DRYMARCHON MELANURUS PDF

Description[ edit ] Dorsally , the Texas indigo snake is predominantly black in color, with a high sheen which gives its smooth scales a remarkable iridescent hue. The underside is often a salmon pink color. Habitat[ edit ] The Texas indigo snake prefers lightly vegetated areas not far from permanent water sources, but is also found in mesquite savannah , open grassland areas, and coastal sand dunes. It dens in burrows left by other animals. Behavior and diet[ edit ] D. It will consume almost anything it can overpower and swallow, including mammals , birds , lizards , frogs , turtles , eggs , and even other snakes , including rattlesnakes.

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Colubridae Diagnostic Features: Dorsal scales are smooth though large adult males may have a couple of keeled rows and in 17 rows near midbody. Anal plate is undivided. Coloration: Indigo snakes are easily identified by their thick, shiny black bodies.

Their dorsal surface color is translucent black or blue-black, from which their common name of "indigo" comes. Belly scales are also blue-gray. The head and chin often are reddish or orange brown, with the head also having at times prominent dark lines radiating downward from the eye. Size: Indigo snakes are typically between ft although they have found measuring over in and weighing around lbs in weight. General Distribution: Indigo snakes are found from the southern U.

Drymarchon melanurus is found from Texas south through Central America to Venezuela. Another species of indigo snake, Drymarchon couperi, is found in Florida and in adjacent Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. The third indigo snake species, Drymarchon corais is found only in South America. Behavior: Often active in the mornings, indigo snakes are voracious foragers that actively search for anything small enough to swallow, including other large snakes including rattlesnakes and birds.

In fact, one indigo snake was found to have recently eaten three mice, two small snapping turtles, and two toads. When captured, indigos may bite repeatedly and release foul smelling musk and feces to instigate their release.

Indigos may also hiss, vibrate their tail, and flatten their necks vertically to appear "dangerous". Reproduction: Mating takes place in the winter with eggs laid in the spring. Up to 12 eggs are deposited and the young hatchlings appear about 80 days later, measuring up to 66 cm 26 in long and possessing more red coloration towards their heads than do the adults. Habitat: Indigo snakes are restricted to the riparian areas found in the remaining areas of mesquite savanna and thorn brush woodland left in south Texas.

They can be found lying along canal banks or coiled in the lower branches of trees overhanging ponds or streams. Conservation Status: Indigo snakes are listed as threatened by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and are protected by the state of Texas. Texas Distribution: Drymarchon m. Map is based on museum voucher specimens. Herp Groups.

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