The Snake is Identified

A few days ago I posted a photo of a snake I saw in our yard. A very helpful reader suggested that I send the photo to for identification. Today, I got a reply and this is what they said:

Thanks for sending the photo! This is a juvenile Neotropical Racer (scientific name Mastigodryas melanolomus). It is a non-venomous species that feeds on mice, frogs, lizards, and some birds. As adults (yes, it will get bigger) they are mostly all brown with a light stripe on the side along the belly. They will often put up a fight and attempt to bite, but they are not venomous to humans. They are fairly common throughout Panama.

I’m glad to know what it is, and I’m happy to tell my neighbors that it isn’t venomous so hopefully no one will kill it if they spot it.


I think it’s a very pretty snake, and I love the markings on the head.


About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
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14 Responses to The Snake is Identified

  1. Thanks for sharing and glad to know.


  2. indacampo says:

    If my internet had been working better I would have given you the email address. They are the same group that identified our Rainbow Boa for us. Did you get a big thank you for not destroying it? 🙂


    • The email was just what I posted here. Is your internet better now? How frustrating, hope it’s fixed! No worries about the address. It all worked out just fine.


      • indacampo says:

        Phhhff….I keep on changing web browsers and it works for a while and then putters out. I think Claro reduced the service somehow, everyone using it is going through the same thing.

        I made sure Eric saw the picture of your snake friend so he knew if we ended up with one he was a goody and not a bady. 🙂


  3. Great news! This is interesting to know!


  4. Mjollnir says:

    Glad to hear you got it iD’d and he’s a harmless wee fellow. Probably keeps the pest population down too! 😀


  5. D. Quijote says:

    I think they call it “borriguera” because its preferred food are “borrigueros” a lizard very common there.


  6. Anonymous says:

    Love the wildlife. I had to have two armadillos extracted from underneath the house. Live traps. Hey Kris I see I’m anonymous in the comments, love this site and your husbands . Hears a computer question. How do I get my photo (ya know name with a face) to go with the comment? I’m quite computer illiterate. Charleston David.


    • Love armadillos. We’d see them occasionally when we lived in Florida.
      Maybe you need to sign up for a gravatar account. Then, when you are logged in your comments will come up with your name, and also a small photo if you upload one. Or, sign up for a wordpress account. When I did I automatically got connected with the gravatar thing. I’m not sure if you need to do both, or if only one of these will do what you need.


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