Photo © by Suzanne L. Collins
Used by permission
Length in Kansas up to 55 1/2 inches.
Common throughout Kansas.
Harmless. Smooth scales; uniform cream or yellow belly with no pattern. Upper body
of adults uniform blue-gray, greenish blue or brown. Young have a pattern of large,
light-edged blotches on back alternating with smaller spots on sides; pattern distinct on
front half of body, but fades toward the rear. Young also have scattered dark speckles on
the belly. As they grow older, young lose all patterns and attain uniform appearance of
A snake of open grassland, pasture and prairie during summer; generally found on
rocky wooded hillsides in spring and fall. Spends day basking in sun or gliding over
ground in search of food; average home range of 25 acres but not territorial. Five to 31
eggs per clutch, laid in June or July; incubation takes 23 months. Pursues and eats
insects, frogs, lizards, other snakes, birds, bird eggs and small mammals.
Click here for
information on precautions against being bitten by snakes
and what to do if you have been bitten by one.
Text: Joseph T. Collins & Suzanne L. Collins
Photos: Suzanne L. Collins & Bob Gress
Range Maps & Web Design: Jim Mason