There are thousands of snake varieties around the globe, but there are only eight snakes in Maine. Of these eight, there are no toxic varieties, and there is only one type of water snake.

As a result, you’re most likely to find these snakes slithering around in the forest, wetlands, or grass, and if you stumble upon one, you won’t need to fret because you know that they aren’t venomous. Read on to learn all about the eight snakes found in the Pine Tree State!

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new snake divider The 7 Land Snakes in Maine

There are seven types of land snakes in this state, but luckily for Maine inhabitants, none are venomous. As a result, most of these snakes are small, docile, and pretty to look at. Only one variety is endangered.

1. Common Garter Snake

garter snake
Image Credit: tdfugere, Pixabay
Species:Thamnophis sirtalis
Longevity:4–5 years
Good to own as a pet?:No
Adult size:22 inches

The Common Garter Snake is the most common snake you can find in Maine. These snakes are found all across North America, and most have yellow stripes on their backs and brown or green background scales. They only grow to be about 22 inches.

Technically, the Common Garter Snake does have some venom that is fatal to small amphibians and small mammals. But if a Common Garter Snake were to bite a human, they might get slight irritation but nothing more. Luckily, Common Garter snakes are very finicky and not likely to bite humans in the first place.


2. Red-Bellied Snake

red bellied black snake
Image Credit: sandid. Pixabay
Species:Storeria occipitomaculata
Longevity:4 years
Good to own as a pet?:No
Adult size:4–10 inches

As you likely figured from the name of the snake, Red-Bellied Snakes come in many colors, but their stomachs are always red. The rest of their bodies can range from brown to gray to bright orange. Most will have a brown ring behind their heads too.

You’re most likely to find Red-Bellied Snakes in woodland habitats. Even though they are common in Maine, you will have to look around to find one of these snakes because they are secretive and like to hide. Interestingly enough, Red-Bellied Snakes can be found in every state in the Eastern United States except for peninsular Florida.


3. Smooth Green Snake

Smooth Green Snake
Image Credit: Kristian Bell, Shutterstock
Species:Opheodrys vernalis
Longevity:5–6 years
Good to own as a pet?:Yes
Adult size:14–20 inches

The Smooth Green Snake is a gentle and striking snake. It is completely light green, which makes it very nice to look at. At the same time, these snakes are quite docile, which makes them common pets. Most likely, Smooth Green Snakes are so docile because their main form of protection is their camouflaged green scales.

Unlike certain species of snakes, Smooth Green Snakes can be found in a variety of different habitats. You can look in open woods, meadows, marshes, and streams for these varieties, but they prefer to be in open areas on the ground. You can even keep one as a pet if you’d like!


4. Milk Snake

milk snake
Image Credit: reptiles4all, Shutterstock
Species:Lampropeltis triangulum
Longevity:15 years
Good to own as a pet?:No
Adult size:24–52 inches

If you assumed that the Milk Snake is a white or cream color, you would be wrong. Milk Snakes typically have a gray base, but they also have red or reddish-brown patterns all over their bodies. At the same time, their bellies have a black-and-white checkerboard pattern. Another unique feature of this snake’s appearance is its Y-shaped spot on its head.

Milk Snakes are often confused for certain Rattlesnakes and Copperheads, but they are not venomous. That said, Milk Snakes shake their tails much like Rattlesnakes do. As a result, many people see Milk Snakes in Maine and assume that the state is home to venomous varieties!


5. Brown Snake

Dekay's Brownsnake_Frode Jacobsen_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Frode Jacobsen, Shutterstock
Species:Pseudonaja textilis
Longevity:7 years
Good to own as a pet?:Yes
Adult size:10–21 inches

Brown Snakes are small and cute-looking creatures. Most often, these snakes are brown, but they can also be red, yellow, or gray. Brown Snakes also frequently come with two rows of dark spots along their backs. Sometimes, these spots are even linked. Brown Snakes are often mistaken for Red-Bellied Snakes, but they lack the red bellies.

Brown Snakes can be found all throughout the eastern United States except for Georgia and Florida. They prefer woodland habitats, but they frequent residential areas too. It is for this reason that Brown Snakes are often called “City Snakes.” They often try to hide under debris and other items in the city and forest alike.


6. Ribbon Snake

western ribbon snake
Image Credit: Mike Wilhelm, Shutterstock
Species:Thamnophis saurita
Longevity:3 years
Good to own as a pet?:Yes
Adult size:16–35 inches

The Ribbon Snake is technically a type of Garter snake, but it is different from the Common Garter. These snakes are skinny but can grow to be 35 inches long. They have dark brown bodies with yellow stripes, almost like a ribbon.

Unlike with most other snakes, you can spot the males from the females by looking at their size. The female Ribbon Snakes tend to be much thicker than the males, but this is the only visual difference between the two sexes. Ribbon Snakes often like to hang out in wet areas, such as streams, lakes, marshes, and woodlands.


7. Northern Black Racer Snake

Northern black racer snake
Image Credit: Jeff Holcombe, Shutterstock
Species:Coluber constrictor
Longevity:Unknown
Good to own as a pet?:No
Adult size:36–60 inches

The Northern Black Racer Snake is the only endangered snake in Maine. If you were to stumble upon this snake in the wild, you would likely think that it is very dangerous because of its dark appearance. The Northern Black Racer Snake is almost exclusively black with a light-colored underbelly.

You can mostly find Northern Black Racer Snakes in the southwestern tip of the state. There, they are often found in a variety of habitats, ranging from open grasslands and rocky ridges to cityscapes. These snakes have been endangered in the state of Maine since 1986.

divider-snake The 1 Water Snake in Maine

Even though Maine has many bodies of water, there is only one type of water snake in the state. This snake is not venomous either.

8. Northern Water Snake

Northern Water Snake_ Jay Ondreicka_Shutterstock
Image Credit: Jay Ondreicka, Shutterstock
Species:Nerodia sipedon
Longevity:9 years
Good to own as a pet?:No
Adult size:24–54 inches

The Northern Water Snake is one of the most easily found water snakes throughout the entire country. Their body colors can vary widely, but the most common shades include tan, buff, grey, and brown. Juvenile snakes tend to be much brighter than the adult ones.

Since Northern Water Snakes have dark bands, they are often mistaken for Cottonmouths or Copperheads. However, these snakes are not venomous, but they will flatten out their bodies and bite if provoked. So, it’s best to leave these snakes alone, though they won’t cause any real damage.

new snake divider Conclusion

Even though snakes can be a bit scary, there’s no need to fear the snakes found in Maine. The snakes native to the Pine Tree State are not venomous and are even docile. As a result, it’s a great idea to go out and look for one of these snakes to experience the nature that Maine provides.

Keep in mind that you should not provoke these snakes even though they are not venomous. These snakes can still bite, which will be painful, just not fatal. Plus, there’s no point in stressing or disturbing them.

Related article: Are There Snakes in Ireland?


Featured Image Credit: Kapa65, Pixabay