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Queen Snake <image courtesy of Dr. Martin J. Rosenberg>


  • Adult body length: 15 - 24 inches, record 36 inches.
  • Length when born: 7½ - inches
  • Breeding period: May to August
  • Young per year: 5 - 23 born alive
  • Typical foods: mostly crayfish

Appearance

The ground color of this snake is olive-brown, chocolate-brown, or almost black. There is a yellow stripe along the lower part of side. The belly is yellow, with four, boldly distinct, brown stripes. On some individuals there are three indistinct stripes on the back. The scales are smooth, without keels and the anal plate is divided.


Range
Overall Range
Pennsylvania west to southeastern Wisconsin, south through much of the eastern U.S. to the Gulf Coast.
Range in Ohio
The Queen Snake is common and widely distributed in most of the state, except for the extreme southeastern counties.
Queen Snake Ohio Map

Local Habitat
In and around streams with rocky bottoms and margins where it finds it favorite food, crayfish.


Lifestyle

The highly aquatic Queen Snake is a very good swimmer. It seems to favor shelter under partially submerged rocks and pieces of wood, along the edge of a stream. The snake is active both during the day and at night. When disturbed it typically will drop into nearby water and swim away. It favors crayfish as food, especially those that are soft-bodied following a recent shedding of the hard, outer skin.


Links

ODNR, Division of Wildlife, "Species A-Z Guide"

University of Michigan Animal Diversity Web

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Date of last revision: 06/25/2003
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