Mandarin Rat Snake

Pantherophis obsoletus

Animal Class: Reptiles

Length: Between 48 and 55 inches

Diet: Small rodents

Habitat: Found across Asia in countries like China, India, and Vietnam.

Description: Rat snakes live in a variety of habitats with each subspecies preferring a slightly different one. Mandarin rat snakes are nonvenomous. They’re shy and reclusive and prefer to stay hidden in rodent burrows. This species prefers cooler temperatures than other rat snakes. Although they don’t vary in color as much as other rat snakes, they predominately have a striking pattern of black and yellow scales on a tan background.

Our Animals: The Zoo has a Mandarin rat snake in the Learning Center.

Photo Credit: Rvanbeusichem at nl.wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons