Monday, January 10, 2011

Rare Rat Snakes Hatch In London Zoo

Eight Rhino Rat Snakes have hatched in a London zoo, making it the first time a Rhino Rat Snake has bred in a European Zoo.
The snakes, which were born in the Zoological Society of London’s Reptile House, were captured on camera as they hatched.
Three of the eight snakes have already been moved to other zoos in Europe as part of an exchange program to increase the captive population in Europe.


Although the snakes are brownish gray in color, as they mature, they will turn into a steel gray and later into bluish green. Once they have fully matured (after about 2 years), they will turn green. There have been known cases where a specimen has remained at the subadult color (steel gray), but this is very rare.
Hatchlings start at between 300 to 350 mm in total length. Rhino Rat Snakes typically grow to between 100-120 cm in total size but sometimes up to 150 cm.

Distribution In The Wild

In the wild, the Rhino Rat Snake, is found in Northern Vietnam and southern China. The snake lives in subtropical rainforests between 300 and 1100 m elevation and has often been seen in stream valleys.

Common Names

The scientific name for the Rhino Rat Snake is Rhynchophis boulengeri. It is also commonly known as Rhinoceros Snake, Rhinoceros Snake, and Vietnamese Longnose Snake.

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