Florida's Snakes thumbnail photo of snake identification guide cover

Eastern Indigo Snake
(Drymarchon couperi)


solid-colored icon

Eastern Indigo Snake

photo of eastern indigo snake showing iridescent blue-black body

close up photo of eastern indigo snake head showing reddish chin and throat

Photos by Dirk Stevenson (upper photo) and Kenney Krysko (FLMNH, lower photo). These photos may not be used for any purpose without the express written permission of the photographer.


Usually 5–6 ft. (max ~8.5 ft)


Large, heavy body is a glossy, almost iridescent blue-black. Body of juveniles is marked with thin whitish bands. Chin and throat are often reddish; belly is gray. Scales are smooth. This snake lays eggs. The Eastern Indigo Snake is federally protected as a threatened species.


Historically found throughout Florida but now rarely encountered, usually in dry upland habitats near water, including undisturbed pine flatwoods, sandhills, and hardwood forests. It may also be found along river corridors, brushy canal banks, and edges of cypress swamps and wet prairies. It often seeks refuge in tortoise burrows.


Frogs, lizards, snakes (including venomous species), small turtles and turtle eggs, birds, rats

map showing eastern indigo snakes are found throughout Florida

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

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