Snakes of Athens-Clarke, GA

Athens-Clarke snake

Welcome to! I am David, a snake enthusiast living in Athens-Clarke, GA. Many people don't know that Athens-Clarke is in fact full of snakes! You just need to know where to find them - they can often be shy and elusive. Some Georgia snake species are more common outside of the city limits, in different parts of Clarke County GA, but many types of snakes are indeed common in the more urban parts of Athens-Clarke. This guide is meant to help educate you about the beautiful snakes of Athens-Clarke, and to help you identify the most common snakes of Athens-Clarke, as well as the venomous snakes of Athens-Clarke that you should learn to recognize and avoid. If you want more detail, click here for my complete list of ALL snake species in Athens-Clarke. Remember the following:

  • Most snakes of Athens-Clarke are harmless and don't want to encounter you
  • Venomous snakes exist but are uncommon in Athens-Clarke, Georgia
  • Snakes eat rats and mice and are a valuable part of the Georgia ecosystem
  • Never kill a snake - if you leave a snake alone, it will leave you alone.

Common Snake Species in Athens-Clarke

Athens-Clarke snake Common garter snake: These snakes are usually 18 to 26 inches in length, and prefer wetlands, moist environments, and water bodies where they hunt down and eat amphibians and aquatic animals. Garter snakes are also found on grasslands, in suburbs, and gardens as they snack on slugs, earthworms, lizards, etc. These snakes have slim gray, brown, or green bodies with bright yellow stripes.

Athens-Clarke snake Kingsnakes: Black kingsnakes, mole kingsnakes, and eastern kingsnakes are all different types of kingsnakes found in Georgia. The black kingsnake has a shiny solid black color, the mole kingsnake is gray or brown with dark brown or reddish-brown blotches along its body while the eastern kingsnake is black with alternating rows of white or pale yellow narrow cross-bands along its body. These snakes have an average length of 20 to 48 inches and have a wide range of habitats including forests, farmlands, wetlands, and suburbs.

Athens-Clarke snake Gray rat snake: This is a medium-sized reptile of 40 to 70 inches long with a slender pale gray background color and dark elongated blotches on its body. It lives in almost any environment including streams, fields, treetops, sheds, barns, etc., where they search for their favorite meal, rodents. These snakes are not venomous but will release a foul-smelling musk, they rarely bite.

Athens-Clarke snake Brown snake: This a semi-aquatic reptile with a pale to dark brown base color and dark brown square patterns on the upper body while the underbelly is pale with brown blotches and black curves. It has a fairly heavy body that measures between 30-60 inches. They are commonly found in rivers, canals, streams, and other flowing water bodies.

Athens-Clarke snake Eastern milk snake: This is a medium-sized non-venomous snake with a light gray or tan color and black-edged brown or reddish-brown splotches along its body. Eastern milk snakes have slender bodies that grow as long as 24 to 35 inches. They are very common in Georgia and are found in a wide range of habitats.

Athens-Clarke snake Corn snake: The corn snake is a medium-sized snake of 30 to 48 inches long with an orange or reddish-brown color with black-edged, reddish-brown, or dark brown square patterns. They are mostly found in dry lands, pinewoods, and other terrestrial habitats including barns. These snakes are known to show up in people’s homes in their search for rodents, but they are harmless and pose no threat to humans.

Athens-Clarke snake Scarlet kingsnake: This is a medium-sized non-venomous snake that looks very much like the venomous coral snake. Scarlet kingsnakes are tri-colored with red, yellow, and black bands alternating across its body, just like the coral. The difference is that on the scarlet snake, the red band touches the black while on the coral snake the red touches yellow. Scarlet snakes are found in forests and sandy habitats, and they rarely bite.

Venomous Snake Species in Athens-Clarke

Athens-Clarke snake Timber rattlesnakes: These are large heavy-bodied snakes with gray, olive green, pale yellow, or tan background colors and dark blotches. These snakes usually measure between 35 - 60 inches and reside mainly in Georgia mountains where they hide in rock crevices, debris piles, and burrows.

Athens-Clarke snake Pygmy rattlesnakes: With a maximum length of 31 inches, the pygmy rattlesnake is the smallest of the species. They are typically gray or tan with a series of pale-edged dark blotches, and sometimes a reddish-brown is seen down the center of their backs. These snakes reside in sandy hills and pine forests.

Athens-Clarke snake Pygmy rattlesnakes: The copperhead has a gray, light brown, or rusty color with dark brown splotches shaped like an hourglass down the length of its stout body. It grows to a maximum length of 54 inches (and no shorter than 36 inches), they can be seen basking on rocky hillsides, river edges, swamps, and rocks.

If you're unsure, you can email me a photo of the snake at and I will email you back with the snake's species. If you found a snake skin, read my Found a Skin? page, and you can email me a photo of the skin, and I'll identify the snake for you. If you need professional Athens-Clarke snake removal help, click my Get Help page, or see the below website sponsor I found, who provides that service.

Remember, the term is not poisonous snakes of Athens-Clarke, it's venomous snakes of Athens-Clarke. Poison is generally something you eat, and venom is injected into you. That said, dangerous snakes are very rare in Athens-Clarke. The few venomous snakes of Clarke County are rarely seen. But they are commonly misidentified, so learn about all the snake species of Athens-Clarke in order to correctly identify them. These snakes are usually also found in the surrounding towns of Winterville, Hull, Watkinsville, Bogart, Arnoldsville, Bishop, Colbert, Nicholson, High Shoals, Statham, Farmington, Crawford, Danielsville, Ila, Comer, Lexington, Bostwick, Commerce, Good Hope, Maxeys, Bethlehem, Winder, Stephens, and the surrounding areas.

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