Wildlife North America . com
North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects

 Red Coachwhip (Masticophis flagellum piceus)




Red Coachwhip | Masticophis flagellum-piceus photo
Red Coachwhip

Photograph by Chris Brown. License: Public Domain.  (view image details)

Red Coachwhip | Masticophis flagellum-piceus photo
Red Coachwhip

Photograph by Chris Brown. License: Public Domain.  (view image details)

RED COACHWHIP FACTS

Description
The Red Coachwhip is a slender snake and is highly variable in color. The back color can be tan, grey, red, or pink with bold black or brown crossbars or blotches. The head and neck have black markings. The underside is pink. The eyes are large with round pupils. Juveniles have black, brown or tan transverse bands on lighter background. Hatchlings do not have the black neck markings. The Red Coachwhip is a fast moving diurnal snake. When handled it will bites and twist its body, excreting musk. It is similar in appearance to the Striped Racer (Masticophis lateralis) which has distinct yellow lateral stripes.

Other Names
Red Racer

Size
length 62cm - 138 cm

Environment
open areas in desert, grassland, scrub, and sagebrush, rocky ground. Rests in rodent burrows or under shady vegetation. Avoids densely vegetated areas.

Food
Eats small mammals, birds, bird eggs, lizards, snakes, amphibians, and carrion

Breeding
Coachwhips are oviparous. Lays eggs in early summer. Eggs hatch in 45 - 70 days.

Range
Found in southern California, Nevada, Arizona, and into Sonora and Baja California in Mexico

Notes
Coachwhips are non-venomous. They can be nervous snakes and will vibrate their tail and strike when threatened, although they will flee if given the opportunity.

Classification
Class:Reptilia
Order:Squamata (Serpentes)
Family:Colubridae
Genus:Masticophis
Species:flagellum piceus
Common Name:Red Coachwhip


Relatives in same Genus
  Western Coachwhip (M. flagellum testaceus)
  Schott's Whipsnake (M. schotti schotti)