture.