Wild Weeds
Spastic Snake

      Why did this king snake wiggle around so spastically? Is this atypical behavior or is it perfectly normal? According to a number of sources king snakes exhibit a variety of defensive behaviors when they feel threatened. Among these are wiggling their tails in leaves in order to sound like a rattlesnake, striking or biting, rolling up into a ball, exuding a foul odor, and other similar behaviors. So, the spastic wiggling is within the normal range of king snake behavior although it does look a little unusual. Of course, spastically wiggling around on the ground is not very intimidating to a human, but perhaps it might scare off another animal. Some potentially dangerous animals which king snakes might encounter in the northern Mojave include coyotes, donkeys, foxes, bobcats, various birds of prey, and possibly even mountain lions. It doesn't seem highly probable that spastically wiggling is likely to be an effective defense mechanism, but you never know!


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Spastic snake
What's wrong with you?
Are you really that afraid
Of my shoe?

Spastic snake you thrash around
You're making strange moves on the ground
Perhaps you are just putting on a show
Spastic snake, I wanna know!

Spastic snake
You might self-destruct
Be careful or you
Might run amuck
You're thrashing madly to and fro
I bet you can't wait until I go!

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