Common Name: California King Snake

Latin Name: Lampropeltis g. calforniae

King Snake
Distribution: S.W. USA Natural Habitat: Desert Scrubland
Adult Size: 3-5 feet Diet: Carnivore
Life Span: 15+ Years

Natural Habitat

This King snake inhabits the desert scrublands of Southwest U.S.A. to Baja California.


Most will become tame with regular handling, although King snakes can be a ‘nippy’ snake. Provide several dark hiding places for cover.

Captive Environment

When captive, adults require a 29 gallon enclosure, 36x18x18inches vivarium. They should be housed individually or with a King snake of similar size.
Use full spectrum lighting 12-14 hours per day. Provide a basking area with access to a cooler zone. Provide several climbing areas on branches, logs & plants. Use aspen, orchid bark, hemp, shavings as substrate.


To ensure the snake can thermoregulate effectively there should be a thermal gradient provided by using a heat source at one end of their enclosure, connected to a thermostat.
A day temperature should be gradient from 25-31°c (78 to 88° F).
Maintain night temperature range between 21-23°c (70-75°F).


Feed on rodents in captivity. Feed weekly. Defrost in hot tap water. Offer with tweezers – never with your fingers. Do not handle the day after feeding.

All reptiles possess zoonotic properties so ensure you wash your hands after handling your reptile.

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