Medium Square Square Square Square
Photo © Judith Bush, some rights reserved
Clowderwood, NC, US (Google, OSM) Details Hide details

Description

Skin shed in high grass/weeds off steps of deck.

38 inches long
25 dorsal scales wide mid body
split ventral scales on tail
POSSIBLY split anal scale, but not sure

Logo eee 15px

Comments & Identifications

Thumb
Colubrid Snakes - Photo (c) Patrick Coin, some rights reserved (CC BY-NC-SA)
judielaine's ID: Colubrid Snakes (Family Colubridae)
Posted by judielaine 11 months ago (Flag)
Thumb
Coluber - Photo (c) Josh Henderson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
herpsofnm's ID: Genus Coluber, a member of Colubrid Snakes (Family Colubridae)
Posted by herpsofnm 10 months ago (Flag)
Thumb

Thanks! is there any key observation that helped narrow down to genus? The smooth dorsal scales and the split anal scale support the genus, but https://snakesarelong.blogspot.com/2012/11/identifying-snake-sheds-part-iii.html lists MANY genus with those key features. That same site has listed fewer dorsal scales for Coluber sp.

Posted by judielaine 10 months ago (Flag)
Thumb

Anytime!

Based upon your photos I count 16-17 dorsal scales, +/- 1 dorsal scale left or right that might be not seen where it joins the ventral scale.

If I use the key off of the Virginia Herp Society page...I know, you're in NC.

Starting here: http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/identification-keys/id-keys-snakes/snake_id_-_20.htm

A. Black or colored collar on neck. / B. No collar or neck band.

I clicked on B as I see no neck collar/band. --> B. Preocular appears absent (this seems misleading however...http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=233595&sid=3cfd4d4f9ecc0aebf4f24e193e000730#p233595 ...as you can clearly see a wedged preocular for that black racer)

The next portion of the key is odd to me, A is 15 mid-dorsal scale or less, B. is equal to or greater than 19 mid-dorsal. Clicking B yields the result of northern black racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/identification-keys/id-keys-snakes/snake_id_-_27.htm

From there, based upon the length of shed, melanin deposit within the shed, divided anal plate, smooth scales, head morphology (not as long and narrow as rat snake, plus rat snakes have weakly keeled scales) of the shed, and distribution (locality) of the observation lead me to calling it at least Coluber. It could be Coluber constrictor, but it could possibly also be Coluber [Masticophis] flagellum. C. flagellum only have 13 scale rows just above the vent, C. constrictor has 15. Length alone (coupled with locality) rules out some of the other smaller, darkly pigmented smooth scaled snakes.

Posted by herpsofnm 10 months ago (Flag)
Thumb
Coluber - Photo (c) Josh Henderson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
judielaine's ID: Genus Coluber, a member of Colubrid Snakes (Family Colubridae)
Posted by judielaine 8 months ago (Flag)
Sign in or Sign up to add comments
Sign in or Sign up to add identifications
Coluber - Photo (c) Josh Henderson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
judielaine's ID: Genus Coluber, a member of Colubrid Snakes (Family Colubridae)
Coluber - Photo (c) Josh Henderson, some rights reserved (CC BY-SA)
Community ID: Genus Coluber, a member of Colubrid Snakes (Family Colubridae)
About
herpsofnm 1 person agrees
Logo eee 15px

Data Quality Assessment

Needs ID
Details Hide details
Logo eee 15px
Observation © Judith Bush
Cc by sa small some rights reserved
Pin it button
Member of the iNaturalist Network   |   Powered by iNaturalist open source software