With such a vast and diverse landscape that covers 65,000 square miles and has 1,350 miles of coastline, it’s not surprising that Florida is home to thousands of unique and wonderful animals. Amongst these are 50 different species of snakes, including six that are venomous. Although some snakes in Florida are secretive and rarely seen, there are several other species that we are more likely to come across.
Additionally, the southern region of the state encounters more of them as compared to any other region. The reason is simple: the area, especially the climatic conditions, suits best to their habitat. On that note, the climate of Southern Florida is tropical and the temperature rarely drops to freezing point. Besides, there’s plenty of vegetation for it to hide in, whether to wait for prey, avoid its own predators or regulate its temperature out of the sun. So, whether you’re a herpetologist or want to learn more about this incredible creature in general, you can take cheap flights to Florida and explore more about it.
Without any further ado, let’s quickly jump on to find out more about such snakes common in Florida.
- Eastern kingsnake
These are usually between 36 and 48 inches long, have shiny scales and are dark brown with white cross bands and a chain-like pattern down their sides. Additionally, they prefer open habitats such as grasslands, deserts, prairies, swamps, and can be found alongside rivers and streams. However, they are also sometimes found in pine forests. They are one of the non venomous snakes in Florida, and eat a range of rodents, birds, lizards, frogs, and other snakes.
- Ring-Necked Snake
Although secretive, the ring-necked snake is one of the most abundant and commonly found in the state. Surprisingly, it has twelve subspecies of which two occur in Florida – Key ring-necked snakes and southern ring-necked snakes. They have a bright ring of color around their neck which is what they are named for. Plus they prefer areas with plenty of vegetation or cover for them to hide underneath woodlands or rocky hillsides. Although they produce a mild venom-like substance, they are not truly venomous and pose no threat to humans or pets. So take a flight to Florida with Avianca Airlines and check out this unusual snake.
- Eastern Indigo Snake
Popularly known to be kept as a pet, this might be one of the daunting snakes in Florida, considering its growing ability of up to 9 feet. Although it is a non venomous species, a permit is required to own it in many states. Moreover, it gets its name from the iridescent purplish-black scales on its belly, with scales on its sides and back being bluish-black. It’s found in sugar cane fields, thickets near rivers, hammocks, flat woods, the bottom of dry streams, and sandhills. It travels back and forth between these habitats, and sometimes makes a den in armadillo boltholes. It eats other reptiles and amphibians, birds, and mammals.
- Florida Pine Snake
This colubrid snake is found only in the southeastern states of the USA. It is a big and bulky one, which can grow as long as 7.5 feet in the wild. Since it’s a pine snake, it lives in pine woods, oak woods, sandhills, pine barrens, and pastures. Although it’s non venomous, but is powerful and subdues its prey by squeezing it to death in its coils. One of three pine species- the Florida pine snake, can be grayish-brown to rust-colored with blotchy patterns on its scales. Additionally, they have an unusual vibrating ability, which they use to mimic the dangerous rattlesnake. Despite their powerful build, pine snakes are often eaten by foxes, skunks, pet dogs and cats, raccoons, and even shrews.
- Southern Black Snake
One of eleven subspecies of eastern racers, southern black racers are easily one of the most widespread black snakes in Florida. Southern black racers are 20 to 56 inches long and are bluish-black with white markings under their chin. They live in a wide range of habitats and are mostly seen in residential areas. Further, they are considered to have keen eyesight, followed by their agility. They eat a wide range of birds, rodents, lizards, and frogs.
- Rough Green Snake
These are one of the most brightly colored snake species found in Florida. As the name suggests, they are bright green in color with yellow color on the belly side. They prefer to live in meadows and woodlands, although they are never very far from a permanent water source. Rough Greens are highly capable swimmers and also excellent climbers, typically spending much of their time in trees. They mainly eat insects and spiders, and their main predators are other snakes – particularly eastern racers and eastern kingsnakes.
- Florida Banded Water Snake
This species is found naturally only in the southeast. It can grow between two feet and a little under 4 feet long, and is ovoviviparous. The is the only banded water snake in Florida, and is light brown on top, with red or black cross bands. Its belly is pale with darker colored markers, usually reddish or brown. They usually have a habitat in all sorts of water bodies including lakes, rivers, swamps, and other wetlands, as long as it’s fresh. As a semi-aquatic snake, it eats aquatic life such as fish, frogs, and other amphibians.
- Burmese Python
The Burmese python is one of the largest species of snakes. Although it is native to Southeast Asia, it is kept as a pet by many in Florida and other parts of the USA. Once it grows too big, people release them in the jungle and let them survive in the wild. Moreover, they can grow longer than 16 feet and weigh over 100 pounds. Considering their size, they can easily swallow huge animals such as goats or deer.
- Corn Snake
Easily one of the most common and nonvenomous snakes in Florida is the Corn Snake, which is found right across the state. These large snakes are 30 to 48 inches long and are incredibly popular as pets. They are orange in color with large red blotches on their bodies. Additionally, they live in a range of habitats such as overgrown fields, forest openings, trees, and abandoned farms. Such snakes are not aggressive, and if threatened, they usually vibrate the tip of their tail as a warning signal.
- Florida Rattler
It is a venomous rattlesnake found only in the Southeastern United States. This is merely the largest and heaviest rattlesnake in the world. It lives in dry pine forests, sandhills, hammocks near the coast, swamps, and salt marshes. Its venom is potent, and its fangs can be two-thirds of an inch in length. Moreover, it can weigh as much as 34 pounds and be nearly 8 feet long. Its scales are shades of brown, gray, or olive green with a pattern of black diamonds edged with cream-colored scales. It generally eats rabbits, rodents, and birds.
That was all about the most commonly found snakes in Florida. The reason for the wide number of these creatures found here is the optimum climatic conditions and suitable hiding space to catch preys and fool out their predators. Moreover, many of them are non venomous, and yet considered to be powerful and agile. Although, if you’re looking to study more on them, Florida is a good place to begin with.