Wild Florida Photo - Pantherophis spiloides - Gray rat snake

Pantherophis spiloides

Gray rat snake
White oak snake

Synonym(s): Elaphe obsoleta spiloides

Florida native

Hamilton Co. FL 10/26/06
Hamilton Co. FL 10/26/06
Hamilton Co. FL 10/26/06
Hamilton Co. FL 10/26/06
Hamilton Co. FL 10/26/06

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A common snake of many panhandle habitats extending eastward to between the Apalachicola River and the Suwannee River (reference sources vary). The range extends west to the Mississippi River and north into Wisconsin & Michigan.
From the Big Bend area of Florida to the Osceola National Forest - much of the Suwannee River drainage - P. spiloides easily hybridizes with the eastern, or yellow, rat snake, P. alleghaniensis to form what is sometimes called the Gulf Hammock Rat Snake. The snake pictured here was seen in this area, and could be a hybrid, although this one does show characteristics typical of the Gray Rat Snake.
Average adult size is from one to two meters (~ 1-2 yards) and both juveniles and adults are gray with dark blotches. The belly is sandy gray with dark square blotches. Scales are weakly keeled.
Habitats include pinelands, hardwood hammocks, cypress strands, swamps, marshes, prairies, farmland and residential areas.


Pantherophis spiloides is a member of the Colubridae - Colubrids - nonvenomous snakes family.

Other species of the Pantherophis genus in the Wild Florida Photo database:
  Pantherophis guttata var. guttata - CORN SNAKE

For more information on this species, visit the following link:
Florida Museum of Natural History Herpetology page for this species

Date record last modified: Sep 23, 2011

Paul Rebmann Nature Photography at pixels.com