Eastern Black Kingsnake

Lampropeltis nigra


Description:   A shiny, mostly jet black snake with whitish, yellow or creamy belly. Some spotting may occur particularly along the sides near the belly. Usually averages from 36 – 45 inches in length. The head is not significantly offset from the body. Juvenile snakes usually have yellow, white or creamy banding that disappears as the snake matures.


Life History:

Range: Statewide

Additional Notes: May be some hybridizing with the Speckled kingsnake in the far northwestern corner of the state along the Kentucky border.


Subspecies Occurring in Tennessee: No sub-species occur for this species.

Distribution of the Eastern Black Kingsnake in Tennessee

Map by Susan Marden, TWRA, GIS Lab