Other common names

Brown Snake

Basic description

Most adult Dekay’s brownsnakes are about 9-13 inches (23-33 cm) in total length. These snakes are small, thin, and may be grayish-brown or light brown. Adults have a faint light stripe running down the middle of the back that is boarded on both sides by parallel rows of small black spots, which may be connected across the back. The back of the neck and top of the head are dark brown, and there is a light band across the back of the head. Juveniles are dark brown with a whitish band across back of head.

small brown snake on fiber
Dekay’s brownsnake. Photo courtesy mariapierce/iNaturalist


Dekay’s brownsnakes are found in the Panhandle west of the Aucilla River area.

Assessment of risk to people and pets

Non-venomous. Dekay’s brownsnakes are not dangerous to people or pets.

Comparison with other species

Ringneck snake
Photo courtesy of Luke Smith.

Ring-necked snake (Diadophis punctata)

brown snake coiled on a log
Photo courtesy J.D. Wilson

Rough earthsnake (Haldea striatula)

red striped snake on brown leaves
Photo courtesy of coluberconstrictor/iNaturalist

Red-bellied snake (Storeria occipitomaculata)

Florida brownsnake
Photo courtesy of Luke Smith.

Florida brownsnake (Storeria victa)

pale gray striped snake
Photo courtesy of cassiethegardener/iNaturalist

Smooth earthsnake (Virginia valeriae)

Share your observations

You can help scientists better understand the biology and distribution of this species by sharing your observations. Send photos or videos of interesting observations, along with associated information, by emailing the herpetology staff at the Florida Museum for documentation in the Museum’s Herpetology Master Database. You can also post your observations on iNaturalist.

Additional helpful information

Do you have snakes around your house? Learn how to safely co-exist with snakes.

Still have questions about snakes or identifications? Feel free to email the herpetology staff at the Florida Museum with your questions or feedback on this profile.

Banner photo courtesy mariapierce/iNaturalist/CC-BY 4.0. Please credit any photographers on the page and see our copyright policy.