The southern red-backed salamander is small, dark, and slender, with a distinct, narrow, red or orange mid-dorsal stripe with saw-toothed edges. It hides under rocks, mosses, and rotten logs in Ozark forests.
This handsome snake is generally black, but a white or yellow spot in the center of most of the scales makes it look speckled. The belly is yellowish with some irregular black markings. Like the rest of our kingsnakes, this species vibrates its tail when alarmed.
The voices of spring peepers are a true announcement that winter is ending. These small, slender frogs can be several overall colors, but seeing an X on the back is a good way to ensure your identification.
This glossy “black snake” is one of Missouri’s largest and most familiar snakes. Its size and often deep-black color makes it seem imposing, but it is as harmless to humans as it is bad news for rodents!
Missouri’s largest venomous snake is dangerously venomous, but there are few cases of rattlesnake bites in our state. It frequents rough country, is mostly nocturnal in summer and few Missourians ever encounter it.
MDC protects and manages Missouri's fish, forest, and wildlife resources. We also facilitate your participation in resource-management activities, and we provide opportunities for you to use, enjoy and learn about nature.