Sunday, April 11, 2010

Meet Cross' Critters: Part V: Hugs


Last week I visited the quaint and diverse Elmwood Park Zoo in Norristown, PA. Through the doors of the Bayou exhibit, you find an array of nocturnal animals, and in the far corner before you exit you'll happen upon a huggable critter--the boa constrictor. At up to 60 pounds and nearly 10 feet long, constrictors like Hugs may look intimidating, but often they are calm creatures happy to gorge on rodents and slither all night.

Don't underestimate Hugs' strength and cunning, though. Hugs finds his feasts in the dark with heat-sensing pits on his face that allows him to detect body heat of animals around him. With his prey locked in his jaws, Hugs will coil his body around it. The next time the prey exhales, Hugs tightens his hold, preventing the prey from inhaling again. Full grown boas can apply around 12 pounds per square inch of pressure to their victims.

Hugs does have his scaredy-snake side. Despite his incredible ability to swim, Hugs avoids the water. Now his anaconda friend....well, that's a different story.

Be kind. Hug a boa.

"Live, Learn, Teach"

A conssssstrictor, I sssssqueezzze. Giving hugssssss, I am besssssst.
It isssssssn’t my fault. Air escapessssss from your chessssst.

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