What snake is this

Asked September 19, 2020, 8:13 PM EDT

what snake is it

Hall County Georgia

1 Response

Thank you for your question. The snake in your photograph is a juvenile black ratsnake, scientific name Pantherophis obsoletus. It is a non-venomous species.

This snake is found throughout or in portions of every eastern state except Maine and New Hampshire. They live in a variety of habitats, including forests, open areas and urban settings, especially if there are still sufficient numbers of trees.

This is one of the longest snakes we have in the eastern/southeastern United States. Typical length is 4-5 feet, but a maximum length of slightly over 8 feet have been recorded. They are excellent climbers.

They feed primarily on mice and rats, but also eat birds and young squirrels. They are also fond of chicken eggs.

Here's a link to the University of Georgia's Savannah River Ecology Laboratory's Snakes of South Carolina and Georgia webpage for this species:

http://srelherp.uga.edu/snakes/elaobs.htm

If you're interested in learning more about snakes in your area, here are two excellent guides:

Gibbons, Whit. (2017). Snakes Of The Eastern United States. Athens: The University of Georgia Press.

Elliott, Matt J., Gibbons, J. Whitfield, et al. (2008). Amphibians and Reptiles of Georgia. Athens: The University of Georgia Press.

I hope this answers your question, and thank you for contacting Ask an Expert.

Jim