Scarlet Snake: (Cemophora coccinea)
The Scarlet snake (cemophora coccinea), is a member of the colubridae family. Scarlet snakes average in size between 14 to 20 inches long, with the record being 32.5 inches long.
Scarlet snakes are small and slender. They have a whitish – gray color red blotches that are bordered with black. Its head is speared shaped and red with a light colored band behind the eyes. Their bellies are a whitish – gray color. They have smooth scales and they have 19 dorsal scale rows mid – body. The upper lip has 7 scales, and their pupils are round.
Scarlet snakes are found throughout Florida. They prefer habitats that have sandy soils such as pine flat – woods, dry prairies, hardwood hammocks and sand – hills.
Scarlet snakes are carnivores that primarily consume small rodents, birds and their eggs, frogs, reptile eggs and lizards.
Scarlet snakes are nocturnal, spending most of their day hiding under leaf debris, logs or underground. They are secretive snakes and are hardly seen. When they are seen its usually at night or after heavy rains. Scarlet snakes are mistaken for the scarlet king snake and the venomous eastern coral snake, although you can easily distinguish them apart from each other. Scarlet snakes are docile and are harmless to humans.