Kansas Herping

Flint Hills vista

Terrapene ornata, in situ

Carphophis vermis (Western Worm Snake)

Red Milk

Peter puts the Milk Snake back where we found it

Great Plains Skink (Eumeces obsoletus)

I had been thinking about herping in Kansas for a while.  Five years had passed since my last visit, and it was so good I was jonesing for another go-round.  When the Kansas Herpetological Society put out an invite to participate in their annual spring field trip, I jumped at the chance.  I filled up my trusty herping vehicle with camping gear and started the loooooong drive west.

Before joining the field trip, I spent a day in the Flint Hills area, one of my favorite spots in Kansas.  I love the vistas of rolling hills and windswept prairies, and the herps are pretty good too.  I stopped at one 'beauty spot' and found a juvenile Red Milk Snake (Lampropeltis triangulum syspila) under the first rock I turned over, a good way to start the trip.

The next morning I drove back to the Kansas City airport to pick up Peter Berg, who had flown in from Chicago that morning.  We proceeded to head south and west towards the site of the next day's field trip.  Of course, we stopped and herped a number of spots as we drove along.  The temperature was a bit cool, but the sun was shining, and we managed to turn up a handful of snakes and rescued a few turtles on the road.  Highlights for us included several Red Milks and a gorgeous adult Yellow-Bellied Racer (Coluber constrictor flaviventris), observed patrolling the banks of a small stream.

We had yet to get to the getting place and the day was moving along - time to put some miles behind us.


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