Pantherophis alleghaniensis, the Eastern (yellow) rat snake;
Lake county, Florida (27 June 2022).
The Yellow rat snake, as it’s often referred to locally, was one of my childhood favorites. I still adore them, of course. Large, arboreal, and fairly shy, Yellow rat snakes can throw out quite the defensive play when cornered or threatened. Still, this is an innocuous, non-threatening species that’s quite beneficial to have slinking about your property. They also don’t accept cash for rodent control; they do that work for free.