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Rat Snakes (Pantherophis obsoletus): Facts, Habitat, Feeding, & More

Rat snakes scientifically known as “Pantherophis obsoletus” is another specie of snakes, dangerous but not like the king cobra. This specie belongs to the reptilia class of animals. Black rat snakes are also called “Elaphe Obsoleta” biologically. They also belong to the genus of their own class.

However, during our findings on rat snakes, we did some research and we realized that rat snakes before the year 2002, were all part of the same Elphae genus.

You should also know that a discovery made by a herpetologist, Urs utiger was what changed the classification of the rat snakes generally.

Although organizations, such as the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, adopted this pantherophis, the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature along with others listed the pantherophis species as invalid.

How Many Rat Snakes Are There In The World?

It is impossible to tell the exact number of rat snakes in the world. In fact, it is unknown. However, they can be found across different countries and parts of the world today. They are common in places such as North America and Southeast Asia.

Where Does a Rat Snake Live

Rat snakes have different species but the Elaphe obsoleta, can be found in different and a variety of places across the world. The most popular places to spot the snakes, however, are New England, Georgia, Texas, South, South-East Asia, Southern Wisconsin, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Southern Ontario, and North America.

Read Also: Rattle snake: Facts, Habitats, Types, and Importance to Ecosystem

What Is a Rat Snake’s Habitat?

When it comes to their habitat, rat snakes live in various habitats such as forests, grasslands, open fields, arid land, brackish water, wetlands, coastal regions, farmland, and near freshwater sources such as rivers.

Rat Snakes (Pantherophis obsoletus): Facts, Habitat, Feeding, & More

Do Rat Snakes Co-Exist?

Most people however believe that rat snakes don’t travel in pairs or groups, but they do. In fact, they roam around with each other.

How Long Does a Rat Snake Live?

Rat snakes have a life expectancy of six to eight years.

What Is Their Conservation Status?

Rat snakes are very common as most people come in contact with this specie of snakes when they explore habitats that incubate snakes. However, in suburban areas, rat snakes can be found in barns or abandoned buildings.

Rat snakes come under the Least Concern category of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list, due to their wide visibility.

Read Also: Are Snakes Good or Bad and What Do Snakes Eat? Find Out

What Do Rat Snakes Look Like?

Do you know that rat snakes are among the largest non-venomous snakes in the world?
Rat snakes also differ in color, they are entirely covered in keeled scales. There is also a different specie of rat snake called the black rat snake (Eastern rat snake), this particular specie has a black body and a white belly together with a white chin.

There is also another, the yellow rat snake. The color of rat snakes differs, depending on the specie. The gray rat snakes (gray ratsnakes) are dark to light in color. However, these snakes are said to grow up to 24.4-70.8 in length.

Are Rat Snakes Cute?

Most people find snakes irritating, but some people are lovers of snakes. However, it is hard to say how cute rat snakes are since they are just snakes, not everyone likes snakes.

However, rat snakes are shy. They are non-venomous, non-aggressive, and practically cannot hurt humans. Although, that doesn’t mean you should go about looking for rat snakes!

Rat Snakes are considered friendly and beneficial by the farmers because they eat the pest animals such as mice and rats.

How Do Rat Snakes Communicate?

Rat snakes are capable of communicating with themselves, using pheromones. However, these pheromones are common among males. It is through this process of communication using the pheromones that they attract females during mating sessions.

Read Also: Complete Guide on How To Start a Successful Chin Chin Business

How Big Is a Rat Snake?

Rat Snakes can grow up to 180cm in length. They are among the world’s longest non-venomous snakes. They are said to grow almost 18 times bigger than the thread snakes. Thread snakes are the smallest non-venomous snakes in the world.

Rat Snakes (Pantherophis obsoletus): Facts, Habitat, Feeding, & More
Rat snake VS Cobra

How Fast Can a Rat Snake Move?

Rat Snakes are pretty fast. An experiment was carried out on rat snakes and it was shown that these snakes have high speed and when in the race they come second to the rattlesnake.

How Much Does a Rat Snake Weigh?

As mentioned earlier, rat snakes can grow very big. Howey, the average weight of a rat snake can be around 0.5 to 2.2kg.

What are the Male and Female Names of the Specie?

Although there are no specific names for the female and male rat snakes, they are both known as rat snakes.

What Would You Call a Baby Rat Snake?

The babies are called snakelets or hatchlings.

Read Also: Water and it’s Importance to the Human Body

What Do Rat Snakes Eat?

Just as their name implies, rat snakes feed on rats. Among their other prey are small rodents, frogs, lizards, voles, chipmunks, squirrels, shrews, bird eggs, and birds.

Rat Snakes Poisonous?

As we all know by now, rat snakes are non-venomous. Since they look like rattlesnakes, they only use their tail to confuse their prey instead of poison. After that, they use their body pressure to kill their prey.

Will Rat Snakes Make a Good Pet?

Rat Snakes as a matter of consideration will make a good pet, for those who want to have snakes as a pet. The cost of maintaining a snake is low.

Most Americans keep rat snakes as a pet. They also help to keep other snakes and pests, that is why farmers like to have these snakes around as a means to keep their crops safe.

Read Also: How to Make Money from Glass Wastes

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Benadine Nonye

An Agric. Consultant & a Blogger - National Diploma in Agricultural Technology - Bachelor's Degree in Agricultural Science - Master's Degree in Science Education... Join Me On: Twitter: @benadinenonye - Instagram: benadinenonye - LinkedIn: benadinenonye - YouTube: Agric4ProfitsTV - Pinterest: BenadineNonye4u - Facebook: benadinenonye.

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