Common Snake Species in Baton RougeSpeckled Kingsnake: The speckled kingsnake is also referred to as the common kingsnake. It is a fairly large snake species that can grow up to 48 inches in length. Its skin has a black background speckled with irregularly shaped yellow markings. The snake gets its name from the speckles on its skin. It has even earned the snake the “salt and pepper snake”.
Speckled kingsnakes mostly live in areas where there is water such as swamps, rivers, and ponds but they can also survive in forests and grasslands. It feeds mainly on rodents, lizards, birds, and other small mammals, killing them by constriction. The speckled kingsnake is non-venomous but it may bite when threatened. It also shakes its tails which may sound like a rattle and expel feces or musk from its body when threatened. The speckled kingsnake does well in captivity and is often kept as a pet.
Pinewood snakes: Pinewood snakes are small snakes with slender bodies. Adults may not grow beyond 10 to 13 inches in length. Its skin is usually golden to reddish-brown with a darker shade at the head. A dark yellowish stripe passes through the upper lip scales and the eye.
Pinewood snakes live around woodlands and forests but they can also survive in wet areas. They can live under logs, small holes inside the soil, and tree barks. Their diet consists mainly of small lizards and frogs, salamanders, etc. Although not venomous and completely not toxic to humans, the pine snake has poisonous saliva which it uses to immobilize smaller prey before feeding on them.
Venomous Snake Species in Baton RougeCanebrake Rattlesnake: The canebrake rattlesnake, also known as the timber rattlesnake, is one of 7 venomous snakes in Baton Rouge. It is a colorful snake with a light grey tan although color can vary slightly from snake to snake. A reddish stripe runs down the middle of its back. Located from its eye to mouth is a brown band. Canebrakes can grow up to 70 inches in length. They live mostly in forests, under logs, and wooded environments. They feed predominantly on rodents.
Canebrakes are docile animals that may remain in a spot for several days. They are ambush predators, lying in wait for their prey for a long time before striking to kill them. Canebrakes are venomous and a bite can lead to death if not attended to on time.
Copperhead: The copperhead snake is a colorful snake found in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. They can grow between 14 and 45 inches in length. The body of the snake is a dull brown color with orange to dull pink tint. They also have brownish cross bands that run along the back with an hourglass shape. Young copperheads have no pattern and they often have a bright yellow tail.
Copperheads live on hillsides, abandoned woodpiles, and many terrestrial or aquatic places they can find. They feed mostly on rodents and frogs. Camouflage is a weapon they use to blend in with their environment when waiting for prey. They may strike if attacked or accidentally stepped on. Copperheads are venomous, although their bites rarely lead to death as their venom is not the most potent.
Cottonmouth: Cottonmouths are venomous snakes also known as water moccasins. They can grow from 15 to 55 inches in length. They are usually dark brown to black in color with cross bands the same color as their skin. Although their triangular heads are black, they have a white line that runs from the side of their heads to their mouths. Cottonmouths are very common in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and may be sighted close to water sources. Cottonmouths are very defensive and they may coil up and shake their tails in order to ward off intruders. They also open their mouths and bring out a white lining resembling cotton, hence the name cottonmouth.
Cottonmouths feed mainly on aquatic animals such as fish, frogs, and other water snakes. Like other pit vipers, cottonmouths are venomous and a bite from them can kill their prey.