20+ Difference between Python and Boa

Large, nonvenomous snakes like pythons and boa constrictors are common household pets for those who like taking care of exotic animals.

While they may at first glance seem interchangeable, several key distinctions should be considered before making your final purchase.

Boas are more common in North and South America, whereas pythons are found in Africa, Australia, and Asia. After millions of years on Earth, neither snake has undergone significant modification. There are around 40 species of boa and 31 species of python.

Comparison Between Python And Boa

DefinitionA python is an example of a reptile. These snakes belong to the family Pythonidae and are known for their ability to encircle and squeeze their prey. Venomous snakes found in the Eastern hemisphere are indigenous to that region. The anima biological categorization system divides all organisms into plant and animal kingdoms. Reptilia is a phylum within the phylum Chordata.The Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute notes that boa constrictors are among the most well-known snakes due to their large size, which may reach over 13 feet (3.9 meters) in length and more than 100 pounds (45 kilograms).
ReproductionPythons have a reproductive cycle that is more comparable to that of other snakes; the female lays eggs, which are then incubated by the male for a long time before the young snakes emerge from their shells.The new offspring are introduced into the world by their mothers once the eggs have been fertilized, hatched, and brought to life by their moms. The eggs are laid inside the bodies of the boa constrictors responsible for the incubation process.
ExercisePythons are generally calm and mellow creatures but can’t be confined to a cage 24/7. Please encourage them to think and move about for at least twenty minutes. Include plenty of branches and other objects for them to climb on within their cages.Pythons and boa snakes have similar requirements for their daily exercise routines. Snakes need to have periods when they are freed from their enclosures to investigate new environments and keep their brains active. In their role as ambush predators, they may be encouraged to move and ponder if the hunt was made more fascinating for them.
Where are they found?They originated in different parts of Africa and Asia. Because it does not occur there natively, the python is an old-world snake. Its environment is more varied than the stereotypical hot and humid rainforest suggests.Because they are only found in the Americas, boas are sometimes called “New World” snakes. Like their python relatives, boa constrictors have a reputation for being savage brutes of the Amazon that murder without mercy and spend their days lounging in the treetops.
StructureGenerally speaking, pythons are more sluggish than boa constrictors. Common rectilinear pythons can only slither along at a speed of roughly 2 kilometers per hour. If you attempt to outrun one of these vicious creatures, the odds are in your favor.In the same manner that their python relatives can scale trees, so can boas. In contrast to the python, the boa lacks an upper jaw bone known as the premaxilla and hence has fewer teeth. And the boa’s sense of smell isn’t as sharp as it is.

Major Difference Between Python And Boa

What exactly is Python?

Some people don’t fear snakes, even though the mere thought of a large snake makes many people squirm with fear. The Old World has many unique animal species, such as the Python.

The genus Python or the family Pythonidae could be meant when referring to this animal. Both boas and pythons kill their prey through the use of body constriction, but other than that, these two species couldn’t be more different from one another.

Key Difference: Python

  • Time of year when pythons mate varies by species. Males utilize their huge spurs (vestigial limbs) to massage females during courtship. 
  • After all, all pythons are egg layers (oviparous). Contrast this with the boas, another group of big constricting snakes which give birth to live young. 
  • The majority of python species are egg-caring. “Females construct nests from plant matter and dirt or exploit abandoned burrows. 
  • When the temperature in the nest drops, the female will tense her muscles to keep the eggs from freezing. Shivering thermogenesis describes the process. 
  • Most female birds stop eating during this period and may only leave the nest to bask. Their maximum age is estimated at 35 years by the San Diego Zoo. 
  • Female snakes don’t bother with their newborn offspring after they emerge from their eggs. There are python species that may live for 25 years or more. 
  • Some sources, like the Reptile Database and ITIS, consider this snake a subspecies, while others consider it a whole species. 
  • The Smithsonian National Zoological Park describes them as having a tan, yellow-brown, or gray base color with huge, reddish spots that are bordered by white or yellow.

What exactly is Boa?

A boa constrictor may start off smaller than other python species, but it may easily outgrow them when you get it home. Though they are exceptional swimmers and near relatives of anacondas, these snakes prefer to avoid water whenever possible.

They come in various colors and designs, including solid red, tan, green, and yellow, or patterns of jagged lines, diamonds, and circles. In contrast to pythons, boas are constantly moving.

Key Difference: Boa

  • Until it’s time to mate, “Boas prefer to remain lonely,” as Heyborne said. The same research also suggested that females may not mate annually, unlike men. 
  • According to research published in the Journal of Herpetology, boa constrictors normally mate during the dry season, typically from April through September. 
  • Females may only choose to have children when they are in peak health. They don’t alter much in appearance over time; however, their coloring may fade.
  • However, women can mate with several men throughout a given mating season. Baby snakes have to force their way through the birth canal’s membranes. 
  • Cloacas are single apertures on the snake’s rear that provide access to the animal’s reproductive, urinary, and gastrointestinal systems. 
  • Embryos are shielded from extreme temperatures by separate transparent membranes that form within the mother. 
  • The duration of their pregnancy ranges from five to eight months, depending on the average annual temperature where they live. 
  • Females typically have litter sizes of between 10 and 64 young, with an average of around 25. When a baby boa constrictor is born, it immediately becomes self-sufficient. 

Contrast Between Python And Boa


  • Python – The family name for pythons is “Pythonidae.” At least 31 distinct species of Python have been identified.

    The Python is an Old World snake since it originates in Asia. There is no faster snake than a python.

    At a mile per hour, they are rather swift. Although pythons, like boas, have a slit in their tongue and no fangs, they do have some additional bones in their mouth. To blend in with their surroundings, pythons are experts at camouflage.
  • Boa – Boa constrictor is the technical term for a Boa snake. Boas, sometimes called red-tailed boas, are often rather tiny.

    However, some species of Boa may grow to be as long as 6 meters. Because of their inquisitive nature, boas are regularly produced in captivity.

    Approximately 40 species of Boa constrictors have been identified. The 40 different species of anaconda are ranked in order of popularity, with anaconda being the most well-known.


  • Python – In contrast, there are several other “giant” species of pythons, each of which has the potential to grow to a length of more than 6 meters (20 feet).

    The Burmese Python, the African rock python, and the reticulated Python are only a few examples of the several species of invasive creatures included in this category. Other examples are the reticulated Python and the reticulated Python.
  • Boa – Boas, on the other hand, often have a lower total body mass when compared to pythons.

    Although the length of the largest boa species may vary from 4 to 12 feet (1.2 to 3.7 m) depending on the gender of the snake in question, the green anaconda is the only member of the boa group that is capable of growing to a length of more than 6 meters (20 ft).


  • Python – When compared to boa constrictors, pythons have a level of avoidance toward a physical confrontation that is somewhat elevated.

    Pythons, in general, are quite mellow and will avoid any form of commotion that may occur during the day.

    They are excellent candidates for keeping as pets because of their placid demeanor and the absence of agitated activity while handled.
  • Boa – The boa constrictors’ preference for solitude is one of the reasons behind the species’ reputation as a stoic and unsociable creature.

    They prefer the darkness, but sometimes the sun themselves during the day. They can swim well but prefer to spend their time on land or on a tree.

    Alternatively, they may dig into the ground under their feet. These snakes are still rather tame but are more difficult to handle because of how much they wriggle.

Health and care:

  • Python – If you want a healthy python, you can’t scrimp on its diet or its environment. These snakes need a once-weekly to twice-weekly meal of room-temperature rats of the proper size. Always have clean, fresh water available in its enclosures.

    A big dish is preferable so that they may submerge their whole body. Don’t get a tank that’s too small for your Python. They like to have a substrate that is comprised of coconut fiber or aspen shavings.
  • Boa – Young boa snakes may live in a standard glass aquarium without any problems, but you’ll need to upgrade to a larger, more suitable tank as they grow.

    The creatures are strong and intelligent. Snakes are considered escape artists by those in the know, and they will try to get out of their cages anytime they can. Ensure the boa snakes have plenty of wood and plants to hide in.

Suitable for:

  • Python – Pythons are a fantastic choice for first-time snake owners who want to obtain a pet since they need a lower level of maintenance than most other types of snakes.

    When maintained in captivity, they do not reach the same size as boas; thus, their care and feeding requirements are far lower.

    Your dedication to them should be long-term because they live for such a very long period.
  • Boa – Almost every snake aficionado would do well with a Boa constrictor. Some inexperienced caregivers do a fine job with them, but reptiles generally thrive when handled by someone with at least some knowledge of keeping them healthy.

    You shouldn’t put them together with someone who will be frightened or uncomfortable around them.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. Are python snakes sociable creatures?

The ball python is a gentle snake, but if you hold them once daily and treat them gently, it may become quite friendly and comfortable being handled by people.

This is especially true if you hold them for an extended period of time. An adult ball python will have no problem winding itself around your arm or waist, but it won’t be difficult for you to free yourself from its grasp if you ever need to.

Q2. Which kind of reptile is more massive, the boa or the Python?

Both boas and pythons kill their prey by wrapping their bodies around it and squeezing it to death; however, boas and pythons belong to different kinds of snakes, and each has its own unique characteristics that set it apart from the others.

The members of the python family have the potential to reach lengths of more than 10 meters (33 feet), making them the longest snakes on the whole globe.

Q3. How excruciatingly painful are the bites that pythons deliver?

To phrase this another way, the bite of a ball python is not very painful. Despite having teeth that are quite sharp, ball pythons do not have extremely powerful jaws.

This makes it difficult for them to bite. Consequently, the experience of being bitten is similar to that of having one’s skin repeatedly punctured by a needle.

Q4. Do boa snakes bite?

As soon as they detect danger, boa constrictors launch an urgent assault. Although they seldom provide a risk to human life, their bites may be excruciatingly painful, especially when they originate from bigger snakes. However, they rarely present a risk to human life.

The specimens from South America are simpler to calm down and do not respond in the same aggressive way as those from Central America. The Central American specimens hiss loudly and strike often in reaction to a disturbance.

Q5. Is it feasible for a boa to take a human being into its stomach?

In order for a snake to be able to consume a human being, it would need to have a very, very large body size.

There are only two families of snakes that can potentially grow large enough to the point where they are not only capable of killing a person but also eating them. These categories are made up of snakes, such as boas and pythons.

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