Eastern Ratsnake Conservation - Least Concern
Scientific Name
Tantilla coronata
Parts of Southern Virginia
Also Called
Black-Headed Snake, Tantilla
Tan or Brown Body With a Black Head with a White Stripe
Small Insects Such as Termites, Worms Centipedes, and Spiders
Litter Size
1 - 3 Eggs per Birth
Life Span
8 - 10 Inches

Quick Links for Southeastern Crowned Snake

Southeastern Crowned Snake

Southeastern Crowned Snake Description

Southeastern Crowned Snake Appearance

This snake is a tan to dark brown snake with a black head and a white stripe around its neck. Sometimes this snake can have a white spot somewhat underneath its eye.
Juveniles will have the same colors and patterns as adults.


This snake is normally between 8 to 10 inches long, however, the record length for this snake is about 13 inches. The record found in Virginia is 9.9 inches.

Juveniles tend to be more than 3 inches long.

Southeastern Crowned Snake in Hand

Pay attention to the black head, the ring is usually the same color as the rest of the body but lighter.

Southeastern Crowned Snake Behavior

These snakes are secretive and prefers not to be seen by any potential threats. As such, finding these snakes can be rather rare.

These snakes tend to be active during the evening, and during the day they can be found under rocks and debris.

These snakes do not bite when handled, and will attempt to flee into the sand if you try to capture it.

It is illegal in Virginia to keep Wild Snakes as pets

Range and Habitat of The Southeastern Crowned Snake


These snakes can be found in southern Virginia. Most notably around the Lynchburg and west of the Norfolk area.

In the rest of the United States, they can be found all throughout the south. But they seem to avoid southern Georgia and Florida except for the panhandle.


These snakes, along with the Worm Snake prefer sandy or loose soil, which they can be observed “swimming” in to escape predators. They also like areas with cover, which means that you can frequently find them under rocks, or leaves.

Southeastern Crowned Snake Map Range

They can only be found in small pockets of Virginia.


They like to eat small insects such as worms, larvae, centipedes, termites, and even some spiders.

Reproduction and Young


Mating for these snakes occurs in the spring to the fall. If the female mates too late then she will carry the sperm until the spring to lay her eggs then.

Eggs and Young

Females will lay their eggs in June or July, and will hatch in the fall.
Juveniles will have the same coloration and markings as adults and they are usually longer than 3 inches long.
Southeastern Crowned Snake

These snakes are very docile, and will not bite if handled.

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