Eastern Racer (Coluber constrictor)

Non-venomous and widespread (except at higher elevations), Eastern (Black) Racers are one of the most commonly encountered diurnal snakes. Despite their scientific name, they are not constrictors. They do prey on a variety of small animals but not by first squeezing them. They usually rapidly crawl away when humans come across them while out hiking. Around eleven subspecies are recognized with various common names.
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Craven Co., NC
29 Aug 2004
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Craven Co., NC
29 Aug 2004

note smooth scales
Black Rat Snakes have a "rougher" look because they have keeled scales.

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Durham Co., NC
6 Apr 2008
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Durham Co., NC
6 Apr 2008
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Durham Co., NC
6 Apr 2008

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Durham Co., NC
1 Apr 2007

Young racers show a faint pattern of small blotches.

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Durham Co., NC
1 Apr 2007

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Dare Co., NC
7 Nov 2008

Nestled in Yaupon Holly (Ilex vomitoria), like Rat Snakes, racers are also good climbers and enjoy dining on bird eggs and nestlings.


Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Orange Co., NC
2 Apr 2012
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Orange Co., NC
2 Apr 2012
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Orange Co., NC
2 Apr 2012

Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013
Black Racer (Coluber constrictor) Northern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor constrictor)
Moore Co., NC
20 Apr 2013

Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola) Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola)
Big Cypress, Collier Co., FL
23 Dec 2014

The Everglades Racer is a subspecies found only in the Everglades habitat region of southern peninsular Florida.

Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola) Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola)
Big Cypress, Collier Co., FL
23 Dec 2014

Western Yellow-bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor mormon) Western Yellow-bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor mormon)
Woodchuck Creek, Missoula Co., MT
3 Oct 2014

Racers of the western US are much paler.

Western Yellow-bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor mormon)
Woodchuck Creek, Missoula Co., MT
3 Oct 2014

Western Yellow-bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor mormon)
MPG Ranch, Missoula Co., MT
28 May 2014


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Created on ... Sep 6, 2004 | jeffpippen9@gmail.com