Micke Grove Zoo

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At the Nature Center you will see

Gopher Snake

Pituophis catenifer

Habitat: Wide range of habitats that include mountains, valleys, deserts, grasslands, forests, and chaparral habitats

Range: Canada, Mexico, and U.S.A

Natural Diet: Small mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and eggs

Status in the Wild: Common (Least Concern)


Animal Facts

The gopher snake is a nonvenomous colubrid endemic to North America. They are found in a variety of color morphs with the most common colors being dark brown with greyish-black blotches on their scales. Adult snakes are range from three to seven feet in length. Gopher snakes are often predated upon by raptors and small carnivores such as foxes, and coyotes. The species looks look like and mimic the behavior of rattlesnakes to deter their predators.

They breed in the summer months. The females produce a secretion from their skin which the males sense through chemoreception that she is reception. Males compete for receptive females. The species is oviparous with females laying up to two clutches of eggs each year. Eggs hatch after an incubation period of two to two and a half months.

Gopher snakes are nonvenomous and are endemic to the United States  (Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons)


Distributional range of wild gopher snakers (click on map to enlarge)

For the location of the Nature Center, click on the link below

Nature Center Location