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Lampropeltis confusion...

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Posted by Kenny Wray on January 23, 2003 at 07:55:07:

In Reply to: Lampropeltis confusion posted by jwoolard on January 23, 2003 at 07:37:30:

The subspecies once known as Lampropeltis getula brooksi (South Florida Kingsnake) was always kind of shaky, at best, and since has been demonstrated to be an invalid subspecies. These animals are highly variable in this area of Florida, with only occasional specimens that are of an intense yellow-ground color and similar colored banding, and are actually just Lampropeltis getula floridana (Florida Kingsnakes). The South Florida Kingsnake was described as a snake that had a very yellow background color and only slightly different shade of yellow banding. This gives the snakes an almost unicolored appearance as it is sometimes hard to distinguish the banding. Their eyes also have a high degree of yellow in the iris. It was shown, however, that many of the kingsnakes in South Florida are actually a varying color, ranging from a dark chocolate color (almost black) to this yellow color, but not in any particular population (i.e. no geographic areas) and that some of the yellowest specimens on record actually come from other, distant parts of the state (ex: Tampa, Gainesville, Jacksonville). Therefore they are nothing more than a color phase, so you will commonly see them for sale as Brooks Kingsnakes, South Florida Kingsnakes, Florida Kingsnakes "Brooks Phase", Yellow Brooks Kingsnakes, etc. But these names are to entice buyers only, as they are not a true race (= subspecies), but rather they are mere color morphs. Hope that helps...
Later, KW

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