"Common" large snakes

Northern Pacific Rattlesnake

Key identifying traits of rattlesnakes include the following;

  • Large, dull, keeled scales
  • Relatively low saturation, although some yellow, orange, and brown tints are common
  • A heavy and wide body
  • Large, contrasted blotches on their back to camouflage them well in grassy & rocky environments

Additionally, their heads are much larger than their (rather small) necks, and feature elliptical pupils

Pacific Gopher Snake

Key identifying traits of gopher snakes include the following;

  • Large, glossy scales
  • Typically quite saturated, frequently with an orange tint
  • Adults can grow to over 4 feet in length, and while the body is fairly wide in adult snakes, they remain more slender than the heavier-bodied rattlesnake
  • Pattern features smaller, but more frequent blotches along the back

Gopher snakes have heads that are about the same size as their neck — however, when defending themselves, gopher snakes will flatten their heads slightly to make it appear larger. They’ll also have round pupils, instead of elliptical pupils.

California King Snake

Key identifying traits of king snakes include the following;

  • Medium sized, glossy scales
  • Typically high-contrast black (or brown) and white pattern
  • Adults typically grow to 3 feet and have average body widths
  • Pattern is typically radial (round) striping around the snake, although king snakes also go through a striped phase

King snakes will have heads that are the same width as the neck typically, but like most snakes, can flatten them out when in defensive posture. Kings also feature round pupils.