The Texas rat snake (Pantherophis obsoleta lindheimeri) is a subspecies of rat snake, also a non-venomous colubrid snake located in America.
As their title suggests these snakes are mostly located within the country of Texas, however, their range extends to Louisiana, Kansas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma.
The Texas rat snake intergrades with different subspecies of rat snakes such as the black rat snake, therefore the species accurate range borders are impossible to ascertain.
These snakes are generalists in regards to habitat, they’re observed in a huge array of habitats in swamps or swampy places, to forests or woods, stream valleys, grasslands, rugged canyons.
They’re even located in metropolitan areas like Dallas, Fort Worth, or Houston, ” The existence of pine trees, and also many likely rodents would be the single most significant factor impacting their occurrence at almost any habitat.
What does a rat snake look like in Texas?
The Texas rat snake has been a long, slim medium to big snake effective at reaching lengths of 4 to 5 feet (121 to 152 cm). Their character is competitive, and it’ll shield themselves from biting and smearing their attacker.
Occasionally they’ll vibrate their tails attempting to mimic a rattlesnake noise. On average those rat snakes may hit between 10 and 15 years old over 20 years, but a few specimens may endure.
The species varies considerably both in color and patterning throughout broad their array. Texas rat snakes have a tan or yellowish body, coated from head to tail with brownish into irregular blotching.
In certain specimens is likely to locate some orange or orange-red speckling. From the northern portions of their range, they are normally darker, whereas people be colored and will have yellowish.
For example, a few specimens located in Sabine County are blackish with a few white areas, which reflects the intergrade with all the black rat snake. Their stomach is gray in color or white.
To quickly differentiate the Texas rat snake out of several the rat snakes we will need to look for their mind because they’re the only species having a strong gray mind.
In addition, there are some wonderful color variants within the wild, for example, large orange, orange, albinos, hypomelanistic and leucistic. These morphs eventually become well known and are consumed in captivity.
Texas rat snake Taxonomy
Up till the early 2000s both New and Old World rat snakes have been classified in precisely exactly the exact identical genus, Elaphe.
Nevertheless, in today’s American rat snakes have been considered a lot more closely associated with king snakes like the California kingsnake compared to Old World rat snake species.
The species epithet lindheimeri was granted to honor Jacob Lindheimer Ferdinand that a German-American naturalist, that had been the very first to amass a Texas rat snake specimen at New Braunfels, Texas.
Texas rat snake Diet
Texas rat snakes possess a significant desire consumption mainly rodents, birds and squirrels.
Mature specimens feed largely on mice and rats but may not have any trouble taking down their eggs. As for snakes they consume soft-bodied pests pinkies or cows.
These snakes are extremely agile climbers, also effective at accomplishing bird nests located in trees along with other large spots quite readily. They are flexible and capable of swimming seeking prey ease.
Even the Texas rat snake turned into a non-venomous snake, so they kill and subdue their prey by constriction, squeezing it till it expires.
Even the Texas rat snake such as snakes species will be found hunting rodents, chicks or chicken eggs that lead them to become known as the poultry snake.
Like most snakes, they all play a significant part in their ecosystem by keeping the rodent population at a minimal level.
This leaves these snakes welcome on farms since they help control the population.
Like another rat, snakes they utilize their sight along with the Jacobson’s organ within their mouth to discover prey.
Texas rat snake Reproduction
The Texas rat snake strains in the spring, soon after emerging from their winter hibernation.
The eggs are put at a moist and humid place like for example tree hollows or even below a stone. The eggs have been left unattended till they hatch in September or even August.
The hatchlings are approximately 12 to 18 inches and are somewhat lighter in color than the mature snakes, but they have equally competitive behavior.
Texas rat snake Conservation
The Texas rat snake hasn’t yet been assessed for the IUCN Red List. When confused with venomous snakes such as copperheads but Texas rat snakes are victims of persecution.