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Normally, we consider Black Rat Snakes to be beneficial critters around the farm; they generally provide very valuable rodent control. In late August 2011, I found a collection of Black Rat Snake eggs in an old straw pile under some cedar trees. All or part of this information was provided by the Animal Diversity Web and Museum of Zoology of the University of Michigan.
Browsers that can not handle javascript will not be able to access some features of this site. Reproduction: In early summer the females deposit 6 to 24 eggs under rotted wood or other cover. Range and Status: Black Rat Snakes occur in the southern half of the Lower Peninsula, but are rare and declining.
Abundant and statewide, Rat Snakes can be quite variable in appearance from yellowish and striped to brownish to solid black above.
Rat Snake (Elaphe obsoleta)Durham Co., NC9 May 2013I believe this is the same individual as the one in the two photos above.
Rat Snake (Elaphe obsoleta)Moore Co., NC20 Apr 2013Some Rat Snakes, when agitated, will accentuate a triangular shape to their head and will rear up in a threatening posture (see below) before striking.


Orange Co., NC29 May 2004Rat Snakes are often encountered on roads & trails, and they often have a "wrinkled" or kinked appearance.
Durham Co., NC24 Sep 2004Rat Snakes are often found in crawlspaces or buildings where mice, toads, or other delicacies are hiding. Rat Snake (Elaphe obsoleta)Hyde Co., NC20 Sep 2008Rat Snakes near the coast in North Carolina have a yellow or green tint and show dark longitudinal stripes.
Coloring Pages for children is a wonderful activity that encourages children to think in a creative way and arises their curiosity. The above specimen, however, took up residence in the chicken house, ate lots of eggs, and killed an adult broody hen, as described here.
A couple of young dispersed from the area at the time that I initially found the nest, but not all of the eggs had yet hatched. Young rat snakes are patterned with dark blotches on a gray background, and traces of this juvenile coloration are often visible in adult specimens. They climb well, and often enter barns and abandoned buildings in search of rodents, a favorite food. They are listed as a "species of special concern" by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, and are protected by state law.


It is an educational tool and is considered an important contribution to a child's development.
We checked the nest again a couple of times, and found this one poking its head out of the egg in the early evening of August 29. Beyond the educational virtues, coloring sessions allow us, the adults, a little peace and quiet while the boy or girl enjoy coloring. If cornered or grabbed these snakes may hiss and strike, but are non venomous and harmless to humans.
Not to mention the result: coloring pages for preschoolers are proudly presented at the nursery, kindergarten or even grandma and grandpa's living room! Please note the images are not hosted on our servers, hence some of the images might not download.
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