Difference Between King And Coral Snake: Which Is Better For You In 2023?

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If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a King and a Coral snake, you’re not alone. These two snakes are often confused due to their similar patterning and size, but understanding the key differences between them is essential for anyone interested in identifying them correctly. In this article, we’ll discuss the unique features of each snake, their habitats, and what sets them apart from one another. So, if you’re curious about the distinction between these two species, read on!

King Snake Coral Snake
Non-venomous Venomous
Red, Black, and Yellow Stripes Red, Yellow and Black Stripes
Usually have a larger size Smaller size
Mild temperament Aggressive temperament

The primary difference between a King Snake and a Coral Snake is that the King Snake is non-venomous, while the Coral Snake is venomous. Additionally, King Snakes usually have red, black, and yellow stripes, while Coral Snakes have red, yellow, and black stripes. King Snakes typically have a larger size than Coral Snakes, and King Snakes generally have a mild temperament, while Coral Snakes have an aggressive temperament.

Difference Between King and Coral Snake

Difference Between King And Coral Snake: Comparison Chart

King Snake Coral Snake
Larger in size Smaller in size
Usually have black, white, and yellow bands Usually have red, yellow, and black bands
Nonvenomous Venomous
Eats other snakes, lizards, birds and rodents Eats small amphibians, lizards, and small mammals
Diurnal (active during the day) Nocturnal (active at night)
Usually found in drier climates Usually found in wetter climates

Difference Between King and Coral Snake

The king snake and the coral snake are both members of the Elapidae family of snakes. However, these two species are actually quite different from each other in terms of physical appearance, behavior, and habitat.

Physical Appearance

The most notable difference between a king and coral snake is the coloration and pattern of their scales. King snakes are usually black or dark brown with yellow, white, or red stripes running down the length of their bodies. Coral snakes, on the other hand, are usually brightly colored with black, yellow, red, and white rings that encircle their bodies.

Another difference between king and coral snakes is the shape of their heads. King snakes have a rounded head, while coral snakes have a more triangular head shape. This is due to the fact that king snakes are non-venomous, while coral snakes are venomous.

Finally, king snakes tend to be much larger than coral snakes. King snakes can reach lengths of up to 8 feet, while coral snakes are usually no more than 3 feet in length.

Behavior and Habitat

King snakes are mostly diurnal, meaning they are active during the day, while coral snakes are mostly nocturnal, meaning they are active at night. King snakes are also more active hunters, while coral snakes are more sedentary and rely on ambushing prey.

King snakes can be found in a variety of habitats, such as deserts, forests, and grasslands. Coral snakes, on the other hand, are usually found in tropical and subtropical areas, such as rainforests and swamps.

King snakes are also more likely to be found in areas near human settlements, such as gardens and farms. Coral snakes, on the other hand, prefer more remote habitats, away from human activity.

Diet

King snakes are mainly carnivorous and will eat a variety of small animals, such as rodents, lizards, and frogs. Coral snakes, on the other hand, are mainly insectivorous and feed mainly on insects.

King snakes will also sometimes eat other snakes, including venomous species such as coral snakes. Coral snakes, however, rarely feed on other snakes and instead prefer to consume insects, worms, and other small invertebrates.

King snakes typically hunt by actively searching for prey, while coral snakes wait for their prey to come to them. This is due to the fact that coral snakes are venomous, so they rely on their venom to incapacitate their prey before consuming it.

Reproduction

King snakes typically lay eggs, while coral snakes give birth to live young. King snakes usually lay between 2-15 eggs at a time, while coral snakes usually give birth to between 2-12 live young.

King snakes typically incubate their eggs for around two months before they hatch, while coral snakes give birth to live young that are already fully formed. King snakes are also oviparous, meaning they lay eggs, while coral snakes are ovoviviparous, meaning they give birth to live young.

King snakes typically reach sexual maturity after about two years, while coral snakes reach sexual maturity after about one year. King snakes can also live for up to 20 years in captivity, while coral snakes typically only live for about 5 years.

Difference Between King and Coral Snake Pros & Cons

Pros of King Snake:

  • King snakes are easy to care for and quite hardy.
  • King snakes have a long lifespan.
  • They are very docile and make great pets.
  • King snakes are relatively inexpensive.

Cons of King Snake:

  • Incorrect or inadequate housing can cause health issues.
  • Providing proper heat, humidity and UV light can be a challenge.
  • King snakes require frequent feeding.
  • They are escape artists.

Pros of Coral Snake:

  • Coral snakes are very docile and make great pets.
  • They are a relatively hardy species.
  • Coral snakes are quite beautiful.

Cons of Coral Snake:

  • Coral snakes require a specialized environment.
  • They can be difficult to feed and require live prey.
  • Coral snakes can be expensive.

Difference Between King and Coral Snake

The debate between King and Coral snakes has been ongoing for many years. Both species of snake have their own unique features and characteristics that set them apart. While they may look similar, there are a few key differences that should be considered when deciding which snake is right for you.

The most obvious difference between the two snakes is the color of their scales. King snakes have dark, black and white banded scales, while the coral snake has bright, multicolored scales. Both species of snake can be found in a variety of habitats, but the king snake is more likely to be found in wooded areas while the coral snake prefers moist, sandy environments.

Another key difference between the two snakes is the way they move. King snakes are more likely to be seen slithering through grass and trees, while the coral snake is more likely to be seen swimming through water. These two species of snakes also differ in size, with the king snake typically growing to be larger than the coral snake.

When deciding which species of snake is best for you, there are a few things to consider. King snakes are more widely available and can be found in pet stores and via online vendors. They can also be easier to care for than coral snakes, who require a more specific environment in order to thrive. Additionally, king snakes have a milder temperament and are less likely to bite than coral snakes. Ultimately, the choice between these two species of snake should come down to personal preference.

Reasons to Choose King Snake:

  • More widely available than coral snakes
  • Easier to care for than coral snakes
  • Milder temperament than coral snakes

Frequently Asked Questions about Difference Between King and Coral Snake

King and Coral Snakes are both venomous snakes with similar color patterns, which can sometimes lead to confusion when trying to identify them. In this article we answer some of the most frequently asked questions related to the difference between King and Coral snakes.

What is the difference between King and Coral Snakes?

The main difference between King and Coral Snakes is their geographic range and color pattern. King snakes are found in the United States, Mexico and Central America, while Coral Snakes are found in the southeastern United States, Central and South America. The color pattern for King Snakes is typically black, white and yellow bands, while Coral Snakes have red, yellow and black bands.

Are King Snakes Venomous?

King Snakes are not venomous, and they are actually immune to the venom of other snakes. They are non-aggressive and will usually flee when they feel threatened. If they are handled they may bite, but the bite is not dangerous and will not cause any serious harm.

Are Coral Snakes Venomous?

Yes, Coral Snakes are venomous and their bite is dangerous. They are shy and will usually retreat when they feel threatened. However, if they are handled or feel cornered they may bite, and the venom can cause serious medical problems.

What is the best way to identify a King or Coral Snake?

The best way to identify a King or Coral Snake is to look for the color pattern. King Snakes have black, white and yellow bands, while Coral Snakes have red, yellow and black bands. It is also important to note the geographic range of the snake, as King Snakes are found in the United States, Mexico and Central America, while Coral Snakes are found in the southeastern United States, Central and South America.

What should you do if you encounter a King or Coral Snake?

If you encounter a King or Coral Snake it is best to leave it alone. King Snakes are non-aggressive and will usually flee if they feel threatened. Coral Snakes are venomous and should not be handled. If you feel threatened by either type of snake, you should back away slowly and seek help from a professional.

How to Tell the Difference Between a King Snake and a Coral Snake

In conclusion, the differences between the King and the Coral Snake are stark, from the patterns of the scales to the potency of the venom. The King Snake is a non-venomous species that is mild-mannered and docile, while the Coral Snake is highly venomous and should be avoided, as its venom is deadly. Knowing the difference between these two species is essential for anyone living in or near their natural habitats, as it can be the difference between life and death.

Aubrey Sawyer

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