Until this day, every snake call we have received has been for the harmless (but sometimes large) boa constrictors commonly seen on San Pedro. This week, though, we had the incredible pleasure of meeting this gentle indigo snake! This stunning snake had crawled into a bodega of someone’s home, so we collected her for relocation to a more adequate snake habitat. She appeared slightly underweight due to possible dehydration, so under the guidance of wildlife vet Dr. Isabelle Paquet-Durand, we held her for a few hours to rehydrate. By mid-afternoon, her body appeared to be of a healthier weight, she was active and ready to go on her merry way.
Indigo snakes are very unique, as they are able to consume venomous snakes, as well as the usual snake diet of rodents, toads, lizards, birds, and small mammals. Despite their potentially long lengths (this lady was 7 feet!) they tend to eat smaller prey items. Indigo snakes, also known as blacktail cribo, are NON-VENOMOUS and NON-AGGRESSIVE. You can recognize an indigo snake by it’s predominantly olive-brown glossy scales evolving to black at the tail. The underside is a lighter olive-yellow color. There are distinctive dark markings round the eyes, a vertical dark slash just behind the jaw, and a heavy diagonal dark slash on both sides of the neck.
If you are to encounter a snake, it is always advised to leave it alone. Snakes usually only become defensive if provoked. If you are concerned by its presence, please call ACES, the forest department, or other wildlife organization to come assist.