Field Guide to Maryland's Snakes (Order Squamata)


Family Colubridae

Mole Kingsnake

Common Name:

Mole Kingsnake


Scientific Name:

Lampropeltis calligaster rhombomaculata

Photo of Mole Kingsnake courtesy of John White
Photo of Mole Kingsnake courtesy of John White


Size:
30 inches – 40 inches. Record: 47 inches.

Appearance:
  • This smooth shiny snake (scales not keeled) is brown to olive above with reddish brown blotches on the back, which alternate with smaller blotches on the sides; although some individuals may have no spots at all.
  • The belly is yellow to yellow-brown, with the yellow tint traveling up the sides.
  • There may be indistinct spots on the belly.
  • The head is small, not distinct from the neck.

Habitats:

This is a subterranean species, preferring to live in other animals' burrows. It may also burrow in sandy or loamy soils.

Photo of Habitat for Mole Kingsnake - courtesy of Rebecca Chalmers
Photo of Habitat for Mole Kingsnake
courtesy of Rebecca Chalmers


How to Find:

This is a nocturnal species. It usually only is seen above ground in plowed fields or after heavy rains. On a post-rainy evening, go out to open areas near woods. Look in rodent burrows or rotted tree roots. They may also be found crossing roads.


Distribution in Maryland:

Found only on the western shore of the Coastal Plain and adjacent Piedmont counties.​

Mole Kingsnake - Distribution in Maryland