In your opionion whats the best pet boa(s) for someone who's only owned ball pythons but wants to look into owning a boa and why?
I’m not really one to say someone should only own certain species, but I can give you some species that are fairly easy to keep for a keeper with a bit of experience. :)
I’m really partial to boa constrictors myself, so I’ll almost always advise them. You can choose from 3′-5′ dwarves to 5′-8′ Colombians going the Boa imperator route. Boa constrictor longicauda and Boa constrictor amarali also seem to stay a fairly manageable size, sitting around 6′ give or take a foot or so as adults. Boa constrictor is generally considered a more advanced boa constrictor due to their sensitive digestive systems, which can require quite close attention to avoid regurgitation or worst-case death. BC and BI have the same potential, but BC average a little bigger. All can be kept fairly similarly with only minor differences in husbandry. The key with all boa constrictors is a conservative feeding schedule to avoid them getting overweight, and overfeeding can drastically cut their lives short. I have a care sheet, and @crispysnakes has a feeding guideline, the only changes I make is that I start my neonates eating every 10-14 days rather than 7-10.
If you do plenty of research, and test run an enclosure, Brazilian rainbow boas are another good species to consider. They get about 5′-7′ as adults, and their thin bodies mean that they aren’t as intimidating as a boa constrictor of the same size. They also seem to grow much slower because of this. lol They are slow growers, and will be on smaller prey for longer than a boa constrictor. My (healthy) yearlings have been on hopper and small adult m.ice, around 150-180 grams, which is what their breeder, Dave Colling, has quoted is his average yearling rainbow size. My oldest will be 3 in Aug and is currently on weaned rats, but he’s been fed slightly more conservatively than my younger female who will be 2 years old in June and she’s currently eating the 18-32 gram (large) adult mice. I start these guys on 7 days, and move them to 2 weeks at 1.5-2 years old.
These are the only boa species I’ve owned, so I can give firsthand advice, and I don’t believe either to be particularly hard to care for, especially if you have some experience keeping a snake with at least moderate humidity needs like ball pythons.
Other species to check out may be Dumeril’s boas, Kenyan sand boas, and rosy boas. All are fairly beginner friendly from what I understand, I just have not kept any of these species. :)
Some beautiful photos of my Peruvian long tail, Poltergeist. Love every bit about this Kiddo. The color transition along his tail, that awesome white glow around his spear and the neck markings. Just a fantastic species of Boa and a great animal. I need 100 more.
Poltergeist; 66% Het Anery Denton Line; Peruvian Long Tail Boa / Boa Constrictor Longicauda