Eastern Mud snake: (Farancia abacura abacura)
Eastern mud snakes (farancia abacura abacura), are members of the colubridae family. They average in size between 40 to 54 inches long, with the record being 81.5 inches long.
Eastern mud snakes have large, thick bodies. Their coloring mainly consists of a shiny or glossy black with an iridescent blue tint in the sunlight, with the ends of more than 50 pink to red lines extending from its belly onto its sides. They have a black and red checkered board pattern on their belly. The head is oval shaped and the neck is distinctive and thick. Their iris is red and pupils are around. The tip of their tail ends with a pointed, horny scale. Although the majority of the eastern mud snakes scales are smooth, there are some keeled scales above the cloaca.
Eastern mud snakes are found throughout Florida, except for the Key. Their preferred habitats include areas such as streams, cypress swamps, drainage ditches, rivers, ponds, marshes and lakes that have dense vegetation or under ground debris, primarily areas near fresh water sources.
Eastern mud are carnivores, primarily consume amphibious that include salamanders, frogs, and sometimes fish.
Eastern mud snakes are nocturnal, but its not uncommon to see them during the day. They are known to be one of the most docile snakes in Florida. When this snake is handled by humans, it will not bite you, but it will press its small pointed tail tip against your hand in an attempt for you to release it, making them completely harmless. They have also known to integrate with the western mud snake, in the western parts of the panhandle.