Florida Brown Snake

NON-VENOMOUS

Storeria victa
Storeria victa
 

Scientific name: Storeria victa (HAY 1892)
* Currently accepted name

Synonym:
* scientific names used through time

  • Tropidonotus dekayi – HOLBROOK 1842
  • Tropidonatus [sic] dekayi – HALLOWELL 1847
  • Storeria dekayi – BAIRD & GIRARD 1853
  • Ischnognathus dekayi – DUMÉRIL, BIBRON & DUMÉRIL 1854
  • Storeria tropica – COPE 1885
  • Storeria victa – HAY 1892
  • Storeria dekayi victa – CONANT 1958

Description Average adult size is 7-10 inches (17.7-25.4 cm), record is 19 inches (48.26 cm). Adults are small, thin, and may be rusty-brown or grayish, with a faint light mid-dorsal stripe and fleckings on the sides. There is a light band across the back of head. There is a dark spot on the upper lip scales under the eye. The belly is tannish to pinkish, with black dots along the edges. The scales are keeled and there are 15 dorsal scale rows at midbody. The pupil is round.

bw_storeria_dekayi.jpg

A. Top of the head
B. Underside of the head (chin and throat)
C. Front (face view) of the head
D. Side of the head
E. Keeled scales
F. Elongated scales below the tail (subcaudal scales) are typically divided

Range:In Florida, the Florida Brown Snake occurs throught the peninsula and Upper Florida Keys, there are disjunct populations in the Lower Florida Keys. Outside of Florida, it occurs into southeastern Georgia.

Habitat: Commonly found near hardwood hammocks, pinelands, bogs, marshes, ponds, swamps, and sloughs.

Storeria victa
Storeria victa
Storeria victa
Storeria victa
 

Comments: HARMLESS (Non-Venomous). The Florida Brown Snake is a terrestrial burrower, found under logs, rocks, and other debris. It feeds on slugs, snails, and earthworms, but occasionally eats small fishes, frogs, and salamanders.

Comparison with other species: The Midland Brown Snake (Storeria dekayi wrightorum) may have dark lines across the back connecting the black spots along the mid-dorsal stripe. The Redbelly Snake (Storeria occipitomaculata) has a light spot under the eye, a light band across the back of neck (not head), and sometimes a red belly. The Ringneck Snake (Diadophis punctatus) is solid grayish-black, with a complete neck ring and black spotted yellow-orange belly.

Storeria victa
Storeria victa