Extensive range throughout most of the southern half of the United States, and down to central Mexico.
This species prefers open areas such as fields, prairies, sparse pine forests, and sand dunes.
A long, thin snake with smooth scales and a narrow pointed face. It has large eyes with round pupils, and a conspicuously long, tapered tail that resembles a whip. It comes in a variety of colors to match the environment in which it lives, but is generally darker or more patterned at the front of its body, with a lighter tail. The pattern of the scales often creates a braided appearance. There are 6 subspecies and some have overlapping ranges. They range in size from 50-100 inches when full grown, and can weigh 2.5-4 pounds.
Learn more with Schechter Natural History's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians