Florida's Snakes thumbnail photo of snake identification guide cover

Black Racer or Blacksnake
(Coluber constrictor)


blotch icon
Blotched juvenile

solid-colored icon
Solid-colored adult

Black Racer or Blacksnake - blotched juvenile (upper image)
and solid-colored adult (lower image)

photo of juvenile black racer

photo of adult black racer

 Photos by Dr. Steve A. Johnson (UF). These photos may not be used without the express written permission of the photographer


Usually 2–4.5 ft. (max 6 ft.); juveniles usually blotched until they reach 1–2 ft.


Young Black Racers have obvious blotches that gradually fade to solid gray-black by adulthood. Body of juveniles (< 2 ft.) is gray with irregular reddish-brown blotches that fade with age. Body of adults is solid black; chin and throat are white. South of Lake Okeechobee, body of adults may be bluish, greenish, or gray. In the Apalachicola River Basin, the chin and throat of adults may be tan. Juveniles are often mistaken for the venomous Pygmy Rattlesnake but are much thinner and have smooth scales and round eye pupils. This snake lays eggs.


Found throughout Florida in a wide variety of habitats, usually near a source of fresh water; prefers areas with low shrubs. It is commonly seen in urbanized areas among landscape plants.


Insects, frogs, toads, salamanders, lizards, snakes, birds and bird eggs, moles, mice, rats

map showing black racers are found throughout Florida

Map by Monica E. McGarrity - may be used freely for education.

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