Baja California Coachwhip

The Baja California Coachwhip (Masticophis fuliginosus) is probably the most common snake in La Ventana and the surrounding region. The photo below shows me holding a juvenile Coachwhip that I found in a brush pile a few weeks ago, in early January.
This slender, harmless, non-venomous snake is diurnal, quite fast and, like many snakes, elusive. 
Normally, adults have black-colored heads, with their bodies fading to gray towards the tail. Juveniles are more brownish, like the one in the photo. They are one of La Ventana’s longest snake species. Adults range in size from four feet up to eight feet long. 
Like many other local snakes, this species is most active during the summer months. During warm, sunny winter days, however, these snakes can be found out and about. Look for them in brush piles, under rocks and flat scraps like discarded wood planks, cardboard, carpet remnants, etc.
Overall, Baja California Coachwhips are beautiful and amazing snakes and, as long as we don’t bother them, they won’t bother us!