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Pueblan Milk Snake

Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli

Pueblanmilksnake Gallery

About the Pueblan Milk Snake

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Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Colubridae
Genus: Lampropeltis
Species: triangulum campbelli

The Pueblan milk snake is a slender-bodied snake with a striped color pattern of black, yellow and red stripes. These color bands are intended to mimic those of the venomous coral snake, warding off potential predators. Pueblan milk snakes are generally solitary and nocturnal, being most active at night and dusk. On hot days, they will stay under rocks, logs, or in burrows. They are called "Pueblan" snakes because they're native to the Mexican state of Puebla, as well as other dry, arid desert regions throughout Central Mexico.

Pueblan Milk Snake Facts

Appearance:

The pueblan milk snake is a slender-bodied snake with a striped color pattern. Their stripe pattern includes stripes of black, yellow, black, and red, in that order. The color bands on this snake are intended to mimic those of the venomous coral snake, scaring off potential predators. They have a highly sensitive forked tongue and Jacobson’s (or vomeronasal) organ to sense chemicals in the environment. The snake flicks its tongue in and out, capturing odor particles and pressing them against the Jacobson's organ.

Size:

  • Length: 2 - 4 feet

Diet:

Mainly rodents, birds, lizards, and other snakes. The snake consumes its prey by constricting it until the blood flow to its heart has ceased, then swallowing it whole. Because of this, milk snakes contribute to rodent control in the rural areas they inhabit.

Reproduction:

These snakes typically breed in the late spring and summer. Females lay an average of two to 14 eggs, usually in rotting wood or beneath rocks and logs where conditions are relatively warm and humid. After the female lays her eggs, she will leave and not provide any parental care. The eggs will hatch after one to two months and each hatchling is only a few inches long when it leaves the egg. They are more brightly colored at birth than the adults, but their color fades as they mature.

Behavior:

The Pueblan milk snake is generally solitary and primarily nocturnal, being most active at night and dusk. On hot days, they will stay under rocks, logs, or in burrows. They spend the winter in communal dens in a state of brumation, which helps them survive the cold temperatures. 

Habitat/range:

Dry, arid desert regions throughout Central Mexico. They are native to a number of Mexican states, including Puebla, Morelos, and Oaxaca.

Median Life Expectancy:

Unknown in the wild

Fun Facts:

  • These snakes are a species of kingsnake.
  • Milk snakes get their name from a folktale that describes a snake sneaking into a barn and drinking the milk from nursing cows.
  • Pueblan milk snakes are sometimes called Campbell's milk snakes. They are called "Pueblan" because they are native to Puebla.