The Boa constrictor is one of the most common reptiles bred in captivity. To achieve a successful breeding season, thorough knowledge of the females’ reproductive activity is necessary. In this regard, information on the Boa constrictor is still rather scarce. The aim of the present study was to monitor the ovarian activity and the embryonic development of boas by ultrasound. We per-formed brief scans on thirty non‐anaesthetized snakes using a portable ultrasound system and a 7.5–10 MHz linear array transducer (Esaote MyLab™ Classic). Ultrasound features, dimensions, and echogenicity of the preovulatory and postovulatory follicles were determined. As gestation progresses, the postovulatory follicle size increases, and the embryonic silhouette becomes increasingly recognizable. During the second month after ovulation, by using color Doppler, early embryos’ heart activity could be evaluated. It is possible to highlight vascular connections between the mother and the membrane covering the embryonic structures. Ultrasound also allows one to identify follicular regression or slugs (nonfertilized eggs) early. The present study suggests that ultrasound could be an excellent noninvasive technique to evaluate the reproductive activity of Boa con-strictor, allowing us to precisely identify the correct time for mating, monitor embryo development and viability, and allow the early diagnosis of follicular regression.
Monitoring of the reproductive cycle in captive‐bred female boa constrictor: Preliminary ultrasound observations / Bertocchi, M.; Bigliardi, E.; Pelizzone, I.; Vetere, A.; Manfredi, S.; Cattarossi, D.; Rizzi, M.; Di Ianni, F.. - In: ANIMALS. - ISSN 2076-2615. - 11:11(2021), p. 3069.3069. [10.3390/ani11113069]
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