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Southern Black Racer Coluber constrictor priapus


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Southern Black Racer
credit:  Fl295

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Family: Colubridae, Colubrid Snakes view all from this family

Description 36-73" (90-185.4 cm). Large, slender, agile, black snake with white on chin and throat (more than Northern subspecies). Iris of eye usually red or orange. Young gray with dark spots on sides and dark gray, brown, or reddish-brown blotches down midline of back. Scales smooth, in 17 rows (15 rows at vent). Anal plate divided.

Habitat Abandoned fields, grassland, sparse brushy areas, open woodland, grassy-bordered streams, and pine flatwoods.

Range Coastal plain from extreme se. North Carolina to Florida Everglades (and lower Florida Keys) west to se. Oklahoma and adjacent Texas; north in Mississippi Valley to s. Illinois and s. Indiana.

Discussion Southern Black Racer closely resembles Northern Black Racer subspecies. Their main physical differences are anatomical. They occupy different geographical ranges that meet in the South and overlap in some areas.