In The Field

In the spring time you can find California Kingsnakes under various types of cover, including man made cover. They use the cover for thermoregulation. Thermoregulation is made easy using surface cover as it allows the snake to warm itself via the sun without being exposed to predators. The sun warms the cover item, allowing the snake underneath to absorb the heat. Once the snake has reached it’s desired temperature, it can then retreat back down a hole or crack beneath the cover.

As found under a rock

Artificial cover or “AC”, such as plywood can be placed in the proper habitat, creating cover in areas where surface cover may not be present. It is important to note that you should take every precaution when in the field in Rattlesnake habitat as they will seek refuge under AC just like any non-venomous snake.

Though it can sometimes be very laborious, setting up artificial cover has many benefits for the animals as well as the hobbyist. The cover well provide an environment for prey items to dwell. This benefits the prey items, and helps to provide a good food source for the snakes. For us hobbyist, the cover provides a great way to observe Kingsnakes in the wild.

As found under piece of plywood

As found under particleboard in rodent nest

One of the greatest benefits of spending time in the field is the irreplaceable quality time with family and friends. There is nothing better than to see the look of excitement on a loved ones face when they discover a beautiful Kingsnake in the wild. It’s even better when they see some of the same animals year after year of visiting their favorite spot.

My son Jake with a King that was under concrete in 2012

My beautiful wife Dennise with a King she found under a piece of plywood in 2012

If you get to spend enough time in the field you may even be fortunate enough to find animals that are few and far between. Though all Kingsnakes are an amazing find, some are very special and unique. Immortalizing them with a simple photograph is a great way to document your find and compare notes from season to season.

(Photo Taken By Ryan Pear)
Finding this Yolo County melanistic King in 2013 is one of my favorite finds of all