The California Kingsnake and rattlesnake roam the grounds of our complex. We have not yet encountered any rattlesnakes, but the kingsnake has greeted us twice now. The first time was right at our front door when we had just gotten home. Nick was jamming the key into the door, oblivious to the snake when I saw it less than a foot away from him, its body rolled up like a hose, head sticking up as I screamed from being startled. It stuck out its tongue and hissed, then backed away, slithering into the brush. We didn’t know then that it was a kingsnake, but the second time we saw it was a variant of the previous, perched up next to our neighbor’s patio. This isn’t the first time our neighbor has had a snake near his patio. The first time was a rattlesnake. It made its way onto the patio and luckily his screen door was closed or else it would have gotten inside his home. This scenario has happened before to other neighbors who were greeted by the venomous snake inside their apartment. A good reason to keep those screen doors closed!
We learned that the kingsnake is harmless and nonvenomous. Although it didn’t acquire its name as the “king” for nothing. This king may be just what we want if a rattlesnake is nearby because the king eats rattlesnakes. The kingsnake does not hunt down rattlesnakes, but if they’re hungry enough they can attack and consume a rattlesnake whole. If you’re interested in a visual, check out the clip below from Discovery Channel.