Found 12 white snakes

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key point:

  • California kingsnakes have contrasting colored stripes, spots, or rings. These kingsnakes can be brown and red, or black and white.
  • Proboscis snakes prefer dry, arid habitats such as deserts and scrublands, where they prey on lizards and amphibians.
  • Bandy bandy snakes are venomous but rarely attack humans. These snakes are snake-eating and only eat other snakes, especially blind snakes.

Pure white is uncommon in nature, especially for snakes. Although unusual, some snakes are white in color and pattern. Many all-white snakes in the wild are the result of rare genetic mutations, such as albinism and albinism.

However, these glowing white snakes stand out and are easily seen by predators. However, despite their rarity (or because of it), white snakes still hold a strong appeal to many people and are coveted in the pet world.

Let's take a look at some of the beautiful wild and captive white snakes in the world today.

1. California Kingsnake

best pet snakes
California king snakes (Lampropeltis californiae) are called king snakes because they sometimes eat other snakes, as do king cobras.

© Creeping Stuff/Shutterstock.com

The California kingsnake is a subspecies of the common kingsnake. This is a very striking snake with contrasting colored stripes, spots or rings. California kingsnakes can be brown and red, or black and white. California kingsnakes come in many different colored morphs, both in the wild and from selective breeding.

A typical black and white California kingsnake has a dark brown or black body with a distinct white or buff ring or band. These strips can be thin and delicate, or wide and more prominent than the black base. There is also a black spot on top of the snake's head with a distinct white "T" in the middle. These snakes are common as pets, but they can also be found in the wild in northern Mexico and the western United States.

An extremely popular pet, the California kingsnake comes in several color morphs that are also selectively bred in captivity. These snakes may be black or white, with black or white rings, spots, or long stripes running along their bodies.

For example, the reverse-spotted California kingsnake is almost entirely white with two rows of black spots on its back. The striped California kingsnake, on the other hand, has a white belly and a black back with a bright white stripe down the middle of the back.

2. Bandi Bandi Snake

bandi bandy snake with hoop
Bandy-Bandy Snake has unique defensive abilities including "blink fusion" and curling its body into a ring.

©Ken Griffiths/Shutterstock.com

The Bandy-bandy is a snake endemic to Australia. These snakes have very smooth, shiny scales with black and white (or yellowish) banded patterns along the length of their bodies. Bandy-bandy snakes are typically between 20-30 inches long and have a round, elongated body and small head.

There are six species of banded snakes that live in different habitats and regions of Australia. These snakes are venomous but generally non-aggressive and are rarely encountered by humans. Bandi bandy snakes are snake-eating and only eat other snakes, especially blind snakes.

Bandy bandy snakes' bright, contrasting colors don't match their surroundings. Instead, these snakes burrow under soil, rocks, and logs for protection, and are usually only out at night. Bandy snakes have two main methods of defense when faced with predators. The snake moves rapidly and randomly, causing its stark black and white colors to "flicker" and cause confusion, especially in low light conditions. This display is called "flicker fusion".

This snake's second line of defense is quite unique. When threatened, the banded snake can coil its body into a "ring" shape, making it appear larger and hopefully more menacing to its predators. For this reason, bandy-bandy snakes are sometimes called "bandy snakes".

3. Common King Snake (or Oriental King Snake)

Eastern King Snake
The common kingsnake (or eastern kingsnake) can grow up to four feet long.

© iStock.com/JasonOndreicka

The common kingsnake, or eastern kingsnake, is an elegant black snake marked with thin white rings or chains along the length of its body. Because of this, it is also sometimes referred to as the "chain king snake." Depending on the snake's habitat, these white bands can sometimes be wider. Their bellies are white or yellowish with a black "chain" or "zigzag" pattern. On average, the common kingsnake is between 36-48 inches in length. These snakes live in the southeastern United States, where they prey on small mammals and snakes.

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4. Proboscis

Proboscis
Proboscis has no instinct to bite. These snakes emit a foul-smelling musk when they feel threatened.

©Jason Mintzer/Shutterstock.com

The proboscis has a white or cream body with red and black stripes or spots on its back. These criss-cross straps are dotted with tiny white or cream dots, giving the snake a somewhat pixelated look in its color and pattern. Sometimes these snakes are only black and white, with little or no red.

Proboscis snakes are 20-30 inches long and have a distinctly elongated, upturned snout. These snakes live in some areas of Mexico as well as the western United States. Proboscis snakes prefer dry, arid habitats such as deserts and scrublands, where they prey on lizards and amphibians. These snakes are non-venomous and rarely bite humans.

5. Florida Pine Snake

florida pine snake
The Florida pine snake, while not venomous, will crush its prey.

© iStock.com/JasonOndreicka

The Florida pine snake is a large snake, measuring between 48-84 inches in length. This snake is white (sometimes tan or rust colored) with dark spots. Sometimes a Florida pine snake may have no black spots and be almost all white or cream in color, and may have a few black spots here and there. These snakes have small heads and pointed noses.

The scales above the snake's eyes are slightly raised, which looks like the snake is "angry". Like its name, the Florida pine snake lives in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Alabama. In Florida, these snakes are considered a "threatened species" and are protected by state law.

6. Crab-eating water snake (or white-bellied mangrove snake)

Everyone needs something in this day and age.

Go to your local mangrove and hand feed a crab to a helpful snake 🐍🦀

Unlucky crab, happy white-bellied mangrove snake (Fordonia lucobalia) – Darwin, Northern Territory. #wildoz pic.twitter.com/DIQ9FHGJIP

— Chris Jolly (@eco_jolly) April 5, 2020

Crab-eating water snakes (or white-bellied mangrove snakes) come in a wide variety of colors and patterns. For example, in South Asia, the snake is usually gray or black with some dark spots. However, in New Guinea and Australia, these snakes can be almost any color, from black and white piebald to yellow, orange or red with black and white spots.

Crab-eating water snakes can only grow to a maximum length of 35 inches, but their bodies are surprisingly strong. Their strong bodies help them hunt their preferred prey: crabs, shrimp, and mud lobsters.

The crab-eating water snake is one of the few species that eats its prey piece by piece rather than swallowing it whole. The snake uses its powerful body to catch crabs and injects them with paralyzing venom.

When the crabs succumb, the snake deliberately pulls off each of the crabs' legs, eating them one at a time. Crab-eating water snakes will eat the bodies of small crabs; however, with larger crabs, they will only eat the legs.

7. Ghost Snake

ghost snake
Ghost snakes are elusive and rare.

© reptiles4all/Shutterstock.com

The ghost snake is a relatively new species of snake, having first appeared in Ancarana National Park in northern Madagascar in 2014. Its scientific name is " Madagascarophis lolo ". ' Madagascarophis' is for several species of 'cat-eyed' snakes from Madagascar that have cat-like pupils that are vertical. " Lolo " (pronounced "luu luu") is Malagasy and means "ghost".

These ghostly snakes are named for their elusive behavior, as well as their coloration. These snakes are literally ghostly ghosts rather than living snakes. The ghost snake is extremely pale, with light gray and white patterns all over its body.

Genetic Mutations in Snakes: Albino vs. Albino Snakes

Albino snakes have red eyes and a white body.

© fivespots/Shutterstock.com

In addition to these "naturally" white snakes, there are often anomalies — namely, naturally colored snakes that are colorless due to a rare genetic mutation. For example, albino snakes lack melanin in their genetics. Melanin is one of the pigments that produce color in snakes, so albino snakes are usually white.

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However, there are other pigments that create color, such as the red or orange hues of carotenoids. Since carotenoid pigments are not affected by the albinism mutation, albino snakes are white, but also have pale pink or yellowish undertones. Plus, albino snakes are easy to spot because of their red eyes.

Albino snakes, on the other hand, have a greater range of variability in color (or lack thereof). Albinism affects the production of all types of pigmentation in snake genetics, including melanin and carotenoids. However, the amount of pigment affected by the mutation varied with each snake. Some snakes have no color at all, while others only partially lose color.

For example, one albino snake might be 100 percent white, while another snake might have white spots or spots, and yet another might only have pastel colors. One of the easiest ways to tell the difference between an albino and an albino snake is by looking at the color of the snake's eyes. If the snake's eyes are red, it is albino. If a snake has blue or dark eyes, it is albino.

8. Albino and Albino Mutant Wild Snakes

Both albinism and albino mutations occur in nature. For example, the Australian slate gray snake has a dark brown body. However, albino gray snakes were found in the Northern Territory in 2017. This snake has a beautiful and white body, with a pair of black and round eyes.

In 2014, the San Diego Zoo introduced Adhira, an extremely rare white one-eyed cobra. Her name means "lightning" in Hindi, alluding to her pure white complexion. Adhira is an albino cobra (not an albino cobra) because her eyes are dark instead of red.

To celebrate Sssserpent Day, we traveled back in time to 2014 when we adopted an albino one-eyed cobra roaming Thousand Oaks. She was later named Adhira, which means "lightning" in Hindi. Our very own ⚡️White Lightning⚡️ can still be seen here. #SerpentDay pic.twitter.com/Lq9CxgIRjk

— San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance (@sandiegozoo) February 1, 2019

The white snake of the pet world

Breeders around the world have spent years creating a variety of white and patterned captive snakes. Today, you can find many types of white patterned and white snakes as pets. Here are just a few examples:

9. Ball Python

Pinstripe boa constrictor
How many colors a spotted ball python has depends on its individual genetics.

©Deb Davis/Shutterstock.com

Blue-eyed Lucy is a very popular albino variant of the ball python, a snake native to parts of Africa. The pristine white bodies of these snakes accentuate their striking blue eyes, like the perfect combination of glistening snow and biting ice.

Ivory ball pythons, on the other hand, are also white, but with a more creamy ivory hue. The spotted ball python has very distinct white patches interspersed with the colors and patterns typical of ball pythons. It almost looks like a python that has been strategically painted white in a few places, or a colorful python that has accidentally fallen into some white paint.

10. Corn Snake

palm corn snake
Palmetto Corn Snakes are a very popular color variant.

© Petlin Dmitry/Shutterstock.com

Corn snakes are very popular pets because they are docile, hardy and relatively easy to care for. These snakes come in endless colors and patterns, including white of course. For example, albino corn snakes have red eyes and white bodies with pink or peach patterns and undertones. Blizzard corn snakes, on the other hand, are bright white without these undertones.

These snakes may have red or black eyes, depending on their lineage. Another popular color morph is the palm corn snake. These snakes are also bright white, but they also have tiny colored spots scattered along the length of their bodies. Corn snakes are found in the eastern United States, from southern New Jersey to Florida, and parts of Louisiana and Kentucky.

11. Reticulated python

Largest Snake: Reticulated Python
The reticulated python is one of the most popular snake species among reptile keepers.

© Opayaza12/Shutterstock.com

The reticulated python is the longest snake in the world, reaching lengths of 20-32 feet! These snakes are also the third heaviest in the world and are best suited for experienced snake owners. Phantom variant reticulated pythons have reduced color and patterning of their original colors, resulting in snakes that are either pure white or have white patterns on a pinkish-white body.

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Reticulated pythons typically live 12-20 years and are native to South and Southeast Asia, Indonesia, and parts of India and China.

12. Western hognose snake

The albino variant of the western hognose snake is pure white but has black eyes.

© fivespots/Shutterstock.com

The Western Hognose Snake is another very popular pet in the United States, with over 60 different captive color morphs. Albino hognose snakes are white with pink or orange undertones and have red eyes. The super arctic western hognose snake, on the other hand, has a creamy white body with black-edged brown spots.

Coral snow hognose snakes look similar to albino snakes, but they also have additional pale pink and purple patterns on their bodies. The life span of wild western hognose snakes is 9-19 years, and the life span of captive hognose snakes is slightly longer, 15-20 years old.

different kinds of white animals

arctic fox baby
The arctic fox, also known as the arctic fox, is a small fox native to the arctic regions of the northern hemisphere. They have a white fluffy coat.

©bhavdip12/Shutterstock.com

White animals have always held a special place in the human imagination, symbolizing purity, innocence and spiritual transcendence.

While many animals are white, some are particularly striking for their snowy coat color.

Here are some examples of different kinds of white animals:

  • Arctic Fox – The arctic fox, also known as the arctic fox, is a small species of fox native to the arctic regions of the northern hemisphere. Their thick, shaggy fur is an excellent insulator, allowing them to survive the harsh, cold conditions of the arctic. In winter, their fur turns all white, blending with the snow and ice, providing them with effective camouflage.
  • Snowy Owl – The Snowy Owl is a large owl native to the arctic regions of North America and Eurasia. They are one of the few owl species that are active during the day and are well adapted to life in the frozen tundra. Their distinctive white plumage helps them blend into snowy landscapes, while their large, round eyes provide excellent vision for hunting small mammals such as lemmings and voles.
  • Beluga Whale – The beluga whale, also known as the white whale, is a small cetacean that lives in arctic and subarctic waters of the northern hemisphere. They are easily identifiable by their pure white skin and lack the dorsal fin of most other whale species. Beluga whales are highly social animals that use a range of vocalizations, including whistles, chirps and clicks, to communicate with each other.
  • White Bengal Tiger – The White Bengal Tiger is a rare variant of the Bengal Tiger that carries a recessive gene that makes its coat all white. They are not albinism, but a naturally occurring color distortion. White Bengal tigers are mostly found in zoos and game reserves because their white color makes them very conspicuous and vulnerable to predation in the wild.

All in all, these are just a few examples of the many different species of white animals found around the world. White animals can be found in nearly every ecosystem on Earth, from the frozen tundra of the Arctic to the lush tropical forests of Asia. While they may be rare and elusive, they are a testament to the beauty and diversity of the natural world.

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Texas rat snakes sometimes occur as white albino snakes; they are especially popular in the pet trade but are rarely seen in the wild.
Texas rat snakes sometimes occur as white albino snakes; they are especially popular in the pet trade but are rarely seen in the wild.

© Alexei Kuznetsov/Shutterstock.com


about the author


For 10 years I have been a professional writer with a special focus on nature, wildlife, ethnozoology and the human-animal relationship. My areas of interest include human-animal studies, ecocriticism, wildlife conservation, pets, and animal behavior. I graduated from Brigham Young University with a master's degree in comparative studies, focusing on the relationship between humans and the natural world. In my spare time, I enjoy exploring the outdoors, watching movies, reading, creating art, and taking care of my pets. Nothing makes me happier than spending a day in the company of animals.

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