Speckle Quest (continued)

Missouri Tarantula


Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis

Pantherophis emoryi

Big Blackie

Gastrophryne carolinensis

Working the middle level of the hill, I turned up a pretty little Eastern Garter Snake, along with an opaque Brown Snake.  I was a little disappointed that I didn't find a Speckled King this day, but that's the way it goes sometimes.  I've had days where I've found more than my share of herps, so I suppose it all evens out over time.

On the way back off the hill, we checked some flat rocks along the top edge of a promontory, and turned up an opaque Great Plains Rat Snake.  This was the first live Missouri emoryi for me; I'd only managed to find DORs in the state up to this point.

After leaving the hill we visited an abandoned quarry nearby, and spotted a very large Black Rat Snake out on the crawl in a stand of cedars.  This snake was every bit of six feet or better, one of the larger ones I've seen over the years.  We crept up and took her picture, but otherwise left her alone.

Our last herp of the day was a cute and chubby Narrowmouth Toad, found under a flat rock along the edge of the quarry.  Then it was time for us to head back home.  It was great to be back herping in Missouri, and in such good company! 


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