Common Name

Scientific Name

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Photo by Breck Bartholomew
Photo Copyright Breck Bartholomew

The common kingsnake, Lampropeltis getula, occurs in much of the United States and Mexico. In Utah, the common kingsnake occurs only in the southern portion of the state.

Common kingsnakes can be found in many types of habitat, including desert scrub areas, agricultural areas, woodlands, and deserts. As with most reptiles, this snake is active during warm periods and inactive during cold times of the year.

Females typically lay one clutch of two to twenty eggs per year during the summer months; eggs hatch in two to three months. Common kingsnakes eat reptiles, small mammals, and birds, as well as the eggs of both birds and reptiles. Interestingly, the common kingsnake is one of the few Utah animals that preys upon rattlesnakes.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Stebbins, R. C. 1985. A field guide to western reptiles and amphibians. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. 336 pp.