I believe this to be a Pituophis of some sort (4' long, keeled scales). It was found in my hometown in northwest Washington state, I believe it to be a released pet. This snake is not indigenous to my side of the mountains... it has excellent body weight (almost round it's so plump)... and scars and wounds all over its body which I believe to be rodent bites.
Any ID assistance would be much appreciated. The color is pretty well represented in the pic. It's a large pic, sorry but I wanted to retain as much detail as possible.
So far he's *** on me, been flighty as hell, made no attempts to bite, no hissing, refused one meal of a thawed adult naked mouse, and given me one nice big poopie which was very solid. He and I get along quite well. I like handling the crazy snakes that aren't so bitey. Emotion: smile

Thanks!

fr0glet

==
"I think fr0glet has the market cornered in techniques for "feeling up" your frog." -AD
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Gopher Snake!!!
This snake when alarmed will shake its tail to simulate the rattles of a rattlesnake. This is a western US snake, but I don't think they travel as far north as Washington. I too believe this is an escapee or released snake. They can be bitey too, but for the most part they are more show than go! Enjoy your find, these snakes sell for about $70 in my part of the country!
Good Luck!
Jim Smith
Gopher Snake!!! This snake when alarmed will shake its tail to simulate the rattles of a rattlesnake.

Almost EVERY wild snake I've found will do this (well, the larger colubrines anyway).
This is a western US snake, but I don't think they
travel as far north as Washington. I too believe this is an escapee or released snake. They can be bitey ... are more show than go! Enjoy your find, these snakes sell for about $70 in my part of the country!

Seventy bucks! I've been GIVING them away!*
*Legal reasons. Emotion: smile
Gopher Snake!!! This snake when alarmed will shake its tail to simulate the rattles of a rattlesnake. This is a western US snake, but I don't think they travel as far north as Washington.

Oh, they do. The great basin gopher snake is found in Eastern Washington at least as far north as Spokanne (I know, 'cause I've seen 'em meself, see). The pacific gopher snake has a listed range that enters Western Washington, although I have never seen any there.

Luke

To email me, take out the trash.
I'm no expert on the Pacific Gopher(which I believe is what Froglet has found), I bred them for a few years, found them to be well liked in this area. They are a very muscular snake. They have a lot of power for their size. A truly great snake!!!
I didn't know their range went as far north as Washington State, hmmm, learn something new every day!
Jim Smith
Gopher Snake!!! This snake when alarmed will shake its tail to simulate the rattles of a rattlesnake.

Almost EVERY wild snake I've found will do this (well, the larger colubrines anyway).

I'd heard that pretty much any snake of north American extraction will rattle its tail, given sufficient provocation. All of my north American Elaphes will do it, despite being captive bred in the UK. There's something very sweet about a 3 foot cornsnake that's decided your proximity means you're obviously trying to steal the mouse it's just "caught", and is trying its hardest to convince you that it's a rattlesnake.
Almost EVERY wild snake I've found will do this (well, the largercolubrines anyway).

I'd heard that pretty much any snake of north American extraction will rattle its tail, given sufficient provocation.

I know (have seen) Lampropetis , Elaphe , and Pituophis do that. I'm sure many more do as well. They also can flatten or otherwise change the shape of their head, negating that whole "arrowhead shape = venomous" rule of thumb.
It's also cool to hear a big bull hissing from many feet away:

LukeCampbell (Email Removed) typed this:
Gopher Snake!!! This snake when alarmed will shake its tail ... but I don't thinkthey travel as far north as Washington.

Oh, they do. The great basin gopher snake is found in Eastern Washington at least as far north as Spokanne ... The pacific gopher snake has a listed range that enters Western Washington, although I have never seen any there. Luke

Hmmm.. so Luke, based on your knowledge of where I am and the range of this snake, it is possible this guy is wild and was NOT a released pet? His attitude tells me he's not been handled much (if any), and he is refusing to eat dead prey. He's covered with scars.

Seriously contemplating release. He's been in full quarantine from my collection... and he has great body weight and very nice poo. His remaining wounds (which do still look like rodent bites) are close to being healed... one more shed and he'll be fine.
I certainly don't want to put a wild caught indigenous snake up for adoption in PNHS! Not to mention the legality...
fr0glet
I'll try to consult my books tonight. A quick Google search indicates that Pacific gopher snakes are most common from California to northern Oregon, but have been found as far north as Brittish Columbia. If your snake is indeed a Pacific gopher, I'd think it was a native. I'm not terribly good at distinguishing the subspecies of Pituouphis catenifer, though, so you'll need to consult some other expert about this.

Another possibility was that it was a wild caught great basin gopher that someone picked up from across the mountains and brought back, then released ("no, Junior, you can't keep it. Let it go in the back yard"). Dealing with this scenario would open up a whole can of worms, though - where would you repatriate it to?
If it is anything other than a Pacific gopher or great basin gopher, I'd say it was almost certainly a released or escaped pet. You really need a positive ID on the subspecies. I wish I could be of more help here.

Best of luck,
Luke

To email me, take out the trash.
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