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The Chicken snake is a type of giant nonvenomous colubrid snake endemic to warmer areas of the Americas. It is regarded as one of the most attractive South American snakes due to its striking patterning. Dorsally, the snake is black with yellow dots, which may form crossbands. The tip of the nose is yellow. The head shields may be completely yellow, or primarily black, or crossbanded with a yellow and black mix, but the guards’ sutures are usually black. Ventrally, it is bright with irregular black crossbands.

Along with referring to this genus of snakes as chicken snakes, other famous names are attributed to the group, including rat snakes, corn snakes, and pine snakes.

Chicken snakes are found in southern Mexico, Central America, northern and central South America, and Trinidad and Tobago. They mainly reside in wooded settings and are frequently found near water.

Related: How do snakes mate ?

There are roughly five species of snake that are known as chicken snakes.

  • The eastern rat snake, known as Elaphe alleghaniensis, is prevalent throughout the eastern shore of the United States and portions of Canada.
  • Elaphe guttata, or the corn snake, is located in the southern US and areas of the midwest region.
  • Black rat snakes, or Elaphe obsoleta, are often found in the Great Lakes region, particularly in portions of Indiana and Illinois.
  • The grey rat snake, or Elaphe slides, is similar to the black rat snake and likes to occupy rocky terrain and open plains.
  • In extremely forested regions in the general vicinity of the United States and Canada border, Pituophis m melanolcucus, or the northern pine snake, is commonly encountered.

Habits and Lifestyle

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Caninana, Spilotes pullatus, is a colubrid snake, characteristic of Central America and South America, which also occurs in Trinidad and Tobago. (Image Credit: Getty Images)

Aggressive snakes of snake that lives mainly in trees, chicken snakes are solitary and prefer to stay on the ground when possible. They are also highly excellent swimmers. Chicken snakes are diurnal species that hunt by day, constantly hunting for their food between tree branches and on the ground.

Diet and Nutrition

Chicken snakes are carnivores that eat a broad range of live food, including small animals, birds, and lizards.

First, many of them may restrict prey or try to wrap around anybody who presents a danger to the snake. All of them will bite when threatened and can leave behind an open wound that is quite painful. Several snakes may appreciate tiny animals such as rats or other prey with as much enjoyment as bird and chicken eggs. Some snakes are exceptional climbers, enabling them to traverse with ease through trees and swallow bird eggs from the nest.

Because these snakes regularly devour rodents, several farmers in rural areas choose to not kill the snakes. Instead, a chicken snake discovered near a hen house is trapped and sent to a forested location distant from the chickens and their eggs for safekeeping and eventual release. In addition, many farmers will make an effort to seal the chicken homes so that the snake’s potential to enter the hen house is minimized.

Mating Habits

Chicken snakes are egg-laying snakes, and females typically deposit a clutch of between 15-25 eggs.

Population threats

The Chicken snake is not classified as an endangered species now; nonetheless, in Argentina, the population of this snake falls owing to habitat loss and fragmentation.

Is a Chicken Snake Bite painful?

While its bite is not deadly in most circumstances, it is generally quite painful.

Also Read: California Kingsnake Facts.
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