Fun Ring-Necked Snake Facts For Kids

Oluniyi Akande
May 03, 2023 By Oluniyi Akande
Originally Published on Aug 06, 2021
Edited by Jacob Fitzbright
Fact-checked by Oluwapelumi Iwayemi
Ring-necked snake facts on the small species of snake.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.8 Min

There are 14 subspecies of ring-necked snakes in the world like the regal ring-necked snake, Diadophis, and other northern and southern species. They live in large colonies and are seldom spotted alone. These shy beings are most active during night hours and not as much during the day. Their unique identifying feature is the ring around their neck which is orange or red and helps distinguish them from other species of snake.  

These species pose no threat to humans although their saliva contains venom it is harmful only to the prey they attack. Northern and western subspecies have 17 scale rows and an anterior end while the southern subspecies have 15 scale rows that cover the entire eastern seaboard. Ring-necked snakes are commonly found throughout rocky hillsides, swamps, or damp forests in North America, Central Mexico, Texas, and the United States.  This article will take an overview of information related to these species. For more such relatable content, check out boa facts and gray rat-snake facts.

Ring-Necked Snake Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Ring-Necked Snake?

The ring-necked snake, Diadophis punctatus, is a small species of snake that belongs to the kingdom Animalia.

What class of animal does a Ring-Necked Snake belong to?

The ring-necked snake, Diadophis punctatus, belongs to the class Reptilia, family Colubridae, and genus Diadophis.  

How many Ring-Necked Snakes are there in the world?

The ring-necked snake population in the world has not been evaluated, however, they are snake species that live together in groups and are rarely seen alone.

Where does a Ring-Necked Snake live?

Ring-necked snakes, Diadophis punctatus, live in swamps, savanna, grasslands, wetlands, forest regions, rocky terrains, and near rocky hillsides.  

What is a Ring-Necked Snake's habitat?

Ring-necked snakes, Diadophis punctatus, occur in a wide range of habitats. Diadophis punctatus are found throughout regions with abundant cover and denning locations and reside in regions that are temperate to terrestrial. They are shy beings and need adequate places for them to hide easily.

Who do Ring-Necked Snakes live with?

Ring-necked snakes are not solitary beings. Diadophis punctatus live in large colonies which can reach up to 100 snakes together as well. If they do wander alone they are prone to attacks by predators.

How long does a Ring-Necked Snake live?

Their average lifespan is six years and two months. The oldest ring-necked snake ever recorded was 10 years old.

How do they reproduce?

The reproductive behavior of these species has not been recorded much. Both adult males and females reach sexual maturity at the age of three. Female ring-necked snakes attract males by secreting pheromones from their skin. Males and females reproduce sexually. Females lay eggs in aerated loose soil from June to July. Eggs hatch in August or September. Parents are rarely involved in raising the young leading to the juveniles being more prone to danger and survival rates being low.

What is their conservation status?

The ring-necked snake's conservation status is of Least Concern as per the International Union For Conservation Of Nature (IUCN).

Ring-Necked Snake Fun Facts

What do Ring-Necked Snakes look like?

A person holding a tiny Ring-Necked Snake

Their overall features are similar to other snakes however they are smaller in size. Ring-necked snakes have a yellow-orange ring around the neck hence the name. This is a unique identifying feature not present in other amphibians and reptiles and fairly common throughout all species of ring-necked snakes and is orange or red in color. This is a bright red-orange color. This bright red-orange color instantly attracts the eye. Their underparts too are red or yellow in color however their upper body is grey.  Their coloration may vary from one species of red-necked snakes to another but they are similar in size. Did you know that snakes don't have eyelids?

How cute are they?

These small species of snakes are rarely seen outside since they are largely shy beings and don't like being out in the open much. Its rarely seen during the day and are most active during the night.

How do they communicate?

They communicate primarily via body language and the use of pheromones. Touching, rubbing, and head nuzzling are part of how they communicate via, mating and other activities like fighting and showcasing their approval or disapproval.

How big is a Ring-Necked Snake?

Ringneck snake is 10-15 in (25-39 cm) in length which is times bigger than the smallest species of snake, the Barbados threadsnake which is 4.1 in (10.4cm).

How fast can a Ring-Necked Snake move?

Ring-necked snakes are small and quick in their movement. They are prone to attack even pet species like dogs or cats if they spot any in their way.

How much does a Ring-Necked Snake weigh?

Ring-necked snakes weigh 0.002 lb (1.32 g). The green anaconda is the heaviest species of snake in the world.

What are the male and female names of the species?

Males and females are not addressed differently and are similar species. Females tend to be larger than males and also differ in reproductive functions.

What would you call a baby Ring-Necked Snake?

Juvenile snakes are called a snakelet or a neonate. Red-necked snakes lay eggs and cover them with mud or sand whichever is available. Parents are not involved in raising the young which leaves them prone to attacks of multiple kinds.

What do they eat?

These snakes are carnivorous in nature and feed on lizards, slugs, earthworms, and baby snakes. They usually sting their prey with venom and also make use of constriction to kill their prey.

Are they poisonous?

These species of snakes are secretive. Their saliva is foul-smelling and contains venom, however, it's not harmful to humans as such. These secretive snakes don't enjoy being petted like other species of pet animals.  

Would they make a good pet?

Yes, ring-necked snakes are a popular pet choice for snake owners and those considering keeping snakes as pets. They are relatively small species of snakes and don't grow too big so it's easier to keep them compared to bigger species of snakes, plus they are not harmful to humans although they do release a foul smell when handled by humans.  

Did you know...

Ring-necked snakes have the habit of playing dead when they sense a possible predator attack or anyone observing them this behavior is typical only to these small species of snakes. Their predators include Bullfrogs, screech owls, skunks, armadillos, and bigger snakes.  

Ring-necked snakes have a way of escaping and entering into houses and the only way to prevent this is to ensure all crevices and openings are closed. It's best to contact professionals in the field to get rid of them if you spot one and are amateur at handling such species.

Snakes are found on all continents except Antarctica. Snakes survive only in tropical and semi-tropical regions. They are carnivores and need appropriate meat to feed on. Snakes are also unique since they can't bite food and have to swallow their food whole in most instances. Digestion happens internally.  

In Ancient times, snake charmers used snakes to perform skits and play wherein the snakes responded to movement and not sound.

What are the different types of Ring-necked Snakes?

There are a total of 14 species of ring-necked snakes. The list includes regal ring-necked snakes, prairie ring-necked snakes, coral-bellied ring-necked snakes, San Diego ring-necked snakes, ring-necked garter snakes, southern ring-necked snakes, northern ring-necked snakes, Florida ring-necked snakes, Pacific ring-necked snake,s and yellow ring-necked snakes. All of them are small in size and vary in coloration. They are venomous, however, not harmful to humans, and usually found in a group. The ring around the neck of such species is their unique identifying feature.

Are Ring-Necked Snakes Endangered?

No, their population status is more or less stable and not endangered. They live in large colonies and have a probability to be spotted near human settlements as well if they find appropriate prey nearby. Similarly, species of rat snakes are attracted to homes primarily due to the presence of mice and rats on which they prey. In such an instance it's best to contact pest control in your region to get rid of them. Ring-necked snakes are small in size hence you are unlikely to get scared by their size however if you do ever spot them be sure to keep a distance if you're observing them or move aside so they don't harm you and be cautious specifically if you have pets at home since these snakes are known to attack domestic pets as well.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other reptiles including black-mamba facts, or vine snake facts.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Ring-Necked Snake coloring pages.

Ring-Necked Snake Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Lizards, Slugs, Earthworms, Baby Snakes

What Type of Animal were they?


Average Litter Size?

2-7 eggs

How Much Did They Weigh?

0.002 lb (1.32 g)

What habitat Do they Live In?

woodlands, rocky areas, swamps and damp forests

Where Do They Live?

north america, mexico

How Long Were They?

10-15 in (25-39 cm)

How Tall Were They?








Scientific Name

Diadophis punctatus

What Do They Look Like?

Gray, Yellow, Orange

Skin Type

Dry Scales

What Are Their Main Threats?

bullfrogs, screech owls, skunks, armadillos, bigger snakes

What is their Conservation Status?

Least Concern
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Written by Oluniyi Akande

Doctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

Oluniyi Akande picture

Oluniyi AkandeDoctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

With an accomplished background as a Veterinarian, SEO content writer, and public speaker, Oluniyi brings a wealth of skills and experience to his work. Holding a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan, he provides exceptional consulting services to pet owners, animal farms, and agricultural establishments. Oluniyi's impressive writing career spans over five years, during which he has produced over 5000 high-quality short- and long-form pieces of content. His versatility shines through as he tackles a diverse array of topics, including pets, real estate, sports, games, technology, landscaping, healthcare, cosmetics, personal loans, debt management, construction, and agriculture.

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