Lampropeltis triangulum
(commonly known as the Milk Snake)

Lampropeltis triangulum andesiana
Photo by Brad Lichtenhan
Eastern Milk Snake Other Subspecies

Eastern Milk Snake

Lampropeltis triangulum triangulum lives in a variety of habitats throughout its range, including farmlands, woods, outbuildings, meadows, riverbottoms, bogs, rocky hillsides, and rodent runways, from sea level to high mountains. A secretive, typically noctural snake, it hides under dry leaf litter, stones, well covers, logs, boards. In pine forests, second-growth pine, bog woods, hard-woods, aspen stands.

[Richard M. DeGraf and Deborah D. Rudis, Amphibians and Reptiles of New England: Habitats and Natural History (Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1983) 71.]

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Other Subspecies

  • Amaura: Predominantly inhabits hardwood lowlands, but may also be found in pine flatwoods, oak-hickory hillsides, and, to the western edge of its range, in grassland areas interspersed with rocky, limestone outcrops.

  • Andesiana: Mountainous areas of the Andes, species found in areas with elevations up to 9000'.

  • Annulata: Primarily the South Texas thorn scrub of mesquite, but also found in the sandier coastal areas, the cedar break hillsides of South Central Texas, and also the sotol/lechugilla of the Eastern Chihuahuan Trans-Pecos area.

  • Campbelli: Mostly in the arid portions of its range and found at elevations exceeding 5500'.

Lampropeltis triangulum gaigeae: Juvenile
Photo by the Western Herpetological Research Institute
  • Celaenops: Rocky grassland habitats throughout its range, although it ranges up into the pinyon/juniper region of the mountains of Texas and New Mexico and down Chihuahuan thornscrub along the Rio Grande from Lozier Canyon to Presidio County, Texas. Also common in sandy deserts of the northeastern Trans-Pecos of Texas and eastern New Mexico. In rocky areas, it is found primarily on limestone and igneous substrates.

  • Elapsoides: Wooded areas containing pine trees.

  • Gaigeae: Wet, high mountain cloud forests at elevations between 5000-7400 feet (Costa Rica) and 4300-6500 feet (Panama).

  • Gentilis: Open prairie. Most abundant in areas with limestone rock outcroppings, but also found in the brittle sandstones of the high plains. Ranges into the foothill valleys of the Rocky Mountains in the vicinity of Denver and Boulder, Colorado.

  • Hondurensis: Low to medium elevations of the tropical areas of the country in which it is found.

  • Multistrata: Primarily open prairie. Most common in the sandhills region of north central Nebraska. There are very few rocks or logs present in its habitat, and cover of all sorts is utilized.

  • Stuarti: Dry tropical forests and coastal plains.

  • Syspila: Bluffs, timbered ledges, and south-facing rocky hillsides, cedar glades. Frequently, live in association with ringnecks and worm snakes.

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