Snake ID

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Lerxt, Jun 24, 2005.

  1. Lerxt

    Lerxt Well-Known Member

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    Anyone know what this guy is?

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    He's about 50-60 inches long. Was fairly agressive when the cats got too close but let me get about 2 feet away to take a snap shot. Twitched his tail like a rattlesnake and we heard a little noise but it could have been the mulch. We didn't see any rattles at the back end like you'd expect on a rattlesnake.
     
  2. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

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    I've seen those here, although not for a year or so. I used to have a few of them, but they all moved away.

    They never caused me any problems and seemed to spend most of the time hiding.

    Sorry I can't help more but at least I got your post bumped over my scary critter post. :)
     

  3. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

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    I do believe that www.kingsnake.com still has a "What is it?" forum. If anyone could ID from a photo it would be someone there. Let them know where in the country it was found...
     
  4. vegascowgirl

    vegascowgirl Try Me

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    I'm no snake expert, but some snakes such as gopher and rat snakes will shake their tails against grass/brush to mimick a rattler.

    Funny how it seems a few of us have had our fair share of scary critters today. I ran into a baby water moc. while putting our boat into the lake today. Thankfully he didn't strike the first time....swam right into my leg, then came back and tried for me again. By then I had an oar and blocked the little boogers strike, and flung him a good 20 feet or so.
     
  5. backwoods

    backwoods Well-Known Member

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    He is what we in TN call a rat snake.Some call him a black snake but all black snakes are not,so he could be a;Black snake,a rat snake,a racer or a king snake.Either way he is harmless to humans and is good to have in the neighborhood.Not in the house.Nice snake.
    Backwoods
     
  6. tnborn

    tnborn Well-Known Member

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    Lex, I thought that you had a degree in biology :haha: :haha: Just kidding with you. It is either a king or black snack. Also, it is possible that it is a black racer. But, I would lean more towards black snake. Guess that herpatology class would have been handy about now. :haha:
    tnborn
     
  7. jvjfarm

    jvjfarm Glad to Be Here!

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    Hi,

    That is a Black Rat Snake...Totally harmless, and wonderful to keep rats and mice out of your barn....they make good pets too, if you get 'em young!

    Don't kill it! They will get territorial, and will put on a good show of aggression, but they are a very beneficial snake..He's a beauty! If you catch him, he'll settle down and curl around your arm!

    Jill
    JVJ Farm
    Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats
     
  8. Lerxt

    Lerxt Well-Known Member

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    Ya know, I'd have taken a herp class if they offered one. Biology is all micro now. Not much opportunity to do the macro stuff. :/

    I'm not scared of snakes. Actually took one in to one of my classes for a demonstration. Can't recall the type but it was gorgeous. Albino python of some sort.

    I do have a good bit of respect for wild snakes though. I'm no good at id'ing them so unless it's a garter I tend to stay away.

    I went into the chat at kingsnake.com and they called it a rat snake as well. I won't kill a snake unless it's an accident (like the mower) or if it's a danger to my pets or livestock. I figure they keep the rodents under control. And any snake that manages to eat a chicken is going to have one heck of a time getting back out the way he came in. :haha:
     
  9. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

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    They will eat birdies.

    I was actually keeping watch over a nest of cardinals --- had even delayed stripping down the shed because the mom and pop cardinal had built their nest in it. So the little ons hatched and, one day, I went out to do some stuff and the mom and pop cardinal were going crazy. I thought they were trying to keep me away --- but one of those snakes had coiled up the wall in the shed and was eating the cardinal babies.

    :grump:

    I'd always been very accomodating and glad to have those snakes around, but I really blew my top when I saw that *^&$%^ had eaten the cardinal babies, so grabbed my hoe and killed that mother.

    :grump:

    I swear, the cardinals were cheering me on. In any case, I've never seen any of those snakes since, but I now have several pairs of cardinals here year round. :D
     
  10. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yep, looks just like the rat snake we had in our driveway last weekend. That was one big snake too!

    You can tell this isn't a poisonous snake by the eyes...has round pupils. Poisonous snakes have slitted pupils like cats.
     
  11. DayBird

    DayBird Big Bird

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    It looks like a really dark phase gray rat snake to me.

    They're probably the most common snake in my local area. (Birmingham)
    Completely harmless to people. Mainly prey on rodents but they certainly won't pass up a diet of bird. Most people around here call them "chicken snakes" because they creep into the henhouse and snatch chicks and, more commonly, eggs. When encountering those people around here that don't know that they are relatively harmless "chicken snakes", the poor snake is usually chopped up and a phone tree of sorts is started with the proclamation that a rattlesnake, copperhead, cotton mouth or giant python has been killed.

    All ratsnakes (remember that the corn snake is also known as the red rat snake) are members of the Colubrid family, along with most other North American snakes like kingsnakes, milk snakes, gopher snakes, pine snakes and the such. All wild Colubrids that I've come across, when cornered and connot get away, strike the pose in your pictures and rattle their tails in the mulch, just as you've experienced. They're trying to fool you into believing that they are in fact venomous rattlesnakes and that you should run away.
     
  12. exegeses

    exegeses Well-Known Member

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    Definately a "black rat snake" which we know are great for killing rodents and like having around UNLESS they take up residence in the chicken coop. Because they do become territorial, if you take them out and 'relocate' them, they'll come back. (Unless you take them VERY far away, which isn't practical.) So, as much as I like snakes (had 2 in the house one summer - one a beautiful speckled king snake that was wounded and recovered while we had her) if I find them in my duck or chicken house, they're history! Of course, by the time I do find them, they've already eaten at least a dozen eggs. This year one ate our chicken eggs for a week before we found him (including a whole clutch of soon-to-hatch eggs) and another ate all but one of our soon-to-hatch ducklings. One year one even ate a half-grown duckling. We've never killed one 'because he might' eat something - every single one was full of eggs or duck!
     
  13. crashy

    crashy chickaholic goddess

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    That there is a snake!! EEEWWWW I would have had a stroke if I saw that in the wild!!! Nope no wild stuff like that for me!! But if you hold it I am ok with it kinda LOL
     
  14. Vera

    Vera Well-Known Member

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    Darn, I wish I had a few of them around here! All we have in this town is little garter snakes down by the creek... I don't know why king snakes don't make it around here if the garter snakes do just fine. If I still had mine, I'd make them work in the gopher burrows all summer long! Can't put the boas out there, and my cats are plumb overwhelmed.

    If any of you have non-poisonous snakes around who like small rodents and might survive in a high-altitude environment, just pack 'em up and mail them here :D
     
  15. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

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    My best guess is that your albino was a Burmese python. Yellow and white.. Probably somewhere between 5 and 10 feet long when you brought him in to class. Anything much bigger than that and you most likely would've had someone to help you with it as they do get heavy and after 10' they have the potential to do some real damage (read possible death) should they become aggravated and find a surprise foothold from which to begin constricting. Of course, if that ever happened all you have to do is pull out your bottle of "emergency" whiskey and hold a cloth soaked with it near it's face and it would release rather quickly. Something that most emergency/law enforcement teams generally don't understand. First reaction is to just remove it as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, cutting/hacking/shooting isn't very effective and is'nt usually much of an option. Just something to keep in mind when dealing with larger non-poisonous snakes (constrictors especially).....
     
  16. Lerxt

    Lerxt Well-Known Member

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    Yep. That's the one. Burmese. About 6-7ft long. Was a friends. I went outside after the presentation and had him in a pillow case. A prof of mine walked up and asked what was in the sack. I told him and he didn't believe me. So I showed him. Go figure, a biology prof just about jumped out of his shoes. :haha:
     
  17. audramray

    audramray New Member

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    I know down here in Louisiana, rat snakes and cottonmouths have started to crossbreed. My dad killed a rat snake (no diamond shaped head) that managed to hole up under the house not too long ago, but when he opened it's mouth, it had fangs that were dripping with venom. It had that white mouth and stunk like a skunk after he killed it. It bit his dog on the lip before he managed to kill it.
     
  18. BaronsMom

    BaronsMom Well-Known Member

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    Pretty good snake id resource on-line. It is for Nebraska but does have color photos of rat snakes (looks a lot like your photo), king snakes and much more (including poisonous snakes). I know you can also find photos of different toads, frogs, turtles, lizards...on the site too.

    There are identification games on the site...obviously I'm going to have to practice on my frogs and toads...didn't do very well!

    Reptiles and Amphibians Web site