What Is A Chicken Snake? [The Surprising Answer!]

Do you know what a chicken snake is? If not, you’re not alone. These slithery creatures are not as well-known as other types of snakes, but they are just as interesting.

It can be really hard to choose the right pet, especially when there are so many options. Do you want a dog? A cat? A fish? Why not try a chicken snake?

What Is A Chicken Snake? 

Chicken snakes are nonvenomous snakes that are commonly found in North America. There are five snake species that can be classified as chicken snakes: the Eastern Rat Snake, Black Rat Snake, Gray Rat Snake, Corn snake, and Northern Pine snake. They get their name from their tendency to eat chicken eggs, although they will also consume small animals. 

These snakes typically grow to be between 3and 6 feet long, and they are typically brown or gray in color.

Do you know what a chicken snake is? This slithery creature can be found in North America, and it often feeds on small animals like rodents and birds. In this article, we will provide everything you need to know about chicken snakes. 

We will discuss their physical characteristics, diet, behavior, and more!

We consulted with experts and compiled the most important information about chicken snakes. We also visited several forums and read through many user-submitted stories to get a well-rounded view of these creatures.

What Is a Chicken Snake?

What Is A Chicken Snake 1 1 What Is A Chicken Snake? [The Surprising Answer!]

Chicken snakes are a type of nonvenomous snake that can be found in North America. These snakes are often gray or brown in color, and they typically have black stripes running down their backs. Chicken snakes typically grow to be between two and four feet long, but some may reach lengths of up to six feet.


Chicken snakes are opportunistic feeders, which means that they will eat whatever food is available to them. 

Small animals like rodents and birds are their preferred prey, but they will also eat lizards, frogs, eggs, and carrion. In some cases, chicken snakes have been known to kill chickens!


Chicken snakes are generally nocturnal creatures, meaning that they are most active at night. During the day, they typically hide in burrows or beneath rocks. 

When they are hunting, chicken snakes will use their keen sense of smell to track down their prey. Once they have located their prey, they will strike quickly and attempt to constrict it.


Chicken snakes can be found in a variety of habitats throughout North America. They are commonly found in forests, swamps, and marshes. In some areas, chicken snakes may even inhabit human dwellings!

What Does a Chicken Snake Look Like?

What Is A Chicken Snake What Is A Chicken Snake? [The Surprising Answer!]

Chicken snakes typically have a solid brown or tan body, with lighter colored blotches that can sometimes resemble the pattern on a chicken’s feathers. These snakes also have distinctive dark bands around their eyes and down their backs, which can help to distinguish them from other types of snakes in the area. 

While they do have small teeth, chicken snakes don’t pose much of a threat to humans, as they rarely bite and are relatively small in size. Some people might encounter them when cleaning out an old barnyard or cellar, as these snakes often seek out these areas for shelter and hunting prey. 

Overall, the typical chicken snake is easy to recognize and is generally not considered to be dangerous.

What Are the Different Types of Chicken Snakes?

There are five species that can be classified as chicken snakes: the Eastern Rat Snake, Black Rat Snake, Gray Rat Snake, Corn snake, and Northern Pine snake. All of these snakes are non venomous, and they vary in size and coloration.

The Eastern Rat Snake is the largest of the five species, and it can grow to be up to six feet in length. The Black Rat Snake is the second largest, reaching lengths of up to five feet. The Gray Rat Snake is smaller than the other two, only growing to be three or four feet in length.

Corn snakes and Northern Pine snakes are even smaller still, with most individuals only reaching two or three feet in length. Regardless of their size, all chicken snakes share certain physical characteristics, such as their black stripes and light-colored blotches.

Chicken Snakes Vs. Rat Snakes

Both terms – chicken snake and rat snake – are used interchangeably to refer to the same group of snakes. The five species of snakes that are considered to be chicken snakes are also referred to as rat snakes. 

So, what is the difference between a chicken snake and a rat snake? Technically speaking, there is no difference – they are both referring to the same group of snakes. However, some people might use the term “chicken snake” to refer specifically to the Eastern Rat Snake, while others might use it to refer to any of the five species in this group.

The bottom line is that there is no right or wrong answer – it’s simply a matter of preference. Whether you call them chicken snakes or rat snakes, these creatures make for interesting pets and can be fun to watch in their natural habitat.

Do Chicken Snakes Pose Any Dangers?

Whole chicken snakes are not venomous, they can still pose a threat to humans and animals. These snakes are constrictors, meaning they kill their prey by surrounding their prey’s body and suffocating it.

This method of hunting can be dangerous for small children or pets who might encounter a chicken snake. Additionally, chicken snakes may bite if they feel threatened, so it’s important to exercise caution if you come across one of these creatures.

Are Chicken Snakes Poisonous?

Many experts believe that chicken snakes do not produce any venom and therefore cannot be considered poisonous. Their diet consists primarily of small rodents like mice and rats, which they subdue using constriction rather than venom. 

However, some researchers argue that whole chicken snakes do not produce venom themselves, they can still pose a risk to humans because they may be carrying a toxin produced by the animals that they eat. In either case, it is generally agreed that chicken snakes are best left alone, as they prefer to avoid confrontation with larger animals whenever possible.

So overall, although it is somewhat controversial whether or not chicken snakes are poisonous, the majority of experts agree that these snakes do not pose a significant threat to humans and typically only attack when provoked or threatened. 

If you come across a chicken snake out in the wild, it is best to leave it alone and enjoy observing this fascinating creature from a distance.

How To Get Rid of Chicken Snakes?

If you have a chicken snake on your property, the best course of action is to leave it alone and let it go about its business. These snakes are beneficial to have around, as they help to control the population of small rodents like mice and rats. 

However, if you are concerned about the safety of your family or pets, you can take steps to get rid of the snake. The most effective way to do this is to call a professional who has experience dealing with these creatures. They will be able to safely remove the snake from your property and relocate it to a more suitable habitat.

You can also try to get rid of a chicken snake yourself, but this is not recommended unless you have experience dealing with these creatures.

If you do decide to try to remove the snake yourself, be sure to exercise caution and use proper safety gear, such as gloves and a long stick. Chicken snakes can be aggressive when cornered, so it’s important to be prepared in case the snake decides to attack.