Nerodia erythrogaster transversa, 10 June 2004

Nerodia erythrogaster transversa, the Blotched watersnake;
Cleveland county, Oklahoma (10 June 2004).

This shot isn’t too great, but the species is. Throwing the line back out west, this is a Blotched watersnake, one of the Plainbelly watersnake subspecies, photographed in Norman, Oklahoma. When I lived in Oklahoma for a few years as a kid back in the 80s, this was my most-commonly encountered species (alongside the larger, rowdier Diamondback waterside, Nerodia rhombifer). Both species are entirely non-venomous, but that didn’t stop many locals from shouting “Poisonous!” every time they saw me with one. Heh. Anyhow, every time I get back to Oklahoma, this species is on my list to find.

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