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North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects

 Speckled Kingsnake (Lampropeltis getula holbrooki)




Speckled Kingsnake | Lampropeltis getula-holbrooki photo
Speckled Kingsnake

Photograph by Terry L. McCormick. License: Public Domain.  (view image details)

SPECKLED KINGSNAKE FACTS

Description
The Speckled Kingsnake is dark brown or black with yellow dots or speckles (usually one per scale) along the back. Juveniles are dark olive-green color becoming black as they mature. Albinos and hypomelanistics occur in the wild. (Albinos have no black pigmentation but retain the yellow speckling. Hypomelanistics are chocolate brown with yellow speckling). The head has two spots in the center and usually has two to four yellow lines on the edges of the top of the head. The underside is usually pale yellow with darker blotches. Some specimens from south west Louisiana and south east Texas have a reddish-yellow underside with dark blotches.

Other Names
Salt and pepper Snake

Size
up to 120cm

Environment
Speckled Kingsnakes can be found near freshwater, brackish swamps, wet areas of hardwood forests, prairie streams, upland forests. They prefer wetter habitats than other Kingsnake species.

Food
mammals, birds, rodents, lizards , other snakes. They kill their prey by constriction.

Breeding
King snakes are oviparous, laying small clutches of 7 to 17 eggs . The eggs hatch in about 60 days.

Range
central and southern United States from southern Iowa to the Gulf of Mexico.

Notes
The Speckled Kingsnake is non venomous and harmless to humans. When threatened, it shakes its tail. It will excrete musk or bite when threatened. They can be quite docile when handled, and are often kept as pets. They are commonly bred in captivity.

Classification
Class:Reptilia
Order:Squamata (Serpentes)
Family:Colubridae
Genus:Lampropeltis
Species:getula holbrooki
Common Name:Speckled Kingsnake


Relatives in same Genus
  Gray-banded Kingsnake (L. alterna)
  Prairie Kingsnake (L. calligaster calligaster)
  Mole Kingsnake (L. calligaster rhombomaculata)
  California Kingsnake (L. getula californiae)
  Florida Kingsnake (L. getula floridana)
  Eastern Kingsnake (L. getula getula)
  Desert Kingsnake (L. getula splendida)
  Mexican Kingsnake (L. mexicana mexicana)
  Mexican Milk Snake (L. triangulum annulata)
  Pueblan Milk Snake (L. triangulum campbelli)
  Scarlet Kingsnake (L. triangulum elapsoides)
  Honduran Milk Snake (L. triangulum hondurensis)
  Nelson's Milk Snake (L. triangulum nelsoni)
  Sinaloan Milk Snake (L. triangulum sinaloae)
  Red Milk Snake (L. triangulum syspila)
  Milk Snake (L. triangulum triangulum)
  San Diego Mountain Kingsnake (L. zonata pulchra)