Rat snakes possess black scales on their backs with shiny appearances while their underside is lighter. Adult black rat snakes have few known predators other than humans. If harassed, it will produce a foul-smelling musk that serves to deter predators. It is the longest snake native to the United States, ranging in size from 60-84 inches and is entirely shiny bluish-black color, including the belly. The Black Rat Snake is common in Maryland. Feeding. However, they can strike a bite if they feel threatened, provoked, or irritated by someone. However, they may bite, hiss or produce musk if they feel extremely threatened, particularly if they are picked up. Rat snakes are members – along with kingsnakes, milk snakes, vine snakes and indigo snakes – of the subfamily Colubrinae of the family Colubridae.They are medium to large constrictors and are found throughout much of the Northern Hemisphere.They feed primarily on rodents and birds.With some species exceeding 2.5 m (8 ft) in total length, they can occupy top levels of some food chains.

Black rat snakes mostly eat small rodents, such as mice, rats, moles and chipmunks.

The black rat snake grows to three to six feet in length. Our largest snake. Black rat snakes are most vulnerable to predators when they are young and on the smaller side. An adult snake is anywhere between 4 and 7 feet. A copperhead has four long fangs for injecting venom into his prey. No, black rat snakes are neither venomous not poisonous. The eastern indigo snake is a massive, black snake. When frightened, a black rat snake will freeze. Young black rat snakes, called hatchlings, are light gray with black blotches along the back. Maybe black/rat snakes aren’t poisonous, but that doesn’t mean harmless. It is very common to observe a black Rat Snake if you are a farmer because black rat snakes always eat rats, mice, and other pests. Unlike poisonous snakes, black rat snakes do not possess fangs. Are Black Rat Snakes Poisonous? Black Rat Snake. You may be startled by them sunning themselves in the middle of the towpath. Range. Black snakes (rat snakes) typically will ‘befriend’ these snakes during the colder months to stay warm and share dens. Body Characteristics.

Foxes, raccoons, owls, and hawks commonly eat them. However large, this snake is more of a gentle giant than you might imagine and is usually not aggressive. The rat snake is one of the largest of the most common Maryland snakes and can grow up to 80 inches in length.

The bite of a rat snake looks like a small scratch which is shaped like a horseshoe. But 8 steps later my dog began to limp.

A black rat snake also defends itself by vibrating its tail, which can fool a predator into thinking it is a rattlesnake. Instead, they have several small teeth.

Life Cycle. I didn’t see it happen, or notice even my dog reacting to it. This morning my dog & I were standing at the edge of our woods in Kentucky when a black snake bite my dog. Maybe black/rat snakes aren’t poisonous, but that doesn’t mean harmless. But 8 steps later my dog began to limp. A plain shiny black back with weakly keeled scales.