Snake Pair

We’ve had a lovely spring here in the valley, and the last eight weeks have seen our local toads emerge and an increasing bounty of snakes and lizards. I’m pretty sure these are Mojave patch-nosed snakes (Salvadora hexalepis mojavensis) – can anyone confirm?

Side by Side

They were having quite a wrestling match, though whether it was rivalrous or amorous was not clear to me:

Wrestling Snakes

Twisting Tails


A handsome gopher snake who’s been hanging out in our yard:

Golden Serpent

Photographing the local herpeta is driving home just how shaky my macro photography skills are, and achieving adequate depth of field is a constant challenge with small creatures. But a bit of blur does emphasize the excellent camouflage of the horned lizards:

Sand and Reptile

The black toads are a pleasure every time I visit!

Four Toads Basking



6 thoughts on “Herpeta

  1. These are gorgeous portraits of your local herpetofauna, Jackson. I can’t confirm the ID of the first two snakes (my copy of Stebbins is long lost), but they’re really wonderful portraits, and it certainly looks like an amorous embrace to me.

    The gopher snake portrait is also really nice, and you did a great job illustrating the camouflage of the horned lizard.

    Your macro skills are far better than mine! I usually end up cursing much more than I make images…

    • Thanks Dave! They’re a treat to see out here, and fun to photograph. It’s surprising how willing many reptiles are to go about their business as long as you’re mellow and keep a little distance.

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