You have heard of California king beds — now meet California Kingsnakes! These are nonvenomous found along the northern part of Mexico and western United States. They live in a large variety of places: forests, grasslands, marshes, farmlands, deserts, and even suburban neighborhoods, just to name a few. California Kingsnakes mostly live on the ground, but they have been known to climb shrubs and low tree branches. They earned their name from their habit of feeding occasionally on other snakes, making them “king” of the snakes!
As for their looks, California Kingsnakes can either have a single stripe going down their bodies or multiple stripes across their bodies. Many come in black and white, black and yellow, brown and white, or brown and yellow. However, in captivity many are bred to create different color morphs. One popular color morph is creating an albino California Kingsnake!
To protect themselves, California Kingsnakes release a strong and musky odor. They will also smear their attacker with fecal matter (gross, but undoubtedly effective!) and make a sound similar to a Rattlesnake rattle. Strangely enough, California Kingsnakes are immune to Rattlesnake venom. Not a bad defense trait to have, if we do say so ourselves!
Want to see a California Kingsnake up close? Come on out to the park! Even if you are not a snake fan in general, you will want to pass up the chance to see the “king of all snakes” for yourself!