Scarlet Kingsnake: (Lampropeltis elapsoides)
Scarlet kingsnakes (lampropeltis elapsoides), are members of the colubridae family. They average in size between 14 to 20 inches long, with the record being 27 inches long.
Scarlet kingsnakes have thin bodies and have smooth scales. They are tricolored, having the combination of red, black and yellow cross – bands encircling its entire body., both the red and yellow cross – bands touch the black rings, meaning the red and yellow do not touch. Their belly patterns are the same as its upper body. Their heads are oval shaped and their pupils are round.
Scarlet kingsnakes are found throughout Florida, including Key Largo and Key West. Their preferred habitats include areas such as pine – lands, cultivated fields and hardwood hammocks.
Scarlet kingsnakes are carnivores, primarily consuming lizards, frogs, rodents and other snakes.
Scarlet kingsnakes are nocturnal, active during the night. They are terrestrial, preferring to be under ground or hiding under dense vegetation such as logs, rocks and under tree bark, because of its secretive and fossorial behavior they are rarely ever seen. They can also climb extremely well. This snake is almost always mistaken for the venomous eastern coral snake and often killed due to its mistaken identity. To properly identify the scarlet kingsnake remember this rhyme; when red touches yellow, kill a fellow, when red touches black, your good jack. Scarlet kingsnakes are docile, and are reluctant to bite, in fact they would rather flee than confront potential danger. Scarlet kingsnakes are completely harmless to humans.